Liam Mcguinness on his Career as a Hair Stylist
Profile (in brief)
Name: Liam McGuinness
Occupation: Experienced hair stylist of 16 years
Currently Living: Paris
Favourite food: Indian and Thai are gorgeous
Dislikes: Clients smoking in my face
Proudest moment: Birth of my kids
Would most like to meet: Barrack Obama, The Queen, John Galliano the Queen too!
Liam McGuinness has the sort of lifestyle most only ever dream about. Starting his hairdressing career at Sassoons, London in 1993 Liam then took a year out to travel around Oz. Only he never came back! His hairdressing career has taken him to Sydney, Australia, a tour of South East Asia that saw him cut hair on the beaches of Thailand to cutting hair for Mud Honey in New York City and finally to Paris where he can still be found.
Not surprising then that we grabbed the opportunity to ask Liam a few questions about his career!
Q. What are you doing at the moment?
At the moment I'm directing my career into more photographic work, as I really love taking photos of hair, and that filters through into the whole ensemble, i.e. hair and fashion together.
Q. What do you love most about working in hair?
What I enjoy most about hairdressing is the immense satisfaction of seeing someone really pleased with what you've done to their hair and especially sorting out 'bad hair' !
Q. What made you want to take your hairdressing career abroad?
I left the UK at 21 just for a year abroad travel experience really; first to Sydney in 1995; but it ended up being a 4 year stay ! The sea and sun were a great incentive, but I started to miss Europe and the cultural world in general as Auz is so far away and a bit undernourished artistically speaking.
Q. How have you found it trying to fix up styling work abroad?
In Sydney it was easy to do the photo shoots and styling as there wasn't much competition, but it gets much harder in the Big Cities, as everyone is hustling for a slot in the limelight, but people are generally pleased to have a Brit do their hair, as we have a good sense of style and fashion.
Q. How does the hair industry abroad compare to that of the UK?
The Australian hair industry is still in its infancy at the moment like the country as a whole; Things are much more creative in the USA, with the look very Rock and Roll / unstyled is the thing; but US hairdressers lack the technical expertise slightly (in the cutting field in particular). They make up for this though with good service and product knowledge.
Q. Favourite place in the world so far? Why?
Thailand would have to be a big favorite of mine; doing a couple of cuts a day on the beach is a great way to live; Zero stress, no tube to catch, yep, that's the life ! Followed closely by Bali.
Q. What have you learnt most from your experiences working abroad?
I've learnt that a positive attitude, ability to listen and just plain hard work get you far. (And have fun when working too)!
Q. Do you miss anything about the UK?
Yes of course I miss England; It will always be home for me; I've got my familly and friends there; plus I like being able to spend quid and take the piss in my own language without offending anybody !
Q. What's been your most bizarre hairdressing experience so far on your travels?
No really bizarre experiences, except for the French women insisting you burn their hair straight every time because they feel more styled.
Q. Highlight of your time abroad?
Doing hair for some important clients in New York was a really high point
Q. Lowlights of your time abroad?
Being a foreigner all the time gets a bit harrowing sometimes; always having to explain why you live in "their country" instead of the UK.
Q. What are your future aspirations?
In the future, I'd like to be completely involved in photographic/editorial and fashion work, where I can use my creativity to the full!
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