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Category Archives: Stylist Spotlight

Educator Spotlight: Robert Sapienza


Hair cutting is an art and skill that any hairdresser can develop. With the right technique and ample practice, you can master any hair cut your clients want, just like our Educator of the Month.

Robert Sapienza is the lead cutter and stylist at Ka’ton Salon in Ft. Lauderdale, FL. On February 10th, he will be sharing his cutting and styling techniques, as well as health and body form tips to a long career behind the chair. Learn more about Rob’s Holistic Cutting and Styling Class in Tampa Bay, FL.

Get to know Rob!


Can you tell us a little about your experience getting into the hair industry?

I attended the Aveda Institute Las Vegas while still performing professionally with Cirque Du Soleil and other shows in Las Vegas. After an injury, I chose to go full time into the hair industry and never looked back.

Who are your mentors? Do you have anyone that you look up to?

Daniel Holzberger is my mentor and happy to call ‘friend’. His passion and talent for cutting hair and his ability to translate it to others is a gift. 

How did hair cutting become your specialty?

I chose Hair Cutting while working for the Van Michael Salon group and specialized with advanced education. Eventually, it became my passion.

What advice would you give to someone starting off in this trade who wants to specialize in hair cutting?

Continuing education is key.


All of these play a role in creating a “look” for someone that will truly fit them. Our clients should wear their hair, not the other way around. Never be afraid to say NO.

What got you interested in the holistic hair/ lifestyle?

Fitness and health have always been in my life. It was a natural progression.

How do you try to incorporate holistic rituals in your salon? In your own life?

At Ka’ton Salon, we pride ourselves on having a fully clean air salon, utilizing the Oway experiences and rituals.

Do you have any advice for salons and stylists who want to switch to a more organic/sustainable line?

Think of it as just changing lanes on an icy road.  The road is the same but one lane is healthier, faster and cleaner.


What is your favorite part of our profession?

Being able to create a look specific to an individual that will bring them joy.

Where do you see yourself down the line, career-wise?

Growth and Happiness is all I ask for the rest will come.




Witness Rob in action on February 10, 2019 in Tampa Bay, FL. The Holistic Cutting and Styling Class will center on 3 FOCAL POINTS:

Cutting Techniques with Two Unique, Versatile Designs

[1] Breaking the Bob: Break the classic bob haircut down to strong graduation techniques with tailor made shapes to suit a client's individual lifestyle, texture and facial features.

[2] Freedom Through Weight Removal: Shatter the rules of haircutting by removing weight in a creative and stylish way through strong graduation.

Oway + O&M Styling Product Knowledge

Learn the differences between these two top-notch non-toxic styling lines, as well as in-depth styling cocktails applicable to a variety of looks. We'll also deep dive into the ingredients, pH, hold and shine factors of each product through a prep, style and finish lens.

Holistic Health & Body Form

Get back to the basics of proper hand, arm and full body positioning alignment that will ensure the longevity of your creative career and overall health.


Educator Spotlight: Karla Marabello


This month, our Educator Spotlight is on Karla Marabello of Kbello Organic Hair. Her salon in Midland Park, New Jersey is a product of hard work, determination, and genuine passion for providing her clients a toxin-free salon experience. No wonder why this incredible lady is already at the top of her game at such a young age.

We’re excited for you to get to know Karla more.

Read her interview below!

What gives you motivation and inspiration in your salon business?

I have found motivation and inspiration through my clients. I want to be able to provide them with not only the service and products they need, but also what they want. I find that there are so many people who desire a healthier salon environment and better-quality products. Many of my clients have had health issues, including allergies, or simply enjoy living a natural and healthy lifestyle, which has led them to be more aware of the chemicals in standard hair products. Because I enjoy a healthy lifestyle myself, I feel connected to my clients in more ways than one. I feel responsible to guide them to the best hair care alternatives to meet their desires and to provide a clean air salon experience, free of toxins, and harmful products.


What are some helpful ideas for others starting out with OWAY and O&M products?

Be sure to listen to your clients’ feedback. They know what they want and what they like, and it’s up to us to deliver that. OWAY and O&M are two outstanding luxury haircare lines that have held their service and the ingredients they use to high standards to provide top quality results. It’s okay to start slow. A small intro package is a great way to explore the products yourself before introducing clients to a new hair care line. If you believe in the products you are providing, your clients will too.

What made you interested you in getting involved in this industry?

I really have to say “hairdressing” picked me. I’ve been doing hair since I was a kid. I was always playing with my sister’s hair and blowing out my mom’s hair, and I would do my friends’ hair for occasions. I also have family members who have been in the industry for years. What I was really drawn to was the people. I wanted to learn from people and their experiences and be able to share knowledge, both emotional and textbook. I truly enjoy connecting with my clients.

What advice would you share with others wanting to market themselves in the holistic/organic lifestyle?

Choosing to become a holistic hairstylist and owning an organic salon has been the most rewarding experience of my entire career for many reasons, one being the relief for many clients that there is an alternative option for them. We have come a long way to be able to call hair color organic, but the fact is we still need certain chemicals and ingredients for color to perform at a professional level. The holistic/organic market is huge and there are many clients to reach but be prepared with your facts and know your product ingredients because today’s clients are educated.

What is your favorite hair type to work with and why?

I would say my favorite hair type is a medium thickness, wavy with a little texture because it is easiest to manipulate and will hold a variety of styles.

Any favorite products that you just can’t live without?


I love Oway Glossy Nectar for a smooth and shiny quick blowout with a little Oway Volumizing Root Spray for fullness. For a final touch, I set my style with Oway Sculpting Mist (love this liquid styling spray!). It is so versatile and can be used with a spritz or two for light hold or layered for a strong hold. Bonus: It combs out so easy without any flake! O&M Know Knott is also a must-have for detangling and is an excellent foundation product. I also can’t live without a little O&M Surf Bomb in my life.

What do you enjoy in your spare time?

In my spare time I enjoy quiet time, taking in fresh air outdoors, catching up with friends and family, and I try to get to a yoga class as often as possible. I also love to shop for anything from clothes, shoes, food, products, and home décor. I probably spend way too much time at Home Goods.

What do you love most about educating other Holistic Hair Tribe members or new members?

I love meeting like-minded professionals. We can all learn so much from each other through our experiences and help create new ones for each other as well. Unfortunately, the Holistic Hair Tribe is still small, but growing by the day. I love being able to introduce people to something they didn’t know about before and seeing some of the “Aha” moments when they realize it is possible to have professional results without toxic ingredients.


What is your next step in your career as an educator and stylist?

I am currently focused on building my staff at my 3-year young salon and looking for professionals interested in holistic and organic hair care to join my team. It has been quite a journey and my business is growing daily. I want to continue to provide a healthy and positive haircare experience to my current clientele and to welcome new clients along the way. I would also like to expand on product offerings to body care, health and beauty. I’m looking forward to seeing what the future holds for growing companies like OWAY and O&M as well.

See some of Karla’s work with Oway and O&M below.

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Oway Stylist Spotlight: Daniel Aydelott


This month, we’re celebrating an Oway stylist whose incredible skill and creativity never fail to inspire us and our #HolisticHairTribe. His unique approach to color and hair design has earned him a loyal client base who consider him as one of the best stylists in San Francisco, CA. Meet Daniel Aydelott of HoxtonTom Salon!

Read his interview below!

Tell us how you started your career as a hair stylist.

My career in hair began 9 years ago, but my love for color has been lifelong.  I have always been very affected by color.  My very first job was at 15, I was painting car parts!  I went to different colleges and majored in different areas of art. I became a freelance makeup artist, then got my cosmetology license to be more “well-rounded.”  I fell in love with hair color!  It could transform a person in a more permanent way than makeup could.

I stayed in the San Francisco area and became a “good” hairstylist.  I wanted to become a “great” hair colorist.  A dear friend of mine went to the renowned diPietro Todd Salons and told me to come along.  There, I started over as an assistant in an intense, 3-year color-specialist program.  After that, I worked as a colorist for them in their Silicon Valley salon in Palo Alto for a while. As blessed as I was, I had developed several allergies and sensitivities, from food, to fragrance, to color!  I would go home and wake up with migraines, rashes, hives and respiratory issues. After an intense car accident, I moved to a salon closer to where I lived. I planned to be my own boss, where I could control what I was exposed to.  Two of my dear friends Glenn Svetich and Jennifer Ross, who are also specialists and educators, opened Hoxton Tom Salon in San Francisco. Their goal was just like mine: to create a salon environment that was nontoxic, and keep the art of hairdressing elevated. I jumped on board with them and have been there since!


How did you discover Oway? What made you decide to switch to the Organic Way of life?

I had already began moving towards an organic and holistic lifestyle. My friends called me the “Bubble Boy” because of all my allergies. I discovered Oway through my friend Jennifer Ross. She began a holistic approach before I did and had already been working with the Simply Organic Beauty family. After research and testing Hcolor, I was blown away that a color line could be so clean and actually work! I leave the salon everyday able to breath, without skin irritations, and happy that I can still give my clients the results they are used to.

Who are the people who have inspired you to become a hair stylist?

At first it was people I had never met!  I knew their imagery: Vidal Sassoon, Annie Humphreys, Antionette Beenders, Vivienne Mackinder, Garren, the Mascolo men and so many more. After joining diPietro Todd and working with a few industry celebrities, they became my mentors and inspirers: Emily Kern, Cares Mills, Erica Campbell, Shelly Mohr, Sarah Classen-Taylor and so many more!  They taught me things I never knew. They taught me to master the rules…and then break them!

If you weren’t a hairdresser, what else would you do?

I would be a baker. I love food, I love to cook, and I LOVE to eat! There are so many parallels between baking and coloring: the precision, the timing, the measuring and quality of your product!


Do you have a signature hairstyle/color that you enjoy doing? Which Oway products are you drawn to the most?

Personally I enjoy doing all colors and techniques, and make sure to keep a variety in my work. I am known for always creating dimension with any tone, and for my blondes. Nothing colored in nature is solid! The Oway products I’m drawn to are Oway Hbleach, Hcolor and the whole Hsystem!

Which 3 Oway products do you think should be a staple in every client’s hair care regimen?


Oway Micro-stimulating Hair Bath, Moisturizing Hair Mask, and Glossy Nectar.  Every client will always need a healthy scalp, hydrated hair, shine and heat protection. Healthy hair holds on to color better too!

What has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced in your career so far?

My biggest challenge has always been balance between work and home life. If you are unbalanced in one, it shows up in the other. Our clients can feel that. I am constantly learning how to improve that balance so that I can be 100% present for each client and avoid becoming disenchanted or burned out.

Your hair color ideas are so unique! Where do you get your inspiration?

My inspirations come from everywhere! Art exhibits, nature, crafts, dreams, food, coworkers, clients, Instagram…You have to be in a state of play to create!

In an industry where following trends is common, what advice can you give to other stylists on how to find their very own style?

Make sure you master the Classic/Foundation Techniques! Trends are great; they will always come and but they will always go. They show us different perspectives. Trends, however, are just variations of Classic Techniques. Trends change – they are recycled, renamed and they are not always appropriate on every face shape, skin type or hair type.

Know the rules before you break them. Know why something reacts the way that it does. By mastering the Classic Techniques, you can be on trend, predict new trends, or make your own!


If you were to do a famous person’s hair, who would it be? Why?

I can’t answer this one! If they have good energy, and want healthy beautiful color, come and see me!

See his other works with Oway below!

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Educator Spotlight: Roberta Rae Dudzik


This month, the spotlight is on Simply Organic Beauty Educator Roberta Rae Dudzik. Being part of the hairdressing industry for more than 30 years, Roberta went from a chair renter to a full-fledged salon owner with her passion as her fuel. She now owns Relax Organic Salon, a holistic hair salon in Washington, Pennsylvania. Today, she shares with us the inspiring lessons she’s learned throughout her career.

Read her interview below!

Who inspires you in creating new looks?

I feel my fellow stylists inspire me most in creating new looks.  We are never too experienced to learn something from everyone we interact with every day. I always keep an open mind and heart to welcome in all that is new around me. Even after 34 years in the business, I’m still always enthusiastic about going to work and creating beauty in people’s lives. I genuinely love what I do. It’s never work to me, it’s my passion.

Tell us a little about your salon and what makes it unique.

My salon was created by divine inspiration during a meditation. I traveled a path of spiritual development of self. During this one weekend I was blessed with the information that I was to combine that of which I knew, hair, with that of which I was learning, self-transformation. I had the thought, “How can one create a place of self-transformation alongside hair salon services?” The seed was planted and in the next four years I created Relax Organic Salon, a different experience.

From the moment you walk in the door you are encompassed by a warm welcoming energy that fills the space as well as your soul. Our guests immediately feel welcomed and comfortable even before a service is done. I’ve set my intention that everyone who enters Relax Organic Salon has an experience of transformation, not only on the outside but also on the inside. It’s always wonderful to see and feel the changes taking place each day. I feel blessed for being able to share my salon with all who cross our path.


What is one of your most significant accomplishments as a salon professional?

The first most significant accomplishment for me was when I was 24 and was told by my peers about a contest I entered in our salon that my model was ugly and I would never win. I didn’t listen and did it anyway. My model was chosen and I was offered to do a photo shoot. The model and work were published in the international magazine Passion. I then became one of the International design team members for the salon I worked for at the time.  All because I chose to believe in myself and my work. That was a huge turning point for me. So many of us choose to listen to the opinions of others when the only one we should listen to is ourselves.

If you could pick any one person to sit in your chair, who would it be and why?

If I could pick anyone to sit in my chair it would be my mom. My mother passed away of cancer 20 years ago. I know she would have loved the path of life I traveled and would be so proud of my accomplishments, especially my salon. She loved getting her hair done and anytime I needed a model for a class or workshop I could depend on her stepping up to the plate. So there you have it, no fancy celebrities … just good ol’ mom! 😊

What do you love most about educating other salon professionals for Simply Organic Beauty?


I love educating other salon professionals about Simply Organic Beauty because it offers a new way of being. The company stands behind the products and their performance 100%. Other salon professionals need to be aware of the cleaner options and the toxicity of our salon as a whole so that they can make the change. Many beauty professionals have no clue what their occupation is doing to their health or the health of their client and the environment. I’m here to change salons for the better. One person, one salon, one community at a time.

What is your next step in life as a stylist?

My next step as a salon professional is to open more salons with the holistic approach to the salon experience. I also want to be the number one educator in the US for the head spa salons and experience.

How do you unwind after a long day in the salon?

I unwind after a long day at work with gratitude in my heart that I am busy enough to call it a long day and then I humbly shut off the lights and lock my doors. My home is very close to the salon. When I get home, I change in to my pajamas and usually retreat to bed and read. Yeah, real exciting I know. I’ve been doing this too long to go out and have drinks after a long day. If it’s an early day and I’m home before eight, I will eat dinner, maybe watch TV or just relax. I have created a space in my salon that is very conducive to relaxing, even for the stylist. So if I’ve truly had a long day it would be because a client wasn’t happy and that does not happen very often! I am truly blessed to have an amazing group of stylists that work for our Salon. I love what I do and have created a salon that is a home away from home.

Do you have a favorite formula and what it might be?

I do not have a favorite formula. I feel as though every guest is different, so every formula is different. I try not to use the same formula on different guests. I create the formulas to personalize it for each individual. That’s what makes us artists, right? We never create a masterpiece that is the same. People are not prints we duplicate, they are each a canvas of beauty we have the opportunity to create upon. I feel as artists if we can remember this, our guest will never get bored with us because the canvas will evolve as the relationship with us evolves through the years. Be an artist not a copy of one.

What is your favorite styling product or cocktail?

I love all of the products by OWAY. I enjoy mixing different products together each time so my guest doesn’t get bored. I have the opportunity to see what each product cocktail can do every time I style a client.  My favorites to use on everyone are Thermal Stress Protector for the hold level of four and protection from the hot tools, and the Glossy Nectar for the shine and fact it cuts the drying time down to half.  There are so many combinations of product mixture I use daily and I’m still always experimenting with each guest, every time they come in the salon.


How do you create your best work?

I create my best work by being grounded and centered daily, making sure I am well rested and nourished and most of all knowing and being grateful that I have the opportunity to be an artist every day loving what I do and that my clients trust me to create a look that is just for them. I am blessed to do what I love and live my passion so I always try and create my best work with everyone.

Check out her amazing works with Oway below!

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Oway Stylist Spotlight: Christen Papasso


This week’s Oway Stylist Spotlight is on Christen Papasso, a Holistic Hair Stylist who owns her own organic salon in Spring Lake, New Jersey. She built Grow Organic Hair Salon at such a young age with pure passion, hard work, and persistence which makes us very excited to feature her as our Stylist of the Month.

Check out her interview below!

Tell us about yourself. Did you always want to be a hairdresser?

Growing up, I was always the one doing all of my friends’ hair and begging my sister to let me do something crazy with hers all the time. It wasn’t until I was already applying to colleges that I actually thought I could make a career out of something I had so much fun doing. Once I had my mind set on it, my goal was to work in NYC doing high fashion photo shoots or something in that area. Little did I know my career would take me to where I am today.

What prompted you to be a holistic hair stylist?

I started working in a couple of salons and started having bad allergic reactions to the point where I couldn’t even work in them anymore. My doctor told me that was it, I could no longer do hair because I was so allergic to the products. That day I went home and started my research and didn’t give up until I found a product I could use. I am so blessed to have found Simply Organic because I have been using Oway ever since and have not had a single reaction. Not only was it safe for me, but it complimented my organic and cruelty-free lifestyle. I was so excited about the product that I started building my clientele right from home. It was so relaxing to be my own boss and keep a calm atmosphere. This changed my outlook on everything and my new dream was to own my own organic hair salon. I worked hard for a few more years to build my clientele until I had enough clients to open my salon. My salon is my new happy place and is located in a cute cozy town, Spring Lake. I am truly grateful to have such an amazing product that I could work with.Sculpting Mist-OWAY

If every client could only own two Oway products, what would they be?

Glossy Nectar and Sculpting Mist!

Do you have an Oway formula that you tend to use more often?

The summer has been all about the cool blondes so definitely the 11.17 + a drop of 9.01 9vol as my go to toner.

What hair trends are you looking forward to seeing this Fall/Winter?

Warm tones! Can’t wait to change it up and try out some new formulas.

What is that one achievement you are most proud of as a stylist and entrepreneur?

I am most proud of being able to own my own salon at a young age and for not taking no for an answer when I was told I couldn’t do hair anymore. Where there’s a will, there’s a way!

As a salon owner, what advice can you give to other stylists who are aspiring to open their own business?

My advice would be to set a goal in mind and go for it. Be persistent yet patient until the right opportunity presents itself. If it’s meant to be it will be!

What’s your personal mantra to help you get through a workday?

“Either I will find a way, or I will make one.”

See Christen's most beautiful work with Oway!


Oway Stylist Spotlight: Erica Walker


Our Stylist of the Month is not your ordinary hair stylist. From vibrant vivids to bombshell beach blondes, Erica Walker, aka magic.maker on Instagram, is one to watch. She does not back down from a challenge and has a bold, fresh style that’s definitely her own.

Check out our interview with Erica below!

Tell us about yourself. How did you get your start in the industry?

I was giving out kitchen scissor haircuts and cap highlights by 12 years old. There is just some kind of therapy in creating. writing, drawing, and painting. I gotta spill my heart out onto a canvas, but hair was the medium that allowed me to grab hold of a livelihood at a young age.

What made you choose holistic hairdressing?

My path actually crossed with Simply Organic 10 years ago when specializing in another non-toxic brand, but when I stumbled across Oway last summer — I was sold! The bar for green chemistry has been set, ladies and gentlemen. With so much in the world out of our control, it is a privilege to get to be mindful of what is going onto and into our bodies. And as if the products don’t already speak for themselves, Owayans pour out support and education.

Your balay work is amazing! Any tips you can share? Do you have a go-to Oway hair color formula?

Trust the trial and error. Develop your skill with patience and practice, and then never stop practicing. Every session can be a lesson. For me, Oway Hbleach is a balayage dream! I think I speak for most of the tribe — Oway Hcolor 11.17 is the go-to toner. The way it can beige and ice your blondes — money, honey!

What are your favorite Oway hair styling products?

Hands down, my number one is Nurturing Drops! No matter if I’m just dusting off the split ends during your lunch break or losing my religion over that all-day color correction, I need the drops to polish and protect the cuticle.

What are the trends should we look out for this fall/winter?


I, at least, predict my clients will have me reaching for the more playful tones at the shampoo bowl rather than the usual neutralizing glazes.

What advice would you give to other stylists who just started carving their own career path?

Coincidentally, I’m in my first two weeks with a brand new salon, BLEACHED. Offered a master styling position by a personal and professional dear friend, we are very much approaching this as an opportunity to build up talent and confidence (because between me and you, I guarantee I was actually more nervous to change salons after 12 years than the fresh-out-of-schooler is during their first client.) You just go for it. Make the magic. Make the mistakes. But by all means, just make something happen!

See Erica's amazing work with Oway below!


Educator Spotlight: Boyd Parris


We are proud and excited to introduce this month’s Educator of the Month! Boyd Parris is a talented hair stylist, educator, and salon owner who was worked with some of the best hair stylists in Europe. Besides managing Salon One Eleven in Atlanta, Georgia, he regularly travels to Milan and Paris to service his international clients and gather the latest trends in fashion and beauty. When he’s not busy jet-setting, you may catch his work being featured in some of the country’s prestigious magazines, such as Rolling Stone, Modern Salon, and American Salon.

Truly, we got a gem in our hands and we couldn’t be any happier that he has chosen to be part of our #HolisticHairTribe.

Read his interview below!

What are your words of wisdom on converting people to a more organic and holistic way of life?

Always bear in mind that people often and naturally perceive change negatively unless they chose it for themselves. When asking someone to consider something new, take into account that they may be hearing you say that what they are doing is wrong.

Be a patient and gentle teacher.

By sharing your lifestyle choices with clients and fellow stylists, you are inviting them to join you in a healthier and happier way of living.

If not immediately, hopefully in time the invitation will be accepted. Lead by example and “be the change you wish to see.”

Any color trends you see for the next season?

The seasons #1 trend: HEALTHY, SHINY, AND HYDRATED.

And full spectrum reds and auburns. Shades are natural and dynamic. Applications are richer and more solid – think of Rose Leslie and Sophie Turner.

What your go-to product in the salon?oway-flux-potion

Oway Flux Potion is solid gold – my clients love it!

It provides weightless memory on all hair types, protects the hair while blow drying, and shields against UV damage. I apply it on damp hair as a cutting lotion. It contains a blend of biodynamic oils that moisturize the hair, add perfect slip, and detangle.

What more could you ask for in a finishing product?

Who was the biggest influence in your career?

Vidal Sassoon.

What are some good tips for new stylists trying to break into the industry?

Constantly strive to build your book and always have a business card with you. Social media and advertising are certainly imperative, but we perform a craft that is anchored in personal touch. I have met some of my most memorable and long-lasting clients via short conversations in random places, like a stalled checkout line or an airport shuttle. Being in the same place at the same time with another person immediately gives you something in common. Sharing your card gives you the opportunity to meet again.

What is your type of style?

Classic but never conservative.

Tell us a bit about your background and how you got started.

I apprenticed under a Master Cosmetologist in an Atlanta salon that was heavily staffed with Master Barbers. It was the best of both worlds. The owner had a close relationship with a local distributor that provided access to a great deal of continuing education.

A few years after I was licensed, I opened my own space and have worked independently since.

What steps do you take to stay up to date on trends and techniques?

Digital editions and social media feeds of consumer fashion magazines for trend spotting. Hands on education and OWAY Holistic Hair Stylist Forum for techniques.


What are your suggestions on how to talk about OWAY with your clients?

Merchandise and display the product in a way that encourages clients to initiate the conversation. I keep a tester of Remedy Hand Balm and Bio-Rich Water in the changing room. When making retail suggestions for clients, keep it simple! I always begin by sharing the fragrance and viscosity of the product by applying a small drop on their hand.

Share the product features by focusing on one or two of the ingredients that provide the greatest benefit for them. Start with a known ingredient that they might be familiar with. For example, Black Quinoa. Feature: Contains concentrated plant proteins and amino acids. Benefit: Strengthens and protects the hair. Then share something new like Amla Extract. Feature: Ayurvedic plant rich in vitamin C. Benefit: Promotes healthy hair growth.

Keeping it simple keeps them excited!

Check out Boyd Parris’ latest work:


Educator Spotlight: Tyler Fenix


This month’s Spotlight is on Tyler Fenix, one of Simply Organic Beauty’s long-time trusted educators. Being in the hair industry for more than 30 years, he has witnessed and experienced the various health-damaging effects of constant exposure to toxic chemicals on his well-being and his clients. This prompted him to look for healthier alternatives and set up his own salon suite in North Miami Beach, Florida.

Read Tyler’s interview below.

What gives you motivation in the industry?

I have always been motivated by healthy hair. Since I began at the age of 16 as an apprentice in Baltimore, I was guided by some great individuals who taught “If you can give them what they want, while also keeping their hair at its healthiest, you will have clients for life,” and “You break the bonds when you break the hair!”

What motivates you to help inspire your clients?

I would have to say that Oway, the company, and the products themselves has been my most recent motivator when it comes to inspiring clients. There is an ease that the apothecary-like retail and color system lends to helping clients want to take better care of their hair and the environment.

Do you specialize in anything? If so, what and why?

Since about the late 80’s and early 90’s I focused solely on specializing in hair coloring. I love it. In many ways the application process is meditative for me. I find satisfaction in the weaving of a traditional foil application and I get my creative juices flowing with techniques like Balayage and Hair Painting. I also focused on Hair Cutting throughout the years and hope to infuse some new energy in that area soon to add to my list of educator’s skills.

Do you have a favorite formula you can share?

Hmmm, this is a hard one. I love all formulas from simple natural grey coverage to complex dimensional applications. I would say more about a technique here which can be used with many formulas.

I apply a color to my clients hair like 15g 6.34 + 7.34 + 20vol.

After application root to end, I will paint a mixture of 15g 0.0 + 5g 0.3 booster + 30vol around the face and artfully crown over the applied base. This gives a very natural, subtle highlight that is easy to repeat in a few visits. It is excellent for shorter hair, as foils or plastic is not necessary. Just between us holistic colorists – it is a great ticket up-sale to put a few more bucks on your book without taking a lot of time and is also great for those who are afraid of bleaching.

What practices do you have as a holistic stylist?

I choose to work one on one with my clients. This gives them a sense of being really cared for. I have a salon suite, which is great for this because they feel like they have my undivided attention. Most of the fear they have is related to previous salons where they were left to “process” well over time and made them feel like they were unimportant.

oway-aroma-potI have purchased a sink which allows them to lay almost fully back, while also allowing me to sit while I am shampooing, which saves my back while giving my legs a rest. I also have always given a massage therapy shampoo! This gives my clients the ultimate feeling of peace and relaxation that is very hard to find on a consistent basis anywhere else.

During the processing time, I offer herbal and green teas with raw organic honey or liquid pure stevia. I try to steer them toward decaf options and do not serve coffee, as even the aroma is too stimulating.

I use floor cleaners I make with essential oils and an atomizer that diffuses a soft aroma upon the client’s arrival and during shampoo. I use ONLY ammonia/formaldehyde free color and chemicals. My clients notice this usually by the middle of the visit when they are not having problems with breathing or their eyes tearing!

What are some good tips for new stylists trying to break into the industry?

Always go back to basics. The laws of color will never disappoint you, but will assist you by helping you formulate and/or add techniques to your practice which will assist you in achieving artistic but consistent results that can be repeated with each visit.

When you shop at Ikea, then bring it home to put together, you will do much better if you read the manufacturer’s directions. No matter what color line you choose, it is always worth it to read that company’s guidelines over and over until you understand and have it committed to memory. There is no shame in keeping the manual next to your color stations and referring to it until you feel comfortable with that brand’s mixing ratio for grey coverage or formulations for refreshing the ends. This practice will save you many hours of having to correct things. It also strengthens your knowledge of the line so you can break out and create with confidence later!

Consistency is key to repeat business. Fashion techniques and colors are a blast! If you are in editorial hair color work, then have at it with artistic fervor. But if you are looking to build a salary by way of repeat, returning clients, do yourself a favor and be consistent in your applications, formulations, and recording WHAT WORKED and WHAT DID NOT.

What is your most significant accomplishment as a professional?

I would say Eco Hair Color Style has been a great accomplishment for me. It is a small salon suite, but it is also my start-up. I have a larger goal over a period of foreseeable years, but I feel like this small start has taught me so much, in bite sized bits (mostly). It has been fun and fulfilling creating my holistic, organic color business. I celebrated 2 years since opening in March. But I have to add that becoming an Educator for Simply Organic Beauty and sticking with that over these last 5 or so years has really kept me inspired to achieve my own personal goals!

oway-hsystemWhat is one product that you feel every salon must have and why?

My answer is not just one product but the whole Oway Hsystem. This has truly made my work stronger and enhances every aspect of Holistic Hair color practice. Hmilk is paramount for delivering a stellar canvas for toning after Hbleach and, in my opinion, replaces Olaplex 10 times over! Hscreen has been a skin staining savior and Hrestore has helped me prepare and repair while I color refresh ends. Hscreen saves me time and allows me to use that time during the shampoo to relax and restore my clients’ minds.

Outside of work, what are your main goals in life?

For most of my adult life I have studied/practiced many different and varying forms of spiritual/energetic modalities of meditation, healing, and self enhancement. I think I am being called to refresh those and maybe even teach locally in small groups to carry the message and share the teaching. This also mirrors my Educating in Holistic Hair Color as giving back is part of learning. After so many years in the business, it is like a rite of passage!

How do you handle a challenging client?

This relates to the previous question. I have to be real here because that is what makes me shine! I am not ever going to try to tell anyone that I have mastered this area of my field because days change and people coming in are very, very different. This is truly a challenge for any of us at times in our career, as we are in a very emotional business of beauty, and beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Refreshing my spiritual, energetic, healing and meditative practices will enhance and strengthen my ability to handle challenging clients.

I am only as ready as my spiritual and mental condition allows. In my humble opinion, this is part of a core holistic practice of any kind because the peace we want to impart must first be generated within ourselves and then maintained by our own personalized feedback system and daily practice.

Clients can push our buttons without a doubt! I wonder sometimes if it is like a part-time job for some. I feel at times like I am being tested, and perhaps I am. Sometimes I score high, other times not so much. But it reminds me I am a human being and I have found over the years that clients must be made aware of this fact too. Not in a harsh way, but instead in ways where we as holistically minded hair professionals create spaces where we can care for, listen to, and uphold one another in the way we would like to do for our clients. I don’t mean screaming in the back room or talking behind the back of the client in the salon. I mean in forums for holistic hair peeps where we can let it go and find solutions or know we are not alone.

So in my stronger moments, when I am centered and balanced, I try to change the direction with humor. I take a quick break from the moment by grabbing another towel, breaking eye contact, excusing myself, and then starting from zero. I have been known to actually say, “let’s start over” when I sense some tension. I work harder to listen. I work harder to explain options. I work harder to get it right!

But here is what I do as well, and I think this comes from years in the field and some of my personal practices: I have created my boundaries and put them in writing on my website and I refer to them in certain times when I feel the client is a boundary buster. Things like: By appointment only; charging for consultation and applying that to appointments within 7 days only; and not allowing clients to blow out their own hair.

I say what I mean and mean what I say, but I don’t say it mean. I say no when no is needed. But I offer an alternative when possible. I stay true to myself and my practices as it pertains to healthy, holistic hair.

Ultimately, if it seems we are just not connecting, I bow out and release them with love by suggesting I may not be the best for them. But this is rare and I have only had to do it a few times as a last resort.

Lastly, I go above and beyond to deliver the best work I can deliver, regardless of the challenging client or events that transpired. Before mixing, I find a place where I can ground and center myself and my mind before I formulate or mix. Many times, this wins them over when nothing else would!

With that said, I am still human. In light of our Holistic Hair Practice discussion here, I must remember I am an emotional, spiritual, and physical being. I am affected by variables and must ultimately be forgiving towards myself and others in trying times. This is my learning curve where instead of speeding up the car, I slow down or stop to gain a better perspective so the road ahead is safe and enjoyable for all.


Educator Spotlight: Vanessa Love


A Skin Care Specialist, Hair Stylist, Reiki Master, and Medical Qigong Practitioner. This month’s Educator Spotlight is on Vanessa Love, a multi-hyphenate artist from Fort Lauderdale, Florida that truly embodies the holistic practice.

Being part of the beauty and wellness industry for more than 13 years, Vanessa is looking forward to sharing her expertise and help as many people as she can on their own path to success.

Read Vanessa’s interview below!

What are some of your inspiring or motivating words for new holistic stylists?

There are two important things that got me where I am today: Always Follow Your Intuition; and Never Stop Learning! Throughout your career, you will be shown all different things that glitter – from products, to techniques, to job offers. But all that glitters is not gold. Stay 100% true to yourself and what you believe in, keep the things you choose to hold in that circle you believe in. If holistic is your goal, weed out the rest! If what you seek does not exist, really think about creating it yourself. Anything is possible! That’s where continuing education comes in. Learn everything you can about what you are most passionate about. Follow your joy and you will never “work” a day in your life.

How long have you been in the industry and why did you decide to become a skin care specialist and hair stylist?

2017 is my 13th year in the industry. I always loved doing hair, even when I was a kid. One of my first memories with it was when I talked my little 6-year old sister into letting me cut her hair in the front yard when my mother was at work. Yes, I used the orange handled kitchen scissors from the “junk drawer” and I was about 10 years old! My mom said it actually looked good, but don’t ever do it again. I also was the one doing all my friends hair for school dances. I always had a passion for it and it came very naturally to me. Skin care came with my own skin issues. I wanted to find a way to deal with it without having to resort to medication and chemical-laden products that seemed to do more harm than good.


What is the latest skin care technology, procedure, or technique that excites you?

I happen to be a very different kind of Esthetician and Stylist. Through following my dreams, literally, I am also a Reiki Master Teacher and Medical Qigong Practitioner. I love adding energy work into my treatments to receive a better understanding of the possible root cause to chronic skin conditions and anything else my client may be having an issue with. To me this practice is like being able to see under the surface to better advise on home and self-care to help my clients/friends feel their best.

What is your most significant accomplishment as a beauty professional?

Educating, absolutely. This will be my 10th year as an educator to Estheticians, Massage Therapists, Stylists, and spa/salon staff. I love sharing the knowledge I have been so fortunate to collect over the years with anyone interested in learning. In turn, I have learned so much and I can’t put into words how much I love what I do. Perhaps my favorite story from these years is being given the opportunity by Tamara Wills at Allyu Spa in Chicago to teach Reiki to the staff there. I was very excited to receive my Reiki Master Teacher certificate in 2010 and at the time I was an esthetician at Allyu. Energy work, in my mind fit perfectly with her business model of being a holistic spa, so I asked her if we could add it to the menu. She saw my enthusiasm and looked at me adoringly and to my surprise said, oh no sweetheart, we can’t add it to the menu, you’re the only one who does it! I thought for a moment and then said, I’m getting my teachers certificate soon, after that can I teach everyone and then we can put it on the menu? She said, you do that, and if they want to learn, you can go ahead and teach! So I finished my studies for my teachers certificate, went back, and set up multiple classes and by the end of it all I had taught Reiki to at least 30 therapists at the spa. We added it to the menu and it’s now one of their most popular services!

What is your favorite client story?

oway-radiance-face-balm-kitThere really are so many that it’s really hard to narrow it down. So many people have trusted me with their skin and even their energy, it’s such an honor to be able to touch people in such a close way. One that stands out though is working with a young man who had really bad acne. He really had no idea of how to care for his skin and was making all the classic mistakes without knowing any better. It was so awesome to see his self-esteem go way up after changing literally two things he was doing. We changed to a different cleanser and started to use a hydrating product. That’s it! The way his skin transformed over a few weeks was amazing! He was a believer from them on, and was open to other treatments and home care to further his results.

How do you want people to remember you?

As someone who never stops growing and evolving while always available to educate, advise and otherwise assist colleagues and clients along on their own path.

Considering you are a multi-faceted cosmetologist, why did you decide to specialize in holistic skin care?

There are a few reasons why I chose skincare. One of them was wanting to gain an understanding of my own skin issues and learn how I could help others with their issues. Having an issue with your skin, and having that issue be right on your face can be extremely traumatizing and actually cause that person to want to hold back in certain ways in their life. Being able to educate people on how to care for themselves is something that I am extremely passionate about, as well as seeing just a few changes and how that can help someone feel like they no longer need to hold back. Also, having started out as a Cosmetologist and Stylist, I really didn’t like all the chemicals associated with that line of work, and there was a holistic path opening up with skincare right at that time.

What is your favorite Simply Organic brand and product?

I’m loving the Oway skincare so much! I love working with healthy oils, essential oils and botanicals. I love the Regenerating Booster. Serums have always been a favorite of mine since they are so packed full of amazing active ingredients. This serum actually works to repair and keep the skin healthy and strong! As you get to know me you will see I’m all about “filling your cup”, getting you what you need to get your skin to the healthy level it needs to be and going from there. This is one of those products that is a game changer and a beautiful first step to changing your skin.

Share a short term and long term goal with us…

Short term: I am really looking forward to learning all I can about the lines and sharing through different forms of education. I feel like there is so much room for creativity and this company seems very open to hearing ideas and working with someone’s individual potential. Long term: I would like to be a part of changing this entire industry for the better.

How has your career created value in your life?

My career has brought so many amazing people into my life. People I feel I wouldn’t have had the opportunity to connect with otherwise. The diversity among our profession is so beautiful, I am so very grateful to be a part of it. I feel inspired by so many of the artists I’ve met, whether they are a hairstylist, esthetician or massage therapist, and I feel honored to have had the opportunity to inspire others as well. My career is my life. I’m happy that I get to do what I love every single day.

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Educator Spotlight: Bailey Simon Sagona


This month, our spotlight is on Simply Organic Beauty Educator Bailey Simon Sagona. Bailey owns what is probably the most charming salon space ever in Geismar, LA – Periwinkle Beauty Studio, where she treats her clients to a multi-sensorial experience behind the chair.

She believes in incorporating the five senses in her salon to create a truly holistic environment, so we interviewed her to learn about what inspired her to become part of the Organic Way movement.

Check out her interview below!

Outside of the salon, what are your main goals in life?

One of my main goals is to be the best example for my son of what it means to be mindful and humble. I hope to teach him to understand what it means for him to love himself and others and how to connect with the world around him.

I know the question asks for goals outside of salon, but line between personal and work life is so blurred for me. I am so passionate about what I do that it is intertwined in all aspects of my life.

Another goal of mine is to help people see and embrace their inner and outer beauty. Every person that sits in my chair is not just a guest, but a friend. It is my honor to be able to change their life for the better as much as they change mine. It is more than just a haircut, color, or treatment – it’s a connection.

Also, a goal of mine is spreading awareness about hair loss, and helping people not to feel embarrassed or hopeless. I want to help give people their dignity back. There are so many aspects to hair loss and people should know that there are options. Lifestyle changes, diet, illnesses, medication, vitamin deficiencies, and so much more can make a major impact on hair. I want to show people that their body is trying tell them something is not right, help them get their hair back, and change their life and health forever.

What is something on your bucket list?

This is so hard! There are so many fabulous things on my list! Definitely traveling all over Europe, like old historical landmarks, landscapes; immerse myself in the cultures – just go to the places where there are no tourists just locals. I want to explore and see what else is out there, meet new people, and have unforgettable experiences. Of course, going to Bologna, Italy to pay a visit to the Oway farm is a must!

What brought you to working with a more organic and holistic line, like Oway?

My beautiful little boy. The moment I saw him I knew he only deserved the best out of life, including the best health. In the months following his birth I discovered the harmful side of  ‘health and beauty’ products. I’ve been in the industry for years and have had so many awful illnesses, autoimmune diseases, and allergies. Lots of research lead me to the conclusion that my prior lifestyle, diet, and profession were causes to my and my son’s health issues. I got to work on finding the best alternatives in my home and in my career. That’s when I ‘googled it’ and there was my answer, The Organic Way, offered by Simply Organic Beauty. I was terrified! How could these products even work? Well here I am over a year later after finding Oway, fully committed and loyal. Making the jump was the best thing I ever did, and my life is forever changed for the better.

How would your family and friends describe you?

Well I asked them, and here is what they said: My Mom: A beautiful positive young woman who encourages others to see the beauty in themselves. My younger sister: determined and healthy. My best friend: Caring and loyal.

oway-glossy-nectarWhat is your favorite hair color formula?

Oh, so many! I love to formulate and make magic with color! Fashion color-wise I am slightly obsessed with teals so Oway Hcolor equal parts 10.1 and 0.9 over hair pre-lightened with Hbleach. As for a more conservative color: Oway Hcolor 8.0, 7.31, 6.0, and 6.3 with Oway Hbleach hand-painted throughout.

Who has inspired you in the industry?

When I was 14, I began to assist my cousin who is an amazing hair stylist and salon owner. I saw the joy that she gave people not just with hair services, but with the connections she made with her guests. I fell in love with all things hair and beauty and never turned back. I am so grateful for the knowledge and experiences that she gave me!

What product would you most desire if you were on a deserted island?

Oway Glossy Nectar for sure! I could just bathe in it. Like I don’t think the words ‘too much Glossy Nectar’ should ever be spoken! Plus it could soothe a sunburn, protect me from getting wrinkles, and keep my hair in check while I await my rescuer!

Oway-EducatorWhat practices do you have as a holistic stylist?

Webster defines holistic as “characterized by the treatment of the whole person”, and that is what I do with every guest and with my salon practices. For my guests their ‘whole’ self is what sits in my chair, so mind, body, and soul are present. I had never had a guest leave without feeling like each of us had touched each other’s lives/made a connection. For my salon as a ‘whole’, I incorporate sensory experiences to help my guest relax and be at peace while engaging all 5 senses. I use a diffuser for smell, spring water to quench their thirst, pleasant décor, and soft colors throughout for ease on their eyes. Adele is usually singing in the background soothing ears, and a relaxing shampoo bowl experience and Remedy Hand Balm for touch.

Do you have any ideas for people that want to market their salon using their Oway line?

Try all of the products more than once, learn all about them, and believe in them. When you truly believe in what you are using and doing, that passion shows through and there will be no need to prove your belief in the Oway products and way of life. You will find yourself so immersed in the brand and what it stands for that promoting yourself or your salon will come naturally.

I also love to sample. I use amber glass bottles and jars to introduce my guests who are interested, but maybe unsure if they want to change. They see how amazing it is and the benefit that it is not harmful to their health, and they make the switch!

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