In a global industry built by equal parts creative freedom and rigorous work schedules, any hair stylist worth their salt knows contribution to the style community and personal success is based on their ability to throw their hands and mind into the ring. It's more than a job for anyone that's earned their way to the top tier of hairdressing, and if anyone knows knows how far passion and determination can take you in an ever-evolving industry, it's Heather Rae who's earned recognition in Chicago Magazine and Refinery 29.
The styling seed was sown at an early age, but like all good things, the first steps into hair took time… and an unexpected career change. "I first decided to go into hairdressing after being laid off in 2004. I found myself attracted to hair design and make-up ever since I was a young girl. This career path has always been beckoning me and losing my previous job just made it that much clearer that it was time to take the risk and jump into a completely new career path."
With natural talent and her determination to "get busy" and create a name for herself, Heather Rae got to work and developed the tools and loyal clientele that's kept her focused on day-to-day work as well as her next professional adventure. Starting her career by staying updated with classes, tips and tricks from her favorite blogs and her daily work behind the chair helped push Heather Rae from simply "stylist" to Director Stylist and Director of Mens Education within 7 years at a Chicago-based salon, Art+Science, (voted Best Salon of 2012 by Chicago Magazine). She's earned spots in advanced education classes everywhere from NYC, LA, Barcelona, Denver and Chicago, with each experience moving her further up the beauty industry ladder. as well as a spot on the national design team for MENSDEPT. "I never want to feel static in my career," Heather Rae says. "I need to be constantly challenged in order to feel like I've achieved something great. I like working hard if it's going to get me a great return either in happiness, success or creativity."
Ever-evolving, Heather Rae relocated to Los Angeles in January 2013 desiring a new path in the hair industry. Soon after her move she met celebrity stylist Ramsell Martinez, currently represented by Streeters, Inc., with editorial features in Elle, Vogue, V, Nylon, and other prominent publications. Working alongside Martinez, Heather Rae learned the ins and outs of editorial, video, and photo shoot production and is quickly gaining her own clientele. The one most important thing she took away from her lessons was "less is more".
Not to neglect her duties behind the chair, Heather Rae is currently splitting her time between 2 major US cities as well. In Los Angeles, she can be found amongst celebrity stylists at Hairroin Salon and once a month she caters to her loyal Chicago clients at Tsubo Salon.
As her portfolio builds, Heather Rae continues to flourish. There isn't an aspect of styling, platform education or editorial work that she isn't ready to conquer, and her philosophy is guaranteed to keep her ahead of the pack - "Try everything at least once. You'll either love it or learn from it."
Check out Heather Rae's personal website.