As Editor in Chief of American Salon, Kelley Donahue reports on all aspects of the professional beauty industry, including salon business-building strategies, seasonal hair and fashion trends, salon services and techniques, and timely issues impacting manufacturers, schools, salons and distributor principals. In addition to conducting photo shoots--one of which was the recipient of an ABBIES Award for Best Magazine Cover--Donahue also travels extensively throughout the U.S. and abroad, sourcing out new trends and representing American Salon at major industry functions and educational events.
Passionate is defined as “having strong feelings or a strong belief about something,” and that sums up how Joy LaMay feels about hairstyling. “I’ve been styling for 10 years and have loved every minute,” LaMay says. A firm believer that knowledge is the key to success, LaMay constantly challenges herself with continuing education to hone her skills. “I believe that a client’s trust is a big responsibility and shouldn’t be taken lightly,” she says.
✂ —Kelley Donahue
What inspires you?
History—the past has always interested me. I love drawing inspiration from the great hair artists who camebefore me.
From an early age, I knew I wanted to be in the arts and sciences and was obsessed with meteorology, biology and art. At one point, I saw myself as a scientist in a lab or in the nature arena performing experiments. That all changed when I enrolled in beauty school. One week of creating with my hands and I was hooked. Doing hair has provided me with so much more than I could have ever imagined.
I attended Bellus Academy in El Cajon, CA, then worked at Michael Nelson An Image Studio and Fringe Hair Studio in Southern California before settling in at C the Salon in Studio City, CA. Along the way, I’ve taken classes with Wella and TIGI.
The iconic look from the 1890s—I love me some Gibson Girls.
Sebastian Professional Re-Shaper hairspray—it helps me achieve endless styling options.
I’ve been welcomed into the Wella family and I’m now friends with talented stylists who’ve been mentors to me. Having the personal mentorship of Wella Education Associate Manager Paula Rufo and C the Salon owner Claudio Lazo is invaluable.
Striking a balance. I give 110 percent of myself to my family and building a clientele.
BEST PIECE OF ADVICE I EVER GOT
On my way to my first job, my mom told me to “Listen, watch, and don’t say ‘Yeah, I know.’” She was teaching me to be humble, respectful and to always have my mind open to learning.
Professionally, it was winning the Hairdressers at Heart Vidal Sassoon Scholarship and the overwhelming response to the video I submitted to win the accolade. In my personal life, it’s being married to my best friend and raising our daughter.
Continuing to work and grow with Wella and my new family at C the Salon. Education is a passion of mine, so I know my future plans will include it in some way, shape or form.