For our November issue’s Editor’s Note, Editorial Director Kelley Donahue talked to Angus Mitchell, the son of the late Paul Mitchell, who will accept his father’s award at the Beauty Changes Lives Experience and Legacy Award Dinner on March 31, 2019. Here, additional highlights from the interview on his dad’s legacy and lasting impact on the culture of hairstyling.
Let’s discuss your father’s legacy. How did his interest in natural ingredients influence your career?
As a hairstylist, my dad was always interested in improving his clients’ hair. In the 1970s, his New York City salon, Super Hair, housed a lab where he would craft specific shampoos for individual clients. As a short-haired hippie in the early ‘80s, he brought our family to Hawaii, where we lived on a self-sufficient, sustainable property. All of our energy was solar-powered, and we were water conservationists. My dad would send me out in a downpour to wash my hair. I planted and harvested the acai berries used in our formulations for $1.25 an hour. My dad’s love for the planet and self-sufficient energy helped us build an electric car, which we raced across a continent in 1987. At the end of the day, my dad was a visionary, an entrepreneur and a hairstylist.
Would you encourage your son to become a hairdresser?
I will be so happy if he chooses to become a hairstylist. But I am right-handed, and he’s a leftie, and I will certainly want him to use my scissors.
What inspires you about Future Professionals entering the beauty industry?
They have so much energy and passion—it’s unbelievable! We see it as Future Professionals in John Paul Mitchell Schools compete for an opportunity to participate in our annual Caper event, an amazing destination hair show experience.
Can you give us a preview of the remarks you’ll make at the Legacy Award Dinner?
I really like to work off the cuff, but I can’t wait to share a very meaningful and beautiful video with all of the attendees at next spring’s Beauty Changes Lives Experience.