Each year, the Fellowship for British Hairdressing and the NHF partner to present The Christofer Mann Step Up & SHINE Scholarship to one lucky hairdresser. This winner receives a budget, to spend on their choice of education courses – mentored by industry expert, Debbie G.
The scholarship is open to any hairdresser, of any age, in any location – and this year’s winner is Amanda Linehan from Hot Trends in Gillingham, Kent.
After spending a mentoring session with Debbie, Amanda decided to undertake sessions in creative colour – her passion – as well as classic courses to build up her confidence.
So far, Amanda has had two cutting courses with Debbie G at the Billi Currie salon. The first covered the foundations of cuts and enhancing precision – something which Amanda admits, “you easily get out of the habit with in a busy salon.” Next up was fringe-cutting course; an intimate session to refresh her skills and create trend-led looks.
Amanda next undertook a presentation skills course with Edward Hemmings. “The idea of this was terrifying,” she says. “But after chatting with Edward, he reassured me it would be a great start to my scholarship. He was right, and it was a great day. I definitely come away with heaps more confidence.”
Next on the list was a session to salon course with Luke Benson. “This was great because it gave me some fantastic tips on how to add a bit more to a finish on a client,” says Amanda. “I have a lot of clients who want to go out of the salon with a little more than just a blowdry, so I came away with great ideas that I've been trying out with them.”
Amanda then headed to Rush Academy for a one-on-one cutting session with Andy Heasman. “I was nervous at first,” she says. “But I came out buzzing. I was welcomed by Adam Bryant on arrival and he reassured me I'd be fine – and he was right. Andrew went through three different haircuts with me from start to finish and was really patient. He showed me new, in-depth methods which were fantastic.”
Most recently, Amanda spent the day at the L’Oréal Academy for a creative colour course. “This was my first colour course and my first time at the academy,” says Amanda. “We learnt how to get more inspired through moodboards, and got to mix and make up colours and really let loose. It was amazing to get to be creative and I came away feeling seriously inspired.”