Mane Master Jennifer Yepez On Her Career Start and Working With Top Models
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Celebrity hairstylist, Jennifer Yepez has been no stranger to Mane Addicts. We love the how-to’s she has graciously shared with us and couldn’t be in any more awe over her work. Whether she’s styling a celebrity for a red carpet or creating a masterpiece for an editorial spread, her work is flawless. We were lucky enough to get an exclusive interview with Yepez and learn a thing or two about success in this industry.
How did you get your start in the industry?
I got my start when I was 18 and started working at John Frieda Salon working with Serge Normant and Losi who taught me so much when I was just starting out. I would assist them on photo shoots and fashion shows, and I was absolutely in love with that world. Then I went off to work with Garren at Sally Hershberger’s salon but I knew that’s not where I would end up. I knew I wanted to be a session hair stylist. That’s when I began to assist Teddy Charles, Guido Palau, Orlando Pita, Luigi Murenu, Sam McKnight and Eugene Souleiman. I would assist them on everything from Vogue shoots to Prada campaigns, Italian Vogue covers, everything that you would ever dream of working on. I would go all over the world and work on fashion shows from New York, London, Milan, Paris and China. Not only was I learning hair techniques from them, but also understanding how the business works. That is an experience you can’t buy. Later on, I began to assist Yannick D’Is, Didier Malige and Odile Gilbert and learned so much more. Afterwards, I got an agent, signed with my 1st agency and started going out on my own shoots, working with major publications and fashion photographers. Of course, like everyone we all grow and change, and change is good. I couldn’t be happier to where I am now.
What was one of your biggest career challenges and how did you overcome it?
One of my biggest career challenges was never giving up. Being an assistant in the fashion world can be pretty tough financially and emotionally; but when there are great times you remember why you started in the first place. Always have to remind yourself it will pay off in the long run.
Who are some role models that have inspired you?
I will say I have so many role models, but four I keep very close to my heart.
I will say Orlando taught me how to be a perfectionist. He taught me techniques and skills that I use on a daily basis. Along with that, he always taught me to never to be afraid of brushing the hair and working with it till you achieve what you want. He also taught me how to think outside the box (as he was self-taught). So basically, to figure it out on your own.
Guido has taught me how to move quickly and also, perfection. Being quick in this business is key but also making sure it’s beautiful and will last. I would say learning how to make shapes and making the hair sculpted is probably one of the biggest things I’ve learned from Guido.
Yannick has taught me not only hair techniques, but also wisdom and to understand how the business works and what people want. People want a beautiful picture and what looks best on the girl. Simple. He is also genuine and so nice to everyone that I learned how to stay humble in the business.
Didier has inspired me but also helped me so much in this business. He pushes me and he makes me believe in myself more than anyone else could. He teaches simplicity; how to have fun while still creating beautiful hair.
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Do you have a signature look or a style that you are known for?
I would say most people would think my signature style is expensive hair. The hair looks shiny, healthy, voluminous, and very glam. I love a woman that looks sexy and confident.
So I would say expensive.
Which hair product or tools are always in your kit?
The tools that I like to use are all made by T3. They are light they work well and the heat up quickly so I absolutely love them.
My Must Have Products Are:
- Oribe Texturizing Spray
- Oribe Grandiose Hair Plumping Mousse
- Oribe Gold Lust
- Kérastase Bluff
- Kérastase LAQUE Couture
- PhytoVolume Actif spray
- Rene Furterer Volumea mousse
- Rene Furterer Fioravanti
What advice would you give yourself 10 years ago?
I would tell myself not to worry, be patient, and be excited about the future. Not to worry about anything, it’s going to work out just fine.
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What is the best piece of advice you’ve received?
The best advice I’ve gotten is to always be prepared for anything. Never assume things, as a look might change and you’ve got to be prepared and ready for it.
What advice would you give to new stylists?
Advice I would give to people just starting out in this business is to learn the basics first. Learn as much as you can from the artists you admire. Assist as long as you can until you know you’re ready. Don’t rush as that time is priceless. Never stop learning, it’s an ongoing process.
What is the next chapter for you?
I would say the next chapter is very exciting. I am not sure what’s ahead but I know it will be special. I’m still growing and expanding in my career and still passionate, so with all that mixed together the outcome can only be great.
How would you describe your beauty and hair philosophy?
Make the most of what you have and also make the woman you’re working on the most beautiful she can be. Do what suits her best, don’t try too hard. Beautiful and effortless is key. First learn the basics, then make it your own.
Be sure to follow Jennifer Yepez on Instagram for more #manespiration.