Living Life Through A New Lens

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For me, my love for hair began in high school, the cringey era where I grew up as an awkward teen. At the time, I was too scared to look or dress a certain way because I didn’t want to be the “weird” one. Until one day, I woke up and thought, “I want to dye my hair.”

So, I did what an average teen in 2009 would do and headed toward my local Sally’s. I got hair bleach and Manic Panic “HOT HOT PINK.” I worked my magic and then, I showed up to school the next day with bright pink hair. My classmates were shook –– something I remember having so much fun with.

At the time, nobody at my school had colored hair, so walking around with bright pink hair was pretty loud. Still, it was awesome because people would always tell me they loved it and wished they could be as daring.

After inspiring some friends to try something different with their hair, it wasn’t too long until they asked me to dye their hair after school. I always said yes!

I’ve always been a visual person, as in when I hear a song, I’m always creating my own music video in my thoughts. Similarly, although I had no idea what I was doing and no hair experience at the time, I had this vision for hair transformations on my classmates. It’s pretty wild to think this is how it all started.

My junior year came around, and I remember having a meeting with my counselor. It was then she asked me what I wanted to do and where I wanted to be after high school. My reply was “I just want to be a “ROCKSTAR.” She smiled and said, “Why don’t you attend Beauty school?”

I looked at her like she was crazy. Ironically, a year later, I graduated and attended Salon Success Academy in Upland, CA. When asked if mine was a good school, my answer is always, “You create the experience you want to have.”

Reread that.

Fast forward to 2020, when I spent numerous sleepless nights, years of assisting and additional training as well as overthinking if I would ever shine. The journey isn’t always fast or easy, but the feeling this career gave me is dreamy.

The hair industry has changed my life and gave me experiences that I only knew existed in dreams, from traveling all over the world and being a part of educational shows to changing people’s lives behind the chair while getting noticed by companies and brands.

It’s like I’m living the life of a rockstar –– always creating and having fun in my own world. And I love it! To any new artists, remember to always take risks. No ideas are crazy if you’re crazy about creating. Be your authentic self and just wait. When you sit back and watch the amazing chaos you create, you’ll realize being the “weird” one always has its perks

Karla Ress
Karla Ress
Karla Ress is an innovative content creator and hairstylist. She’s also a brand ambassador for Manic Panic Professional.