My Journey ~ By Kylie
We all have a background to how we got where we are today and along that journey we all experience bumps in the road, like clients that make you want to rip your own hair out, or at times even questioning, “Is this something I really want to do with the rest of my life?” Like so many others, I’ve also experienced those same hurdles, but throughout my journey this far, I’ve found a passion for this career. One that I knew was there all along.
When I was a little girl I was passionate about dance and I stuck with it for 10 years. Now, I loved dance in general, but my favorite thing was the recitals! I loved getting into costume, having my hair and makeup done, and just feeling fabulous! From little on I had loved getting my hair or makeup done, so when it was time to start thinking about college and my life after high school, the only thing I knew that I was passionate about was the cosmetology field.
You can ask anyone that really knows me and they will agree that I am a city girl at heart, so when it came down to looking at cosmetology schools, there was no question that the bigger city was calling my name. People assumed I would go to Wausau, or Eau Claire, simply because it was closer to home, but I wanted adventure! I had a desire to meet new people and to see and experience new things. For me, that meant traveling to a different state, Minnesota. I came across Regency Beauty Institute in Blaine, Minnesota, and I instantly knew that this was the school for me! I was super excited to start my journey as a cosmetologist and start this new adventure.
As I walked into the lobby at beauty school on the first day, I remember that there were about 15 other girls also waiting to be told where to go and what to do next. I gained so many experiences through school, but some of my favorite things we did were avant-garde, fantasy makeup, and of course when we were able to work and practice our new skills on one another. I ended up learning so much more than I ever could have imagined and I even met some pretty amazing friends along the way. Of course, I had my fair share of bumps in the road as I attended school and towards the end of my program, I even started to doubt and question my career path. Through it all, I successfully completed my program and became a licensed Minnesota Cosmetologist. Due to the self-doubt I struggled with about my path, I ended up moving back home to where it felt safe. There, I knew I could take the time to figure out exactly what I wanted to do.
Before I moved home, I was told that there was a difference in hours of schooling between Minnesota and Wisconsin, but my school reassured me that they could help me obtain the hours necessary in order to receive a Wisconsin Cosmetologist License. The difference was 200 hours! I was given two options, to either go back to Regency for two months and spend roughly $2000, or I was told I could simply wait it out until Wisconsin changed their hours to match Minnesota’s. I decided to save money and wait it out. Well, I waited, and I waited, and I waited! Finally, I decided I would try to find a receptionist position at a salon somewhere around the area, as a way to get my foot in the door.
Long story short, that’s how I ended up here, at Back To Bliss! I was hired as a receptionist and shortly after, Monica asked if I wanted to do the apprenticeship program in order to make up the difference or hours. Of course I said yes!! Little did we know that instead of simply being able to make up the 200-hour difference I had to do an ENTIRE year of apprenticeship, but in the end, it was so worth it!
When leaving cosmetology school the educators said, “We just teach you the basics. You learn so much more when you go out into the real world and get experience.” They were so right! My educators at Regency were awesome and there’s no doubt that I learned a lot from them. They pushed me to never give up, and that practice always makes perfect, but I always felt as if I learned nothing other than “just the basics.”
At the salon, Monica and the other stylists taught and are continuing to teach me new tips, tricks, and techniques every day. Monica is an awesome mentor! Shortly after I started my apprenticeship she helped me realize how much I do love being a cosmetologist and how strong of a passion I have for the art of cosmetology. I can honestly say that I can’t picture myself doing anything else the rest of my life. I’m happy I report that in October, I had officially obtained my Wisconsin Cosmetology License!
Over the years I have come to realize, my likes and dislikes in this industry and what areas I am more passionate about than others. For instance, I always have been passionate about good skin care, and I thought that this was the area that I wanted to mainly focus on, however, this has started to shift. For example, I’ve gotten more into perms! I am all about curly hair! The curlier the better! I believe that at one point in our lives we have all envied the girl with the naturally curly hair. I am also known as the blowout queen around here, so give me a round brush and watch me do my magic!
I have had quite the adventure so far in this industry and I can’t wait to see where it takes me! Thanks for taking the time to read about my journey as a stylist thus far. I hope you decide to follow along and join me as I continue to grow as a stylist!
Xoxo Kylie Gonnering
Associate Level Stylist