We had the good fortune of connecting with Ron Lopez and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Ron, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
From an early age, I tended to be a little cautious. I was the oldest sibling and always had to be dependable and take on the responsibilities of being the older child. As a young adult, I started exploring a flamboyant personal style and participated in local and national nightlife club culture. This really helped me to be able to expand my boundaries. When I found my salon home, I was lucky enough to find a mentor and a team of people around me that helped me to take all of my life experience up to that point, and tailor it to a high-end clientele. I have to admit it I was intimidated that my flamboyance would deter people from sitting in my chair. This mentor of mine helped me to take that same energy of pushing boundaries in the nightlife and focus that creativity into my craft. I didn’t realize how challenging that would be. I found myself reverting back to my cautious ways. Through entering hair competitions as well as curating my editorial hair skills for local media and magazines, I began to get comfortable with getting uncomfortable. Fast forward to now, I reflect on my nearly 25 years in the business, that all of my opportunities have come from taking risks. Learning how to network and build my clientele, entering national competitions, to being a national educator and platform artist for major manufacturers, participating in New York Fashion Week, stepping into salon ownership, all of this was because I took a chance. We all have to quiet that little voice inside that says “You can’t do that” or You’re not good enough”. We all have it. We just have to know that people only grow when faced with challenges.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I was a night club entertainer that pushed my self creatively as “live decoration” That seems like a lifetime ago, but was very pivotal in me finding my creative voice. We would have a shoestring budget and have to create flamboyant glam a few times a week. My 90’s Club Kid days really did set me on an amazing career path. I have been able to channel that energy into my work in the salon, my work in winning local and national hairstyling and makeup competitions, working New York Fashion Week, and now as a salon owner and National artist for L’Oreal Professionnel. In my salon world, a mentor of mine use to tell me that my ability to do the extreme made everything in the middle, easy. Im now 25 years into my career and definitely not wearing that extreme on my sleeve anymore. What i learned over the is years is that I can help someone in my chair to find their confidence. At my own salon, I am able to help my teammates to find their strength. In the salons around the country that I teach at, I am there to inspire them to keep learning. I never wanted anyone to judge me by what they see, I believe I am able to do the same for the people that I am lucky enough to cross paths with.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I was shocked that at the time that I went to beauty school. that there was no education available on the business side of the industry. We were not shown the most foundational part of running a behind the chair business. For example, how to set up and manage scheduling, how to handle the day to day book keeping, how to manage supply ordering, etc. My profession attracts a creative individual that doesn’t always feel confident in the business side of our business. I was one of those. I was lucky enough to have a mentor who was able to guide me through that process. About 4 years ago I was very lucky to have stumble upon one of my most valuable assets as a business owner. I connected with Zan Ray and Tom Collins of Elevatemybusiness.com. We hired them as our business coach and have kept them as our asset for that whole of that time They have been invaluable to helping my business partner and I to expand our way of thinking and really are helping us take our business to the next level.
Instagram: @ronlopez2 and @elsalondenver
Linkedin: Ron Lopez
Facebook: ronlopez and elsalondenver
Kevin Alexander and Ehren Joseph Studios