A hair stylist is celebrating three decades of hairdressing at a Northampton salon.
Leah began her career at Hensmans salon in Abington Square in June 1992 as a Saturday job following a stint of work experience. A year later, she became a full-time apprentice and qualified as a stylist in 1995.
Leah was promoted to salon manager in 1998 and took on the role of salon assessor in 1999. The arrival of her daughter Violet in 2009 and son Wilfie 2012 meant that Leah returned to work part-time after maternity leave and undertook the role of client care manager, overseeing the standards of customer service in the salon. In July 2016, Leah was promoted once again and became the salon’s Associate Director, a role which she continues to fulfil today.
Thirty years on, Leah still loves hairdressing just as much as the day she qualified. She said, “Thirty years does sound like a long time but my career at Hensmans has been so varied and fulfilling that it sometimes feels like no time has passed at all. I feel incredibly lucky to have had so many incredible opportunities and experiences, which wouldn’t have been possible without the encouragement from the Directors and the salon team over the years.
“I enjoy a challenge and because of this I have been able to carve out a career that I am really proud of. I am also so grateful for the support shown by the salon when I had my children. They worked with me to make sure my job was flexible while also giving me new responsibilities to focus on across the wider salon.”
As well as working her way up the ranks of the salon, Leah has always been actively involved in the wider hairdressing industry and has also entered industry awards and worked at events and shows, including creating hair looks for University degree shows in partnership with Northampton University and at Salon International.
Salon owner, Julie Hensman, said: “It has been an absolute joy to watch Leah grow, not only as an incredible hairstylist, but as a person too. Leah is the epitome of what a career in hairdressing can be and her talent, commitment and growth endorse that.
“The thing I love about Leah is that she never rests on her laurels. She continues to find new goals in the salon, around being a mother – which she is also great at! She has always met her targets for promotion and is a fantastic role model for our younger stylists.”
The Hensmans team will be raising a glass to Leah on June 22 at a salon gathering that will include many of Leah’s loyal clients and colleagues from over the years.
Leah adds, “I really have to say that working in a salon is so much more than just cutting hair, though I really love that part! It’s about gaining valuable life skills and helping to create a safe and welcoming space for the local community to enjoy. My clients are fantastic, many who have stuck with me since the beginning, which means I must be doing something right!”