Cooking with Kahlil - Celebrity Hairstylist Kahlil Oliver
So, I didn’t meet this Image Maker on Twitter. I know right, “what”?? Though I was turned on to him by Image Maker Sandy James as he hails from her agency Stilista Agency… seems that agency is running amuck with Beauty Supa Stars. LOL, and Kahlil Oliver is no exception as soon as Sandy sent his info and I saw his photos I was eager to reach out to him. Read the interview to find out how Kahlil went from doing hair in the kitchen to Hollywood, what he thinks it takes to stay on top and what a “typical” day in his shoes is like.
BEAUTYSCHOOLED! How long have you been in the industry?
Kahlil: I’ve been doing hair for the last 13 years and found my way into the industry side of it about 6 years ago.
BEAUTYSCHOOLED! When did you know you wanted to be a hair stylist?
Kahlil: I first knew I wanted to be a hairstylist when I was about 15 years old with a full appointment book and no formal training. Quickly began to be the talk around town and I knew at that point I was an artist and hair was my clay.
BEAUTYSCHOOLED! Love that analogy of the artist and clay. So, other than cosmetology school have you had any additional training or education that you believe has helped you to stand out amongst the sea of other hairstylist?
Kahlil: I think being a great hairstylist or anything that you choose to be great at requires constant training in your craft. Staying on top of the latest trends is a must. So to answer the question I like to keep myself involved in cutting and coloring classes, latest weaving techniques and constantly keeping myself involved with editorial photo shoots to stay up on my creative skills.
BEAUTYSCHOOLED! When did all of that begin got really pay off for you, when was your first big break and what was it?
Kahlil: My first big break was in 2005 when I was requested by a local makeup artist to join the crew as a hairstylist on the set of "The Salon" a film starring Vivica Fox, Monica Calhoun, Taral Hicks and many more.
BEAUTYSCHOOLED! I remember that movie, that’s a HUGE break! Kahlil, would you say that you have a niche, or is there anything particular that your clients or industry peers would say you're known for?
Kahlil: When it comes to hair I am very versatile in my craft. I am equally as good when it comes to white, black, long , short, classic or avant garde, so my niche would be great hair!
BEAUTYSCHOOLED! What’s a typical working day like for you, if there is such a thing as typical for you?
Kahlil: A typical work day for me starts at about 10 in the morning with my first client. I usually do about 15 clients a day that gets me out of the salon around 8 or 9 pm. At any given day I can receive a phone call from my agent sending me anywhere from DC to NYC to do a photo shoot, red carpet event, video etc.
BEAUTYSCHOOLED! What would you say are the biggest misconceptions about the industry and hair stylists specifically?
Kahlil: That it’s all fabulous, fortune and fame. You really have to have a love for it. It is many long hours, very picky clients, very fast paced a lot of traveling, and working out of a suitcase, but it’s all worth it.
BEAUTYSCHOOLED! It seems that every up and coming makeup artist and hairstylists wants to work with celebrities. What advice do you have for someone new who is trying to break into the industry and wanting to work with celebrities?
Kahlil: That the road is long and hard but if working with celebs is what your ultimate goal is, you should never give up. Success doesn’t happen over night.
BEAUTYSCHOOLED! Do you hire assistants, provide mentoring for young stylists or provide workshops or training?
Kahlil: I do hire assistants when needed and I am always willing to give a helping hand and words of encouragement to up and coming hairstylist.
Thanks Kahlil! For more information on Kahlil and to see more of his work visit his website or for booking information visit his agent’s website.
Ciao for now… Class is dismissed!