Beauty Launchpad Magazine

DEC 2017

Beauty Launchpad is everything beauty for salons & stylists! Stay on top of the latest hair style trends and products for hair, skin, makeup and nails. Get hair color ideas, business advice, education tips and beauty industry news.

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T here was never a time in my life when I wanted to be anything other than a hairstylist," asserts Detra Smith (@detrashalee), artistic director for Hot Tools (@hottoolspro). At 12, Smith was already trimming tresses for neighborhood children; in high school, she enrolled in a cosmetology vocational program and was participating in student competitions by the 11th grade. "The fi rst time I knew the difference I could make in a person's self- esteem was when I glammed up my grandmother," Smith recalls. "She couldn't stop smiling when I styled her hair and makeup. Years later, I still look for that giddiness in my salon guests." But it was while attending the Masters Institute of Cosmetology in AL, owned by Gary and Ann Bray, where Smith found a lifelong mentor who would change her career forever. Ann coached the young teenager, stressing discipline, structure and foundational skills. Meanwhile, Smith assisted the duo (then U.S. Hairworld team trainers) when top stylists from around the world attended their master sessions—learning not only styling skills but model selection, makeup artistry, wardrobe essentials and assembling camera-ready looks. "I used all of that for competitions, but also for marketing myself and later for launching my salon," Smith notes. "Becoming artistic director at Hot Tools is a direct result of continuing to use the skills I learned from the very beginning." Nowadays, Smith—who is also a Matrix artistic educator—focuses on connecting with stylists and spreading the word about Hot Tools' commitment to innovation and technology. The team is also developing education programs and teaching stylists how to strengthen their skills with the latest tools. "A stylist recently described Hot Tools as tried and true—and we're proud of our heritage, but we're also excited about where the future is taking us," Smith grins. "We have to be open and willing to evolve with the industry. Innovation is vital to the success of tomorrow's stylists." Profi les DETRA: KIM ALEXANDER PHOTOGRAPHY; COURTESY OF HOT TOOLS Hot Tools artistic director Detra Smith was always slated for the stylist life—but a gifted mentor and passion for learning soared her to unforeseen heights. ÑTRACY MORIN DEVELOPMENT NOTES Detra Smith takes a hands- on approach to Hot Tools' product development, from the uniquely designed CurlBar to the new Black Gold tools. "The makers behind the products place tools in my hands and watch every joint in my body to design better ergonomics," she explains. "And they measure as the tools glide over the hair to design the best surfaces and heating technology." 34 | BEAUTY LAUNCHPAD | DECEMBER 2017 L I V E & LE A R N Hot Tools CurlBar Destiny's Child At a shoot for wedding designer Heidi Elnora. Smith styles hair at Prabal Gurung. Detra Smith

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