Inspire! 2020 went live on Zoom!

Each year, the Freelance Hairdressers’ Association (FHA) hosts Inspire! – a day-long event for its members- that brings together the freelancers of our community with stage shows, education, inspiration and networking. Due to coronavirus, Inspire! 2020 couldn’t go ahead like normal; it was hosted live on Zoom instead. The result? One day full of virtual goodness!

What a line-up!

Inspire! 2020 featured a star-studded line-up of guests, representing friends of the FHA and its supporters and covering all aspects of hairdressing. A truly diverse and inspirational day of education indeed!

The morning opened with live demos of long hair with-who else? FHA honorary member, Patrick Cameron. Patrick talked about lockdown and his Education In Isolation weekly series going out to reach more than 300,000 hairdressers across the globe. He shared insights into dealing with social media trolls, his love for education and demonstrated some of his trademark bridal hair up styling. The looks had easy-to-follow steps to demystify long hair and solid techniques that could serve as a base for any further styles. ”We, hairdressers, are passionate about staying connected and giving our very best to our community and clients” he said and that’s certainly what Patrick proved during his interactive, lively session.

Next up was Alan Edwards for L’Oreal Professionnel presenting live cutting and colouring techniques to inspire ahead of re-opening. Alan shared a series of looks based around techniques from his recent Contemporary Classics collection. Although built on similar methods, each of the five looks had a different result through the colour placement of his ‘Stardust’ technique. The finished result was a series of commercial textured asymmetric cuts with colour palette choices inspired by David Bowie’s Ziggy Stardust cover! We loved it!

Claire Jones, Regional Education Developer for Matrix, followed. Claire talked about the importance of a thorough consultation with every client – essential as hairdressers return to work post lockdown!  She explained the science behind a consultation and product diagnosis and the importance of asking your client the right questions: ‘you’re the expert, so don’t leave them to diagnose themselves in the supermarket; show what you know and analyse their hair properly to provide the perfect consultation and product choice.’

More special guests made an appearance including Jez Barnett talking products and treatments, John Huscroft sharing some of his business insights on the future of the industry, Edward Hemmings talking about coming changes and education and Cath McGuinness from Wella Professionals sharing what’s new from the brand and their future plans for supporting freelancers.


Peter Mellon, owner of Medusa salon in Scotland and Wella guest artist, demonstrated a series of salon-friendly styles, before finishing with a more editorial look.


The final session of the day was hosted by Indola, with ambassadors Andy Smith and Paddy McDougall showcasing the brand’s Autumn 2020 Street Style Collection for the first time, joined by Technical Manager, Shayne Meadows. Andy and Paddy worked together to talk through the new collection, with mannequin heads pre-coloured by Paddy and sent to Andy to cut and finish live on the stream.

Paddy talked through his panelling colour technique; a highly versatile method for creating personalised results, demonstrated through accent panels in the collection. For Andy, the collection centred on tailored cuts with playful details styled with a sleek, rounded finish. See the photoshoot of the collection and learn more about panelling HERE


A success

Even though it was something never done before, Inspire! 2020 was super successful, with more than 200 hairdressers joining! Both members and guests got inspired by the day’s stream – and several viewers signed up to join the FHA after being motivated by the day!

Founder Sheila Abrahams said:

“Inspire! 2020 was a phenomenal success and we are delighted that so many people joined us. I’d also like to thank all of our supporters and guests for giving up their time to be a part of the day. One thing we’ve learned during lockdown is the importance of getting together to share, talk and stay connected – and Inspire! gave us all of that. We couldn’t be happier with how the day went and are excited to continue to build on its success with more online events and education to come.”