We asked our Educator...

Introducing Clare Hooson, salon-owner and long-term industry educator. As of 2016, Clare has owned her own salon where she not only provides expert treatments but also ensures her team is fully trained in all the treatments on offer. Over the past few months, Clare has worked alongside Louella Belle to deliver invaluable knowledge via our webinars to over 1,300 students.

How important is Education to you? Is it something you have always been involved in?
Education is key: Without a decent education we would all be slightly lost in our field of expertise, I see education as guidance and it is there to set you on your journey of success.
My journey started at 16, where I attended a college to complete my NVQ level 2 and 3 Beauty, in which time I offered my services free of charge for a year one day a week in a well-known salon. This enabled me to learn as I went from experienced therapists and due to my enthusiasm I was offered a full-time position. My beauty career was off to a good start. In 2016 I was offered the opportunity to purchase a salon in which I already helped out in. I took the plunge and transformed the salon, creating an extra 3 rooms. We now have 10 therapists, 7 treatment rooms and a large mani/pedi area. By helping to train the team I took on, it gave me purpose and it felt so good to share my knowledge and skills which then led me to think about adding education to the salon. I completed my teaching qualification and got in contact with Louella Belle, as I adored the products and was already using most of their brands - I have always said, for you to sell or teach something you have to believe in the product and its results. This is why Louella Belle was the only company for me. I was very lucky to have been offered an Educator position and they have helped me grow. The support I have received and opportunities have been overwhelming.

What does being an Educator mean to you?
Being an Educator is everything to me, I thrive on helping others, it gives me that feel good factor that we all need from time to time. It is a tough industry to be in at the moment and it is about sticking together and helping others.
I have been working closely with Louella Belle for over 2 years and have been given so many opportunities. I teach one to ones or group sessions in the salon or travel to salons and spas. During lockdown, I was given the opportunity to teach via webinars, which was scary at first and having so many people hear and see me all at once was quite overwhelming but it has been so rewarding doing these. Sharing my knowledge with others is what I enjoy, but what I have found is as I teach, I’m learning from everyone, with the questions and input it has helped me grow and learn more as I go. The amazing feedback I have gained from these online courses have genuinely boosted my morale and made me feel like I can do anything!

How have you managed to Educate your students over the last few months? 
I like to keep our clients and students up to date via social media, promoting products, new collections and courses available.
I have held over 25 webinars for Louella Belle with a total of over 1300 students over the last few months and have enjoyed delivering every single one. Students have been so grateful for the free education in this difficult time.

As a salon owner and Louella Belle Educator, what are the kinds of courses you get your team enrolled in?
I like the team to be fully trained in most of the treatments we offer, so I have regular meetings with my team to talk about what courses they would be interested in and what ones they feel they’d benefit from attending. They are always keen to do more nail courses! They have attended many nail training days with myself including, Artistic Perfect Dip, Artistic Colour Gloss, IBX, Footlogix and when needed, one to one sessions to help them progress and grow further. A few of them are interested in teaching, so I am guiding them in the right direction as I think it’s a great career path.

How do you, yourself, keep up to date with new systems, techniques etc.?
I like to keep up to date with the treatments I offer and the best way I find is by researching, watching videos on YouTube, attending various training. For example I have watched Linda Nordstrom’s IBX webinars a couple of times now as I find you pick new things up each time and it never hurts to keep refreshing! The sessions that Footlogix offered were a great help for me, I always pick up new things I can carry over to my classes, I would highly recommend any of these. Me and my team at the salon love watching tutorials on Instagram especially any nail art. Suzy Fecsik, Louella Belle Educator has been offering some amazing nail art webinars recently and we have all jumped on them! She really makes them simple but effective.