We had the good fortune of connecting with Amy Huson and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Amy, have there been any changes in how you think about work-life balance?
Work life balance is something I think I’ve struggled with from the beginning. I started my career in New York City, where someone is always on your heels waiting for you to fail and take your spot. It’s a pretty tough place to climb to the top, but once the hustle and bustle of that city is in your blood, there’s no turning back. In my 20’s it was easy for me to work 10+ hours a day and pack in a dozen clients. I would even go as far as to say I loved it! It was what everyone else in New York was doing. Life inside and outside of the salon started to blend. My co workers became my best friends and who I would spend all my free time with. This didn’t seem to change until I met my husband. All of a sudden I didn’t want to be at work until 9pm. Then came my first daughter and, as you can imagine, my work life balance completely shifted. After daughter number two, salon life took on a whole new look to me. My family relies on my income so I have to work hard, but my priorities have completely shifted. It’s still a daily struggle for me, but I’ve learned that saying “no” or “I’m sorry but I just don’t have the time” is OK. Just the other week I took of a day to go surfing. What?! I would have NEVER done something like that in the past. It still gave me a lot of anxiety to actually pull the trigger and make that happen, but it was a great lesson for me. I’m lucky that I love what I do. I’m sure that’s the reason why walking away from my job at times is hard for me, but having a more balanced life has given everything more meaning. Life looks brighter!
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I’m most well known for my balayage technique and the way I create natural, dimensional, healthy color. I was taught to paint hair by the talented Laurie Foley in the East Village. She’s famous for her balayage. After that, I was given the opportunity to work for a few of the top hair salons in New York and LA. It was never easy, but it was something I wanted so badly. Building a clientele and proving yourself to them and the people you work for is tough on your self esteem. I’ve learned to be careful, cautious, and patient. I think being a careful colorist has been one of the things that’s pushed my career forward so much. It creates a strong, trusting foundation for a client/stylist relationship. You’ll never see me start a big project without testing a few pieces of hair to see how they will hold up. It keeps me from over promising or even worse… damaging the hair.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
(Let’s go ahead and say this is pre or post Covid) I live in Topanga so that in itself is a cool place to start. We’d probably start with breakfast and a smoothie at Topanga Living Cafe, then grab a couple surf boards and head down to Topanga Beach. We’d likely run into some friends there. I love a good farmers market, so we’d do Santa Monica on Wednesday morning. We may swing over to Venice and pop in my favorite vintage shop- Venice Vintage Paradise. Can’t leave Abbot Kinney without a salted malted chocolate chip cookie dough cone at Salt & Straw. We’d also hit up Robertas in Culver City for pizza (reminding me of Brooklyn). No doubt we’d finish with way more beach time and some Topanga hikes.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Dedicating this shout out to the people who gave me opportunities and helped me grow along the way: Laurie Foley Serge Normant Marie Robinson Johnny Ramirez Anh Co Tran All of my best nyc salon girlfriends My loyal clients