We had the good fortune of connecting with Meg Titus and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Meg, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
When I think about risk; the possibility that something unpleasant or unwelcome will happen. so much of our lives and how we live them involves risk; the forks in the road, choices we’re forced to make, the sliding doors of it all. I didn’t start trusting my intuition till later in life so many lessons have been learned.
Some would say opening a business in the middle of a global pandemic is a huge risk. I say never stop taking risks, falling down, making mistakes, learning from them – keep on growing and evolving. I am so excited for this next chapter and all the pages I have left to turn. I feel incredibly lucky to have a business partner, friend, co-worker by my side who inspires me, challenges me and lifts me up. Westfolk salons doors have been open just under a year and the welcome we have had from the neighborhood and community has been so heart warming – it is an affirmation that we have landed exactly where we were meant to.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Growing up I wanted to be an actress, I was a theater and choir nerd with the best of them; however, leaving my small town in Northern California to live in los Angeles seemed way too scary. My mom and my grandmother are both hairstylists and owned their own salons so naturally I wanted to do something different from them and since I was too afraid to move to the big bad city and had no idea what else I wanted to do, I opted to work at Costco. That didn’t last very long, as I soon learned I was not destined for a life of pushing carts and boxing groceries; as fun as it was, it wasn’t scratching that creative itch I was feeling. Off to beauty school I went. I graduated in 2000, excited to start my hair career. In 2003 I moved down to San Diego. Not quite LA, but a little less scary and my dad had some friends down there that could be a safe place to land if I needed. I worked at a busy salon in La Jolla. 4 months into my new adventure my father passed away suddenly. This particular fork in the road changed my way of thinking and shaped the way I thought about life and the risks we take forever. For one, I realized how delicate and short life could be – so I started taking more risks. I started teaching for Joico, a hair color company. It was so exciting. It had me traveling out of the state, assisting at photo shoots in LA and running gifting suites during award season in Hollywood. I was even published in a couple hair magazines which was really exciting for a 24 year old. I got to go to different salons and meet and teach other hairstylists about joico. It was a blast. I was spending so much time in LA I decided to face my fear and move there. in 2006 my pug Guinness and I sold what little stuff we owned packed my car and drove to Sherman oaks, where we would live for the next three months… on the couch of my best friend Jessica (we have been friends since we were 4) just until I got settled and started building up a clientele. Since I found myself in tinsel town I decided to study acting as well. I studied Meisner two days a week in a two year program while working full time as a hairstylist and also freelancing; doing hair and makeup in the film wedding and entertainment industries. I dabbled in acting, modeling and writing for a few years but ultimately my hair career was taking off I was so busy it was hard to focus – being pulled in so many directions. Finding myself at another fork in the road, I decided to just do hair and nothing else for a couple years and see how that felt.
Pre covid I was working at a bustling 10 chair salon in Studio City where I met my now business partner in crime Genai. I was lucky enough to get a station right next to her and we became friends. After working together a couple years we would joke and day dream about opening a salon one day together.
I had been craving teaching again since I had taken some years off to pursue other things and was using this new color line called ‘Color Me’ by Kevin Murphy: an Australian hair care line. I sent in my audition tape and got the job. I went to my first training in 2019 and then flew to Dallas in January of 2020 to train with the whole international crew and all the masters. It was enthralling and I was ambitiously plotting out my path to become a color master and travel around the world with Kevin Murphy… life had other plans.
Leap year 2020 I flew to England to marry my best friend after a two year engagement. The world was starting to shift but not fast enough to see with the naked eye. Our wedding went off without a hitch and life as we knew it was blissful. Excited to fly home and celebrate with friends and family in America who couldn’t make the trip, we flew back into LAX on March 8th. I worked at the salon for a week and the world shut down and my path was about to change course again.
Those first six months of Covid, and lockdown, were scary. I quit the salon I was working at, as I couldn’t pay rent for my chair, given that my financial future was unknown and I had just spent my savings on a wedding in another country. I kept myself slightly busy creatively during lockdown; attending virtual classes with my Kevin Murphy family, dropping off root color kits to clients with a how to video, using my husbands hair as my guinea pig for new cuts and color techniques all while patiently waiting for the world to open up so I could get back to business. The idea of returning to a big space made me really nervous, so when salons were allowed to open again, I reached out to my friend Maggie, who owned a slightly smaller salon, to see if she had an open chair. After working there a couple months I found a little two chair bungalow that was for lease and I reached out to Genai to see if she wanted to sublet it with me and have our own sacred little safe space, seeing as we were both on the same page with covid and wanted to be somewhere we felt safe and had good ventilation. After working there together for almost a year and with the world seemingly starting to open up again, we felt like we were outgrowing our little space and started looking for our own. We landed at 3951 Laurelgrove Ave in Studio City. Westfolk salon was coming to fruition. We built out our little four chair space over a couple months and opened in August 2021.
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?
If I had a week to show my bestie Los Angles
Massages at the NOW
A trip to Westfolk salon
Coffee at Alfreds
Brunch at Vintage wine and eats
Dinner at Uovo
9 holes at weddington
Hike on Fryman
Wine at Mirabelle
Concert st the Hollywood bowl
Magic burlesque show at black rabbit rose
Night out at the magic castle
Pool day at the Hollywood rooselvelt hotel
Dinner at Pace
Cocktails at the sunset towers hotel
Hollywood forever cemetery movie screenings
Facial at Facile
Lunch at Jon and Vinnys
Wine shopping at Helens wines
A night at Petite Ermitage
Hike Griffith park
Griffith park observatory
Dinner at Little Doms
Brunch at Alcove
Shopping at spitfire girl
Dinner at Gjelina
Shopping on Abbot Kinney
Chips and curry at the Kings Head
Brunch at Elephante
A night at the Proper Hotel
Estate sales on the weekends
Academy awards museum
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I would love to dedicate this shout out to my beautiful mother for always giving me the space to be who I want to be. My father Stewart for being my cheerleader. All the amazing salon owners that took a chance on me and helped me grow.
My Kevin Murphy family.
Genai Canale for embarking on this journey with me and inspiring me everyday.
Cathryn Farnsworth Jeff Gardner