We had the good fortune of connecting with Melissa Tabares and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Melissa, how do you think about risk?
I think the word risk has a bad wrap. The implication is that you are making a decision that could end bad. I don’t look at things that way. I think you make a decision and it’s not wrong or right, it just is. So, With that being said, I think risk taking is essential for growth! I’ve for sure jumped on things and put myself in situations where you either sink or swim. Not saying that things don’t get hard or I might even freak out in the moment but in the end I’m proud that I swam.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I’m fortunate to say that I’m lucky to have a career doing what I love! I’m a hairstylist and I love people! I started assisting in Sherman oaks, ca and was there for a little under a year and knew early on that salon wasn’t, the place for me. From there I went to West Hills, ca and worked with my hairstylist growing up, she’s a great colorist and learned a lot from her. I think continuing your education is super important through out your career. Then about 6 years later was ready for more! I’ve never been one to think a lot about change, I just know I need it. So I met someone and with not much in my bank account I packed up and moved across country! I got my cosmetology license in Greensburg, Pennsylvania and did hair at a company called Phillip Pelusi. I wanted change and I got it! Besides my work environment, there was a huge culture shock. Coming from la to a small town is eye opening. I don’t think I realized it at the time but it was one of the best decisions I’ve made. It pushed my out of my comfort zone at a young age and I knew then I could do what ever I put my mind to. Eleven months later and I was ready to come home. I knew that the person I left with wasn’t the person for me. Came back to West Hills and again new my time there was up. Moved to Studio City, CA and had to rebuild a clientele all over again. I for sure had some freak out moments but again the uncomfortableness Pushed me. I’m currently in Sherman Oaks, CA and was able to not only retain people from Studio City but also West Hills. I think the key besides putting yourself in uncomfortable situations(ha) is to be honest with yourself, trust your gut and follow your heart. I listen to people and their stories. Hair is an art and so is be social. Most people listen so they can get their point of view across, I listen to hear everyone else’s view.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Man this is a hard one! I love La! I would for sure take them for coffee! There is this cute coffee shop in Burbank, called The Palm. Their coffee is great and they have fun drinks with glitter and marshmallows too. I’m a big fan of Topanga canyon, so maybe a walk around to check out some thrift shops, art and show them something different then your typical Hollywood tour. Museums are always on my list so I’d let them tell me what they are into and go from there. Maybe some chill time at a park and grab some lunch. For dinner mmmm I’ll pick three places I love because one is too tuff! Bestie, in la is delicious! Highly recommend there bone marrow yum! They also have awesome cocktails! Augustine wine bar. Wine and charcuterie I’m there! I love this wine bar because they always have great wine options that you can’t find just anywhere, My last choice ( had to pick two) Katsuya or sugar fish. Sugar fish has a smaller menu but their warm rice with fresh sushi is bomb! Katsuya has a bigger menu, full bar and there baked crab hand rolls are so tasty!

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My best friend, family and my boyfriend. My sister Sandra has always been there supporting my decisions. She gets excited when I do and bummed out too! She goes through the emotion with me. My best friend Eren, she’s amazing! When ever I call her and I second guess myself or freak out she’s always there with words of encouragement to remind me that I’m so lucky to do what I love to do. Then there is my wonderful boyfriend, Eric. He challenges me! He helps me work out my though processes and puts things in perspective for me in ways I don’t usually see. He pushes me to the best version of myself.

Instagram: @melissatabareshair

Image Credits
Portrait by Eric Lombart @ericlombart Hair pics by me

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