Passionate, creative, and driven are some of the attributes passed onto Celene from her parents, that have helped her become a successful sought after stylist, educator and entrepreneur.
Celene's Dad, Louis opened a business in Saskatoon and worked with his partner and brother tirelessly to make it successful. At a young age Celene and her sisters could be found standing on milk crates and skewering souvlaki at their fathers butcher shop, as teaching their children how to work hard was one of the most important things to Louis and his wife Cheryl.
As a teen Celene always loved everything beauty, and when she told her family she wanted to be a hairstylist their response was full of support, but also reservation. "We don't want to see you struggle financially", her parents said. Celene pushed onward anyways, and made it her life mission to prove that hairstyling could be a lucrative and rewarding job. One of her defining moments was as her dad was fighting a battle with Brain Cancer, Celene was cutting his hair - he looked up at her and said "You are doing exactly what you were meant to do." Even though she didn't need the support to keep focused, his realization that this industry really is full of opportunity, inspired her to help others see it too.
Joining forces as an educator with Redken, two years into her career would prove to be a life changing experience for Celene. A new world of never ending inspiration and education awaited, and Celene took it all in. Her drive to keep evolving and learning led her to being a sought after facilitating not only across Canada, but into the United States. Working in Las Vegas multiple years as a facilitator for the Redken Symposium, hosting 10,000 hairstylists from around the Globe was a humbling and exciting experience. Becoming an Exchange Facilitating in 2018 at the world renowned Redken Exchange in New York City was a bucket list experience for Celene, and being a part of helping inspire students from as far away as Dubai still remains one of her career highlights.
Her advice and knowledge is sought after, and has been published in multiple magazines (Candian Hair Dresser, Flare, HairDressers Journal - London, The KIT) Magazine across Canada, and the United States and Europe, and she continues to be the official Color Ambassador for Redken Canada.
All of the being said, we all know that all of the acaliades in the world doesn't really tell you who a person really is. And Celene is about realness - and honesty...so lets take a look at her own words.
Q What are 3 words that describe yourself?
A I would say survivor, passionate, weird!
Q What challenges you the most about the beauty industry?
A The competitiveness. I think for a long time this industry has had the potential to be cruel and competitive - brands not supporting other brands, competitions within your own city over salons... I am so thrilled with the #artistsupportingartists movement. I have always believed the only person you are in competition with is yourself. If you have knowledge share it. This can be a vain industry - and we know that beauty is much more than skip deep - we need to set the example. If I have a promotion that worked - I want to share it. If I figure out a way to place color to save you time and money - its yours. You make the choice in what kind of person you want to be.
Q What are your thoughts not he whole 'influencer' thing?
A I find it interesting how many people feel threatened by this. The state of our industry is changing - we have to change with it. Having followers is like being rich in monopoly it isn't real. You can't base what you post and who you are on wanting to gain internet popularity. However - having influence means you have opportunity to change the industry and world but putting out content and message that matter. I think what some of your industry influencers are doing is incredible. Elizabeth Faye, Jamie Sea and Olivia Smalley are putting positive vibes out their and helping stylists change the game! For all of us smaller micro-influencers this would be my message - KNOW YOUR WHY. Don't think about posting to get likes or followers, think about putting out what you want in this world - and remember; if 1 person follows you, you are an influencer and this is a responsibility to be taken seriously. Also, not everyone wants or needs to be an influencer - as long as your audience is the right audience chillax and just share what you know with the world.
Q What experiences in your life has helped shape you into who you are today?
A I said one of my describing words was survivor. I believe what I have experienced in my life has made me relatable, and helped me create human connections with the stylists I've had the honour to facilitate to. I lost my sister to a drunk driver when I was 18. It effecting my families lives in a very profound way. My mom began a Non-Profit called Danae's Song to share with teens the dangers of drinking and driving. For the fist year I travelled with her across Canada, and that is where I got my first experience in public speaking. A few years later I lost my father to brain cancer. These experiences have changed me and my family forever. While I would trade back in a second, they also made me who I am. I learned how to be strong and resilitiant. How to understand what's really important in life - and I learned not to judge a book by its cover - you never know what people have went through. These experience helped me prepare for my husbands accident in 2016. He was in a quad roller-over and suffered from a burst fracture to his L1 vertebra leaving him a paraplegic. The road to recovery has been excruciating - we are still healing from this, coming to terms with the fact he will never walk again, but we are trying to use the situation to create awareness in our community and world. We feel it's important to share our experiences, and to advocate for accessibility in our cities, as well as connecting with people who have suffered loss - to let them know we are here. Life gives you some tough stuff sometimes - but we can chose how to respond, and by creating community we can help each other get through it.
Q Lastly, if you could have one message for the beauty industry, or someone wanting to become and educator, what would it be?
A I would say stop talking about it and get it done! People always say "How to you have the time". Well you make it. If you did a time excessive and wrote down how you spent your time over a full week you would be sick seeing how much time we waste on things that don't matter. We make time for what we care about. Also don't "wait" till you are ready. I also hear "I'm not experienced enough". I have news for you - NO ONE FEELS GOOD ENOUGH. Look at all of the addiction and mental health issues from creatives (artists, actors, musicians). We are artists, we are FEELERS. Don't let those little voice stop you from reaching your goals. You are standing in your own way. Just go for it! I started with Redken 2 years in - I KNEW NOTHING. Guess what, they taught me everything, or I sought out the answers. You've got this babe, you can do it.