American Board of Certified Haircolorists Newsletter 

October 2011

In This Issue
Texas Exam
Taking the Pureology Challenge
Diversion at Costco
Haircolor Study Predictes Growth
Too Many Cosmetology Licenses?
Brad Pitt Reinvented
Feedback from Exams
Foil Cutter Distributor
Feedback from Exams
Lowlights from the Editor

Only 2 more Exam dates this year!  


     2011 Examination dates: 



   Washington D.C. on October 9


   Atlanta on November 6 


Register online  or take the practice exam





     We have not had an examination in Texas for 5 years and what a shame! Texas is such a great state and gave us a wonderful group of candidates. 9 of the 15 who took the examination passed all three portions, a 60% pass rate. We held the examination in the hotel where the Texas Longhorns hung out before their big game. Man, those guys are big.  

       The word is out - Austin is a wonderful city. In the last 10 years, the population has tripled.  Lots of folks from California are moving there. The skyline is filled with high rise condos.  We had such a wonderful time we will be returning again next year. We failed to realize when we set the date for the exam that it was the same date as the big Armstrong McCall show in San Antonio, just 2 hours away.  These dedicated candidates made a pledge that they would talk up the exam to other haircolorists for next year. Further evidence of their commitment - all candidates 6 who failed to pass the examination have made arrangements to re-take the portions they did not pass.  Now that's dedication!  One of the candidates drove 10 hours from El Paso to take the exam.  

*There are 10 candidates pictured because one of the high scorers failed to pass all three portions.    

   Washington DC Examination  SOLD OUT!!


     For the first time in the history of the ABCH examinations we have had to turn potential candidates away.  In the long run, can we handle more candidates than the 50 we have enrolled? Yes, of course we could have booked larger rooms; but when planning an exam you need to anticipate the number of people you expect to attend.  Many times you are disappointed and other times you are elated at the exam  turnout.  

      The Ratner Company (over 800 salons) is, in large part, responsible for the large turnout.  They use the ABCH curriculum to train their haircolorists.  It is a wise choice to not be beholden to a haircolor manufacturer, but rather to gain your independence.  It is a difficult choice to change color lines if the manufacturer was responsible for training your staff.  The Ratner company has gained market share by being independent.  

A Different Slant on Diversion     

By, Andre Nizetich    


         Cruising down the aisle at Costco, I came across a stack of Sebastian Shaper hair spray.  I had just finished reading an article in the Beauty Industry Report, written by Reuben Caranza, the president of P&G professional. Carranza indicated in the article "Our ultimate goal is to make it so difficult, so costly, and so painful for diverters that they avoid our products altogether."  I think he is sincere when he wrote that article, its just that diverters are very clever in obtaining products  

        Herman Cain, a presidential hopeful, said in the debates, "I have never been in a board meeting were the executives sat around the table and discussed how to slow down sales." So it is in corporate America, growth is what drives a company. It is their culture to sell more, and let's face it; there is only so much growth in the professional salon industry.

            But consider this there are "good" diverters and there are "bad" diverters. The "bad" diverters sell their products without any restrictions and the stores to which they sell often undercut the salon price. The "good" diverters require the stores that buy the diverted products to sell them at the same price point as the salons. This way, there is a possibility that when the client needs to replace the product bought at Costco, it is no longer available and they would then buy the hair products from salons. Quite a roundabout way to drive business to salons.... it is food for thought.  

              Diversion seems to be a way of life. IT IS NOT GOING TO STOP. To be successful, manufacturers need sell high volume of products and so they sell outside the professional industry. The only way diversion can be totally avoided is to use private label products. Clients are always looking for something new and trustworthy so they still look to stylists for recommendations. Hairstylists are still the best at introducing new products to our clients.  

Haircolor Leading the Way in Salon Growth
Professional Consultants & Resources has released its in-depth 2010 Professional Salon Haircolor Study, which shows US salon haircolor product dollars growing at 3.2%. This is the fastest growing major product category--in an economy emerging from recession. (In comparison, overall salon hair care growth was 4%.) Growth comes primarily from increased salon visits and minor price increases in demi/semi permanents and permanents. Haircolor services grow by 3.3%, as consumers' frequency of salon visits and demands for haircolor services start to rebound.
  • Haircolor makes a big comeback and is projected to grow to mid-to-single digits by 2015.
  • Haircolor is the "AXIS SERVICE" that generates other salon services and sales for haircare products.
  • Salon haircolor services  grow 3.3%, as booth rentals continue taking share from leading salon chains.
  • Demi & semi permanents  register a much higher growth and nearly double the overall category.
  • Permanents grow at slower rates. Growth is lower than the category rate and indicates a new trend.
  • Crèmes & gels now totally surpass liquid haircolor sales in the United States for a major industry shift.

Read the entire story about the Haircolor Study on the Professional Consultants & Resources blog:

 Andre receives nasty emails disputing funding of too many licenses.


Are you aware that the more there is of something, that its perceived value is thereby reduced? This is also true of cosmetologists. Consider each cosmetologist needing just 50 clients weekly to make a decent wage. That is 5 million new clients we need for the new licensees. Where are they going to come from? You can argue they won't all go to work but I think you can safely say, most of them will not go to work. The statistics prove it-all of those new cosmetologists and not one tax-paying job has been added.


Just from a taxpayer's point of view, wouldn't you prefer that the 15 billion dollars spent on cosmetologists instead go to public education for our kids? The problem is beauty industry corporations like having lots of licensees, distributors and their "professional" stores," manufacturers of professional products, schools, textbook companies, mannequin manufactures, and the list go on. If it keeps up cosmetology will become a third world occupation. What we cosmetologists do is very noble; don't let greed tear it down. Write to your representative and tell them to quit wasting our money and degrading our profession by sending people to beauty schools. 

Brad Pitt
Brad Pitt: Reinvented

Brad Pitt is one of the most recognized faces in Hollywood.  No matter how long he grows the hair on his head or how he styles the hair on his face, he exemplifies the male fashion chameleon. Unlike  Johnny Depp, another quick-change artist, Brad Pitt doesn't resort to eye-liner to make those changes.  
We Hear From Our Board Certified Haircolorists
After every examination we ask for feedback from our candidates who tested.  In every instance the feedback is positive.  Oh sure, we get complaints from  people who failed the exam saying they need more time or the person sitting next to them sighed constantly, but for the most part the comments are like this one received from Kelly Anderson after the Boston exam.
"After hours and hours of preparation, I didn't take into account how dramatically nerves would affect my ability to perform and speak smoothly.  This has been an amazing experience.  I've learned a great deal and
Kelly Anderson
become recharged in my work.  Thank you so much for this opportunity".   Kelly Anderson 

Thank you, Kelly, for being one of the bold ones
striving to be the best.



The first distributor was named for the 24/7 automatic foil cutter and it is Salon Core. The principle of the company is Greg Oppedisano, located in Lake Forest, California. The prices we quoted in our last newsletter were inaccurate.  The cost of the 24/7 Foil Cutter is $499.00, and the 500 meter roll of foil is $55.00.  Go to for more information.

Kitchen Salons 
A letter to the Editor
kitchen salon 
This is an issue ... a growing problem in my neck of the woods. With the economy doing so badly our clients are declining. We work hard at keeping the salon clean, making improvements, greeting all clients, thanking them when they leave. We've kept are prices fair to mid range. Why and where are the clients going? My co-worker ran into a client of mine. When she asked aren't you so and so client. The client replied I always loved the way Jeannie did my hair however I'm going to a "FRIEND" now. 
More and more kitchen salons are opening up and when we get the name and address of such kitchen salon we report them.  It takes time to track down such information of the address and residents name who is in violation of state law. It takes numerous complaints to close such kitchen salons down. 
It may be easier if we educate the public as to why we are inspected, licensed, and how quickly the general public can be infected by such wrong doing.  A shelf talker for public awareness - We're here to make you look and feel good, and keep you healthy. It would state infectious conditions that can be spread quickly within a community by doing salon task in the kitchen or garage of a FRIENDS home.
We need to bring the money back to the salon otherwise we too will be doing the kitchen salon thing. 
Edi LePere
Lowlights from the Editor


Last month I showed you famous people rockin' pink hair.This stylist, Edi LePere, is in the PINK! Please note the fashion icon over Edi's one shoulder and her ABCH certificate over the other. Edi works the extra attention her haircolor attracts to pass out cards to potential clients.

In honor of breast cancer awareness, I will post photos in the next Highlights news letter of your pink hair. Show me your many shades of PINK-NESS! 

Watch for info in the next Highlights regarding reader responses to bleaching eyebrows. Readers have requested info about 1.) release forms and 2.) henna.              Edi LePere

More to come... 

Thank you to those certified haircolorists who have sent me their stories. 

Watch for future articles about both their success and challenges. 

I am looking for Your ABCH story. Show me your great photos! Is your framed ABCH certificate posted in your salon? Snap any great shots at the Energizing Summit this year? Write to me...I wanna see them! USE subject line: ABCH    

Certifiably yours, Mary