Creativity and passion are two things that make real talent stand out in this industry, and Lynndy Rolfe has them both by the bucket load.
I t’s hard to find something that this top hairdresser and British Master Barber hasn’t excelled at. She’s a Creative Educator at ghd, a session stylist for Hairbond, and has recently signed up to do education for Andis. Oh, and did we mention she dabbles in TV presenting?
Lynndy literally does it all. Starting in hairdressing at the Vokes salons group over a decade ago, Lynndy impressed in women’s hairdressing and stumbled into barbering by chance when asked to manage one of the group’s barbershops. Lucky for us! And with her background in hairdressing she’s keen to change the way people look at the industry.
“I love barbering,” she tells us. “But it all falls under the banner of men’s hairdressing which is slightly controversial and people get upset about it, but the hairdressing industry is worth billions, barbering is worth millions. So if you’re under men’s hairdressing then there’s more opportunity than just barbering. It doesn’t devalue it in anyway but it just fits you into a certain vision of barbershops: trim on top, short back and sides. For men’s hairdressing and male grooming it’s about treating men in the right way – fashion forward, cut and colour. It makes people think they are being looked after.”
Lynndy is more than just talk. She’s keen to encourage barbers to get more education and broaden their horizons. She says: “In barbering there’s no colour, noblow drying. I think the education needs to be understanding restructuring hair, the science behind the colour and what you’re working with.
“I’m a state registered hairdresser and barber and there’s not many that do both. I’m not saying you need to have Level 2 or Level 3 barbering but going to seminars and seeing people educating is very important. It pays in so many ways; it pays financially, it pays for the future, it pays for inspiration, it’s really key you get to constantly see new techniques.”
It’s no surprise with this love of education that she’s been in demand as an educator for the biggest names in the industry both for barbering and hairdressing.
“I’ve done a lot of educating for GHD and I love it. I really enjoy it but the only thing is it’s a very hairdressing type job which is fine, but my heart is in the barbering side.
“Andis came to me and I had to do a couple of auditions with them. I made a really good relationship with Aileen [Nunez, former International Education Manager]. She’s such a beautiful person, I absolutely adore her! I’ve been with them officially since May and I’m going to be with them at Salon International this month.
“I’ve been so lucky to have done a bit of everything. I’ve had so many opportunities including with Hairbond, Wahl, and other industry people.”
While those companies might be the cream of the crop, a more bizarre offer has recently piqued Lynndy’s interest, to give education to people who need it the most – in a prison.
“When I got the message to do education in a prison I was just like ‘Oh my god!’ It never occurred to me till the opportunity arose, this is what I want. It’s about training young offenders and giving them opportunities to live normal lives. That’s my dream. All I want to do is help people and spread the barbering word. Barbering has come a long way now and the education is a massive thing for me.
“I don’t mean to have everything with a qualification, it’s not about that. I’m not an academic person, I’m creative. I want to work with people who think it’s impossible and show them it is possible. You get all these cool barbers with tattoos, I’m not a particularly cool barber, I don’t have loads of tattoos, but I care, I care so much about this industry.”
With the industry growing year-on-year thanks to the input and sacrifice of barbers like Lynndy, there’s never been a better time to be involved in it. Events like Barber Connect and The Great British Barber Bash are bringing the community closer together and have shown the interest not only from barbers but from the wider world. Lynndy is a veteran of the stage and can’t speak highly enough about the shows.
“I’ve been to Great British Barber Bashes, I’ve been to different barbering things and I love them. I think they’re brilliant. Such good opportunities for people to connect and network.
“I’ve been doing shows since I was 19; worked with Wahl on stage twice, I’ve done Toni & Guy, Andis, and this year I’m doing Salon International for the Hair Journal a second time.”
While Lynndy is known for all the work she’s done helping other people in barbering and hairdressing, some step-by-step videos that she put on YouTube have held her land a rather unusual gig – television presenting.
“It’s for a company called TDV Productions. They produce and direct TV adverts and social media adverts. Not really hairdressing related but it’s such good fun! It’s unpredictable work and I don’t know what’s coming, I just get the script a couple of days before the start filming so I have to read it over and commit it to memory. It’s another string to my bow!”
Lynndy has one hell of a bow and though she’s tight-lipped about what the future might hold for her – she’s putting plans to open her own salons on hold while she pursues one of her many other opportunities – we’re sure she’ll be making waves for years to come, whether it’s in the TV world or the barbering world.