HJ Careers: Claire Martin

Published 17th May 2024 by Talana Sodiwala

We spoke to Claire Martin about breaking down barriers to make hairdressing more inclusive, The Big Blow Out and chasing opportunities. 

What has been your career journey so far?

I studied hairdressing NVQ Level 2 and 3 at The College of North-West London. Once I’d qualified, I worked at various salons around London to find where I could use my skills acquired for both Afro and European hair types. Now, I have 13 years experience at the highest levels, have won and finalised in industry awards for textured hair, and was a finalist on E4’s The Big Blow Out. I have made it my mission to break down walls within the industry and help other hairdressers, salons, and brands learn how to make the hairdressing industry a more inclusive world.

What has been the proudest moment during your career?

Conducting the very first training session within the L’Oréal Academy that hosted models who were people of colour. During the class I was teaching other hairstylists how to work with tightly coiled hair confidently. It was a very teary-eyed moment for me.

Did competing on The Big Blow Out open doors to new opportunities for you?

Since competing on The Big Blow Out, it has definitely raised my profile and cemented the connections I have with brands such as Redken, L’Oréal Professionnel, and Mielle. I have also been asked to be an ambassador for Treatwell which has allowed me to not only take part in designing their new salon software but attend prestigious events and join panel discussions as a voice of expertise within the industry.

What advice would you give to someone who aspires to have a successful career in the industry?

Do what you do with love. Make sure every interaction with clients and your process of working is done with love as the experience is much better for everyone. Also, say yes to every opportunity that aligns with your mission. Don’t chase the money as the money will come, but instead chase the opportunity to share your love of the industry with as many people as possible through as many platforms as possible.

What’s next for Claire?

To bring the cLHair Online academy to my new workshop in Soho. With it being not only a salon and members club (equipped with a built-in bar and coffee station), it’s the perfect environment to help nurture the thirst of other stylists wanting to learn how to work with all hair textures.


2017: Qualified Level 3 in Hairdressing

2020: Redken Brand Ambassador

2022: Finalist on The Big Blow Out

2023: Moved to Salon64 in Soho

Talana Sodiwala

Talana Sodiwala

Published 17th May 2024

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