Vidal Sassoon was the iconic hairdresser of the '60s, with a legacy that is still influential in beauty. He created the legendary five-point cut on Grace Coddington in 1964, following this up with the 1968 pixie cut on Mia Farrow for the film "Rosemary's Baby". Other famous clients included Mary Quant and actress Nancy Kwan, who first sported the now trademarked sleek Sassoon bob. Training with Vidal Sassoon schools is a highlight for your resume, since their qualifications are recognised worldwide. Working hair stylists can also choose from a range of professional development courses to learn the basics of the Vidal Sassoon approach, or simply to update their skills.
Famous for technical quality, Vidal Sassoon training is built on achieving a solid understanding of cutting and colour. The "ABC" courses teach the foundations of the Sassoon method, with an emphasis on developing skills through practice. This is why hair stylists cannot take certain courses without several years of professional working experience.
Throughout all of the Sassoon courses, you also always get chances to practice and see demonstrations on real models, rather than only wig-blocks or doll-heads.
Vidal Sassoon runs two beginners courses, which lead to universally accepted hairdressing qualifications -- the UK Diploma and the USA Cosmetology. Their curricula vary slightly; each is tailored to starting your career in the respective locations, but both give thorough training for professional hairdressing.
Elements covered in the courses include blow-drying and styling, hair-cutting, colour, perm techniques and advanced theory. You should allow for a full academic year to complete either course.
Vidal Sassoon short professional courses, which are for trained stylists only, range from technique refreshers to postgraduate studies. You must be experienced to enrol in any of these, holding a recognised qualification, but not necessarily from Vidal Sassoon.
Examples of professional short courses include "ABC Color", a weeklong technicians' course in basic Vidal Sassoon colour techniques and "The Collection", which is an advanced diploma for hairdressers with at least six years cutting experience.
Vidal Sassoon courses are directed from London but taught in the UK, USA, Canada and Germany. In the USA, study locations are in Los Angeles, Chicago, Miami, San Francisco and Seattle. The USA Cosmetology course is only taught in Los Angeles.
Professional development courses are available on request, and are taught by visiting trainers in the salon where you work. With teaching tailored to your exact level of experience, students can choose the skills on which they want to focus.
For example, you could opt to learn a particular colouring or cutting technique. These small workshop-style courses are focused on teaching specialised skills in small salons, taking a Vidal Sassoon education to hair stylists who cannot attend the main centres.
Open days for the UK Diploma and USA Cosmetology courses are held annually; it is important to attend an Open Day before you decide to enrol. Basic training is expensive but does give you a prestigious qualification together with a high-quality tool kit, which is yours to keep after graduating.
Vidal Sassoon professional development courses are ideal if you work in fashion or want to further your career in salons. Despite teaching iconic Sassoon cutting and colouring techniques, the courses are designed by working professionals with contemporary techniques in mind. This modern emphasis is true to the directional tradition of Vidal Sassoon.