To celebrate International Women’s Day, we’re celebrating the women at Aveda.
From breaking into the beauty industry to her biggest inspiration and the advice she’d give
her teenage self, we caught up with Bea Carmichael...
First things first, what do you do at Aveda?
I am the Global Educator in Styling and part of the Global Artistic Team. I teach styling and create styling classes in all regions; I do London Fashion Week; and I’m constantly traveling and inspiring teams to break the styling mould and to try new things.
How did you break into the beauty industry?
Totally by accident. I hated the accountancy job I was in when I left college and desperately wanted a different job. They needed apprentices at a very good salon where I lived, and I got the job! It was meant to be.
What inspires you?
People… we are so intricate, each one of us like a fingerprint, different tastes, different personalities, different values, and I find this inspiring.
What does International Women’s Day mean to you?
For me it’s a celebration of women, what women have accomplished so far and the celebration of each other, the acceptance of each other and the support of each other. We are pretty incredible, each and every one of us for so many different reasons.
Have you experienced any challenges because of your gender?
I’d love to say no… but unfortunately, yes I have. As a woman in a male-dominated industry, when you get to a certain level, you realise you must work harder, be better, and have a thick skin. I have learnt what battles to fight over the years and what goes around comes around. Karma and all that! But yes, just look at all the big names in hairdressing… they’re mostly men!
Best way to overcome challenges?
Stay strong and true to yourself. Believe in yourself even when it feels like no one else does. Don’t waste time with people that don’t deserve you. And remember it’s ok to be you, and have your own opinion and way, don’t feel as though you need to hide yourself to make others happy. Show the fabric of you.
What’s your mantra?
You do you and I’ll do me! Create an environment where people can be free to be themselves and you can be you too.
Who has been the most inspiring woman in your life?
My Mum. When I was born my Mum was very ill and shouldn’t have really carried me for as long as she did. But she was determined to bring me into the world. We are so close, she’s my Mum, my friend, and just the most incredible women you could meet.
She sounds great. Tell us more…
At points, life hasn’t been kind to her, but she always stays strong and acts with dignity and grace. She always says, ‘sleep on it, you’ll feel better in the morning’ and it’s true. She’s taught me not to react, take time and forgive. She’s showed me how to see the good in everything, even in the toughest of times.
Advice for your teenage self…
Have fun, but don’t waste time – it goes so quickly. Focus on what you want and surround yourself with good people that want you to succeed too. Don’t hold grudges because they only hurt you in the end, remember nobody is perfect, we’re all just finding our own way.
Book that changed your life?
Daring Do’s: A History of Extraordinary Hair by Mary Trasko. It’s about the history of hair and how it changes the way people have been perceived over the years because of their hair, particularly women.
We can’t let you go without asking – what’s your favourite Aveda product?
This is hard as I don’t have just one! I adore texture tonic, thickening tonic, and light elements™ smoothing fluid – there are more but they are my top three!