Small Town to Center Stage November 13, 2019 – Posted in: Artist Co-Lab

Moms never give bad advice, right? Well, if majestic mermaid-maker Amanda Harsche had listened to her mom, we would never have got to revel in her glorious colorwork because Amanda’s mom dissuaded from beauty when she was 17, 19 and 25 years old. Yep, three times Amanda almost signed up for beauty school and three times she let her mom talk her out of it. Fortunately, at 28, Amanda was determined and her mom finally gave in.

‘I was so sick of working nights, managing clubs, and all I wanted to do was go to beauty school,’ says Amanda, who is from a small town in North Dakota. ‘The minute I walked into that school I knew I’d come home.’

The reluctant delay to the career she always wanted has had one positive consequence for Amanda. When she finally did enter beauty school she was resolute on making up for lost time, deeply serious about what she wanted to do and ready to work beyond endurance to get there. It explains how she’s gone from small-town girl to mega-player on the beauty landscape in just five years.

On her first day of school, Amanda set up an Instagram account, cataloging her journey every step of the way. The rawness of her original posts garnered some amazing support but the channel also gave her audience a front-row seat as Amanda blossomed from unskilled dreamer to mega-high achiever, producing colorwork that others have taken decades to perfect. She also hooked up with other like-minded souls, building lasting friendships and grabbing every opportunity to extend her learning, especially as she moved to an even smaller town in Ohio on qualifying.

‘The only real competition there was Great Clips. I had only just qualified and suddenly I felt like there was only me. There were no like-minded salons where I could learn and grow so I started looking beyond my area, building connections online,’ she explains. ‘I linked up with The Goonies, a group of people like me, and when they set up their first collaborative education camp I was straight there, flying down to Phoenix for the course.’

Over the next few years, Amanda invested heavily in her education, regularly flying hundreds of miles on a Sunday or Monday to catch her heroes in action. At the same time, others started reaching out to her online for advice and inspiration. She became the teacher.

‘I saw Instagram as a great way to build clientele when I was in Ohio, but it also gave me an opportunity to share what I loved with other colorists,’ she adds.

After a couple of years, Amanda’s boyfriend was transferred again, this time to Denver, Colorado, and she was faced with moving to a new town and the long haul of building a new clientele. But on the morning of her move, she was contacted by Pulp Riot asking if she’d like to join the Riot Squad.

‘I couldn’t believe it, I was amazed. I’ve been a devotee of Pulp Riot from the start. The day it launched I ordered the complete set and started experimenting, sharing all my successes and my not such successes on social media,’ says Amanda, who is a major fan of ECOHEADS. ‘I am addicted to fashion color and praise the day my school instructor advised me to focus on that. I was considering barbering!’

Small-town girl Amanda is now a major voice on the circuit, having a blast sharing her collaborations on social. Her enthusiasm is matched by her brilliance, and she is traveling not just around the U.S. but also overseas to share her knowledge. If you get a chance, go see her. You’ll never regret it. And you might also get the chance to meet her Ping.