Today we’d like to introduce you to Kristina Cheeseman.
Hi Kristina, so excited to have you on the platform. So, before we get into questions about your work-life, maybe you can bring our readers up to speed on your story and how you got to where you are today?
I’ve been a hairstylist for 13 years and I moved to Saint Louis 10 years ago on a whim not knowing a single person.
I started my career working at a corporate salon in the mall, to working at two high-end salons in Clayton, and now working for myself in a studio in the Grove.
What launched my career was utilizing social media. In the beginning, I used it to get clients in my chair and that slowly morphed into being more of a creative outlet pushing the boundaries of hair color. It really changed my life and has given me endless opportunities and connections around the globe.
Growing up, I always felt prisoner – where my worth and value as a human was dependent on my looks and attractiveness. I talk to a lot of people and I get to know people intimately- I know I am not alone in that and that’s why I’m a firm believer in Self-expression. To be able to accept yourself and look however the F you want. My goal is to help people create and cultivate whatever that looks like and give a space to do it. I’m really lucky my job allows me to offer that to another human being.
Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Pushing against the norm you’re bound to have naysayers in a lot of instances the struggles helped me in the long run. Like the time my boss told me I wasn’t ever going to get it any better. Or getting the courage to leave a toxic work environment made it easier to set boundaries for the future. I worked somewhere for a year and some of the staff members maybe spoke 5 words to me the entire year I was there. It hurt but it also taught me that that was a reflection of them and not me.
A huge lesson for me has been not to get caught up in the bullshit. Focus on your goals and what you want to accomplish. Take action, be consistent. This is easier said than done – people will take it personally, some people will say you think you’re better than everyone else. It’s intimidating. You cannot focus on those things and you cannot take it personally. This is not a reflection of you. Stressing out over what other people think will hold you back.
Alright, so let’s switch gears a bit and talk business. What should we know about your work?
I’m known for my colorwork and the unique colors and patterns I do. I like to push the envelope when it comes to hair color. Instagram is my creative outlet and I have some amazing hair models that give me free reign. I don’t typically show my clients on social media but I typically do a lot of blonding services and razor cutting.
Are there any important lessons you’ve learned that you can share with us?
Sunshine all the time makes a desert. Our failures and struggles are keys to our success.