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Hello Rochester: Salon Europa

Salvatore Maniscalco has been a hairdresser since 1984. He started as an assistant at Shear Ego and learned his trade shadowing Gene Cardamone and Peter Webb. After 20 years of working at four different Shear Ego locations, he decided to move on. In 2005, Salvatore opened Salon Europa.


1. How and when did you know you wanted to be a hairstylist?

Being a hairdresser was not my first choice. After attending one year at St. John Fisher College, I moved back to Australia, only to come back the following year. My mom was diagnosed with Melanoma. Wanting to return to college, I had to wait until the following semester. In the mean time, I decided to learn a trade. The rest is history.

2. What advice would you give to a recent cosmetology graduate who is eager to grow their clientele? My advice is to reach out to family and friends and offer them free services. Practice makes perfect. Also, get some business cards and give them to people you meet when you're out. Self promoting is important.

3. Was there an influential person in your career that helped you become successful? Explain.

Peter Webb. My mentor. Peter took me in like one of his sons. The word 'no' never came out of his mouth when I asked for help. My most influential memory of Peter was when I was leaving Shear Ego to open up my own salon. He wished me luck and said I could stay as long as I wanted until my salon was ready. Usually, you get escorted out the door over fear of taking your clientele with you. Once I opened my salon, Peter came to visit. He saw that I was busy and asked if he could help. What a moment. I was honored. Peter was not only my mentor, but a true friend. He was the best man in my wedding.

4. Is there a difference between getting your hair done at a local salon compared to a chain? Why or why not?

There is a big difference between chain salons and local salons. In my opinion, a chain salon is for someone who doesn't care who cuts their hair. Most times, it's a quick in-and-out appointment. In a local salon, your hairdresser becomes a part of your family. You and the hairdresser connect and form a bond. With repeat visits to the same hairdresser, a relationship and trust develops.

5. What are you most proud of accomplishing in your career? I am a National Certified Educator for Alfaparf. As an Alfaparf Educator, I get hired by distributors to do shows using products they sell. There's usually three collection hair styles that I cut and color on stage and the audience varies depending on the venue. These shows could be held in local or big cities. For example, I have done shows in Kentucky, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Texas, Las Vegas and NYC.

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