beauty school Tag

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27 Sep Financial Aid for Beauty School Students

Financial aid is available to those who qualify.

So you’re wondering how you can pay for beauty school in an easy and efficient way? At our Inspire Greatness Aveda Institutes, we’ve got some simple tips on how you can apply for financial aid to get you started down the path of a beauty education. Check out how simple the process is and learn how to get started by filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®)!

What Is the FAFSA® and How Do I Complete It?

Beauty school students have a lot to learn as they make their journey towards becoming beauty professionals. Applying for student aid should be simple, so rather than stressing about having to pay for school, you can focus on your learning!

The first thing to understand is where you can get financial aid from. There are plenty of private scholarships that are offered to students, even scholarships for beauty school-specific students.

But there are other options too! Federal student loans could be a good option to help students pay for beauty school. FAFSA® stands for Free Application for Federal Student Aid after all, so it’s completely free to fill out!

One of the most frequently asked questions about the FAFSA® is “Where can I go to fill it out?” The official website,, is the place to start your financial aid process. Keep in mind that if you are single and under the age of 24, your parents’ information is mandatory to complete it. If you are married and have dependents you are completely supporting on your own, you won’t need your parents to fill out the FAFSA® form.

If you decided to start a FAFSA® application, you’ll need to create a FAFSA® ID and to provide basic demographics, your social security number, and a tax return for the previous year. To submit the FAFSA® you’ll most likely need the code to the school of your choice.

Here are the codes for each of our locations:

Denver – 041671
Phoenix – E40394
Provo – 040723
Tucson – 041945

Once it’s all signed and completed then you’ll be finished until someone can review your application!

The nice thing about the FAFSA® is that it doesn’t take very long to fill out and it’s effortless. You can even fill it out on a mobile app on your phone.

What’s the Process Like With Student Loans?

There are more ways to pay for school than scholarships and FAFSA® money. Student loans are a viable option as well when searching out ways to pay for schooling.

First, if someone decides to take out direct federal loans, there is a requirement that the student has to complete an entrance counseling process and promissory note to receive their loans. Both only take about 30 minutes to complete.

Luckily, at Inspire Greatness Aveda Institutes, we have financial counselors who can review info about loans and give you more knowledge on interest rates, cost of living and what loans can look like in the end for you. The promissory note is a document that you sign promising that you will repay your loans when the time comes. Both actions are mandatory to be able to be eligible for student loans.

The End of a Beauty School Journey!

If you’re accepted into beauty school, you can expect to complete exit counseling for your direct loan. You can log in to with your id username and password. Select “exit counseling for undergraduate borrowers” and it can give you great information on repayment options, the total debt owed, your grace period and a loan servicer. If you have questions you can always contact your financial aid office.

Are You Looking Into Beginning an Education in Beauty?

There are a lot of secondary education options available out there, but there’s nothing quite like an education and a potential career in beauty. If you are looking into a future of beauty, it’s important to research beauty schools with extra opportunities and resources, like financial aid assistance! At all four of our Inspire Greatness Aveda Institutes locations we offer financial aid to those who qualify. See if you have what a beauty professional is made of and what kind of program is best for you!

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Girl with blonde hair

21 Aug Our Students’ Take on Current Beauty Trends!

At Inspire Greatness Aveda Institute, we have plenty of great and talented students who learn how to create and express themselves through beauty. Here are some of the best 2019 trends from our talented students you need in your life right now!

Platinum Hair

Look created by @lexietinamarie at Aveda Institute Denver.

What’s a better way to make a beauty statement than going platinum? Named after one of the most precious metals, this hair color can make you feel priceless.


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Balayage Is Still Here

Look created by @stylesbyriles at Aveda Institute Tucson.

If you’re looking for more depth to your hair but want to keep it simple and chic, balayage is the way to go! Have you ever seen someone who doesn’t look great with a perfect balayage? We haven’t!


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Rose Gold Gal

Look created by @hairbyanna_xo at Aveda Institute Denver.

Rose Gold is a classy and beautiful look that brings out the soft pink tones in your complexion. It’s versatile and can go with many different skin tones.


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Minimalistic Manicures

Look created by @inspiredbeautybykatlyn at Aveda Institute Provo.

There’s nothing better than a simple and elegant manicure to make you feel put together and beautiful! Keep the colors and patterns clean to tie together any and every outfit you pair your new nails with.


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Beautiful Braiding

Look created by @bohemebeauty_ at Aveda Institute Tucson.

This look is the perfect balance of fun and high-class. Who can resist a low maintenance braid that makes you feel like a queen?


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New Color, New You!

Look created by @estheticsby_brookeoneill and @estiianaa at Aveda Institute Phoenix.

Coloring your hair can always give you a good change in your life. Even though the hair color trend has been going for a few years, it’s still going strong! We love all color changes, but this hair transformation is something we adore.


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Scrunchies and Braids!

Look created by at Aveda Institute Provo.

Scrunchies have become all the rage this year. So what’s cuter than pairing it with the perfect braid and using multiple scrunchies? Nothing!


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Want a Similar Look?

Visit our student salon to get pampered by our students under the direct supervision of licensed professionals. These trends are perfect to incorporate into your look for the rest of 2019. Visit our blog to see why these services are especially great if you’re a college student.

Do You Love Creating?

At Inspire Greatness Aveda Institute, we encourage our students to create their original ideas. Are you someone that has a passion for creativity? Take our quiz to see if an education in cosmetology might be right for you. You can also learn more about how cosmetology can help fuel your excitement for cultivating beauty.

Ready to learn how to get started? Check out our programs at the campus closest to you.

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Beautiful girl in a floral dress smiles at the camera.

28 May 5 Steps You Should Take When Transferring Beauty Schools

Sometimes your dream beauty school doesn’t always turn out to be the one of your dreams. You may find yourself needing to transfer because it isn’t the right fit for you or because of circumstances outside of your control. If you’re looking to transfer to a different beauty school, here are five steps you can take to make the transfer process easier!

One: Explore Schools

Transferring to a different beauty school can feel like a fresh start, and sometimes you’ll have to go back to the basics: looking for the right place for you. If you’re currently enrolled in a cosmetology program, make sure the one you’re thinking about transferring to offers a cosmetology program. If you’re in esthetics, make sure there’s an esthetics program. That’s often the first thing to do!

When looking for a new place, contact the admissions department. They’ll let you know:

  • How to apply
  • How to transfer hours
  • What documents you need from your previous school
  • Financial aid and scholarship opportunities
  • When the next classes start

Much like your first beauty education endeavor, you should schedule a tour to get to know the place you want to transfer to. See how the culture and facilities are different, and take the time you need to decide if it’s the right fit for you.

Woman looking at phone and laughingTwo: Apply

Once you’ve picked the new program of your choice, it’s time to start the application process. You’ll want to work closely with the school to see what parts of the application process you’ll need to do and anything you should know as a transfer student.

Three: Get Everything You Need From Your Current School

Transferring isn’t a matter of just choosing a different place and applying. Contact your current school to get the documentation your new choice needs to make the transfer easy. You’ll often need:

  • Your transcript and hours they’ve reported to the state board
  • A list of any outstanding payment balances
  • A release from your previous school

This step is an absolute must! A transcript can help you get the most out of the work you’ve already put in. It makes it easier to verify how many hours you’ve already completed and how many you have left. However, just because you have the hours doesn’t mean all hours will directly transfer.

At Inspire Greatness Aveda we cannot guarantee that any or all of your previously completed hours will transfer. However, we do look at each transfer on an individual basis to determine how many hours we can accept from your previous school. We’re happy to work with you!

You should also expect to pay any outstanding balances with your current school before you can enroll somewhere else. If you are transferring because the institution you are currently enrolled in is closing, they may prorate the amount you owe based on how many hours you’ve already completed.

Four: Re-Apply for Financial Aid

Your federal financial aid doesn’t automatically transfer when you move to a different place. You’ll need to log into your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®) account and add the appropriate school’s code to transfer your application to your new choice.

Inspire Greatness Aveda has financial aid available to those who qualify. If you’re transferring to one of our locations, you’ll need to add the school code of the one you’re planning on transferring to on your application. Our codes are:

From there, your original financial aid should transfer, but you should work with the financial department at your new school to see if there are other steps you need to take.

Five: Believe in Yourself

It can be daunting to switch from one program to another, but you can do it! We’re here to help you every step of the way. Here are some other things to keep in mind when you’re thinking about transferring beauty school.

  • Keep in touch! Just because you’re transferring doesn’t mean you don’t have to stop talking to the friends you’ve made at your current school.
  • Make new friends. New school, new opportunities to find people with the same interests as you. You can get to know some great new students.
  • Work closely with your advisors. We want to see you succeed in your future. If you have any questions about what you need to pursue an education in beauty, don’t hesitate to ask!


Want to Transfer to Inspire Greatness Aveda?

If you’re interested in pursuing an education at one of our locations, book a tour with us today! We’ll be happy to help you get you started on your new journey.

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Kat carpooling to Aveda beauty school.

24 Mar Day In the Life of a Student

Meet Kat Unruh, cosmetology student at Aveda Institute in Denver. She took over our Instagram to share what it’s like to be a student at Inspire Greatness Aveda Institutes.

My morning routine always starts with my hair! I usually only wash my hair every other day, so for my day two (or three) hair I  use a touch of dry shampoo and I recently got a sample of the Aveda Shampure Thermal Dry Conditioner! It’s the newest part of my daily routine.


Off to school with my fiancé Kody driving. To save money and to reduce car pollution we often car pool with other students in my class and he drops us off in the mornings.


Striking a pose with one of my besties on campus, Brandi. Our class as a whole is super supportive of each other, we really have an incredible group of people.

IMG_6345I had to stop down by administration and say hi to Kristy Fiore. She’s part of our admissions team and helped me start my journey at the Aveda Institute Denver. She’s just the sweetest ☺️
In the Expression Phase of our Cosmetology program we learn the 60 minute facial. Today we learned the first part of the facial and we got to receive a little pampering from each other.
IMG_6294After school, I get started on my before-bed routine. I cleanse my face and sometimes do a mask and to finish off I apply the Tulasara Wedding Masque to prep my skin for the next day.

Since its flashback Friday, here’s a little photo of myself with the girls backstage at London fashion week for our recent study abroad trip

IMG_6348To follow Kat’s Instagram: @katunruhmua
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30 Sep We are here for you.

We are saddened to hear of the closing of Regency beauty schools nationwide. Our hearts go out to the team who have lost their positions and the students who have lost their education. We are here for you.

Professionals, if you would like to submit a resume please visit

Students, we are committed to doing what we can to help you continue on your journey to a dream career. If you have questions about transferring to one of our campuses, please email, text, or call the following team members for the campus close to you:
Denver Kristy (720) 560-2155

Tucson Melanie (520) 425-1700
Provo Kennedy (801) 448-2683
Phoenix Sarah (480) 280-3781

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Portrait of Tiffany Swafford, massage student.

12 Aug Day in the Life: Spa Student

Meet Tiffany Swafford, Aveda Institute Denver esthiology graduate and current massage student. Tiffany took a moment from her day to capture what it’s like to be our student in our spa program! Follow her personal story on Instagram @tswaff_lashes


Morning Ritual: My mornings have a set routine. I start my day out with quick shower, eat a plentiful breakfast, and then my daily makeup and hair routine. My commute is pretty easy, I simply ride the elevator to the main level of the building; yes, that’s right. I am fortunate enough to live in the same building as the school! Lucky right? Before starting Massage, I graduated from Aveda Institute Denver’s Esthiology Program and in the meantime, I got certified in Eye Lash Extensions.

Before learning the Chakra Massage this afternoon, I wanted to show you my favorite Aveda Skin Care line: Tourmaline. The deep exfoliation is great for the dry skin that most of us experience in Colorado.

Tiffany S skin care line

Posse: At the Institute, I have met some amazing people. But, today I get to  master Massage techinques beside these wonderful ladies. These wonderful women are creative and bright. I am incredibly blessed to have met so many admirable people through my journey at Aveda!

Tiffany S posse

Massage: Here I am learning the Aveda Chakra Massage. Which Chakra is your favorite? Mine is Chakra 3, its the power/solar plexus center. It’s all about motivation and tapping into your own power. The color is yellow, and I imagine a bright yellow beaming out of me like a CareBear full of sun shine! Are you letting your light shine?

Tiffany S learns chakra massage

After school: Tonight I had an eyelash extension appointment. This guest likes a longer lashes, with a natural look and shape. I love the industry we are in, it allows each of our guest a greater sense of confidence by simply enhancing the beauty that already exist! You can follow more of my lash extension before and after by liking my professional page: @tswaff_lashes

Tiffany S lash appt

Favorite product: After a busy day full of hard-work, I love coming home and washing my face. But, I couldn’t do it without my Aveda Shammy. It’s a hidden gem in the Aveda product line but once you discover it, you’ll be amazed! Washcloths only scratch the surface of your skin, but the shammy actually cleanses the face with a smooth gentle approach.

Tiffany S fave product

Before bed: I like to end my day with a daily reading that reminds me how grateful I am for all the wonderful assets I’ve worked so hard for. What are you grateful for?

Tiffany S before bed wellness

Aveda Institute Denver is a school for cosmetology, barbering, esthiology (skin care) and massage therapy. To learn more about our programs, connect with our Admissions Team Leader, Kristy Fiore by emailing For more information about our services offered by our students in training, call 303-567-7500.

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Aveda Institute Denver Industry Day poster.

04 Aug Inspire Greatness Education Jam Denver 2016

Aveda Institute Denver is hosting its annual Industry Day & Education Jam event on August 8, 2016. This time we are pleased to welcome back many of our graduates to host inspiring workshops for Education Jam: and afternoon of inspired education to and from professionals in the beauty industry. From editorial and social media marketing to skin care and massage, we have it all and it’s all happening for our Inspire Greatness community. This event is open to our students, graduates, team and the Aveda network as a part of our Industry Day. Below is a celebration of our featured guest artists and the inspired workshops they will offer. For more information, contact Marketing Team Lead, Alicia Christus 720-240-7566

Madison Wade, AID graduate, Stylist Matthew Morris Salon, NAHA nominee

Madison Wade, AID graduate, Stylist Matthew Morris Salon, NAHA nominee

Madison Wade
NAHA 2015 nominee Student Stylist of the Year
AID Premier Talent Cosmetology Graduate

Wigs 101 Editorial Workshop – Styling Outside of the Box
3 -4 pm & 4:30 – 5:30 pm

AID is pleased to welcome back Madison Wade to host a special workshop during our summer Education Jam. Madison is a Colorado native, Aveda Institute Denver Graduate, 2015 NAHA nominee, and a stylist at Matthew Morris Salon and Skincare.
“My goal in life is to get inspired, be inspired, and inspire others, I’m so fortunate to be able to share my knowledge with students in this fun, exciting workshop about thinking outside with box when it comes to editorial styling.”
Learn more about Madison by visiting her Website.



Stephan Lauren, AID graduate, Artist for Beauty Underground Artistic Team

Stephan Lauren, AID graduate, Artist for Beauty Underground Artistic Team

Stephan Lauren
Newcomer Artist of the Year 2015, Southwest Hairstyling Awards
Artist for the Beauty Underground Artist Team

Editorial Up-do Styling
2-3 pm & 3:30 – 4:30 pm

Stephan Lauren has always had a passion for the hair and fashion industry. While attending Aveda Institute Denver, Stephan began assisting at Salon Myo in Aspen, and ZenSalon in Cherry Creek, and also joined Charlie Price and the Beauty Underground Artistic Team on multiple photo shoots and shows. He’s now recognized at an Artist of the Beauty Underground Artist Team and was just working behind the scenes at NAHA 2016.
Stephan specializes in cutting and styling all hair types and textures. While he enjoys being behind the chair in the salon and educating fellow stylists, Stephan’s passion is styling hair for runway shows and editorial photo shoots and productions.
Stephan’s talents have not gone without recognition. He was awarded Newcomer of the Year in 2015 by the Southwest Hairstyling Awards and has been nominated as a finalist in 2016 for the Southwest Hairstyling Award. He has begun a great start to a prosperous career doing what he loves!



Jaime De La Rosa, AID graduate, Ted Gibson Artistic Team

Jaime De La Rosa, AID graduate, Ted Gibson Artistic Team

Jaime De La Rosa
Owner of Javier James Collection
Artist for the Ted Gibson Artistic Team

Brand Aid: Crafting your Image (branding & social media)
2-3 pm & 3:30 – 4:30 pm

Jaime De La Rosa, owner Javier Jaimes and The Javier Jaimes Collection, was born an artist. Throughout his life he has dabbled in painting, drawing, and fashion design. With natural talent and an eye for style, he has built a reputation not only for artistic vision but also for quality. Studying under AVEDA, Jaime’s makeup skills and hair styling specialties have led him to work with other well-known stylists, designers and photographers in the Mile High City and beyond! He is also a regular backstage at fashion shows and photo shoots spending his time working between Denver and New York City. Natural skill combined with attention to detail and an underlying commitment to listening to client’s desires and fuels Jaime’s mastery of his profession.



Graham Nation, AID Graduate, Ted Gibson Artistic Team

Graham Nation, AID Graduate, Ted Gibson Artistic TeamDry Cutting & Texture Hair Styling

Graham Nation
Stylist, Alen M Femme Coiffure Salon in Los Angeles
Artist for Ted Gibson Artistic Team

Dry Cutting & Textured Hair Styling
2-3:30 pm& 4-5:30 pm

Graham is an AID graduate and Aveda helped him get his start and through his first years working in the salon industry, Graham started to pave his own way. His story, short and sweet, is all about determination and, in his own words, “being hungry for success.” From being fresh out of beauty school to working through the failures and mistakes that led to opportunity, Graham paved his way to make his mark in the industry. We, at Inspire Greatness Institutes, know this is just the beginning of Graham “making waves” and they’re about to get even bigger. Check out our full blog spotlight




Poppy Rowe of Studio Poppy Makeup & More

Poppy Rowe of Studio Poppy Makeup & More

Poppy Rowe
Studio Poppy Makeup & More

Getting Creative with Skin Care
2 – 5 pm (only) open to cos and spa

The skincare industry is huge and ever-changing. It is estimated that the skincare market will reach nearly $11 billion by 2018. Scientists are always working on the latest and greatest technologies to transform your skin. As estheticians, it can be hard to stay on top of this industry! With thousands of publications on skincare, we are dealing with a consumer that is super savvy. Don’t be a deer caught in headlights: Join this class to discuss skincare terms, treatments & techniques so you can better assist your already knowledgeable clients. During this workshop we will briefly discuss the top grossing treatments, the top cosmetic ingredients, and some of Poppy’s favorite facial massage techniques. The class will be both lecture and practical. So put your thinking caps on and get ready to have some hands-on fun in “Beyond the Basics” with Poppy Rowe! Learn more about Poppy by visiting her Website.


Kandice Martinez, Aveda SDP and Alicia Christus, Marketing TL for AID

Kandice Martinez, Aveda SDP and Alicia Christus, Marketing TL for AID


Alicia Christus & Kandice Martinez

Certified educators

Ayurveda & Tulasara
3:30-5:30 pm (only) open to cos and spa
Explore a deeper foundation to Ayurveda: the science of life. This ancient healing system is primarily practiced in India but has influenced many alternative modalities practiced today. Alicia is a certified yoga instructor and has trained in Ayurveda with Deepak Chopra. She often themes her classes around Ayurveda and the chakras. Alicia will bridge the gap between Ayurveda and Aveda. Participants will explore foundations, doshas and modalities to balance. Kandice is a salon development partner with Aveda and will help connect the practice of Ayurveda to the new Tulasara skin care system. Students are encouraged to review dosha quizzes online and learn more about their primary constitutional type by visiting or find the Dosha Quiz on the Website.




Tro Trujillo, Aveda Barbering Coach & Purefessional

Tro Trujillo, Aveda Barbering Coach & Purefessional

Barber Crossover Program
Tro Trujillo, Barbering Coach & Purefessional

Barber Look & Learn
2 -3 pm and 4 – 5 pm

Learn more about Aveda Institute Denver’s newest program for licensed cosmetologists: Barber Crossover. This program starts this summer and will focus primarily on preparing stylists to enhance their men’s grooming services. You’ll also enjoy a sneak preview of the new Aveda Men’s Core 1 Curriculum and a razor demo.





Sam Hayes, Master Esthetician and Massage Therapist

Sam Hayes, Master Esthetician and Massage Therapist

Rossiter System with Sam Hayes
Senior Esthetician & Massage Therapist, Centre Salon Spa
Rossiter Massage Coach

Rossiter Massage System
2 – 5 pm (only) open to cos and spa

The Rossiter System® is an AMAZING form of bodywork consisting of 2-per-son pin-and-stretch techniques that release the root cause of pain and im-mobility. The use of the practitioner’s strategically placed foot, combined with focused motions of the recipient, result in rapid and extensive pain relief and mobility restoration. Learn the true cause of stress, immobility, and pain. Feel in your own body how quick it can be to feel better. Watch others respond to work that is seemingly miraculous. Hear how an Aveda colleague has benefitted from Rossiter including increased guest retention, more income, guest satisfaction and referral increase, and it’s kinder to your body too!



Common Conditions Rossiter Relieves:

• Back Pain/Sciatica
• Neck Pain
• Migraines/Headaches

Rossiter massage technique demonstration

Rossiter massage technique demonstration

• Shoulder Pain/Immobility
• Arm, Elbow, and hand issues
• Knee Pain
• Foot or Ankle Pain
• Plantar Fasciitis
• Shin Splints
• Hip Pain/Immobility
• Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
• Sprains, Overuse Injuries & much more

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18 Jul Inspire Greatness Presents: Master Series with Jim Pacifio


Inspire Greatness Aveda Institutes Denver, Tucson, Phoenix, Provo are proud to offer Master Series presentations on campus as a point of difference in our education. This July, we are pleased to welcome, Jim Pacifico.

Jim has been in the industry since 1970 and is currently the owner of Centre Salons and World Class Financial Services. In 2014, Jim was the recipient of Aveda Corporation’s “Lifetime Achievement Award”. Jim was honored by Aveda with this prestigious award last month for his many years of hard work, dedication and philanthropy work over the many years in the beauty industry…

Jim began his career in 1970 with Clairol, in 1980 he worked with Zotos and in 1986 he joined Aveda Corporation as the Vice President of Sales, Marketing and Education. In 1989, Jim moved to Southern California and became the Senior Vice President and General Manager at Caesar’s Beauty Products, exclusive Aveda Distributor. In 1991, he moved to Colorado and became the President and CEO of Pacifico’s Beauty Products, exclusive Aveda distributor for Colorado and Wyoming. His success led Pacifico’s to acquire a six-state region. In 2007 Jim merged his distribution back to Aveda to become the Consulting Vice President for Aveda Services, Inc. for the West Coast Region. This allowed Jim the opportunity to own his own Aveda Concept Salons; five Centre Salons & Spas in Colorado, one in Utah and one in California. He is also the owner and founder of World Class Financial Services which provides accounting services to over 100 Salons and Spas throughout the Aveda Network.

Dale with Jim and Van Council Jim has never lost sight of the community during this time. His philanthropy work over the years has been very generous. He has led his employees to raise money and awareness for many different charitable causes. Some examples: collecting food, toys and money for underprivileged children & their families, the homeless, Katrina victims, as well as raising money for clean water in our region. Jim latest quest in philanthropy work is leading his salons to fund-raise over $67,000 for the Breast Cancer Research Foundation; visit for more info.

Jim is dedicated to providing legendary support to the beauty industry, its professionals and customers. His passion in the industry is evident in his desire to improve the salon industry as well as giving back to the community.

 In 2014, Jim was the recipient of Aveda Corporation’s “Lifetime Achievement Award.” Jim was honored by Aveda with this prestigious award last month for his many years of hard work, dedication and philanthropy work over the many years in the beauty industry.

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Graham Nation in a suit.

28 May Paving the Way – Graduate Spotlight with Graham Nation

Aveda helped him get his start and through his first years working in the salon, Graham started to pave his own way. His story, short and sweet, is all about determination and, in his own words, “being hungry for success and busting a**,” Graham shared a post on his Facebook page a few weeks ago after accepting a modeling contract with First London.

So grateful for the opportunity I’ve been given the last few years. They say dreams don’t work unless you do. Believe me it’s true. I’ve laid awake at night thinking of the next move how to be better. Pushing for more out of my life knowing this life has more to offer. This goal has moved me to Los Angeles where I became apart of now my amazing salon family at @kenpavessalon where I can’t thank @kenpaves enough for allowing me to grow as a stylist and a creative human! The last year I started modeling a ton in LA as a way to meet people and still create and colab as an outlet. The past few months I signed with @firstlondon ?? and today I leave for a few week trip to work and grow even more! I can not express how grateful I am for the support of my friends and family and clients! I can’t wait to share my travels with y’all the next few weeks!!

Recently, we had a chance to catch up with Graham and find out how he’s grown to become a successful stylist at Ken Paves Salon in Los Angeles, Cali. And we’ll discuss his modeling career too…



Following graduation from Aveda Institute Denver, Graham started working at Matthew Morris Salon where he worked hard for about 15 months to build a clientele and then later joined the Juno Salon team in Denver, Colo. He shared how it was tough working behind the chair in his early years and he also bartended part-time to help steady his income. Graham describes his first few years behind the chair as a trial period where he learned from his mistakes, developed his craft and finally felt confident as a stylist.

I failed a lot those first years but for every loss there was a gain.

With his mind set on success and knowing that meant being fully booked, Graham make a big change in his life and got sober and a few months later, he says everything took off and started happening for him. He worked 7 days a week, hungry for success.

Graham desired to “make waves” in the industry so he set intention to move to New York and become more involved with fashion week and a celebrity clientele. Alas, after a short time he realized he wanted sunshine, warmer climate and a car to drive around so he headed West for Los Angeles, a better city to “make waves.” He finally made it to LA but the job he had lined up fell through. He was crushed but he didn’t give up hope. He put his networking skills to use and connected with those people who knows someone, who knows someone, who knew Ken Paves.

Let’s back up a bit because it wasn’t this easy. Graham had connections to other salons in LA and Beverly Hills but they want high-end, quality, experienced stylist – which he feels he’s still aspiring to be – and to get to that point he would have to be an assistant for six months up to 2 years. In Graham’s mind, this wouldn’t be a challenge for a 20-something stylist starting his/her career but being he just turned 30 at the time, he felt he didn’t have time to start at the beginning… again.

Kelsey Christian at LA models by Kimo Lauer hair by Graham Nation me on beat shot at #KPSstudios #marccornwall #makeupbyme #lightdusting #Kenpavessalonla — with Kimo Lauer and Graham Nation at Ken Paves Salon.

Kelsey Christian at LA models by Kimo Lauer hair by Graham Nation me on beat shot at #KPSstudios #marccornwall #makeupbyme #lightdusting #Kenpavessalonla — with Kimo Lauer and Graham Nation at Ken Paves Salon.

Fast forward, Graham walks into Ken Paves salon and immediately clicked with Ken. “He was (is) the coolest dude,” says Graham. In their meeting, Graham said he was asked two questions by Ken that he has rarely heard in the industry (which made him realize he had landed exactly where he needed to be). Ken asked, “What do you want to do? How can I help you?” Twenty days later, Graham was working with his first celebrity guest, a model. A few weeks before this interview, he had Eva Longoria as a guest for a shampoo and style.

Graham worked seven days a week at his training that led to a series of test-outs and presentations including nine color services, 12 haircuts while working an additional 40 hours a week assisting. The expectation was to get his timing down and presentation factor set to the Ken Pave’s Salon level.

I’m on the path and it feels right. My continued vision of success is building a brand, owning a home and my own list of clients.

As he settled in his salon in LA, Graham got back into modeling and is working with First Model Management in London. He has also worked with the Ted Gibson team as part of the haircutting stage team for New York Fashion Week. Graham continues to be inspired by his mentors, Ken Paves and Geno Chapman, and he also credits his time at Aveda Institute Denver and Matthew Morris as being instrumental to being where is his now and where he’s headed.


The educators gave so much of their time for a reason. I remember Scott, my educator, always saying “stay focused” there’s so much more out there but be in the moment and learn this first. I had to learn discipline. You have to learn discipline or you won’t have a career.

Throw back to 2009 when Graham was a cosmetology student, and DJ. Here he's providing the music soundtrack for our Earth Month Hair & Makeup Show.

Throw back to 2009 when Graham was a cosmetology student, and DJ. Here he’s providing the music soundtrack for our Earth Month Hair & Makeup Show.

His advice for our students is simple and involves living the Aveda mission:


Timing. Always be 15 minutes early. You cannot be late for a client, ever so don’t be late to school.

Take advantage of the yoga. I realize now it was the best thing for mental focus.

[credit to his educator, Scott] Stay focused. When you’re tired and over it, that’s when you need it the most. Know what you want and learn what the industry can offer you. Anyone can learn hair but you have to show up, be positive and stay motivated.

From being fresh out of beauty school to working through the failures and mistakes that led to opportunity, Graham paved his way to make his mark in the industry. We, at Inspire Greatness Institutes, know this is just the beginning of Graham “making waves” and they’re about to get even bigger.

Graham travels to Denver often and works as a guest stylist at Indie Six salon. Appointments can be scheduled directly through Graham by visiting his Facebook page or follow his story on Instagram @grahamnation

Graham Nation signature

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Student Alexus, and educator Jenna.

19 Feb Day-in-the-Life of an Aveda Beauty School Student

What’s it like to go to beauty school? Well, not just any beauty school… Aveda Institute Denver, an Inspire Greatness Aveda Institute? Our cosmetology student, Alexus Gallegos gives us context from her point of view on a typical day-in-life for her as a student. Alexus toured our institute last year during our Earth Month awareness, which inspired her even more to choose Aveda. Here, at Aveda Institute Denver, the Aveda mission to care for the world we live in, truly comes to life each and every day through our team and students.

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My day begins with all things Aveda, like Control Force, Smooth Infusion Nourishing Styling Creme, Volumizing Tonic and Pure Abundance Hair Potion to create lots of volume! #pumpupthevolume #avedaproducts

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Then it’s off to school, which begins at 8:30 am. Aveda Institute Denver is located on the 16th Street Mall between Stout and California streets, which happens to be the busiest block on the mall. We have over 20,000 residents and 120,000 workers in downtown Denver. Students offer all the salon and spa services at a relaxed price. Hair cuts start at $15, spa services range from $40 to $50. #downtowndenver #visitdenver

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This is my pose! These two girls have made my life so much brighter! What’s beauty school without the amazing friendships? I can definitely say it wouldn’t be nearly as fun without them. #classmates #bestfriends #beautyschool

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My mentor and educator, Jenna has truly made learning the best thing it could ever be! I’ve learned so much from her, not only about beauty but also about life. She has helped me face all of my fears – head first. She has the sweetest heart and is by far one of the greatest educators I’ve ever had. Thank you Jenna, for everything! #inspiregreatness #bestteacher #avedaeducator

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I learned what it truly means to be patient during this service. I did my first live color cleanse and, wow, was it an experience! Since I started the program July 2015 and began services in the fall. Since then I have completed over 50 services so far. I attend school three days a week so I am on the clinic floor for two and in class for one day each week. #colorcleanse #avedacolor #process

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School is out! Dinner for two. Every night I cook dinner and it’s my favorite time of the day. I’m discovering that cooking is another passion of mine. #burritobowls #avedalife #topchefhairstylist

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Goodnight world. Wrapping up my day-in-the-life as a cosmetology student at Aveda Institute Denver. Time to sleep with soft, clean skin with help from the Botanical Kinetics line and then wind-down with some hot tea and a good book. I am a sucker for social media also. I love seeing all the new trends. #socialmedia #zzz #avedaskincare #industrytrends

~shared by Allexus Gallegos @allbyalexusg 2016

Our next programs begin soon! Enjoy our 3-day program for cosmetology, esthiology or massage therapy. For more information text or call Kristy at 720-560-2155 or email For more information about our graduation rates, the median debt of students who completed the program, and other important information, please visit

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