About

Ashley Michelle Brand Photo

MY STORY

I am A. Michelle, a master healthy hair specialist, educator, and business mentor. I have 23 years of experience from when I first fell in love with hair at 10 years old, and 8 years as a licensed professional. I am also the owner of Distinctions Hair Lounge in Columbia, SC. My credentials include a bachelors and masters degree in business management. Even though I didn't need the degrees to become a hairstylist, I knew I wanted to become a salon owner so it was necessary to learn how to run a successful business, as well as to be able to teach other stylists how to do the same. Healthy hair became my main focus because I struggled my whole life with hair issues of my own. My goal is to help other women feel confident and love their own hair no matter the condition by not only finding the root cause of the damage to the hair, but also by taking the time to nurture the hair to restore it back to health using the appropriate techniques and hairstyles that are beneficial to their desired results. My mission is to provide top of the line service and education to help my clients achieve their own healthy hair goals and teach other stylists the skills, techniques, and business principles to help expand their brand as a professional hair stylist that their clients can trust.

 

How it all started...

My passion for hair started as a braider when I was 10 years old. Growing up, I did not have the best hair. In fact, I suffered from traumatic hair loss at the early age of 5, which over the years, lowered my self esteem and my self confidence, but inadvertently boosted my interest in hair because I became aware of a problem that needed a solution.

As a young girl developing her skills but not being quite educated enough, I tried any and everything to fix my hair, not realizing that I was actually making the problem worse. I just wanted to cover up my issues but I wasn’t catering to my own hair in the process. I can admit, I did not show my hair the love it needed, instead I was doing things I knew weren't right just so I could get the style to look good.

This became a constant struggle for years and when I was 17 I decided it was time for me to learn about healthy hairstyling and transition my skills from braiding to learning what it really takes to care for the hair. I was determined that even if I could not save myself from my early hair loss experience, I could help other women battling similar issues so they wouldn’t go through life the same way I did.

Then A. Michelle Hairstyles was born and my purpose was driven from my pain growing up. I mastered a variety of hairstyles and created my own techniques to nurture, grow, and maintain the health of my clients hair as well as provide education to help them understand their hair.