Chance Encounters: The People of America’s Beauty Show

When was the last time you walked up to a complete stranger and asked them to answer a personal question like, “When do you feel the most beautiful about yourself,” or “If you had your own hashtag, what would it be?” Much like the pastime of sending a postcard, the art of striking conversation and making eye contact with a stranger is diminishing right before our very eyes. Encounters and memorable human interactions are fleeting and unfortunately they are becoming non-existent due to technology and social media.

“We sometimes encounter people, even perfect strangers, who begin to interest us at first sight, somehow suddenly, all at once, before a word has been spoken.” ~ Fyodor Dostoevsky, Novelist

How so very true, Fyodor.

This past March, we attended the America’s Beauty Show (ABS) in Chicago where we came up with the idea of creating a new way to interact with the attendees of this pro-only weekend chockful of education, inspiration, and networking. Since our site wasn’t officially live at the time (we launched June 1, 2015), we felt like this was a prime opportunity for us to really get to know the the people attending ABS. It was that weekend we came up with the idea of creating Chance Encounters.

How did it all play out? When we saw someone who peaked our interest, we approached them and asked them to answer a few questions. After a post and a quick pic, we went our separate ways. This gave us the chance to connect face-to-face, eye-to-eye and ear-to-ear with real people. It was a hell of a lot more fun than just walking past someone, averting our eyes and disconnecting from eye contact, something that many of us have unfortunately fallen accustomed to.

These Chance Encounters allowed for memorable interactions and connections to be made and a chance for us to share with you a snippet of someone’s life.  Even if it was for a brief moment, five minutes at the most and on a crowded and bustling show floor, we made it a point to get to know “The People of America’s Beauty Show.” Now it’s your turn to see everyone we met. Scroll across each photo and see who they are, where they are from and what they had to say.

Yolanda
Chicago, IL
When do you feel the most beautiful?
“I feel beautiful all day long.”
What is your spirit animal?
“My spirit animal is an eagle.”
What inspires you?
“I’m inspired by travel, beauty, glitz & glamour.”
Taylor
Cleveland, OH
“My personal hashtag: #Curly”
If you weren’t here right now, what would you be doing?
“I’d be out changing the world!”
When do you feel the most confident?
“I feel most confident right after I get out of the shower.”
Rance
St. Louis, MO
“My personal hashtag: #FadeFocus”
Paige
Celina, OH
What makes you happy?
“If I’m having a bad day, I can always count on my dog or my fiance to cheer me up.”
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received or given?
“Someone always has it worse than you, so be positive and thankful.”
These three lovely ladies, Norma, Georgina and Fatima, didn’t have time to chat so we snapped a pic and wished them a lovely day.
Nellie
Minnetonka, MN
“My personal hashtag: #GetNailedByNellieNow”
What do you never leave the house without?
“My jewelry, hairspray and a mirror.”
What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
“Never get in a relationship, you’ll wake up happy every morning.”
Mystery Man #2
Location: Unknown
He was a true gentleman. So eloquent, and a pleasure just to stand next to. He’s #1 on our list to meet again.
Mystery Man #1
Location: Unknown
Not only did we find him intriguing, but he remains a mystery. He never spoke. He would only let us take his picture and insisted on 100 selfies with us. He was a definite highlight of the weekend.
Margaret Vinci Heldt (Inventor of the Beehive hairstyle)
Elmhurst, IL
How do you define true beauty?
“True beauty? I’m lookin’ at it! True beauty comes from within.”
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received or given?
“Be the best you can be, whatever you’re doing.”
Michael
Chicago, IL
What would never leave the house without?
“My right shoe, my left shoe and my wallet.”
How do you define true beauty?
“True beauty is feeling good and hopefully looking good, too!”
Melinda
Highland, IN
“The best career decision I ever made was deciding to pursue my passion.”
Megan
Mattoon, IL
When do you feel the most beautiful?
“I feel most beautiful after I’m done getting ready, of course!”
What is the best advice you’ve ever received?
“Stay loyal.”
Marcus
Chicago, IL
When do you feel the most confident?
“I feel most confident when I’m with friends and people who encourage me.”
Mandi
Highland, IN
What is your spirit animal?
“It would be a snow leopard.”
Mackenzie
Mattoon, IL
What inspires you?
“No one thing inspires me. I can find inspiration in everything I do.”
What is your spirit animal?
“My spirit animal is a lone wolf.”
When do you feel the most beautiful?
“I feel beautiful all the time.”
Ludo
Chernivtsy, Ukraine
What do you never leave the house without?
“My perfume, a hairbrush and my brain!”
What is your spirit animal?
“A cat.”
What do you love about this industry?
“My favorite part of the beauty industry is experiencing new trends.”
Lacey
Grand Rapids, MI
What is your spirit animal?
“My spirit animal is a fox.”
How do you define true beauty?
“Being true to yourself is what makes a person really beautiful.”
Kristina
Chicago, IL
How do you define true beauty?
“There is just a certain air about someone who is truly beautiful.”
Kimberly
Chicago, IL
“My personal hashtag: #Extravagant”
What is your spirit animal?
“My spirit animal is a lion.”
What is the best advice you’ve ever received?
“Stay focused, never give up.”
Kim
Minneapolis, MN
What inspires you?
“What inspires me most in my life are travel, food and my husband.”
Kelly
Chicago, IL
My personal hashtag: #BeHereNow
When do you feel your most beautiful?
“I enjoy getting ready. When I’m wearing something I love or take time for myself, I feel really beautiful.”
How do you define true beauty?
“True beauty, to me, is being okay in your own skin, and being okay with others as they are. People who are in that space are beautiful.”
Katie
Avon Lake, OH
When makes you happy?
“I’m happiest when I’m making other people happy.”
What do you love most about this industry?
“I’m a colorist and I love breaking the rules in this industry”
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
“Never give up on yourself.”
Kat
Des Plaines, IL
“My personal hashtag: #BarbieDoll”
What is the best professional advice you’ve ever received?
“Just keep practicing.”
When do you feel the most beautiful?
“I feel most beautiful when I’m all done up.”
Jeph
Detroit, MI
If you weren’t here, what would you be doing?
“If I wasn’t at ABS, I would be riding with my motorcycle club.”
What is your personal motto in life?
“Life without music would be a mistake.”
Jeigh
Chicago, IL
What do you never leave home without?
“I’d never leave home without mascara, lip balm and DevaCurl Set it Free.”
What inspires you?
“I’m inspired by art, food and architecture.”
Jamie
Chicago, IL
What is your spirit animal?
“My spirit animal is a lion.”
When do you feel the most confident?
“I feel my best and most confident right after sex.”
Guan
Chicago, IL
My personal hashtag: #Zhulander
What is your spirit animal?
“My spirit animal is a dragon.”
When makes you happy?
“I feel my best when I’m with the people I love.”
Fumi
Salt Lake City, UT
What is your personal mantra?
“Be Different.”
What makes you happy?
“My kid.”
Fernando
Hollywood, CA
“My personal hashtag: #Hiena, #MohawkMoney”
How would you define true beauty?
“True beauty, to me, can only be found on the inside. You could be the hottest chick in the world, but if you’re ugly on the inside, it ruins it.”
What is the best advice you’ve ever received or given?
“Invest in yourself.”
Eric Fisher
Wichita, KS
What advice do you have for a newbie in the industry?
“Work hard, focus on your skills and technique and PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE.”
What is your spirit animal?
“My spirit animal is a monkey”
What do you never leave home without?
“I would never leave home without finishing spray, my Aquage Smoothing Brush and this old doctor’s bag I’ve had for years that’s packed full of hair tools!”
Cre
St. Louis, MO
What is your spirit animal?
“It would be a peacock.”
Chris
St. Louis, MO
If you weren’t here right now, what would you be doing?
“If I weren’t at ABS right now, I’d be getting ready for work and a Saturday night with my wife and kids.”
How do you define true beauty?
“Beauty can’t be produced. You really have to be a nice, genuine, good person to be beautiful.”
Cameron
Grand Rapids, MI
How do you define true beauty?
“True beauty is a healthy mind and body.”
Brenda
Ann Arbor, MI
“My personal hashtag: #QueenBee”
Ayana
Madison, TN
“My personal hashtag: #StylistOfInterest”
“My life motto: Looking good is feeling good.”
Ashley
Chicago, IL
How do you define true beauty?
“True beauty is a reflection of who you are, from the inside out. It’s about not going with the crowd.”
Who inspires you?
“My son inspires me every day, everything I do is for him.”
Amy
Fort Wayne, IN
What inspires you?
“My own passion inspires me.”
How do you make a living in the beauty industrie?
“Barbering is my thing.”
When do you feel the most beautiful?
“I feel most beautiful the moment I wake up everyday, smiling and alive.”
We wanted to chat with them, but they were a bit busy working. So they posed and we got a “Pretty in Pink” photo.