LOS ANGELES—Jehr Schiavo knows hair. He knows what works and he knows what simply does not work. With extensive experience in the styling world, Schiavo melded together his most valuable lessons of hair care and forged a unique vision of what a good hair style should be and what it should do.
Minimalism, freedom and beauty from within: these are terms which Jehr Schiavo also hopes one day will be synonymous with his approach to hair and his Jehrcut.
Who exactly is Jehr Schiavo, though? The multifaceted hair expert is many things, among them, a caring and devoted family man. Describing what inspires him, Schiavo thinks back to his childhood in New York in the 1960s. “I was four years old. My mother was working two jobs (one in the day, one at night) and we didn’t get a chance to see each other often,” he recalls. Some of the hours they did have together to share were on Saturdays, when his mother would share an experience which would clearly impact him positively. “I would sit in the beauty parlor while she had her hair done,” he explained. As her hair was washed and set, he savored the time together and the feeling of closeness which this quality time brought.
Today, “what drives me every day is my family,” Schiavo shares. “It is now my wife and my daughter… She and Jeanette are my inspiration each day.” Schiavo and his wife, Jeanette, and daughter LouLou (almost 9) are close as can be. (Schiavo proudly adds that LouLou “has never had a babysitter.”) The three travel together, mainly splitting their time between Los Angeles, New York, and San Francisco (where Schiavo met Jeanette), with “an almost equal amount of time shared in each city.”
Schiavo came to one of his home bases, San Francisco, in 1977 when he embarked on a rigorous, year-long apprenticeship with Vidal Sassoon. From his time there, he gained some inspiration in terms of “discipline and precision in cutting… so there is formula.” He could also appreciate the Sassoon idea of the importance of learning the basic five haircuts, though he would go on to transcend and focus on the customer rather than on which of the five cuts would best suit a customer.
Jehr Schiavo blazed his own trail, feeling that it was time to look beyond the lines of haircuts one through five. A woman “is a soft creature, and putting hard lines on the most precious parts of her (eyes, skin, neck) doesn’t do much to soften and enhance the woman (and her features),” he explains. It is this vision that “Sets me apart,” he continues. “I am not placing arbitrary style on somebody’s head. I am creating something unique and specific for that person’s face.”
And his “Jehrcut” is a crowning achievement, as he blends a deep intuition of what style works best on each of his customers, with a knowledge of hair and its interactions with facial features. “I am trying to please every person I see,” he explains. “It’s a completely different experience.”
“I am not creating art, sort of statements on somebody’s head,” he points out. “That’s really important to understand. What I’m trying to give somebody is style that is an accessory to their total being. [When] somebody walks in… I can see how they present themselves, what their style is,” Schiavo explains, of his great gift for intuition. “Their face should be the artwork, and my work is an accessory, a frame for their beautiful face.”
“My inspiration is the client who walks in the door with an open mind… and [when I can] deliver… a healthier version of how they had taken care of their care in the past. “
So what exactly can a potential customer expect from a Jehrcut?
“They can expect something that is chic,” Schiavo begins. “In terms of something that is washable, wearable, stylish without any products to really speak of… absolutely effortless and really healthy.” Another added benefit, he points out, is avoiding unnecessary chemical products and products that leave hair sticky.
“A Jehrcut, we hope, in the end, this person will [allow the visitor to] feel sexier than when they walked in the door,” Schiavo illustrates. And with a Jehrcut, the customer “doesn’t feel like an object is just placed on there like a helmet will be.”
Overall, the Jehrcut provides a “really loose, soft, sexy look.”
A Jehrcut allows “the hair to dance and move freely,” in Jeanette’s words.
And many clients have been quite delighted with their Jehrcut, expressing said delight on such review sites as Yelp.
Another very exciting thing to know about the Jehrcut is that it can be brought right to the customer! Like the trend of “pop-up” boutiques, Jehr comes to clients to deliver his signature style and vision. When an appointment is scheduled, the Schiavos take a suite in a hotel and the customer spends their appointment in that suite for that unique appointment.
The Schiavos are involved in the maintenance and care of client hair before and after the appointments, too, as they offer helpful advice on long-term care and the best products to use. One of the services they provide is offering a prescription list of six items which they suggest clients use.
Those who want to experience a Jehrcut can make an appointment with Jeanette Schiavo, via email or telephone. The average price range of a cut is $300 to $1,000
Do remember to schedule those appointments, though: the lead time for an appointment is on average, about three months.
Where does Schiavo see himself in five years? “In five years, I would hope that the philosophy I have regarding beauty would be something that’s recognizable and synonymous with the name,” he explains. “My life’s work would be the achievement of somehow assuring women (primarily) and men, that any beauty [and confidence] they would find in this lifetime… is gained by realizing their inner beauty is already there,” he shares. Part of his vision is “Allowing the person to be who they are.”
Schiavo would also love to have multiple books published, including a satirical work on beauty, and would love to establish a new line of products.
“Maybe it was my life’s calling,” the modest Schiavo muses. His gift of intuition serves him well, as “Whoever it is that walks through the door… I know absolutely how far I can take the hour… what direction it would be.”
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