// Bianca Hillier is by far one of the most sought-after hair colourists in Los Angeles. Days after graduating from beauty school she landed a job at exclusive Sally Hershberger salon where she was mentored by some of the best in the business.
Right now, Bianca Hillier is best known for her "Beachy Blonde" hard contrast balayage highlights and seamless blending techniques.
Bianca Hillier is a colourist with an eye for detail, always looking at ways to elevate her craft with next level education.
BTL is collaborating with Bianca in the near future and certainly looking forward to it . . . You'll need to stay posted for more.
How did you get started in the industry?
I graduated high school when I was 17, took the summer off and in the fall started beauty school at Pasadena City College. I went for 10 hours a day, finished 1600 hours in 10 months and got hired at Sally Hershberger two days after I graduated. I assisted Sulekha Hilton at SHLA for two years and then went on the floor as a Colourist.
Do you have a signature look/style you're known for?
I believe that people often refer to my colour as extremely contrasted balayage highlights with a natural feel due to Rachel Barnes @rocky_barnes. Rachel was one of the first models I ever coloured. We linked up through Instagram and after our first session her agent contacted me and explained that she wanted me to colour all of her talent.
What do you get out of traveling and do you educate while on the road?
I travel quite often for work and for pleasure. I think traveling is extremely important because the more you see, the more you can offer as an artist, the more culture you experience, the more knowledge you retain. I am based in Los Angeles at Andy Lecompte Salon, I chronically visit Belle Femme in Dubai as well as Beautopia in Bahrain. In the Middle East I work in these salons regularly taking clients. I am a part of the Olaplex team as an international educator/artist. When I travel with Olaplex at first I was helping launch the product and now I do guest appearances as well as educating and helping people understand the chemistry of Olaplex (which is actually incredible) as well as touch on other subjects. I think that the key to being successful is to never stop learning.
What is one of your biggest career challenges and how did you overcome it?
I developed an allergy to the chemicals in bleach a few years ago. At first I was visiting the doctors quite often being tested for allergies to plants, animals, foods and etc... Negative for everything. I would search all around my house wondering if there was mould or something my body was trying to reject. Finally after several blood tests I realized that body was not able to properly release the toxins that the bleach consists of. I now have asthma and I regularly take allergy medication which helps but doesn't rid of the situation. Redken flash lift is the least harmful bleach to my body so far and I love what it does to the hair so I am lucky that Tracy Cunningham and Slim have turned me onto it.
Must have tool/product for your kit?
My must have product is Olaplex without a doubt, I use it on every single client. My must have tool is my Framar Int. Balayage tint brush. It helps me create precision lines for highlights.
How much input do you have with your celebrity clientele?
Working with influencers, models and celebrities is definitely a bit different than working with clients who are not being recorded, filmed/photographed on a regular basis. As a Colourist you must understand that colour and hair read differently on film than live in person. These clients are visiting me due to my skill and/or reputation so we work together as a collective in order to create the final product. As an expert you must give your input and most logical way to go about the services based on your clients wants/needs. I have been extremely lucky with my clientele, they are tremendously intelligent, inspiring and understanding allowing me to perform my job to the best of my abilities. You must know that sometimes it is not possible to create certain things in one session. You must know when to say no.
The next big trend starting to happen?
I am starting to see highly contrasted yet muted highlights. I am loving this trend.
What do you enjoy when the brushes are down?
When I am not working I love to travel. I try to leave the country and go somewhere new and not work at least once a year. Last year I went to the Philippines alone! I visited Boracay, Manila and Palawan. I also went to Puerto Rico. Although I work and love to, I think it's very important to take time away to truly appreciate your craft and home.
What advice would you give artists just starting out?
Anyone just starting in the industry should try to absorb as much information as possible. Learn anything and everything. Learning isn't always figuring out what to do but sometimes what not to do. Find someone who's work inspires you and try to assist her/him. Stay ahead of the social media trends.
Ultimate dinner party guests?
The Olsen twins hands down. I admire their hustle and their craft. I would be honoured!