Episode 120

Mike Karg

Podcast Length: | Date Published: 16th December 2021

Although most of us started in the same place—meaning after beauty school or an apprenticeship—the next step is to be a stylist in a salon.

For some people, they will then spend their entire career building up a loyal clientele and the great relationships and friendships that come with it.

But for others, they move into different paths in the industry, whether it’s as an editorial stylist or an educator, or perhaps into the product side of the business.  There are many opportunities should you wish to pursue them.

My guest on today’s Podcast is Mike Karg, and although Mike started out on a traditional path, he’s worked in multiple roles and countries—from salon-based stylist to platform artist, to photographic work, to being an educator and product developer.

In this episode we discuss:

  • The options that a hair-dressing career gives you if you want to pursue them
  • Why working in more than one salon has become a thing
  • And what it takes to develop your own scissor line

And lots more!

In this Episode:


[03:15] An overview of today’s guest, Mike Karg.

[06:00] How Mike managed to start a career with a move to Los Angeles in the early 90s.

[08:10] Mike’s decision to start working with photographers to build his portfolio and clientele.

[10:30] How Mike hustled and grew his client base.

[12:24] What made Mike leave Los Angeles to start again fresh in New York.

[15:15] Balancing the pursuit of editorial photography in New York with independent work in salons.

[17:47] Traveling between two places to support a career is becoming a thing today, but Mike was doing it years before the age of social media.

[20:25] The practicalities of religiously travelling and living between two places, according to Mike.

[22:38] The key to expanding work to six salons in the United States.

[24:59] Scheduling appointments and proactive communications helped ensure clients knew when Mike was in town.

[26:30] Mike describes what ignited his passion for platform work.

[28:36] Advantages of dry haircutting, in Mike’s opinion.

[30:20] What it takes to create a new line of scissors.

[33:10] A brief history of the longevity of shears.

[35:05] The innovative changes that Mike implemented in his shears to make them stand out from everything else on the market.

[38:10] What are the biggest parts of Mike’s business?

[39:15] The launch of PERFECT styling products.

[41:46] Advice from Mike for anyone with ideas about inventing their own salon tools, methods, or products.

[44:30] It’s not about coming in with a bang.  It’s about coming in with something that’s really good that you really use and makes your life easier.

[47:11] Mike explains why he never opened his own salon.

[49:26] Mike and Antony discuss the wrong reasons to open a salon.

[51:15] How COVID-19 has impacted Mike’s businesses, and what Mike sees as the future of education post-COVID.

[53:22] Digital education is valuable, but Mike believes it will never replace in-person education.

[55:00] Mike shares his thoughts on the changing business models we see in the industry today.

[57:55] Mike reveals what he believes is his biggest strength and what he wishes he could do better.

[1:00:10] How can people connect with Mike?


Thanks so much for joining me this week. If you enjoyed this episode, please leave a review. Ratings and reviews are extremely helpful and greatly appreciated!

They do matter in the rankings of the show and help other people find my podcast.

I also love to hear what’s been helpful and what you love about the podcast! Just click here to review, scroll to the bottom, tap “Ratings and Reviews” tap to rate with 5 stars and “Write a Review” and let me know what your favourite part of the podcast is. Thank you for your support!

Special thanks to Mike for sharing his insights with me for this week’s episode. Until next time!



Links and Resources:


Grow My Salon Business

Website | Facebook | Instagram


Mike Karg

Website | Facebook | Instagram