Sitting in the bustling urban centre of Guangzhou, Lim Hair & Beauty Chamber provides top fashion and styling services to modern men and women. The salon was founded by Toby Lim, with the intent to bring Asian fashion, design, and style to the mainstream fashion industry. Lim Hair & Beauty Chamber also focuses on helping independent women from Asia build their own attitudes about fashion, while encouraging creativity.
We recently had a conversation with Toby about his experience with hairstyling, how he interacts with clients, and learned how he establishes and promotes his own brand through social media and other platforms. Read on to gain some useful insight and tips that you can apply to your own business.
What did you learn from working in Japan?
Details. Details are the key to success. I am always a believer of details and persistence. No matter what you do, stay focused on the details and carry on. One day you will see the success smiling and waving to you. Nothing is impossible for a willing mind. Keep going and you will reap what you sow no matter how hard it is.
Can you tell us a little about how you approach new clients?
There are so many ways to expand the client circle — from social media, to stores, and even parties. I always run into people who are really interested in the hair & beauty industry. They ask me about different fashion and hairstyle trends. When it comes to interacting with clients, I normally start by asking about their occupation, since the hairstyles I end up creating are often designed and customized based on profession and overall style. I treat my client as a friend, and maintain thorough communication about their different needs.
Do you have any special techniques as a color specialist?
I always say never be a blind follower. Styling fits into different needs and different lives. Art comes from life but is more than life. I like to come up with different inspirations based on each client’s unique situation. In terms of special techniques, advanced dyeing techniques are applied in my salon, which provides a new experience for those who are ready to take the plunge. One example of a current trending style that we offer is “Balayage.”
How do you see Chinese woman of today and the near future?
Today, we’re seeing more space for women to grow and have influence on a global stage. They’re mentally and financially independent, and they represent progress in time, and the future of the hair and beauty industry. Women have broken through the constraints of housework, and have their own pursuits especially when it comes to trends and fashion. It’s important for modern women to find their own beauty and confidence, and it is this desire that has driven us to constantly learn and update our new techniques.
How do you learn about new trends? What resources do you rely on for information?
I follow famous hair & beauty designers on Youtube, Instagram, and Facebook to catch up with fashion trends. I will reach out to them if I’m interested in their techniques and go abroad to meet and communicate with them.
What are 3 things to keep in mind if someone wants to become a successful hairdresser?
1. Love your career forever.
2. Find your own style and way of doing things.
3. Be passionate about learning. Always set small targets for yourself and never stick to one style. You can have hundreds of looks in your design, but always pick the one that suits your client best. As a professional stylist, understand that the customer’s need is a must. Never design only from your own perspective. As an artist, a unique personal style must be shaped without blind imitation.
How do you use social media to promote your work?
We share pictures and videos of Lim’s work on YouTube, Instagram and Facebook to help people learn about us. We also like to create clips that call for more audience engagement, encouraging them to join and enjoy the process of changing and rejuvenation.
Which channels work best for you and why?
In mainland China, we use WeChat, Weibo, and popular video sharing platforms like Douyin and Huajiao. Following fashion updates through mobile applications is easier and more common for young people in China. Therefore, these mobile channels work best for us.
How do you see Chinese beauty trends and ideals inspiring the world?
I believe more Chinese designers are joining the industry and taking their work and fresh ideas to the global stage. As a result, Chinese style has more of an influence in the world.
We’ve seen some of Lim’s hair designers live broadcasting their work, having real-time interactions with online audiences. Why do you choose to live stream? Have you learned anything interesting through this?
Live streaming is a new and popular way to engage in mass communication. It’s also the fastest and most direct medium for engaging audiences. Through real-time interaction, we learn the audience’s understanding of fashion and trends, which provides more elegant inspiration for in-store styling and services. Live helps us spread our brand and concept, allowing people to know about the different hairstyles we do.
We are live on Huajiao every Monday. We’ve had 3 live streams so far, and we’ve received interesting questions from our friends on the internet. Some have asked for our opinions on future trends, and others have asked about our designers’ mate selection. Some viewers have expressed interest in coming to the salon to try and learn the dyeing techniques. It is the audience’s support that encourages us to keep live streaming.
About Lim Hair & Beauty Chamber
Lim Hair & Beauty Chamber is a luxurious private hair and beauty salon made for sophisticated women (think: modern day office woman, women working on their career, and mid-to-high-end women who appreciate aesthetics, modern style, and fashion). Founder and technical director Toby Lim has extensive experience from both academy and industry practices in Tokyo and London. He wanted to bring China’s first beauty chamber specialized in hair-dyeing to Guangzhou. His salon brings a creative mixture of contemporary Japanese and American hair styling aesthetics to modern women in China. Stylists at Lim are experts in using different hair dye to create a one-of-a-kind style.
Tune in for Lim’s next livestream here!