This hair stylist’s work is always impeccable right down to the styling. You can see her passion for what she does – in the looks she creates.

I had trouble narrowing down the number of looks to use in her feature, there were so many to choose from in her portfolio. She definitely posts with purpose and knows how to highlight her work.

Meet Michal, a multi-talented artist with a unique personal style.

Here is a bit of her story.

Michal Beattie

Hair Stylist

Le Petit Salon – Elgin| Ottawa, ON
Instagram: @hairbymichalmaria

So let’s start from the beginning – what drew you to a career in the beauty industry?

I have always been a right brained person. In high school all the classes I excelled in were art based, whether it be music, photography, or visual arts. When looking for a career after high school, I wanted to find a path that was both fiscally responsible, but also allowed my creative side to shine. This seemed like an appropriate choice, but I didn’t realize it would become my life’s passion.

I have been a fan of your work for a few years now – it is very editorial – so clean and fresh.
Looking through your before and after looks – you have such a diverse portfolio. The looks you create fit your clients so well – their bone structure, angles of their face, skin tone. How collaborative are your consultations with your clients?

As much possible! I have to admit, consultation has not always been my strong suit. It took many long years of trial and error to determine the right formula. The one thing that is extremely helpful is asking people for inspiration photos of their “end goal” for their hair.

At that point we will discuss what they like and do not like about each photo (tone, placement, length etc.) to try to find some similar elements that stand out to them. This is when I will let the client know if the end result is feasible in one appointment or if it will take multiple appointments to achieve.

The biggest thing I’ve learned during a consultation is to try to be as realistic as possible. “Under promise, over deliver” if you will.

Most hair stylist I know have other artistic outlets outside of the salon, you play the guitar and have a beautiful voice. What inspires you as an artist?

Music and the culture that comes with it have always been a huge inspiration to me. I really love 50’s, 60’s and 70’s rock and folk music. It wasn’t until my later 20’s that I really found my personal taste and aesthetic from those eras. For instance, Eddie Sedgwick, Stevie Nicks, Etta James, Cher; all women who touched the world with their incredible charisma, talent, and unique fashion style. Fashion is also my other massive love, and with that brings thrifting and vintage collecting. I could go on and on.

Ongoing training is such an important part of being a hair stylist – trends come and go and styles are always evolving. How do you keep up to date with everything?

Going to classes, instructual seminars, and ongoing education facilitated by the salon is always so important. I’m so lucky to work at Le Petit Salon (LPS), where our owner and manager really encourages us to attend as many classes as possible. Obviously because of Covid, it has been difficult this year. The brands we work with, L’Oreal and Davines, have many awesome tutorials on their websites that keep us up to date on trends, whether it be styling, colour, or product lines. However, you can find the stylists at the salon on most days showing each other different techniques on instagram, YouTube or other stylists blogs that we find inspirational. We really enjoy keeping our creative juices flowing.

I have always liked the idea of tattoos – the symbolism, the stories behind them. If I ever did get one, I would want it to have meaning and for it to be timeless.

They lose touch with their feet. They look at the sky too much.

What is the meaning behind your tattoo?

This is a quote from A Handmaid’s Tale by Margret Atwood. It’s part of a monologue by one of the main characters that really struck me. I also like to think it reminds me to keep my mind focused and not to sweat the little things.

A lot of people expect hair stylist to be trendy. But I think when it comes to artists – they use clothes, hair and makeup to express themselves – it’s their calling card. How would you describe your personal style?

Silver is definitely my thing! I see photos of older women, covered in tattoos, with stacks and stacks of silver bangles and rings, and I hope that I will be one of those women. I usually try to buy vintage and used silver, and one of my favourite things to do is to imagine the stories behind each piece.

Who made it? Who wore it? Who received it as a gift?

It’s pretty beautiful to think about.

I have seen some of your editorial work and I know you’ve competed in Trend Vision before. Does having this type of creative outlet, working with other artists – important to you as a hair stylist?

It’s extremely important to me. Every stylist I’ve watched on stage or taken classes from has taught me some incredible things I’ve been able to implement into my day-to-day work. However, the people who have taught me the most are the people I work with every day at LPS. I work with such innovative and creative women and men. I can literally say I learn something new every day.

You have also done some work in front of the camera as well. I remember seeing a photoshoot you did with Andrew Szeto a while back. How was that experience?

WOW! That’s such a throw back. We had a lot of fun that day. Andrew had designed his own motorcycle helmet, and wanted to photograph it! A man of many talents.

I always ask people if they follow a beauty routine – because I am a bit of a skincare and makeup junkie. I can’t leave Sephora without spending a small fortune – no matter what I tell myself before I go there. What are your favorite beauty products?

Glossier is a make up and skin care line I really love. The price point is super reasonable and I’ve found all the skin serums extremely necessary in my daily regimen. My personal favourite is Future Dew.

I’m obsessed with hair masque – they make my hair feel amazing. Do you have any haircare products that you like to use?

Davines is by far my favourite hair collection. It is a Italian hair brand we sell at Le Petit Salon. It’s a family owned company that prides itself in its sustainability. Not to mention the packaging is to die for. My personal two fave products are the OI oil for moisture balance and the Liquid Spell which is used as a blow-dry add and protein additive. All the products smell amazing and really live up to the hype.

What do you love most about going into work every day and being behind the chair?

I adore the stories.

Meeting and working  with so many incredible people is such an honour. I hear many incredible tales of peoples lives, whether they are belly laugh inducing or a little tear jerking. I honestly love coming to work every day and interacting with so many different people and personalities. There is never a dull moment.

It also doesn’t hurt working in a beautiful environment. Le Petit Salon is little, but it has an incredible aura. You can feel it as soon as you walk in the door. From the music to the art, every thing is hand picked to create a welcoming, warm and interesting experience. 

Finally – what three words describe you best?

Unique, Bright, Driven.