Paul Mitchell opens in Lexington



By Shelisa Melendez

A popular name in hair has landed in Lexington.

On Tuesday, April 6, John Paul Mitchell Systems held a Grand Opening Extravaganza at Paul Mitchell The School Lexington. With the program scheduled to begin at 7 p.m., guests arrived early to tour the new location. Like any other Paul Mitchell event, students and beauty professionals were dressed in black and white attire. Visiting students from the Cincinnati Academy wore black, while current The School Lexington students were dressed in white.

Prior to the Grand Opening, fruit parfait’s and “I ♥ PM” cupcakes were made available for guests. While guests viewed Paul Mitchell products and hairstyling stations, hundreds of Paul Mitchell students waited in line to take pictures with John Paul DeJoria, CEO and co-founder of John Paul Mitchell Systems.

Announced as a surprise guest, Miss Kentucky 2009 Mallory Ervin kicked-off the Grand Opening with her vocal presentation of “My Old Kentucky Home.” Following her entrance, Ervin spoke about her love for Paul Mitchell products and explained why the appearance of hair is important to her.

“It’s important to have pretty, healthy hair with good product on it,” Ervin said.

Following Ervin, Winn Claybaugh, dean and co-founder of Paul Mitchell Schools, spoke of the continuing growth of Paul Mitchell Schools across the country.

There are currently 115 Paul Mitchell Schools throughout the U.S., with over 10,000 potential professional students. Along with its rapid growth, Paul Mitchell Schools and John Paul Mitchell Systems are major contributors to five non-profit organizations: Children’s Miracle Network, Food 4 Africa, Leeza Gibbons Memory Foundation, Andrew Gomez Dream Foundation, and the recently added Larry King Cardiac Foundation.

After the mood for the evening was set, the company’s CEO, John Paul DeJoria, took the stage. Due to a knee injury on vacation, DeJoria sat on a stool while speaking. While on stage, he revealed the company’s intentions for its students.

“It’s not about being a cosmetologist,” DeJoria said. “We want to teach them how to be better human beings.”

DeJoria then went on to stress the importance of enjoying the profession and the Paul Mitchell brand.

“We want to make sure your culture is more important than anything else,” DeJoria said.

As co-founder and owner of most of John Paul Mitchell Systems, DeJoria purchased a 360 year trust for the company, allowing only him to make any changes to it. The purpose of the trust is to ensure the principles, regulations, and goals of John Paul Mitchell Systems remain the same.

To the surprise of many guests and DeJoria himself, UK men’s basketball players Darius Miller, Perry Stephenson, and Ramon Harris made a special appearance to wish both DeJoria and Claybaugh a happy birthday.

As the evening drew to a close, both current and prospective students mingled, and expressed why they chose to attend a Paul Mitchell school above all others.

“We’re called the Harvard of hair, best of the best,” said Brittany Herrell, creative student from The School Lexington.

When making his final remarks, DeJoria wanted every guest to remember one very important fact.

“If you ever see Paul Mitchell in a drugstore or grocery store, it is counterfeit or black/grey market. We don’t sell there,” DeJoria said.