How long have you been with the PORTFOLIO Crows Nest salon?

Im so lucky to be part of the Crowie team now, for a little over 2 years (with a mini few months off for mum life).


What is your role at the salon?

Actually, ive just been lucky enough to be promoted to Salon Manager (laughs, excitedly)!


You specialize in both hairstyling as a senior stylist for PORTFOLIO - can you tell us a little about what your skill set and how it differs from the other staff?

Well, its no secret that im a bit of a hair nerd! I specialize in colouring - as i've spent a good 12 years obsessing over my "blondes" - since i was trained-up to be meticulous and a little bit of a perfectionist. I was actually a Northern Beaches based hairdresser for a good decade; therefore blondes made up the majority of our clientele...and hey, i do love a good foil! But i seriously love a challenge too...a bit of an old-school foiling tech head meets freehand artist, when it comes to colour.

Hairstyling wise...? Well, being the hair nerd that i am, i spent one of my Sundays off this past month doing an advanced cutting course. I thrive on training and learning more...or working on the skills i already have! I love doing all hair types and just love having my clients trust me enough to let me do a good old chop.


What is the number one product (for your clients) in your arsenal that you couldn’t live without each day at work?

Oh! That's hard! I actually probably have a top 4! Eeeekk, hahaha! My all time go-to has gotta be the SP Lux Oil. I use it 3-4 times a day...wet, dry - especially when i feel a clients ends are dry. I just can't go a day without it...


Any quick tips for home hair maintenance? What advice would you give when in a rush to get out the door?

Being a time poor mum i love a quick getaway. I always do three shampoos and then a treatment on my hair. Treatments are so much more instant these days. Gone are the days of leaving it on for 3-5 minutes, so i use it like a conditioner.  Then, because my hair's cleaner (due to the three shampoos applied) my blowdry lasts longer...and using the Keratin Thermique by Kerastase it probably cuts down my blowdry time by about half. FYI - the more time you spend on your hair, the longer the style, or blowdry lasts.


Any funny customer stories whilst working in the salon (names withheld)?

Oh easily - one of the funnest is when one of my clients...comes in still drunk...and obviously is always a lot more confident in her hair decisions and her banter (with me). Obviously being more keen for a change with her hair too. I really, thoroughly, enjoy watching her sobering-up process over the course of a couple hours, and then realization of what shes requested for her hair overhaul...she usually does this once a year. Somewhat hilarious!


What advice would you give to someone looking to get into hairdressing for the first time?

Do it!! This job has been so rewarding. I've been lucky enough to work in fantastic salons with inspiring teams, even managing to travel Australia for work seminars. I love that a machine can never take away from the art of hairdressing. It takes compassion and skill. Its so personalised. Creative and fun, yet still a hobby for me - going on 12 years strong.


What (musical) artist do you have on repeat at moment?

Oh, there is three at the moment that get played on repeat during my drive to work. They pump me up and make for a great day:
'This Is What You Came For' Calvin Harris
'Cant Stop The Feeling' Justin Timberlake
'Sorry' Justin Bieber (eeeek, i know...yeah im a Belieber)


If you could spend three months anywhere, where would the dream destination be?

Europe, France and Greece mainly. Ahhh, to be young again and back on a Contiki hey...many great memories...hahaha.


How would you describe your personal style?

Well, even my husband and kids would be able to answer this: black with alot more black and many, many accessories (how else do you liven up black?) and ever-changing hair...


Whats the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning?

These days? Its a feed for a chubby-bubby. Totally worth the 5am starts!


Describe your ideal man - in three words?

Chad Michael Murray - hahaha, that's three words technically...(oops, sorry hubby)


If you could raid any woman's closet, who’s would it be?

And be them? Easy one, Blake Lively.



Our staff go through rigorous training. We ensure their skill set's reflect what we consider a high standard. Therefore meet Bianca Dowling; a senior hair technician at our Mona Vale salon, who has just recently evolved her offering here at the salon as a professional makeup artist.

Enjoy reading the following spotlight:

Hey Bianca, just wanted to take a minute or two of your time for a few quick, rapid-fire questions for a feature on the journal. You game?

Hahaha sure. Always.


Ok, here goes: How long have you been with the PORTFOLIO Mona Vale salon?

I have been with PORTFOLIO Hair for seven years this past Christmas.


You seem to have a great energy about you and just constantly moving. What's your role at the salon?

To provide cuts, colours and styling (as one of the salon's senior hairstylists) to all my clientele, whilst ensuring a relaxing and enjoyable experience.


You specialise in both hair + makeup for PORTFOLIO - can you tell us a little about what you offer with the makeup service within the salon?

Absolutely. I offer makeup services to suit all of my clientele; whether it be for a wedding, special occasion or to help compliment a new hair style. I only provide the latest quality products, sanitised tools and always a relaxing service to make the client just feel a million dollars...


What is your number 1 product in your makeup kit that you couldn’t live without?

I couldn't live without my 'Anastasia Beverly Hills' brow pomade!


Any quick tips for applying makeup at home? What advice would you give when in a rush to get out the door?

For quick and easy makeup looks when youre in a real rush I'd recommend applying a shear foundation or tinted moisturiser, with a bit of bronzer (on the cheeks) and mascara (on the lashes). This will freshen your look without too much work.


Any funny customer stories whilst working in the salon (names withheld)?

Oh, there's always several great stories on a regular basis. That's part of the fun of this type of job. We once had a lady who showed up for an appointment which she had accidentally booked through another salon - just adamant it was us. She was so embarrassed after we showed her the confirmation text we sent her earlier in the week. It was all in good jest.


What advice would you give to someone looking to get into 'Hair and Makeup' for the first time?

Realistically, just do your research on salons to train within, as well as colleges to attend. I was lucky enough to have such great staff at PORTFOLIO take me under their wing, to guide me to be the hairdresser I am today.


Which artist do you have playing on repeat at moment?

Drake and his new album! I love his music (haha)


If you could spend three months anywhere, where would the dream destination be?

Hmmm...a toss up between either Greece or New York. Both are just amazing destinations for different reasons.


Whats the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning?

Cook a big breakfast. I love my food!


Describe your ideal man in three words?

Funny. Affectionate. Supportive.


If you could raid any woman's closet, who’s would it be?

Ahhhh - i'd just love to raid Amrezy's closet. She's a makeup artist in the US and has the BEST clothes!!!



When a client writes to us, be it good feedback or constructive criticism, we always take note...And once in awhile, we just get great little letters of appreciation, like this beautiful piece last week:

I would just like to offer some feedback on your Mona Vale salon.

I was just walking past your salon on Tuesday (26.04.16) and decided my greys had got the better of me. I wandered in to be greeted by what I think is your receptionist (lovely young girl with very red nails). I had no appointment and no prior knowledge of your salon. The young women gave me an appointment and my hair was done by a beautiful young lady “Amy”.
From the moment I walked in Amy Lewis was professional yet extremely personable. She did a PERFECT colour on my hair – I really don’t pay much attention to my hair and usually do home dyes.
Amy recommended I have a treatment – which she did after she had shampooed my hair.
Amy is an absolute credit to your salon – I shy away from hairdressers as they tend to talk too much. AMY is 100% BY FAR the best hairdresser I have ever had – and I am 41 so I have been to a few. AMY AMY AMY – I will be recommending her to anyone who wants to know.
Rebecca B.

Love it! And if like Rebecca, you'd like to make a booking with Amy Lewis (and with glowing reviews like this, who wouldnt!?!) please don't hesitate to contact the salon via (02) 9997 1343.

Thankyou in advance.