As featured in issue 1 of SalonEVO North America in February 2020
BORN AN IDENTICAL TWIN IN MANCHESTER, ENGLAND, COLE THOMPSON GREW UP MUCH LIKE MANY KIDS IN BRITAIN: WITH HIGH HOPES OF BEING A PROFESSIONAL FOOTBALLER. BUT EVERYONE KNEW THIS WOULD NEVER HAPPEN BECAUSE HE WAS SLOW AND ONLY 5’4’’. TURNS OUT, TO BE A PROFESSIONAL AT SOMETHING, YOU ACTUALLY HAVE TO BE PRETTY GOOD AT IT…
It wasn’t until his frustrated mother threw the job section of the newspaper at a teenage Cole and told him to find something fast that he ever fathomed working in a salon. Upon arriving for his initial interview, he felt an almost instant connection to the buzzing vibe of the busy salon environment. He took a cleaning position that quickly blossomed into an apprenticeship at one of the top salons in town.
Cole quickly became a rising star of the Vidal Sassoon brand in the UK, holding the title of Creative Director for both the Manchester and Liverpool locations as well as traveling all over the world educating business owners and hairstylists–and delivering seminars for thousands of people. He was, and still is, one of the youngest to ever hold that distinct title with Sassoon. It was that momentum that propelled Cole to take the frightening step to move across the Atlantic and assume that same role for Sassoon Boston, running both the academy as well as the salon.
After his first year in the US, he was presented with the incredible honor and opportunity to run the North American flagship Sassoon location in Santa Monica. While in California, hair professionals flew in from all over the world to learn from Cole. However, after speaking with hundreds of stylists, local and abroad, Cole was able to identify a gap in the industry: the need for a more personalized approach to teaching, support, and business development.
With everything he had learned throughout his various stops as a highly sought-after educator, Cole left the only brand he had ever known as a beauty professional and established his own company that focused on helping business owners and individuals in the hair industry achieve their specific goals. Cole’s platform, Elevation H, has since been adopted by salons and schools all over the world as a program to help everyone achieve the success they are destined for.
Hattori Hanzo Shears, the top scissor brand in the U.S., took notice of this ‘kid from England’ and brought him on board as one of their premier cutting artists in 2015. Since joining forces, Cole has become one of Hanzo’s most requested educators for in-salon cutting classes and has headlined hair shows all over the world. He has been an integral part of their expansion into new markets and Cole credits Hanzo with helping him achieve a lot of his recent success.
Remember that twin brother of his? As it turns out, Paul Thompson was influenced very much by his brother. So much so that he has also become a very accomplished hairdresser and business owner in his own right in their hometown of Manchester. Paul is currently playing a vital role as Hanzo begins its transition into the European market.
Whether in the US, Canada, Australia or Europe…there is no doubt that Cole Thompson will continue to make his mark on this industry we all love. And after years working on opposite sides of the world developing an unparalleled skillset and fun-loving energetic personalities–both Cole and Paul have found themselves uniquely aligned towards the goal of helping you remember why you became a hairstylist. If you saw them in person–you’d be thinking you were seeing double–but the only thing that would be doubling is your client growth and business revenue.
By hosting Cole Thompson at your salon, school, or barbershop, you can be assured he will place a keen focus on helping you take your business to the next level and inspire your team. And if you’re an independent stylist, Cole is certain to be teaching at a salon or hair show near you at some point soon–so do yourself a favor and sit in on one of his classes. You’ll be glad you did!