Photo: Courtesy of Hector Estrada Salon
Hector Estrada is an artist, entrepreneur, teacher and philanthropist. He makes a difference in the community by volunteering in organizations such as “Project Happiness” which helps people find their own path to happiness through education and connecting through a group called “Circle” which starts with a great book that leads to conversation that can bring about real change.
Hector is the co-founder and creative director of the Hector Estrada Salon (formerly Rubio & Raven). Which happens to be one of San Francisco’s top five-star salons. He also launched his own product line called the “Hector Estrada System” which consist of a shampoo, conditioner and conditioning masque which is great for all hair types and is safe for color-treated hair. It contains only safe, botanical ingredients with no sulfates or parabens. A portion of each sale goes to support “Project Happiness.”
The salon is located at 142 Fillmore Street in San Francisco. We caught up with Hector to find out more about his work, product line and Project Happiness.
Tell us about your salon?
“My salon is a place to discover new talent within San Francisco and beyond. One of my dreams is to not only find and mentor new talent, but to help build and foster the careers of new stylists, so that they have the skills to be successful within their career wherever it may lead them––at my salon or to other parts of the world.”
Describe the décor?
“Understated elegance, with muted classic colors and vintage touches.”
How would you describe your personal style?
“Sophisticated color and tailored haircuts with clean lines and good texture.”
What are your favorite products?
“I’m very excited about the products that I created and brought to my salon this year. I spent nearly two years with industry professionals formulating what is now known as The Hector Estrada System, which consists of one shampoo, a conditioner and a deep conditioning masque suitable for all hair types.
I love the shampoo because it gently cleanses hair without stripping it, providing visible shine and moisture. The conditioner is great because it doesn’t weight the hair down, which also allows for a quicker blow dry. And, the deep conditioning masque is amazing for its versatility which can be used as a normal conditioner for thick, coarse and curly hair, yet can also be used as a deep conditioning treatment for any hair type.
I’m also excited about my new products that are in development–– a dry shampoo, sea salt spray and texture creme.”
Best selling products?
“The Hector Estrada System is by far our most popular products sold in the salon.”
What is unique about your salon compared to other salons in the Bay Area?
“What is unique is the overall customer experience that each client experiences. The attention to superior customer service and the care that is placed into pairing each client with the best stylist for their particular hair type and desired look.”
Who are your hair icons?
“Brigitte Bardot, because of her hair color and style. I was 10 years old, when I first saw a picture of Brigitte Bardot and it made me excited about the transformative power of hair and beauty.”
What do you like most about working at the salon?
“To have the opportunity to connect with my clients and my talented team.”
The most memorable moment you’ve had while working at the salon?
“When a sight-impaired woman first came to the salon and asked me for a new, modern hairstyle, and when I finished the haircut she expressed how happy and beautiful she felt.”
What makes a successful hair stylist?
“To be open to learn all areas of hair; to be consistent in practice; and to exhibit dedicated workmanship to the craft.”
Something you have not done yet that you really want to do during your career?
“I would like to raise more awareness and money for Project Happiness (www.projecthappiness.org), a local non-profit that provides anti-bullying and social and emotional resilience––building resources to youth and adults worldwide. My ultimate goal is to provide online programs created by Project Happiness founder, Randy Taran and world-class experts to youth, young adults and adults, particularly in the Bay Area.”
Any achievements, special talents, stories about the salon or staff you would like to talk about?
“I opened the salon just over five years ago with my previous business partner, Michael Caravas, and one assistant––at that time, there were only three of us. Today, my salon has grown exponentially in terms of talented stylists, support team and a wonderful, loyal salon clientele. I feel very blessed.”