Jason Holloway creates at Second Look Studio

The son of a man whose jobs kept their family moving, Jason Holloway (born in Ithaca, N.Y.), first came to Culpeper when his father was made foreman of a local dairy farm.

Jason spent the magic years of youth (unofficially estimated to be from 8 to 12 years old) exploring the wonders of their 200-acre farm before graduating from Stonewall Jackson High School in Manassas.

He went immediately into the field that would have him opening his first solo business in Culpeper years later ―personal betterment (starting with hair).

Jason’s hairdressing career began in the Touch of Class salon in Yorkshire, Va. where the owner saw great things in him and was of assistance in securing Jason a position at the renowned Sylvain Melloul Salon.

For three years, Jason apprenticed with french hair dressers who believed a hairstyle was an extension of pop culture and with English hair dressers whose work he called incredibly precise.

He carried this learning into the Carousel Salon in Roanoke where owner Caroline Farlow taught him about business and a representative from Loreal discovered him.

Three interviews and two trips to New York City later, Jason was offered the job of corporate colorist and, for the next two years, traveled the country styling for magazine and print advertising and shows and providing education.

Loreal offered Jason a lucrative position in business development but, one list of pros and cons (heavier on the cons) and one call from the Bristow-based Jolie Laid Salon later and Jason chose to get off the proverbial fast track and come home to Virginia.

During his artistic directorship at Jolie Laid, Salon Magazine named it one of the top 200 fastest growing salons in the country with Northern Virginia and Washingtonian magazines also chiming in. (Loreal caught wind of the recognition and tried to woo Jason back, but, again, he declined.)

Jason’s interest in, and pursuit of, personal growth has, not surprisingly, paralleled his business success. He’d already completed extensive training in karate when, in 2007, he was certified as a yoga instructor through the Charlottesville Yoga School. It was around this time when he met the love of his life, Jerry Brick, a man with such an abundance of good will and positivity, his exodus from a job at Fredericksburg’s Hyperion Espresso inspired not just an article in the city’s paper, but a small rebellion by the coffee shop’s patrons.

Jason and Jerry have been together five years now and continue to be one’s yin to the other’s yang.

Jason opened his niche, Culpeper-based boutique, Second Look Studio, three years ago. In addition to hair services, the salon offers nail services, massages, facials, and (at Second Floor Studio) Jason teaches yoga classes. A talented artist in his own right, Jason maintains a gallery in his salon currently showing the work of no less than five local artists.

When asked to describe his vision for the studio, Jason answered, “I want it to be a creative playground where private attention allows people to express themselves in new ways.” Toward this end, he is sponsoring the first in what is anticipated to be an annual fashion event.

The Personal Design Festival will occur over the month of August and will include workshops taught by Jason’s industry peers that include makeup techniques, image consultation, and accessorizing.

“The goal is to teach people the best way to express themselves by entertaining the idea of taking on other personas,” Jason explained of this (initially) invitation/client only event.

The month-long festival will culminate in a fantasy runway fashion show to be held at the Second Floor Studio.

While Jason’s professional accolades and accomplishments are many, it’s his personal relationships he refers to when asked about his success.

He speaks in reverent terms about his mother who moved back from Florida to help him with his fledgling salon and his right-hand- ‘man’ and apprentice, April Carter, the only apprentice he’s taken on in 20 years.

When he speaks of his partner, Jerry, his sea-colored eyes turn light. “I found someone who loves me unconditionally. Supporting each other in the world is vital and we have that.”

LB: What’s the most beautiful place in, or part of, Culpeper?

Jason: My front porch.

LB: What’s your favorite place to hang out on a weekend?

Jason: Foti’s bar on jazz nights.

LB: What’s the most beautiful quality you find about the people who live here?

Jason: Their fabulous histories and generous hearts.