Introducing You to OPEN Hairdressing Harpenden’s Terrific Stylist Oli Tilney

I see the salon as my stage and I just come to life!

Tell us a bit about yourself and your role at OPEN Hairdressing 

I am a stylist at OPEN Hairdressing and I mainly work at OPEN Hairdressing Harpenden. I never really knew what I wanted to do when I was at school. While I worked hard and achieved good grades, I knew I wanted to work in a creative field. Anything behind a computer at a desk would not be for me!

My Dad prompted me to give hairdressing a go. He thought hairdressing could be a suitable route for me. I had an interview at the Vidal Sassoon Academy and with some luck, I was given a place! Sassoon was my home for eight years. I also played a part on the teaching side of the salon for the last two years. I completed their hairdressing apprenticeship in London until I eventually worked as a stylist at City Hair.

When I returned from travelling, I got in touch with OPEN’s Co-Director Jack Palmer in Harpenden. He’s been a friend of mine for years as we did our Vidal Sassoon apprenticeship together. I’ve been working alongside him as a stylist and I’ve never been happier. Co-Director John Phillips has kindly given me the position of training the assistants on hairdressing training days. Cutting days are my favourite day of the week. 

What do you think makes OPEN Hairdressing different to other salons? 

It’s different because there isn’t one stylist / colourist that hasn’t had some of the best training in the world. All our staff members are very passionate about hair and the enthusiasm from each member doesn’t go unnoticed. Training to a professional level doesn’t just give you the skills you need to cut or colour hair. It gives you knowledge to provide the best customer service and salon atmosphere. Our clients love OPEN’s salon environment and the attention to detail, not to mention the end product.  

We are bringing London chic to the suburbs as most of the staff have worked in London for many years. They certainly keep in the loop in terms of trends and fashion. This is crucial, even in the suburbs as there is a lot of competition. However, at OPEN Hairdressing, you can be assured you are getting a high-end result for a competitive price. 

Oli taking part in OPEN Education’s in-house training scheme

What can clients expect when they have an appointment with you? 

I am a very passionate person and want to make clients feel comfortable. This is especially true during the first few minutes of meeting someone. I am attentive to anyone who walks through the door, offering drinks and a seat. Customer service is one of the most important things to me and I pride myself on being good at it. I constantly have energy at work because I see the salon as my stage and I just come to life! 

My work in terms of cutting is very classic, focusing on short shapes using strong techniques. I tend to change styles frequently and pitch new looks to keep things interesting for both myself and the clients. You won’t expect cliché conversation and I like to try and find out more interesting things about my clients. I believe this builds fantastic rapports and on occasion, I even make friends.  

A classic cut by Oli Tilney

What do you enjoy most about your role at OPEN Hairdressing? 

Again, the part that I love most is the atmosphere in the salon and the banter we have. I am one of the older members of the team, so it’s nice to nurture the younger team members. We certainly learn from everybody. I was very set in my ways at Sassoon. However, I am proud to say I have learnt so much and feel I have really broken the mould.

Where can clients find you? 

You can find me at OPEN Hairdressing Harpenden most days. You can simply give us a call on 01582 762444 or drop us an email to book an appointment. And don’t forget, clients can also follow our work on Instagram and Facebook.