Q & A With Michelle
Get to know Michelle as she shares her journey of becoming a licensed hairstylist, her rise on social media, and her tips for success.
Fun Facts About Michelle
Q: What is your full name? Age? Reside in?
A: Michelle Therese Zabatta. 29. San Pedro, CA.
Q: When and where were you born? Where have you lived?
A: San Pedro, CA . Only lived here!!!!
Q: What is your zodiac sign?
Q: What is your name and nickname?
A: Michelle! no nickname… maybe fabulous 😜.
Q: What did you want to be when you grew up?
Q: What is an interesting/fun fact about you?
A: I’ve danced my whole life and just started privately choreographing again recently.
Q: What is your favorite activity or hobby?
A: Networking. Hands down. Getting to know another soul and their business and how they run their life/biz.
Q: Favorite candy, treat, or guilty pleasure?
A: Anything chocolate. like my hair masks.
Q: What is your favorite self care routine?
A: The *everything* shower.
Time At Cosmetology School
Q: What year did you start Cosmetology School?
Q: What was your biggest obstacle and how did you overcome it?
A: Bullying. I was good, I was passionate & it intimidated other stylists. It felt cut throat very early on & I overcame it with the help of my god father. He lived close to my beauty school & always let me express myself.
Q: What advice do you have for current cosmetologist students?
A: Give yourself grace and work HARD.
Q: Have you continued your education and if yes why do you think it is important?
A: OH ABSOLUTELY. you can learn from someone 1 day on the job and 10000000 days on the job, someone, somewhere can teach you something to better yourself to then better your guestbook & then better your community.
Social Media Journey
Q: How important of a role has social media played in your professional career?
A: Massive. Free advertisement and social selling can make or break anyone just starting in their career. It’s assisted mine in so many ways.
Q: Which platform has been most impactful to you?
Q: What advice do you have for someone starting out as a stylist and trying to get their name out on Social Media?
A: Politely tag and bug the heck out of your fave brands and be honest about them. Don’t sugar coat or lie about the product. Being fake isn’t apart of art.
Life As A Hairstylist
Q: What's your specialty service you offer? Blonding? Color? Color Correction?
A: My specialty service is the entire experience. i am not one specialist, although I am a Christian Michael Extensions exclusive stylist, as well as private education for licensed pros, I love all color / blonding / cutting / corrections/ brazilians ! I LOVE HAIR..
Q: What salon do you work in?
A: K Bella, in San Pedro, California.
Q: What do you find most rewarding about being a stylist?
A: The confidence my guests leave my chair with.
Q: What do you enjoy most about working in your salon?
A: The social and personal acceptance of the talented women i have the honor of working beside.
Q: What advice do you have for your fellow stylist, followers, and people you inspire?
A: Please don’t give up. Please get help if you need it. Whether it’s physical, mental or business related. It’s totally fine to reset. You deserve grace and peace. It’s also 100% okay to be different, and don’t forget that you will never need anyone, simply just want them. Own your confidence and see yourself thrive.
Q: Is there anything else you would like to share?
A: Although I've battled trauma in the work field, I've also lost over 330 POUNDS, yes i was 500lbs behind the chair, I have been sober from alcohol and narcotics for 3.5 years, I am very much on the spectrum, AuDHD & battle mental disorders completely big pharma free. I believe in balance and raw honesty and that’s how I run my 4 businesses after a complete and total nervous breakdown 2 years ago.
Q: Who inspires you?
A: My father. My resilience must be genetic.
Q: Who is someone you admire, and why?
A: Lisa Giles... she’s an incredibly talented licensed traveling stylist, former salon owner, & the founder (alongside Taylor Smith) of an app called Straight Out Of Cosmo & has an incredible podcast called The Fuck You Mentality & her passion lit a fire within me that I NEEDED. She’s been through similar and different work related and life traumas and I reached out to her … she wrote right back….fast forward, I can proudly call her a friend and ally in this industry and i am praying for the chance to work with her one day!
Q: What is a cause you are passionate about?
A: Mental and physical wellness.
Q: What inspired you to become a hairstylist?
A: I help my guests feel seen and beautiful. To be honest, I've been bullied my entire life for my weight / morbid obesity & still 100% struggle with my appearance sometimes, sure. So now, i create a safe space for anyone to feel their best self, without judgement!
A Positive Impact
Q: What mark or impact do you want to make in this industry?
A: To be living proof of the ultimate comeback story. That it is okay to fall down 9 times, because that 10th will be your winning stance if you do the hard work and do NOT give up.
Q: What do you love most about this industry?
A: That we create art in a living form.
Q: What legacy do you want to leave behind?
A: That she maybe messed up, but was willing to do the work to be better.
Q: Short term goal you would like to achieve?
A: To rebuild my guestbook entirely. I lost a lot at my own doing when I was not at my most healthiest state of mind, before my very public and excruciatingly painful nervous breakdown.
Q: Long term goal. Where do you see yourself in 3-5 years?
A: Happy, still. I see myself happy, still in 3-5 years.
Words Of Advice
Q: What is one thing that you like to share with your followers? One is one piece of advice you can share that will help them grow personally and professionally?
A: Follow your heart and your gut. Trust your instinct & let people show you who they are. Respect everyone but remind them, kindly, of your boundaries because we all deserve peace. You can come back from anything and you will 100% succeed if you are pure at heart without malicious intent. Always. Without a doubt!
See some of Michelle's amazing hair works!