So you are a young, hot guy (at least in your own mind anyway) looking to meet some good looking girls to hang out with and have a good time.
Have you ever thought of enrolling cosmetology school (a.k.a. “beauty school”)?
Yes, you read that correctly. And no, I haven’t lost my mind.
The idea of meeting pretty girls is what piqued then 20-year-old Anthony Lombardi’s interest in attending cosmetology school. “I got into hair to meet girls,” said Lombardi, now a stylist/salon owner and one of the stars of the new Style Network reality series, Jerseylicious (Sundays, 10 p.m. Eastern/Pacific) “I saw pretty girls doing hair and pretty girls go to hair salons. Who doesn’t love being around pretty girls at 20?”
Anthony, who started out doing buzz cuts in his parents’ garage was “afraid to go to hair school at first” because of the “stigma” associated with a man doing hair. “It should have been the last thing I thought about doing especially as a straight guy growing up in my neighborhood.”
After a while, Anthony dismissed the trash talkers and put aside his reservations and signed on for “hair school” falling in love with it the moment he started.
On Jerseylicious, Anthony is the only dude among women at Central New Jersey’s Gatsby Salon. Anthony, a salon owner himself, needed to place to work while his place was being renovated and took the opportunity to work for and learn from co-owner mom and daughter team Gayle and Christy.
Now back at his own place (Anthony Robert Salon), but still taking clients at the Gatsby Salon, Anthony has only great memories of the experience. “I loved my time there. Cool people.” It was also a unique and beneficial learning opportunity. “I was like a sponge. I let myself sit back and observe. I was learning from my peers — fellow owners. It was like taking a Master Class.”
Some of those memories I’m sure include feuds between rivals and fellow employees Olivia and Tracy. Anthony, who says they were “sweet girls”, acted as a big brother to both giving them much needed advice. “[I told them] if they got issues with one another, [and are tempted to] go at each others’ throats, don’t do it on the floor. Maintain a level of professionalism. Find a way to work together.”
Since the show is called, Jerseylicious, I had to ask about comparisons with that other Jersey show, Jersey Shore. “There’s always going to be comparisons, It’s a completely different show,” said Anthony. “[On Jerseylicious], there is no jumping in the hot tubs. No pink thongs. There’s a certain level of respectability.” Anthony is not totally trashing Jersey Shore (“I know what it’s like to be young…I hope they have 10 seasons”). But he said, “[Jerseylicous] is not all about partying. The girls (Olivia and Tracy) are still 21 and 22 but are looking to get their careers and lives going. The show is about seven people at different stages in their lives and careers.”
“[Jerseylicious] has a little something for everybody. You are going to see growth on the show, see how people evolve. It’s no Macbeth but there is story to be told.”
More from Anthony
Is there such a thing as “Jersey hair”?
Yes, said Anthony. “Tracey has the quintessential Jersey hair. [Jersey hair] is hair that has life. It has volume. It’s doing a lot of stuff. It has movement. It’s hair that’s not stiff. It’s hair that has an attitude all its own.”
Anthony has a wife and a 13-month old son which he calls “his greatest support system”. So, I had to ask, does he do his wife’s hair?
Yes, of course he does his wife’s hair. “I don’t do it as much he she would like,” he laughed.
Three Hair Tips from Anthony
If you have curly hair, use an anti-frizz treatment that doesn’t take the curl out just the frizz. Definitely use some finishing oil, a serum that helps keep the shine, after blowing out hair. It helps keep the hair coated and also keep it from frizzing. Finally, don’t be afraid to put your hair in a ponytail especially at the beach this summer.
What is it like to work work with all women?
“Women love drama. I see it all the time,” said Anthony. “Yes, it sometimes gets tiring. It doesn’t phase me any. If it didn’t love it, I wouldn’t be in the business.”
What are some of the misconceptions about Jersey?
“It’s not all the turnpike or Port Elizabeth (like the opening credits of The Sopranos). There are mountains, skiing. It’s got history. It’s not New York’s stepbrother. It’s it own state with it’s own attitude. I’m sick of people thinking that New Jersey is part of New York. It’s an entity all its own.”
To follow Anthony on Twitter, @AntLombardi.
To follow his salon Anthony Robert Salon in Verona, NJ on Twitter, @SalonAR
For more information about Anthony Robert Salon, click here.