Get to Know Jack Sturgeon
Jack Sturgeon got his start in the cosmetology industry in 1975, right out of college. Since then, Jackie has dedicated his life to helping people embrace their true beauty and celebrate their self-confidence. We caught up with him between clients to find out more about his story and his passion.
“I was fortunate in my early career to have the opportunity to train far and wide,” says Jackie, who even studied the Sassoon method in London. Seeking out extensive training and education paid off for Jackie, who was then able to partner with modeling agencies. “We started out doing models for fashion shows and TV,” Jackie says, “but we quickly started teaching classes at the agencies as well.”
Jack then turned his expertise into his own business. “After about three years of traveling and learning, I opened the first Blades out in Hurstbourne.” Blades then moved to the Vogue Theatre area for over 15 years, before settling into the building on Chenoweth Lane. “We bought that building and stayed in that location for another 20 years,” says Jackie. “We wound up managing anywhere from 55-65 people at a time, and were consistently voted one of the top three salons in Louisville.”
During his years co-owning and managing Blades, Jackie had the opportunity to work broadly in fashion and media. “We worked everything from club fashion shows to major events, including 30 years of hair and makeup for the news media covering the Kentucky Derby.” Jack and his team at Blades also worked the grand openings of the Kentucky Center for the Arts and the Speed Art Museum. “Our work was everywhere,” Jackie says.
It was during this time that Jack first discovered his passion for hair replacement. “I had a stylist working for me who was doing hair replacement and it was inspirational to see how he was helping his clients.” Jack turned that inspiration into a whole new division for Blades. “At first, all we had to work with were men’s toupees,” says Jack. “Then we’d have them customized for the women by special ordering the length, color and style. Finally they began making hair pieces specifically for women and the quality really improved, but before that we did everything custom.”
Jack’s passion for hair replacement didn’t end with the women who came to him for help. “I was in Minneapolis one time and a little girl came into the salon to get a wig after she’d gone through chemotherapy,” Jackie remembers. “Her reaction to the wig was so powerful that I honestly had to leave the room to compose myself. That’s how I decided to start the nonprofit.” The nonprofit turned out to be Cool Cuts, which created and donated human hair wigs to children in need.
After almost 45 years of managing a full staff, helping to launch some of Louisville’s most iconic arts organizations and making the media look gorgeous for Derby, Jackie decided it was time to move toward retirement. “After my bout with cancer back in 2011, I knew it was time to take a step back from managing that many people and working that hard. I now split my weeks between Louisville and my gorgeous lake house.”
When he’s in town, you can find Jackie at Vert’u Salon. “I’m still as passionate as ever about hair replacement,” he says. “There’s something so rewarding about being able to transform someone. I can literally give someone back their security and their confidence – I drive home from work knowing that I made a genuine difference.”
If you’re ready to change your life, contact Jack Sturgeon today.