April 08, 2017 7 min read

4am Friday, Manchester, Hanna’s bed.

 Everyone is sleeping but I’m wide awake. Brrr… Unfortunately, jetlag from my trip to Thailand is something I can’t control… Well, at least it’s getting a bit better, yesterday I woke up at 2am :D

 4.30am Friday, Manchester, Hanna’s bed.

Can’t get back to sleep – so let’s talk to the American girls on Instagramand to our Asian manufacturers by email. At least there are some business benefits from having jetlag. I like to be positive about things.

 6am Friday, Manchester

All emails are done and all messages replied. Going to have a shower and get myself ready for my trip to Croatia, Zagreb. Martina Kallos invited me to be a judge of her Lash Challenge competition and I’m very excited about the trip.

 5pm Friday, Zagreb, Croatia 

Arrival to our beautiful hotel where the competition is going to take place – I’m absolutely in love with the decor and the old fashioned features of the building.

 5.05pm Friday, Zagreb, Croatia, Hotel

I’ve gone to meet Martina’s husband at the hotel reception and he doesn’t recognise me – haha, that’s us, girls without make-up and hair extensions – nobody can recognise us, we are like 2 different people before and after make up application :D My friend Alena is constantly having trouble with passport control in the airports as on her passport photo she is wearing her best make up, but obviously she is travelling without make up on and no one believes that it’s her passport :D

8.30pm Friday, Zagreb, Croatia, hotel

Meeting all the girls judges and Martina Kallos with her husband at the reseption. Omg, have you seen Martina in real life? She is so beautiful! Can’t stop staring at her… envious :/ :)

Meeting the lovely Frankie Widdowswith her super friendly boyfriend Damian. I haven’t seen her since last year’s Lash Battle, so it’s great to catch up again and pick her brain about YouTube marketing and promotion. Apparently she has over 20k followers on her YouTube channel and most of her business is coming from there. Something to think about and probably take ideas on board. I’m a big lover of lash talks – so I might be quite good at it.. need to try and see! In Russia they say – “those who don’t try, will never drink champagne!” A bit exaggerated though, with the price of Prosecco £5.85 in Tesco :D but yes, point is - let’s try and see how it’s going to go.

Lovely to see Alena Skodic and Marta Wiatr again – haven’t seen both of them for ages so it’s nice to catch up and chat about the latest news.

Was great to finally meet Laura Kaminskiene - her lash work is absolutely amazing and she is a great trainer. She is also suffering from jetlag from her trip to USA Lash masters  – poor kid :( 

9pm Friday, Central Zagreb, Croatia,

We are having a dinner in a super fancy bar in the centre of Zagreb. Absolutely beautiful food. Eating lots of my favourite tartare, god knows why I like fresh meat so much. I’m like a predator! It worries me a bit.

Thank you Martina and her husband Mehmed for a beautiful dinner.

 9am Saturday, Zagreb, Croatia, Hotel

I’m having breakfast with the judge’s downstairs and discussing the judging criteria. Recently all competitions have slightly changed the way of judging. Before, every judge used to judge each criteria. Each judge checked stickies, inners and outer corners, directions, styling etc. It was very time consuming (sometimes models needed to wait for 3-4 hours to get judged) and often we had situations when extensions were falling out while one judge was checking stickies, and then all the following judges would give the contestant lower points for coverage and overall look. Which is not fair. Now we do it differently. We discuss what are the strongest sides of each judge and ask each judge to be responsible for checking only 2-3 criteria. It allows us to get the most accurate results and significantly speeds up the judging process.

 10.30am Saturday, Zagreb, Croatia, Competition Area

A nice young man greets me and introduces himself as our new French distributor, Alexandre. Oh really? I didn’t even know…Since I started to delegate most of the work to my girls I don’t know much about what’s going on in the company :D A bit embarrassing, but delegating is the only way to deal with such a fast growing business. Otherwise you are going to burn yourself and apparently become much less intuitive, productive and progressive. I went through it 2 years ago. Depression and complete loss of interest in anything – this is a result of “overworking”. No thank you, I don’t want it any more. I want to be happy and have a balance between my private life and business. So please don’t get upset if I don’t answer your messages on Facebook :D instead of this, please email my girls: info@londonlashpro.com - they will respond within an hour :)

 Alexandre’s wife Johana was taking part in the competition and he came to support her. I admire men who do it, competition is such a stressful project and it’s very nice if your partner comes to support you.

 11am Saturday, Zagreb, Croatia, Competition Area

I’m doing an interview with a Croatian TV channel! Scary…. but actually I did very well. You just need to start talking and then you forget about the fear very quickly. Hopefully Martina can send me some videos from this interview later. 

 12am – 5pm Saturday, Zagreb, Croatia, Competition Area

Judging. I must admit that all the participants are extremely talented and I’m very happy with results of their works. I’m judging Styling and overall look and give away lots of high points J I must admit that some juniors are better than Experts. Which is incredibly impressive! Well done girls!

 7pm Saturday, Zagreb, Croatia, Awards ceremony

Woop–woop! The most exciting time! Awards! Congratulations to all the winners!!! You proved that you are the best of the best! Especially congratulations to all Junior lash artists – it must be very exciting to win your first ever Lash Competition! Another special congratulation to Johanna, our new French distributor. 2nd place in Volume is a great result and I’m very happy for her. You can find her competition work in her blog here and youtube channel here, she’s done an absolutely stunning set of brown lashes for her model.

And my best wishes to everyone who didn’t win, I hope you will win next time!!!

 11pm Saturday, Zagreb, Croatia, Hotel room

Going to my room, absolutely exhausted. Talking to my boyfriend by facetime and my phone keeps falling out of my hand :D I need some sleep and rest!!!

 11am Sunday, Zagreb, Croatia, Hotel room

Weather in Zagreb is absolutely fantastic and I’d love to have a look at the city, but I promised myself to finalise my speech for the League of Lash Masters in Prague organised by Petr Lhotský. So unfortunately no sunny weekend for Hanna.. Researching different types of cyanoacrylate adhesive instead :/

7pm Sunday, Zagreb, Croatia, Hotel room

Ok looks like I’ve finally finished, just need to prepare photos and send them to my designer to put them together nicely and professionally. I’ll leave it for tomorrow, I need to have a little rest please.

 7.15pm Sunday, Zagreb, Croatia, Hotel

Texting Laura and Kasiato meet for dinner. Kasia is my student, she did her classics and Russian volume training with London Lash. Unfortunately she didn’t win yesterday, but I know she will win one day. As she is a very talented and determined person. She knows her mistakes and what needs to be improved. She is very fast (We call her Kasia “Lash Machine”). Being a lash machine is very good when you work in a salon, but for competition you need to slow down and work on the technique rather than on coverage. Coverage is only one criteria of judging. So I always say – make 80-90% of coverage but absolutely perfect set, rather than full coverage with few stickies, few closed fans and funny lash directions. You will get more points in total. Look at the judging criteria and think about it carefully. You need to think strategically to have a higher chance to win.

I wish you all the best of luck in all your next competitions, my dear Kasia :) I believe in you!

Ah and big sorry to your husband for stealing you for dinner on Sunday night. I know it was your birthday and he wasn’t very happy…

 11.30am Monday, Zagreb, Croatia, Airport

I’m in Zagreb airport with Laura, having an early lunch. I’m trying to film a nice video message for all Scandinavian Lash artists to invite them to Nordic Lash Conference organised by Jane Eriksson and Daniel Olsson. I’ve tried 17 attempts already and I still don’t like it – Laura keeps laughing at me :D this is the reality of life – when you see 20 seconds video of someone talking on Instagram or Facebook, it probably took about an hour to film it.. I wish one day I’ll be able to do it on the first attempt :D

 7.30pm London Gatwick, UK

During my flight I was writing this blog post and preparing photos for the League of Lash Masters conference. During the Interchange in Munich I was talking to my staff in the office, salon and warehouse. And I even managed to buy myself a little Koala teddy bear :D  It was a very productive day even though I was on the flight.

I’m now excited about the VIP Russian volume course tomorrow with a student Teresa travelling all the way from USA. Just found out that my lovely friend Megan Bradley, owner of Wink lashes, will also pop in to our training academy tomorrow. She Teresa’s friend, and I’m so excited to see them both.



 PS Read my blog report from League of Lash Masters Conference next week :-*


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