What is the Fuel Education System?

Chris Baran has been cutting hair for 45 years, training hundreds of thousands of hairdressers in 26 countries to understand the Principles of Design and the Principles of Finishing, developed in cooperation with Redken 5th Ave. Everyone has heard the expression, “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.” This is the truth at the heart of the Fuel for Education System. If you understand hair, you’ll never need to learn another haircut. You will know, just by looking at it, how to recreate any design out there.  You will have the understanding that unlocks your creativity, paving the way for you to go from good to Great. Chris’ promise: Any cut, any style, any time. And it’s all yours for less than the cost of a good pair of shears.

Chris breaks his massive experience down into easy to absorb bites with clear lessons in a See-Do format. First you watch, and then you do it yourself. Then Chris explores the most common mistakes with you. The DVDs, in conjunction with the Manual, Workbook, and Lesson Plan, create a fast, efficient highway for learning.

Tell me more about the DVDs

Navigation is easy – just jump right in, stop and review if you need to, and move on when you’re ready. Follow the Lesson Plan for efficiency, or work ahead.  First Chris covers the theory and shows you how it’s done, and then you grab your mannequin and try it yourself. You will be stunned how easily it all comes to you, whether you are a novice or a seasoned pro looking to hit the next level.

What is the see-do method?

First you watch a portion of the cut on the DVD, then you practice the skill on your mannequin. First you SEE it, then you DO it. Depending on the complexity of the design we sometimes break it down into a couple segments.

Do I have to follow the Lesson Plan?

Your Little Voice might tell you to skip ahead to a different chapter, and that’s not wrong, exactly, but think of it like building blocks. As we progress, each lesson builds on the previous ones.

Do I need salon supervision?

No. But I will tell you this – if a stylist is picking this stuff up, it would be very wise for the salon, education manager or mentor to get grounded in the material as well. Having this knowledge tends to help create advantages and opportunities, and those who have it are clear choices to guide new team members as they join.

As I’m working along with the DVDs, can I try variations of the haircuts?

Well, sure, but if you cut it too short you’ll be affecting subsequent haircuts planned for that mannequin. Hey, if you can spare a mannequin or two, I’m all about exploration.

How many mannequins do I need for Fuel for Design?

The program is designed for a rotation of five, but if you are a little free with a shear, you may want one or two more. In the Lesson Plan, we’ve color coded the mannequins so you’ll know which one to rotate to next. Mark your own mannequins before getting started so you can follow along.

  • mannequin #1 – blue
  • mannequin #2 – green
  • mannequin #3 – red
  • mannequin #4 – plus
  • mannequin #5 – brown

And how many mannequins for Fuel for Finishing?

There’s no cutting, so a couple of Pivot Point Erica heads, and something from Pivot Point with long hair will do fine. They can all be re-used.

Can I do this by myself?

Absolutely. I have found, however, that having a partner helps create the sort of interactive environment that really propels knowledge. The buddy system!

Where are the books?

All the files are in the printable PDF format on your Essentials CD included with each package.

I keep seeing the word blueprint. What does that mean?

For our purposes, a blueprint is a drawing that shows how to do a haircut. When an architect draws a rendering of a finished building, she uses clear lines to show how to build it. For us, a blueprint communicates how to recreate a shape. There are some helpful ones on the Essentials CD.

Am I done when the DVDs are done?

I’ve often said that when I stop learning I’ll be two weeks dead. I think it’s an excellent idea to repeat the program and the exercises as many times as you need until you are confident in the material. It won’t take long, and it’s an investment with huge benefits. They weren’t kidding when they said practice makes perfect.

Okay! Tell me about shopping on this website.

Check out the t-shirts! Also, you should know that your credit card payments are safe, processed through a private, encrypted web channel called SSL, or Secure Sockets Layer.

Can I change my order after I’ve submitted it?

Most orders you place on ChrisBaran.com enter the shipping process very quickly so we can get your items to you as soon as possible. Orders already in the shipping process cannot be modified. When it arrives, contact us about returning the unopened package for a refund, less shipping and handling. Memberships can be cancelled any time, and your access will end at the end of the current billing cycle.

So I can return items?

We really want you to be happy with your purchase, but if it arrives damaged or you just got another one for your birthday, you can contact us and we’ll help you sort it out. Usually it’s no problem to arrange an exchange or a return and a refund, less shipping and handling. There are no refunds for online content, but we’re pretty sure you won’t want one anyway.

Tell me about the Lightbulb Library

Imagine having Chris handy whenever you were really stumped with a design or finishing question. This is really the next best thing. You can check out the free videos just by signing up. You’ll see Chris in short videos answering questions from hairdressers like you from all over the world. He’ll tackle mannequins and models with shear or straight razor. He’ll grapple questions about finger angle or body position. He might not have the answers to the mysteries of the universe, but hair – hair he has covered.

After you’ve watched the samples, consider signing up for the super-cheap monthly subscription. New videos are being added all the time, and subscribers will get treated to the occasional surprise. There’s also talk of a community forum so everybody can get in on the conversation. And did I mention you can email him with your own questions?

What are the computer requirements for watching the videos?

We admit it – we are tech nerds. We shoot HD and we want you to have the best educational experience possible, so the videos are posted in high resolution. That said, nobody likes watching that spinning circle for long. We think we’ve geared things to work for just about everybody. As a ballpark, we suggest an internet connection of at least 450 Kbits/sec. And really, that’s just about everybody these days. We’ve tested all major browsers, and all major platforms (including iPad!), and our videos do well on all of them.

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