As one of the most sought after hairdressers in the world and an International Ambassador for the industry, there are very few areas of the hairdressing industry that have not benefited from the influence, creativity and expertise of Andrew Collinge.
Andrew Collinge began his hairdressing career with his father Peter Collinge in Liverpool, 1974. In 1976 he completed his training at the prestigious London salon MichaelJohn. Whilst there he assisted both Michael and John within the salon and on numerous photo shoots. He also assisted the legendary Robert Lobetta, the master of Avant Garde hairdressing on his photo shoots.
During his six years at MichaelJohn he went onto become Artistic Director, representing the company at events such as World Hair, Dusseldorf 1980, Salon International and other major hairdressing events.
It was whilst in London that Andrew met his wife Liz. They married in 1980 and moved back to the North West in 1982. In 1985 they opened their first Hair and Beauty salon in Heswall on Wirral.
Fast forward to 1988, Andrew and Liz were invited by ‘This Morning’ to complete a makeover on the first week of the new ITV show. The makeover slot became such a phenomenal success that the ‘King and Queen of Makeovers’, as they were dubbed, stayed with the show for eight years completing over 500 makeovers. Such was the demand for a makeover with Andrew and Liz that they offered a luxury service at the World famous store Harrods.
Andrew and Liz have enjoyed a close working relationship for over 20 years working on fashion and hair shows, photo shoots and TV shows, including a Channel 4 show called ‘Icons’ where they recreated the looks of Hollywood legends such as Marilyn Monroe, Audrey Hepburn and Rita Hayworth. Today Andrew continues to appear on various television and radio programmes.
Between them they share creativity, a continuous passion for the industry and above all a common vision for shaping looks and trends which keep them at the cutting edge of the hair and beauty world.
There are now six Andrew Collinge salons, a male grooming and barbers, two Graduate salons and a Training Academy in the North West. The training division under the direction of Andrew’s sister Sarah Collinge has an enviable reputation. The company was awarded ‘Beacon Status’ from the Government for setting the benchmark for hairdressing training.
In 2007 Andrew Collinge Training scored a hat trick with its third Grade 1 achievement from Ofsted. (Grade 1 acknowledges hairdressing training as ‘outstanding’.) The lead Inspector responsible for awarding the hairdressing grade commented “Andrew Collinge Training is in the elite. It is a first for an inspector to find no areas for improvement with regards to achieving a Grade 1 in hairdressing.” The Inspector for Leadership & Management commented “In my 10 years of inspecting, Andrew Collinge Training is the best provision I’ve ever seen.”
Christine Gilbert, Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Education, Children’s Services and Skills, Ofsted, said: “I wholeheartedly congratulate Andrew Collinge on their success and hard work in delivering such high standards for their trainees, excellence does not happen by chance. The support and expertise which Andrew Collinge trainees can count on really helps to inspire and challenge these young people into becoming some of the most talented hairdressers in the country. There is no reason why all apprenticeships and work-based learning can’t be outstanding and I hope Andrew Collinge will be a source of inspiration to others.”
Sarah Collinge Training Director said, “Training has always been very important to the company. An ‘outstanding’ from Ofsted really helps to motivate our apprentices and our staff, encouraging our trainees to gain confidence in their skills and push their creative boundaries. We’re really proud of our efforts in offering young people exciting and worthwhile career opportunities”.
Awards & Accolades – Andrew Collinge
1984/5/6 – North West Hairdresser of the Year 1987 – Inaugurated into the British Hairdressing Hall of Fame.
1993 – British Hairdresser of the Year
1996 – President for The Fellowship for British Hairdressing – The Fellowship photographic Image of the Year winner
1997 – British Hairdresser of the Year
1998 – First Honorary President of Habia. Governing body set up to oversee standards in the Hair and Beauty Industry.
1998 – National Hairdressers Federation Gold Medal Recipient
2000 – AIPP Grand Trophy Winner (International Hairdresser of the Year) received at the Mondial Coiffure de Beaute in Paris. The first British Hairdresser to receive this award.
2003 – 1st recipient for the Lifetime Achievement Award presented by the Guild of Hairdressers.
2004 – Winner of BBC1’s celebrity hairdressing special ‘The Weakest Link’
2005 – Honorary Fellowship from Liverpool John Moores University in recognition of contribution for Business and Commerce.
2005 – Celebrity Hairdresser of the Year awarded by the National Hairdressers’ Federation
2007 – Andrew Collinge was presented to HRH Prince of Wales during a Royal visit to Liverpool to mark the 800th anniversary of the city.
2008 – Andrew Collinge Castle Street salon was voted Hair Magazine’s Salon of the Year.
2009 – Andrew Collinge Hairdressing voted Hair Magazine’s Salon Group of the Year. The company relocated its Training Division and Head Office to new premises on Bold Street, Liverpool. Andrew Collinge was awarded a Master Craftsman Award from The Hairdressing Council at the House of Commons.
2010 – Collinge Hairdressing celebrates 100 years
Peter Collinge a profile
The Collinge name has been involved in the hairdressing industry spanning three generations. The name in the context of hairdressing began in 1910 with Peter Collinges’ father Wilfred who began barbering in a hairdressers in Southport as an apprentice.
In 1920 Wilfred Collinge went on to work as a ships barber on the Eldar Dempter Line, travelling the West Coast of Africa. Wilfred worked as a ship barber until 1939.
On his return to Liverpool Wilfred opened his own barbers in 1940 which was situated in West Derby, a suburb of Liverpool. The salon was simply called ‘Collinges’, and remained a family business.
In 1942 Peter Collinge left school and started out as a hairdressers apprentice at a salon on Richmond Street, Liverpool called Symonds who were predominately ladies hairdressers and wig makers. Peter stayed with Symonds until 1945.
In 1945 aged 17, Peter left Symonds and for two years worked as a barber/ladies hairdresser on the troop ship HMS Mauritania. In 1947 Peter then spent a year working with ‘Cunard’ on ships based out of Southampton and New York.
Peter finally returned to the city of Liverpool in 1948 and worked in his fathers salon concentrating on ladies hairdressing whilst Wilfred concentrated on barbering. It was during 1950 that Peter started entering hairdressing competitions, which were predominantly organised by the newspapers post war. It was whilst visiting competitions in places such as Blackpool which inspired Peter to start entering and he spent considerable time understanding the judging process, assessing what the judges were looking for and what was involved.
Between 1951 – 1953 Peter won hair awards in Blackpool, Glasgow, Edinburgh, London, Leeds and Brussels achieving 1st place 7 times.
In June 1954 the first Peter Collinge salon opened, which was situated on Church Street above Hepworth Chambers. Employed by Peter were just one other hairdresser and two apprentices. 50% of the business came from permanent waving. The salon became such a success that in the space of a couple of years the staff had gone from four to twenty.
By the late 1960’s there was a chain of Peter Collinge salons throughout Merseyside. Liverpool throughout the 60’s was a very exciting place to be with the explosion of the youth culture and being the hometown of the Beatles. The salons throughout this time were not only popular but attracted clients from throughout the North of England.
In 1974 the Peter Collinge hair study centre was opened in the heart of the city. (Now known as Andrew Collinge Training).
In 1975 Peter Collinge became President of the Fellowship for British Hairdressing and is one of the longest serving members of the organisation.
In the 1980’s with training still very much in mind the company became a Government Management Agent for Vocational Training throughout the North West. The initial training programme was set up by Hazel Collinge (Peters wife) and was soon recognised as the bench mark for NVQ training. The Graduate salons were the brainchild of Peter & Hazel and they still operate today for 3rd year hairdressers who work in a salon environment whilst being prepared for a position in Andrew Collinge salons.
Peter Collinge retired from active hairdressing in 1992, although as Chairman of the company he still very much keeps a personal interest in the salons and the training division.
In 2010 Peter Collinge was awarded the Gold Medal from the Fellowship for British Hairdressing.