Our Beginnings

It was 1980 when hairstylist Paul Mitchell and businessman John Paul DeJoria teamed up to start a beauty company unlike anything our industry had ever known. With their shared vision, a trailblazing spirit and $700 between them, they founded Paul Mitchell®.

"There are people that see things early, and that was a gift that Paul had. I believe he was a trendsetter, not only in the fashion and the hair industry, but in what's important in the world."


- Jeanne Braa, Original Artistic Director + Distributor

"John Paul always had a knack for knowing what's relevant and how he can do it, and it didn't matter what anyone else thinks. He wasn't, and still isn't, afraid to take chances. If he believes in something, we all believe in it.”


- Brenda DuVal, Senior Vice President, Research + Development


“I was with Paul and John Paul when they said, 'As soon as we start to make money, we're going to give back.' That was the sincere way in which they planned to run their company, and they did exactly that.”


- Diane Quincy, Original Distributor Principal

"As soon as I got to Paul Mitchell, I quickly found out the most important part of our company was to support, honor and help the professional beauty industry, especially the stylist and salon owner. That continues today."


- Luke Jacobellis, Former President + CEO

"In the early days, you know what it was about John Paul and Paul's leadership that struck me most? They always had fun, and they were always helping people, lifting them up."


- Sheila Gomez, SGI CEO + Artistic Director

"In 1982, I was in beauty school and Paul, John Paul and Jeanne Braa came in to do a hair show. Those three individuals changed my life that night. I knew I found my circle."


- Stephanie Kocielski, Vice President, Key Customers


"The most precious moment of my career was meeting Paul Mitchell. I patterned my entire career after his philosophy."


- Connie Warren Lang, Original Master Associate + Distributor Principal




"I got the opportunity to open one of the first Paul Mitchell Schools, and I will never forget that moment. I said, 'Paul Mitchell will change my life.' It's so much more than a brand name."


- Tina Black, Paul Mitchell School + Salon Owner


"We've been a Paul Mitchell distributor since the early '80s with our father. We have grown with Paul Mitchell. It's been an illustrious career."


- Tyler, Kerry + Lauren Sullivan, Sullivan Beauty



"Everything we did in the first 40+ years has paid off, but it's the next 40 years that are going to make the biggest difference in the beauty industry."


- Robert Cromeans, Global Artistic + Business Director

Good Fortune


Our co-founder John Paul DeJoria's inspirational rags-to-riches success story exemplifies the American Dream. From living on the streets of Los Angeles and selling encyclopedias door to door to becoming the co-founder of our global beauty brand, he has defied the odds to achieve success and share his success with others. In 2016, he took to the big screen to share his story.