Paul Mitchell revolutionized the art of hairdressing with his creative eye and unparalleled talent. He was the visionary behind the art of hair sculpting, he liberated women from hair rollers and he took the industry by storm with the introduction of hair products featuring Hawaiian awapuhi ginger.
During the height of his career, Paul’s styles were featured on the covers of leading magazines and worn by famous actresses, models and editors. Today, his work is still celebrated and his legend lives on through our company and the work of his son, Angus, and business partner, John Paul DeJoria.
Scroll through the timeline to learn more about our co-founder.
Cyril Thomson Mitchell is born on January 27 in Carnwath, Scotland. His mother was Carnwath’s first hairdresser.
On the Move
The Mitchell family moves to London where Cyril spends his childhood.
Starting His Career
Cyril tries his hand at silversmithing before deciding to follow in his mother’s footsteps. He enrolls at the Morris School of Hairdressing in London’s West End.
By age 18, Cyril Mitchell has won many British and international hairdressing competitions.
Say Hello to Paul
Cyril joins the Park Lane, a salon in Mayfair, and decides to go by Paul, a moniker given to him by his boss. His starting salary was 12 pounds a week (approximately $18 US dollars).
Joining the Vidal Sassoon Team
Paul takes his talent to Vidal Sassoon’s salon in London, which was already making history.
A Journey to New York City
Vidal Sassoon is invited to be the hairstylist on a fashion cruise to New York, and he asks Paul to join him. Soon after arriving, Paul decides to stay in America.
Vidal Sassoon opens his first salon in America and asks Paul to train his staff. “He had great style,” Vidal enthused. “He had something terribly special. He could inspire people.”
The Launch of Crimpers Salon
Paul helps launch Crimpers Salon at Bendel’s department store in New York. During his time at Crimpers, he expands the idea of wash-and-wear hairstyles throughout the U.S.
Paul and his wife, Jolina, welcome a baby boy to their family. They name their son Angus.
The Start of a Lifelong Friendship
Paul meets John Paul DeJoria, then a district manager for another hair care company. They quickly become friends.
A New Salon
Paul opens his successful Superhair Salon on Madison and E. 58th Street in New York.
The Paul Mitchell Cutting Club
The first cutting club in America is started by Paul at his Superhair Salon. Hairdressers from across the country come to his Paul Mitchell Cutting Club for training.
Paul and the Paul Mitchell Cutting Club visit London to entertain fashion press with a show at the American Embassy.
On the Big Island
Paul is offered an opportunity to do hair shows in Hawaii, and he quickly makes his way to Honolulu. He returns to New York later that year.
A Big Move
After selling Superhair Salon, Paul moves to Hawaii and begins to host week-long “Paul Mitchell in Hawaii” seminars. Hairdressers from all over the country make their way to Hawaii to attend.
An Iconic Duo
Paul meets his future stage partner, Jeanne Braa, at one of his seminars in Hawaii.
The Start of Our Company
Paul teams up with John Paul DeJoria and launches our revolutionary hair care system with just $700.
A Green Idea
Paul and John Paul DeJoria create the self-sustaining, solar-powered Paul Mitchell® Awapuhi Farm in Hawaii—all of the awapuhi used in our products is still harvested there today.
Looking to the future, Paul and John Paul DeJoria pioneer one of the world’s first solar and wind-powered racecars and enter it in the World Solar Challenge in Australia. Fast and green!
Starring in a National Campaign
Paul is featured in a national advertising campaign for Sculpting Foam™, which is still a Paul Mitchell® favorite.
A Final Appearance
The last Paul Mitchell® ad featuring Paul appears in major consumer and trade magazines.
The Loss of an Icon
Paul dies of Pancreatic Cancer at age 53, leaving his share of the company to Angus.