Stephen Knoll is an iconic hair stylist responsible for the gorgeous locks of Cindy Crawford and Maria Shriver, among others. With a popular beauty salon on the Upper East Side and an eponymous line of beauty products (wildly successful in Japan), he stays busy helping his clients revive their hair for the new season. We spoke with Stephen to get all the essential insider tips on summer hair trends.
What is your overall hair philosophy? There is nothing more beautiful or youthful than healthy, shiny and luxurious hair. Starting with that as a basis and then finding the most flattering look for you as an individual at this time in your life is key. That doesn’t mean that it can’t change, because your look evolves naturally as life does.
What are your thoughts on hair length as it relates to age appropriateness? The correlation between age and hair length has gone away a long time ago. With all the options to maintain yourself, including fitness and a healthy lifestyle, people look, act and feel differently than they did in the past. You could be 20 years old and not look good with long hair, and you could be 60 with hair past your shoulders, and it could be your best look to date.
What are your best tips/products for dealing with humidity? The best product for dealing with humidity is the Ultra Shine treatment Oil – it will always give you a gloss and finish while holding your style together and preventing ends from looking dry or damaged. The Hydrating Serum Mist is perfect for people who are fighting the frizz and is great to relax the curl. No matter what your hair length is, it’s a miracle worker. For the ultimate control over your blow dry, use the style memory lotion. Whether your hair is straight, curly or with loose waves, it will give you the end result you want.
What are you feeling for fresh summer cuts? I love the schoolboy androgynous look. I think this look is best with strong color – very blonde, very dark, or very red. As for styling, I love a structured look for day or evening, when the hair swept up at the crown. Forget the floppy, messy look – it looks dated.
What are your thoughts on color? I like all applications of color, even fantasy color. The most important thing to me is that the hair still looks
like you want to touch it, feel it, put your face in it! Or if some one else does – even better! Color can be great as long as it is done well and suits the personality of the individual. The key is that it has to be healthy and shiny looking.
As temperatures rise, so many women tend to throw their hair in a ponytail. Do you have any other clever alternatives? There’s nothing wrong with a ponytail. I like a high pony, at the nape of the neck, middle or crown (but not at the very top!).