It’s not unusual to see a dozen or so different hair colors backstage at a runway show—particularly at a Marc Jacobs runway show. But what went down at Marc Jacobs’s spring 2019 show—and the three days preceding—was a hair color undertaking the likes of which the runways have never seen. Over 35 models agreed to have their hair dyed to walk in the designer’s ’60s-inspired show, which meant hairstylist Guido Palau and hair colorist Josh Wood, who both work with Redken, were quite busy when we caught up with them in the hours before the lights dimmed and the first model hit the catwalk.
“This is the biggest color project I have ever worked on—I’ve never done anything with so many girls who were willing to color their hair. So it’s a proud moment for me,” Wood told us minutes after taking off his coloring gloves having finished the last model’s hair, a dark violet hue. He noted that more models than he anticipated agreed to have their hair bleached and colored in one of the many antique pastel hues, dubbing it a “color revolution.” “It’s a filmstar kind of color. It’s not so overt. It’s not crass of vulgar, it’s refined. It’s slightly anti-unicorn hair, I love unicorn hair. But these kind of colors allow every woman to access having fun with color, not just if you’re in a youth market.”
Some models had their hair buzzed totally off, then dyed a color like faded peach. Makeup artist Diane Kendal then used Marc Jacobs Beauty eyeshadows to match their new hair color. “The clothes are so beautiful, there’s a fragility to it. It’s like color that is there and isn’t there,” Woods says. “I love working on color that has a slight innuendo—is it pink? It is oyster?”
Models haven’t always been so keen to chop and dye their hair. So we had to ask—what changed? “Instagram,” says Woods. “The fact that there are so many images everywhere—people having color, people changing color. Color isn’t for life anymore. With technology the way that it is today, using something like Flash Lift with a bonder inside, bleaching isn’t like it was two or three years ago. It’s not the same anymore. The technologies support change.”
Each model, regardless of their base color, underwent about five or six processes over the course of three days. The designer would match fabric swatches with each model and personally approve each color before Woods and his team got to work dyeing the hair right in the designer’s showroom. “We bleached everybody first using Flash Lift with toner inside so we’re really protecting and looking after the hair as we were lifting it. Then we layered. There was a metallic base coat in purple or titanium or platinum. That was because Marc didn’t want a fairground pastel or a fun pastel. He wanted it to have history and to it look vintage were actually trying to make the colors look like they had a history to them,” notes the famed colorist. “They weren’t throw away colors, they are grown-up pastels.”
While Woods was busy coloring, Palau and his team transformed a few models with buzz cuts or an exaggerated “egg” layered bob inspired by Barbara Streisand. The rest of the models without cuts had their hair whipped and pinned into otherworldly graphic chignons. “These kind of exaggerated chignons and it’s all kind of based on an egg, that kind of shape. I suppose really it’s a nod to the ’60s, a nod to iconic women Marc really likes like Barbra Streisand, Lee Radziwill. Those ’60s women who were very done, very salon,” says Palau. “The color is a big thing as well, with a lot of the girls we’ve been very lucky they have agreed to color their hair in these pastel antique colors. It was a very important part of the visual and the hair it nods to yesteryear those sort of faded colors. Typical Marc Jacobs it’s being color coordinated with nets. It’s a very exaggerated fashion look.”
To achieve such sky-high volume, Palau and his team used Redken Guts while blow-drying to get volume at the roots, then teased the hair. He also added in extensions and hair pieces to help pad the hair even further. “It’s simplistic but it’s quite a complex ‘do. There’s fake hair going in, there’s all these different tricks to getting that volume in the hair. It is a very coiffed, done look,” notes the hairstylist. His one piece of advice? Don’t do this at home. Hair this done should be sculpted by a pro, he adds.
From: Harper’s BAZAAR US