haircare

Beauty Connections: Serge Normant

HERO

If Hollywood handed out awards for best hair, Julia Roberts, Sarah Jessica Parker and Julianne Moore would need to prepare acceptance speeches. We imagine they’d first thank their parents for the genes that coded their luscious locks, then give all remaining credit to their mane man: hairstylist Serge Normant.

Born and raised outside of Paris, and a New York City resident since 1988, Serge is adored by all of his celebrity clients. Not only does he make them look like goddesses, they call him a trusted friend. After meeting the iconic stylist at a local appearance to promote his eagerly awaited Serge Normant Hair Care Collection, we quickly understood why. Warm, philosophical and suave in a très français (translate: authentic) kind of way, Serge charmed—and sometimes surprised—us with his ideas about beauty, style, success and serendipity…

American beauties or French belles?
There’s this perception that Europeans think American women are over the top with beauty, but actually we are fascinated by how American women pay attention to looking beautiful, to enhancing and celebrating the fact that they’re women. Sometimes French women go too far the other way, wearing absolutely no makeup or looking disheveled because they think it’s cool. What’s beautiful to me, whether you are French or American, is subtle glamour: taking care of yourself and making an effort to play with style. I think French actresses like Charlotte Gainsbourg and Marian Cotillard embody that effortless chic in the same way Julia and Sarah Jessica do.

Long hair or short?
Hair length is not a question of age—it’s about style, personality. I have a friend who’s 70, and she has had the same long hairstyle for 50 years. She should never cut her hair short—it just wouldn’t look like her. Look, I’ll admit it: I love working with a gorgeous, extravagant head of hair like Julia’s, but I’m not saying that a woman has to have long hair to be beautiful. What’s important is how a woman feels about her hair, not what society dictates she should look like. Hair is such a great accessory—you can make mistakes and it grows back! You have to have fun with your hair, to enjoy it. Fashion changes, taste changes, play with your hair.

Hair apparent: Serge styled Julia Roberts for the cover of his book Metamorphosis (New York: Harry N. Abrams, 2004) and Sarah Jessica Parker for the Harper’s Bazaar September 2013 issue.
(Images courtesy of sergenormant.com)

Timing or talent?
Early on, I got introduced to the right people at the right time. I never forced anything; I never had a career plan—all I wanted was to do great work, to be part of a great team creating great moments, great photographs. Things just happened for me: I met Julia on the set of her first Vanity Fair shoot with Herb Ritts. I met Sarah Jessica on a shoot in Los Angeles. As a hairstylist, you’re in so many different intimate situations with your celebrity clients—you fly together, you eat together, you’re in a small room at 6am to get ready together. To sustain these relationships, you have to connect on a personal level.

Image or inspiration?
At the end of the day, I am a hairdresser, providing a service. When a client walks the red carpet, I don’t want her wearing ‘Serge Normant.’ She needs to be herself first, and my job is to enhance her. I am so inspired by women—I was inspired by my mom when I was growing up, and I’ve continued to be inspired by all the women I meet. The problem with being too focused on yourself is that whenever you do anything in the spotlight, you’re always judged. So I’m only as good as my last haircut, which keeps me grounded!


No bad hair days: Watch Serge work his magic using his incredible ‘Meta Revive’ Dry Shampoo.

Serge created his hair care line using products he has relied on for his entire career to create hair that looks luscious, healthy and gorgeous. Along with luxurious shampoos, conditioners, volumizers, styling and finishing products, Serge recently introduced ‘Avah’ Eau de Parfum, an exotic fragrance you can mist on your body and your hair. Shop our complete Serge Normant collection to add a little ‘Serge glamour’ to your life.

—Stefanie Frank

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Toss that “dog days” misnomer into the pool: these easy, breezy hairdos offer maximum style with minimum prep (because who wants to spend even more time with heat?)—to make it a summer of loveliness.

The Beachy Bob: Summer-ize your shoulder-length tresses with soft waves.

1. For the texture that’s key to this look, use soft pomade warmed in your fingers and rake it through your hair before blow-drying. We like: blowpro mane tame soft pomade
2. Starting 2 inches from your part, use a curling rod to create soft, loose curls. Alternate directions for the most natural look; run your fingers through the curls to make some waves. We like: Sultra The Bombshell Oval Rod Curling Iron
3. Use a humidity-blocking hairspray to keep your waves wilt- and frizz-free. We like: Living Proof Hold Humidity-Blocking Flexible Hairspray

A Breezy Bun: The ubiquitous up-do goes low and loose.

1. Use an ultra-fast blow dryer, focusing on your roots to pump up the volume. We like: T3 Featherweight 2 Dryer
2. Spritz dry hair with texturizing spray to add dimension and shape. Gather your hair at the nape of your neck, then twist, coil and secure with hairpins. We like: OSCAR BLANDI Pronto Texture & Volume Spray
3. Use a flexible-hold hairspray to hold the look and keep wisps at bay. We like: ALTERNA Caviar Anti-Aging Working Hair Spray

Halo Braiding: A carefree, boho look for long hair.

1. Work in relaxing balm before drying for smoother, straighter hair. We like: PHYTO Phytodéfrisant Botanical Hair-Relaxing Balm
2. Backcomb your dry hair to create a slight pouf. Start braids above each ear; tuck them under each other and secure with pins or join them in back with a ponytail holder. Flat-iron the hair below to smooth extra curls and frizz. We like: KeratinPerfect PerfectLight Infrared Smoothing Iron
3. Use a medium-hold, shiny hairspray for a healthy look that stays in place. We like: B. the Product Spray

Check out more summer dos and how-tos in our monthly Beauty on the Spot site experience.

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Jack Black Epic Moisture Nourishing Oil is now available, and we’re giving it high marks. This lightweight, unisex gem is a hydrating heavy-hitter with a blend of 10 natural oils.

Hero

10 ways to use it for him and/or her:
1. Pre-shave oil
2. Shave oil
3. Beard moisturizer
4. Facial moisturizer
5. Lightweight body moisturizer
6. Body lotion booster
7. Dry Hair treatment
8. Dry cuticle treatment
9. Dry elbow moisturizer
10. Dry feet moisturizer

Expert Tips:
For shaving: Spread a thin layer on slightly moist skin. Shave. Rub residual oil into skin for deep penetrating moisture. Or, rinse oil off with warm water and a washcloth.
As a pre-shave oil: Spread a thin layer on slightly moist skin, allowing oil to penetrate beard growth for 10 seconds. Apply Beard Lube Conditioning Shave or Supreme Cream Shave Lather over oil. Shave. Rinse with warm water.
As a facial and skin moisturizer: Apply a thin layer to slightly moist skin following bath or shower. Perfect for rough patches on feet, elbows and cuticles.
For hair: Apply a small amount to clean, towel dried hair from mid-length to ends. Blow dry or let dry naturally. Apply to dry hair to tame fly-aways or condition dry ends.
As a beard conditioner: Dispense 2-3 pumps in palm of hand, rub through beard, working into hair and skin underneath.

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