MATRIX Hair Fest 2020: A festival by hairdressers for hairdressers
LAST MONTH, INDIA witnessed a one-of-its-kind event — a festival by hairdressers for hairdressers. Held in Goa on February 18 and 19, the MATRIX Hair Fest saw participation from 5,000 hairdressers and salon owners, travelling to Goa from various parts of the country.
Organised to educate, and thereby inspire and empower the hairdressing community, the two-day festival hosted masterclasses by international MATRIX ambassadors Alfredo Lewis, Philip Wolff and Danielle Keasling. Suggesting that people move beyond connecting every line while giving a haircut, Philip decided to bend the rules and displayed the idea of deconstruction, which also helps in creating volume. Alfredo, who is considered a master of colouring hair, showed the others how to create overlays, and Danielle explained how to set hairstyles using the bare minimum, without any heat.
“We are normally taught to connect every line (while giving a haircut), but now, we are at a level where everyone knows that. I am trying to bend the rules to approach ‘disconnected haircuts’,” shares Philip, who was extremely crowd-friendly and clicked plenty of selfies with everyone. “The idea is to make it educational, fun and inspirational. We are teaching things that we do for our clients, hoping stylists here would learn and recreate them for their clients in India. I have seen the work here and I have seen the hunger in them to learn more, and that’s why we are showing different styles. When it comes to India, long hair is the classic staple, but what you do with that length is important. We are bringing more layering, and also removing the excess of the weight at the back of the head, because, at the end of the day, lean hair is the way to go to,” he shares.
While Philip wowed the audience with his flamboyance, Danielle took everyone by surprise with a unique kind of ‘editorial styling’, and that too in about 10 minutes. “I think styling should be kept fast, efficient and simple. Thinking outside the box and getting away with heat-driven styling tools is the way to go ahead. Indian hair, in general, is gorgeous. And while there are a lot of different varieties of Indian hair, they are easy to style. Realising how to work with natural texture, be it curly or lightweight, is important,” says Danielle, adding that when she had started, she wondered how easier it would be if she had access to bigger names in the industry. “It’s all about community and support for hairdressers, and this is my way of giving back to the community,” adds Danielle, who also styled Lady Gaga for the 2016 Super Bowl.
Alongside, there were sessions by Vinit Goel, Client Solution Manag er, Facebook; Bhaskar Ramesh, Director, Google India; and architect Amit Aurora. While Vinit and Bhaskar shared how one can make the most of social media and create a positive online presence, Amit shared his insights on designing a salon.
Besides education, there was plenty when it came to entertainment. Where the first day saw a performance by Mumbai-based hip-hop crew Kings United India, who won America’s dance reality show World of Dance, the second day saw rapper-king Badshah in the house. Both the days also saw models walking the ramp sporting Gavin Miguel’s clothes paired with interesting hairstyles, created by the trio.
While the festival saw great enthusiasm from all participants, we wondered if it would have made more sense had it been a full-day event on both days instead of lasting a few hours each day.
“We could do a day - long workshop, but the grasping power is limited. Your attention span is never there for the entire day because you’ re being taught something very new. Secondly, the aim is to inspire. People who want training can always come to our academy, where we teach in a batch of 15,” says DP Sharma, General Manager, Professional Products Division, L’Oréal India.
When asked when we were going to see the second edition of the festival, he said the team will evaluate the success of the festival and decide its periodicity. “But, we would surely like to organise more such events, because we got a lot of positive feedback from the clients we’re working with,” he assured.