Q&A with James Brown

April 14, 2011

Ask The Stylist, Daily Digest

Q&A with James Brown

James Brown, the celebrity hairdresser and go-to guy of the A-list aristocracy, has cover shoot credits which read like a who’s who of the famous and fabulous – Kate Moss, Gwyneth Paltrow, Anne Hathaway, Sienna Miller and January Jones.

Taking a break from shooting The Great British Hairdresser TV series for E4, James was in Dublin on Monday to promote his new hair range for Boots and I caught up with him at the Dylan Hotel .

Before I met James, I’d asked on Facebook and Twitter if you had any questions for him.  “Will he do my hair for free?” was one such question, to which I answered, “Get in line!”

So here you go: your questions, asked by me, to James Brown.

WSW: What’s with the hat?
JB: It’s a work thing. For filming the new show, I thought I’d need a “look”, you know, the way Gok has his glasses, well I’ve got my hat. I’ve a long face so it helps make it look shorter.

WSW: What’s the story with your own hair?
JB: See previous answer about wearing a hat!

WSW: What are the best hair styling tips you can give any woman?
JB: Keep it simple. Don’t jump on trends so quickly. One day it’s the Jennifer Aniston ‘do (it was actually just a blow-dry he points out) and the next week it’s a pixie crop, but it doesn’t mean that it suits you.

If you’re a mum of 5 kids, you’ve gotta be practical – have you time to style and blow-dry your hair for 40 minutes every day?  If you go blonde from dark hair, are you prepared to get your roots done every four weeks? These are things you’ve gotta consider before diving in to a hairstyle.

Don’t choose a style on a whim. If you’ve got a celebrity style that you admire, don’t just bring in one picture to your stylist;  bring lots of the celebrity wearing it styled in different ways. Research is key to helping us. You can’t just walk into a salon unknown to a stylist and expect us to know your lifestyle. It’s different of course if you’ve stuck with the same hairdresser for years.

WSW: How did your collection for Boots come about?
JB: I hate the idea of celebrities selling a shampoo for, like €150 in Harvey Nics *exagerrates* so I wanted my shampoos to be reasonably priced and available somewhere accessible to everyone.

Boots is somewhere where you can pick up everything from cotton buds to cough syrup, where every walk of life goes. I wanted a loyal following and an affordable range with good ingredients – it all just came together with Boots.

WSW: How did you get into hairdressing?
JB: My three sisters and Mum all had long hair. My sister used to go to the hairdresser, get a blow dry and come home, wash it out and blow dry it herself ‘cos she didn’t like how it was done. So I started doing it for her.

WSW: What age were you then?
JB: Eight or nine. I went on to cut hair aged twelve, I cut everyone’s hair on the street.

WSW: Where did Keris get her gold, red and black striped dress from programme two of your TV series? (I’ve since discovered, when I told this reader the answer, that she has lost a ton of weight and was lusting after this dress after seeing it on TV, wanting it for her “big reveal”).
JB: It’s Vivienne Westwood. I’ve been asked a lot about that dress!

I love it when it all comes back around to fashion.

James Brown Photo Fabulous hair care range is in Boots now.  The 12 high-performance products are priced between  €8.79 and  €11.49.

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One Response to “Q&A with James Brown”

  1. Nora Says:

    I don’t think the hat does him any favours loose it!

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