Tribute to Vidal Sassoon
Vidal Sassoon, who has died aged 84, was at the cutting edge of hairdressing (excuse the pun). His sharp, geometric hairstyles saw that he was the pioneer of his craft and he inevitably shot to fame after creating the bob, which was made famous thanks to Mary Quant. An astute businessman, Sassoon made a fortune from his salons and products, and became a household name.
The hairdresser, who was born in Hammersmith London, was in his twenties when he opened his first salon in London. He set himself a five year goal to make it or break it, after which – If the business was not successful – he would neglect hairdressing altogether! However, as we all know his talent and innovation in creating modern, low-maintenance styles resulted in a booming business and he went on to become arguably the most famous hairdresser in the world.
Sassoon never felt the profession that he put at the forefront of modern fashion received the respect it was owed: “Hairdressing in general hasn’t been given the kudos it deserves. It’s not recognised by enough people as a worthy craft.”
“If you get hold of a head of hair on somebody you’ve never seen before, cut beautiful shapes, cut beautiful architectural angles and she walks out looking so different – I think that’s masterful,” he said.
His association with Quant put Sassoon at the forefront of pop culture and fashion. His styles also began attracting a male audience when The Beatles adopted Sassoon-inspired cuts with bangs and long locks down to their shoulders.
The stylist maintained his British roots despite living in the United States. He was a die-hard fan of the Chelsea football team, and in 2009 he was honoured by Queen Elizabeth when he was named a Commander of the Order of the British Empire.
Apart from hairdressing interests, he set up the Vidal Sassoon Foundation to help the needy in educational pursuits both in Israel and abroad.
The Gina Conway Team say farewell to a true master of hair and will forever look to his work for inspiration.