It was another spell-binding show this Paris Fashion Week AW19 for the return of the Gothic Prince, Olivier Theysksens.
Beautiful, jet-black tailored suits dressed the models as they sauntered across the catwalk. Olivier Theyskens set about stirring the crowd with what he does best – moody, mystical magic with a haute couture twist. The “perpetual fill rouge of a dark utopia” runs throughout Olivier Theyskens’ collection, which somehow manages to look to the future with a glance at the past, with a distinct feel of the supernatural.
In a world obsessed with replicating perfection, it can actually be unnerving to be met with the end result. A glance in to the future led Eugene Souleiman to create a hair look that “truly is perfection.” This isn’t “Instagram perfection,” it’s the reality of Theyskens’ dystopian future, where hair is a material to be moulded and shaped, with inspiration taken from the likes of Bladerunner. Souleiman has created a look that is to all intents and purposes, a ponytail. However – this is by no means your average ponytail – it’s heavy with product and sculpted to perfection.
The Key Technique
- To create the plastic, synthetic look, a small hairband is added to create a ponytail. To create a sleek effect, Eugene and his team then ran the ghd platinum+ styler throughout the ends of the ponytail, providing the base ponytail from which the look is created from. The hair is covered, root to tip in mousse. Eugene swears by EIMI Root Shoot, using it to gather the hair together into a solid but malleable material. The hair is then sectioned at the centre of the nape, bringing the ponytail together down low. The ponytail is moussed until it is fully saturated and combed through thoroughly.
- Following this, the hair is sectioned at the recession area to where the ponytail is and EIMI Sculpt Force Gel is painted on with a tint brush. To the untrained eye, you could be led to believe that colour is being applied to the hair, but it’s simply the volume of product required to create the perfect look.
- The hair is then pressed flat to the roots and pushed to the head as compactly as possible. The next sections are layered and applied in the exact same way – applying further product and smoothing each section over the top of the other. The ambition here is that you do not see the scalp line, instead, all models have the same, perfectly shaped ‘head’, created only by the newly hardened texture of the hair.
- To set the hair in place, it’s carefully diffused with the ghd air professional performance hairdryer.
The end result is a beautifully set, entirely unshakeable up-do that conceals any evidence of a fastener to keep the hair in place. At the end of the hair, due to the hard, rigid texture, is a jagged, crisp crunch of a ponytail. Overall – the end result is perfection. Craftsmanship, excellence and true artistry are evident throughout the creation – which all set off the gothic dream world exquisitely.
Asked how we wanted this audience to feel on seeing his work, Souleiman said he wanted his audience to feel like they would love it but they couldn’t have it. "Aspirational but unattainable. It’s not hair, it’s more than hair, it’s an object – a sculpture.”