Each month, celebrity hairstylist and Attitude Hair and Grooming expert Jason Collier is sharing his wealth of experience to help keep you looking razor-sharp and ready for any occasion…
Whether you’re a Boomtown, Bestival or Blissfields regular or not, there’s no escaping the fact that June is the start of Pride and festival season.
Since Glastonbury kicked off in 1970, the UK has taken the festival spirit to heart. Which is all well and good, but when it comes to grooming for a full-on festival experience, it can be tricky to look and feel effortlessly cool at all times.
With a bit of forward planning, however, there are one or two tricks and styling tips that will see you through with the minimum of fuss and the maximum of style.
Festivals these days are as much about looking good and showing off your style credentials as they are about the performances – Glastonbury is the largest greenfield festival in the world and an event that now attracts around 175,000 people, which is a lot of potential people watching! An entire range of ‘festival fashion’ has grown up around the cultural movement, but the secret is to keep things as simple as possible. You want something that is light, easy-to-wear and low maintenance – opt for loose-fitting, breathable fabrics that you can layer up if need be. Some kind of waterproof jacket is a must – check out Helly Hansen for breathable, windproof options.
Regardless of whether the sun is blazing down, shades are a must. With a nod to the festivals of the 60s, coloured sunglasses were a big runway feature this spring, so ditch the black-out shades for a tinted or rosy-ish glow. Check out Johnny Depp’s sleazy-chic look in yellow-tinted sunnies in Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, and you get the picture.
You obviously want to look and smell as fresh as possible, but you don’t want to be lugging loads of product with you, which is when travel sizes come into their own. Unscented wet wipes are enough to give you a quick freshen up all over, while Awake Organics’ Aura Clean Deodorant comes in a travel-size (£2.99, awakeorganics.co.uk) which is aluminium-free and will help to keep any unwanted odours at bay.
You may have to sacrifice your normal cleansing routine until you get home, but it’s worth popping in some mini must-haves for a quick fix for skins that have been exposed to the elements all day. Aster & Bay has a great travel kit that features miniature versions of their Cleansing Oil, exfoliating Face Grains, a refreshing Rosewater Mist and a choice of two luxe serums, depending on your skin type (£42, asterandbay.co.uk).
Hair care should be as simple as possible. If you have short hair, visit your barber or stylist as close to festival time as possible. Any crew or buzz cuts should be cropped into shape – it might be worth going a shade shorter than usual to keep things really neat, but remember any exposed patches will need to be protected in the sun, so layer on that SPF if you aren’t a hat wearer. Nick and Joe Jonas both sported close crops at this year’s Coachella, while rapper Drake rocked a buzz cut and beard combo. If you are opting for a clean-shaven look, to start with anyway, it’s worth bearing in mind that your barber is likely to make a better job of this than you can yourself.
Tie or slick back longer hair – opt for non-greasy pomades that won’t weigh hair down but will hold it in place; I really like the Pomade by Braw Beard Oils, (£10.99, brawbeardoils.com) which is lightweight but holds hair for hours. The man-bun may feel as if it has been done, but it still works for a fuss-free festival vibe. Chin-length hair works for a half-ponytail, which is a style that looks better the messier it is. Take inspiration from David Beckham, who has made this look his own in the past, while the likes of Jake Gyllenhaal and Charlie Hunnam have both worn it well.
Dry shampoo is your festival friend. Aster & Bay has a hard-working, absorbent dry shampoo that is lightly scented with tea tree oil (£26, asterandbay.co.uk). You only need a little of this applied to the roots of your hair and massaged in until it disappears, which will help to volumise hair and extend the time between shampooing.
Post-festival recovery is just as important as prep! Skin will need a deep cleanse to get rid of the grime and dead skin cells that roughing it for a few nights will have produced, so ditch the wipes and reach for the Jack Black Face Buff Energising Scrub. Enriched with vitamin C, this eco-friendly exfoliator will soften and hydrate skin. Follow up with Jack Black Deep Dive Glycolic Facial Cleanser that will help wash away dead skin cells and build-up. You can also use this cleanser as a purifying mask as part of your post-festival deep cleanse. To restore essential oils and protect skin from the damage that city life throws at it, I really like MBotanicals’ Rejuvenating Facial Elixir to give skin an extra boost (£32, mbotanicals.co.uk). Massage this facial oil in last thing at night, really working it into skin, which will help to break down toxins and stimulate circulation for a healthy fresh skin glow.
With a little bit of planning, you’ll be ready to rock this summer with style and grooming credentials intact!
Jason Collier is an award-winning hair colourist and stylist to the stars, and Creative Director at the Matthew Curtis Hair Salon at The Rosewood London. For more visit jason-collier.co.uk and follow him on Twitter @jasoncollierjc.