5 Questions With Cos Sakkas, British Hairdresser of the Year

When American Salon heard that Cos Sakkas, the global creative director at TONI&GUY and LABEL.M in Central London had won the British Hairdresser of the Year Award at the British Hairdressing awards for his Vertigo Collection, we immediately got in touch to find out what goes on behind the scenes with this industry icon. Sakkas is also the current International Hairdresser of the Year—the first person to hold two prestigious titles at the same time.

AS: Congratulations on this prestigious award! Can you share some of the details of creating the Vertigo Collection? What was your inspiration and your vision?

Cos Sakkas: I was inspired by the environment I work in every day. We photographed the collection on the roof of the TONI & GUY Academy in central London and used the natural sunlight that is reflected in the skin. Jack Eames, the photographer, has vertigo, so that is the name of the collection. The hair is feminine with a little twist. 

AS: In your acceptance speech, you mention your mentor, Anthony Mascolo. Can you share some of the things you learned from him?
Cos Sakkas:
I was his assistant and part of the artistic team, so I was always around him when he was shooting. He taught me how to look through the lens of a camera, how to capture the hair on camera, how to create hair that stands out when on stage. I learnt a lot about studio and stage work from him.  (More below image).


Vertigo Collection by Cos Sakkas

AS: What is happening in the UK now in terms of hairstyle trends and education?
Cos Sakkas:
We are seeing a lot of street style hair gracing the catwalks – more and more models are coming to shoots with haircuts such as shags, mullets, buzzcuts and undercuts. There’s a contrast and contradiction between soft balayage and street style haircuts. 

AS: What is a typical day like for you (if there is such a thing as a typical day!). What is your favorite part of the day?
Cos Sakkas:
No one day is typical; it always starts at the Academy whether I’m teaching or shooting a collection or prepping for a show. I’m always getting ready for the next project. Sharing hair is what I love to do, whether that is on a screen, on social or in print. My favourite part of the day is the afternoon when everything starts to heat up and creativity really starts to flow. That’s when the magic happens!  

AS: If you could give your younger self advice, when you won the Newcomer of the Year Award in 1999, what would it be?
Cos Sakkas:
Never give up, never say no and always be ready for anything! 

More from Cos Sakkas (Instagram: @cossakkasofficial)
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