Sam Villa Leaves the Stage to Sit in the Audience

sv headshot high res 180x300 Sam Villa Gives a Glimpse at Life on the Road

As I mentioned in my last blog entry, I came back from Salon International in London so inspired! I always know when it’s time to sit in the audience before returning to face the audience.

British eyes are often more fashionably trained than ours are. For example, a stacked perm over color looks good to them because their street fashion allows it, while American eyes see that hair as too fried. So while I brought back from London great enthusiasm for permed looks, I’m still wondering whether the American market will go for combining texture services with hair color. I think so, because there’s a generation that has never had perms, and the influence of the ’70s glamour vibe will launch these stacked perms. This time around, the perms will require higher maintenance than just putting your hands in your hair! It’s still grunge, but crafted grunge.

Attending Salon International also improved my skill set for long-hair upstyling. It’s been a while since great new upstyle ideas came my way, so this is really exciting!

In short and medium cuts, the British hair designers showed a lot of textured, disconnected geometrics with bowl-like silhouettes that had the hair falling back away from the face. It was 1970s-’80s but with a sense of glamor. Disconnection finally has a sense of beauty!

Hair color was gorgeously laid out in rose petals, with one section overlapping another in a circular pattern. For some styles, the artists would braid the hair and color over the braid. Then when the braid was released, the hair had a beautiful, shimmering effect that went together with all of the shimmery, glistening fabrics we’re seeing on the runways.

All of the looks I saw require maintenance, but they’re very wearable. As the messenger, I’ll now go out and teach what I learned by making it digestible and applicable to hairdressers here. Our stylists have mastered disconnection, and now I’ll show them how to just slightly tilt it to create three-dimensional shape that will give hair sexy volume to go with the layered clothes, ruffles and shoulder pads in fashion. Crafted control is what creates today’s chaos.

sv headshot high res 180x300 Sam Villa Gives a Glimpse at Life on the RoadSam Villa has more than 25 years experience as a platform artist and educator for major salon professional companies. Part of the Redken family for the past 11 years, Sam is Redken’s Education Artistic Director and Design & Training Consultant and appears on as a spokesperson for consumer consultations. He is in constant demand at international and domestic trade shows and in-salon programs, where his progressive teaching approach enables stylists to absorb new techniques quickly and for practical use in the salon. In 2008, Sam launched his website,, along with his own brand of digital media education and styling tools for salon professionals.