Meet Jen Atkin, the hair stylist behind some of our favourite celebrities ‘do’s. She’s worked from everyone in the A-list industry and she just keeps on getting better. Her newly launched brand, Ouai, has been a huge success, which is no surprise when you’re the Kardashian’s go-to stylist. Read on to see what Jen had to say about what keeps her sane and the secrets behind her success…
What is your go-to style that’s on-trend and easy to do when you’re having a bad hair day?
I love a sleek low bun or pony. It’s perfect when you are in a rush, heading from the gym to office, or if you didn’t have time to wash your hair. All you need is some OUAI Treatment Oil, a hair elastic, and a smoothing brush.
What is the biggest request you get from your clients- thicker/shinier/longer hair?
Everyone wants thicker and longer hair! That’s part of the reason why I have been developing supplements that compliment the products in my line of haircare, OUAI. While you’re waiting for the results from supplements to kick in, Beauty Works extensions are the perfect quick fix for instant gratificiation. You can use them to easily change your length, texture, color, and density without any fuss or commitment.
What hero products in your kit can you NOT live without?
OUAI Texturizing Hair Spray, OUAI Wave Spray, my Mane Addicts extension bag and Beauty Works clip in extensions (in every color!).
What is the most unusual tool in your kit?
A toothbrush! I use it to take frizz and flyaways. Also Monkey Snot Hair Gel. It’s literally what kids use to spike their hair, but it holds so well it’s perfect for wet and sleek looks.
What brushes would you recommend for hair extensions, thin hair, curly hair, thick hair and afro hair?
I’m as minimal as I can be with my kit, so I use a extension removal brush for almost everything, but the Beauty Works large paddle brush is almost essential if you have extensions and works great for all hair types.
You’ve just launched your Ouai brand and extension range with Beauty Works what made you want to start your ranges?
I’m a confused, over-stimulated consumer myself. Throughout my career, I’ve used every hair product on the market. I’ve spent years working around the globe talking to clients about haircare, listening to my followers and ManeAddicts.com readers. With a major lack of cool and curated products in the marketplace, I’ve struggled finding a haircare brand that my friends or I could relate to.
Haircare has become so serious. With OUAI, I wanted to create a “breath of fresh hair”—a line for real life, for real women. Luxury products that are simple, affordable, and classic in a world full of loud noise. I didn’t want to work with a giant haircare company or make those elaborate, unrealistic advertising campaigns. I was lucky to partner with investors who understood my vision and collaborate with industry experts in design and formulation.
Beauty Works has been so amazing to partner with because I love extensions. Gone are the days of feeling like you have to hide extensions in your hair. Embrace the willingness to change your hair and have fun with it!
Who would you be so amazed and happy to know uses your products?
I feel so blessed to have so many amazing supporters of my line. I guess if I had to get it to one person that I haven’t already it would be the Obamas.
What foods do you recommend your clients to eat for amazing hair?
There are so many! I always suggest foods rich in Omega oils like avocado, walnuts, and salmon. Foods rich of folic acids will really help the hair health, like dark leafy greens.
Do you have any go-to hair accessories you rely on?
I’m obsessed with Chloe and Isabel.
Have you ever had to rescue any hair disasters? And how have you done it?
I’ve had to fix many ‘bad’ haircuts! Sometimes I just tell people to hold off and let their hair grow for a few months before trying to ‘fix’ it so that the shape grows enough to have something to work with.
When you’re travelling A LOT with clients, what keeps you sane?
Working out, The Real Housewives, and Sprite with Gummibears.
Who do you follow on Instagram/ Pinterest for hairstyle inspo?
I look to so many places for inspiration, but it’s really hard to find a one stop shop for great hair. That’s part of the reason why I created Mane Addicts. It’s an exclusive behind the scenes look at celebrity hairstylists and an endless source of inspiration.
When I’m traveling I love looking at the editorial spreads in magazines abroad. Every country has such a unique view on beauty and sometimes the editorial trends will translate seasons later in the states.
I check sites like Fashion Gone Rogue, The Coveteur, WhoWhatWear, and WWD regularly to see what’s happening in fashion, as that always translates for hair. Fashion Gone Rogue usually always credits the hairstylist and will share editorials from magazines oversees that we don’t always get to see.
I love watching new models on Instagram and seeing how they’ll play with their hair, especially when they’re off duty. Some of my favorites to follow are Freja Beha, Jourdan Dunn, Gigi Hadid, and Natasha Poly. And of course Kim, Khloe, and Kylie are such trendsetters. I’m also so inspired by other hairstylists. I love seeing what my colleagues post on their Instagrams, especially people like Harry Josh and Oscar James who post so many inspirational quotes and stories.
On Snapchat it’s all about a good story. Some of my favorites are Glossier, Elle Canada, Geri Hersch, and Kylie Jenner.
On PInterest I love following Mane Addicts, 901 Salon, Byrdie, Vogue, and WhoWhatWear.
What was the last product you recommended to a client and who was it?
A diffuser for Khloe Kardashian!
If you weren’t a hair stylist what would you be doing…?
The singer on a cruise ship.
The Jen Atkin by Beauty Works range is available now from www.beautyworksonline.com