Those of you who have a thing for clothes, style and everything fashion (and if you’re reading this then it’s probably all of you), surely remember our recent interview with stylist extraordinaire Donna Lisa.
Here at Mundane, we worship innovative and edgy creatives and wanna know everything about their story and see if they can share bits of their wealth of knowledge with us so we can tell you fashion heads all about it.
This time we decided to have a chat with hairdresser and creative director Traci Sakosits. Oftentimes hair and hair styling gets overlooked and we don’t love that so we thought we would benefit from a little knowledge drop from Traci.
Like we said last time for Donna, styling is no joke. Nor is hair! And Traci knows about it more than anyone!
What’s your story?
I’ve always done hair. I’ve worked at Sassoon for 28 years. What I think is different about me is that I’ve focused all of my attention on hair. I managed on holding a high level career doing one thing very well. You don’t see that a lot. I think there’s a mindset that we could call entrepreneurial or creative that kind of pushes you to do loads of different things and explore different avenues and on the other end of the spectrum there’s that one thing that is your own thing: your craft.
Do you feel you benefited from focusing your career on making hair your master craft?
Absolutely! I was able to meet and work with an endless list of creatives, artists, musicians and more. When people think of hair stylists their mind immediately goes to saloons but most of the time you don’t even set foot into a saloon at all. I don’t work at a saloon myself.
Where do you work at then?
I’m more of an educator for high level hairdressers. These are individuals who want to advance their knowledge, see what’s new in hair etc. so I act like an inspiration source for them and show them new tricks, styles and techniques.
So you’re more of a mentor one could say?
Yes for sure. I think you can look at my role as the equivalent of a creative director in a production.
Would you say sometimes hair is the most underrated part of any creative production?
That’s a good question. I don’t think there’s a specific reason but we should distinguish between the commercial and fine art side of things when it comes to hair. Many times a hairdresser has to reproduce a look that a creative director envisioned for a specific campaign or editorial. Other times on fashion shows you become more of a collaborator with the designer and join forces to create a look that reflects and complements the aesthetics of the clothes being showcased.
But then there’s a whole other level of fine art where there are innovators and leaders. These are the people that change the game. I’d say it’s like every other industry: you have the commercial side of it and you have the people that poke the edges with something special.
How did you get to where you are now in your career?
I have been doing hair since high school but I didn’t know what I was doing. So I approached Sassoon and started learning that you can develop methods and techniques to make your growth and skillset not only sharper but sustainable and always developable. So I kept pushing my skills to the next level until I joined the Sassoon academy and travelled the world.
Wow! That’s pretty cool. What’s your favorite place you’ve been?
To me is more about the people I met than the places I’ve been to. I think the world is amazing and the people in it are even more sensational. Though the memory I hold the dearest is my very first trip abroad. I’m from New Jersey and lived and worked in New York so I travelled through the tristate area a lot but I had no idea what it’d be like to go from LA to London, Greece, Shanghai and back to LA for 6 weeks which was my very first trip around the world. I fell in love with every bit of it!
How is the pandemic impacting your day to day work life and your industry?
Well travelling hasn’t been an option any more. When we hit the first lockdown I thought I’d have to settle down in Copenhagen since there’s where I was back then. So I flew back to LA and the next we were in lockdown. I think this is the longest period of time in 25 years that I’ve been grounded!
In terms of my work, we were already thinking about starting an online platform to offer classes online but Covid made it happen right there and then. So we launched Sassoon inhauss and the first online class we had was viewed by more than ten thousand people worldwide.
That’s a success. Do you think digital education could be a model to keep and develop more?
Yes, definitely! If you think about it it offers students even more value because they don’t have to pay for traveling, accommodation etc. So we are definitely keeping it and reinforcing it. We offer everything from beginners to the most advanced courses, talks, recorded content, live content. It’s all things Sassoon in one place.
Is there any artist you would love to work with?
Oh there are so many of course but my fashion icon is Yohji Yamamoto. That’s my aesthetics: very thought-out but with an edgy twist. I tend to like very minimalist aesthetics and combine them with high standards of beauty and style. That’s the recipe for timelessness, in my opinion!