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Renown Stylist Julien Farel Reveals Hair Care Secrets Of The Tennis Pros

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Healthy Skin And Hair

Renown Stylist Julien Farel Reveals Hair Care Secrets Of The Tennis Pros

When I get ready for a tennis match, the LAST thing on my mind is getting my hair done – but that’s probably because I don’t have access to a bad-ass on-site salon. But they do at the US Open, and it’s not just any salon. It’s the Restore Salon & Spa, owned and run by French stylist Julien Farel.

Julien has coiffed some of the most well-known celebs like entrepreneur Ivanka Trump, top model Kate Moss, actress Julia Louis Dryfus, actress Catherine Denueve, rock star Rod Stewart, actor Richard Gere, and many more. And every year, for two weeks in July, Julien and a dozen or so stylists pack up shop and open it in a temporary location on the grounds of the US Open. There, he works his magic on some of the most well-known tennis stars, like Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, Serena Williams, Venus Williams, Jelena Jankovic, Ana Ivanovic, Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Victoria Azarenka. He also prettifies player spouses/significant others and celeb spectators, coaches, so that when the cameras are on them, they look their absolute best.

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victoria azarenka

julien farel

Photos courtesy of Restore Salon & Spa

But for those of us who don’t have the luxury of an on-site salon during our matches, Julien has some fantastic tips on how we tennis players can keep our hair healthy and looking great, both on and off the court:

  • A stylish braid is the way to go when you want to secure hair and keep it off the face while looking chic, both during and after a match. During the US Open, I offer players a menu of signature styles to withstand the stress of hours of competitive match play while looking chic during and after matches. The signature styles included a variety of braids, as well as a modern take on the ponytail to keep hair fresh and fun.
  • To help hair to stay in place, a strong hold hair gel that doesn’t leave build-up is a must to implement into your hair regimen. I recommend Julien Farel Flexible Gel. It’ll help keep hair in place without having to tug, pull and constantly re-style. A good, lightweight hairspray like L’Oreal Elnett is necessary as well to tame flyaways. For those really stubborn ones that just won’t stay put, grab some bobby pins to secure.
  • Invest in a treatment to keep hair frizz-free with minimal maintenance, like the De-Frizz Quick Treatment offered at our salons. Made with hydrolyzed keratin, it tames the hair without removing body and volume, like some other chemical treatments do.
  • Give hair a break. Whenever possible, let hair go au naturel – hair that’s color-treated, over-processed and damaged from excessive heat styling is going to be more prone to frizz and flyways, especially when playing in hot, humid conditions.
  • If you don’t have time to wash hair after a match, the best thing to do is tease hair a bit at the top for body, then pull it into a messy ponytail to minimize the appearance of frizz and flyaways. When hair feels particularly greasy after practice or a match, spritz in some dry shampoo before styling, but be cautious of leaving any residue on the hair.
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4.5 USTA rated/open champion level tennis player, vegan, fitness freak, animal lover, and smart ass who firmly believes that champagne is anathema for all ills. Right now I'm either up to my eyeballs in paint swatches and fabric samples, or kicking some butt on a tennis court (hopefully the latter).

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