Back in April, I attended a Brazilian Blowout event at Argyle Salon & Spa in West Hollywood where I received a Brazilian Blowout from Alfredo Lewis. We totally hit it off and talked celebrity hair gossip–he’s done everyone from Sandra Bullock to Jane Fonda! Alfredo even gave me advice on my upcoming wedding hair and what I should do with the color… So, stay tuned for more on that. Alfredo agreed to do a little interview with HOTB on everything from how he got his start to extending the life of your Brazilian Blowout to what celebrity needs a hair makeover. Check it out!
Hair On The Brain: How did you decide to become a hairstylist?
Alfredo: I’ve been doing hair for over 17 years. I use to want to be an actor… Welcome to Hollywood, right? (Laughs.) I grew up in Newport Beach and moved to Hollywood when I was 17. I took some acting classes and was going out on auditions, but nothing was really happening. I thought about doing hair for movies and TV. At first I thought that if I got into that, it would be my way to make connections in the industry. But I found my calling, in a weird way. I just fell in love with hair color and hair in general. The acting just sort of fell by the wayside. When I got out of hair school, we went on a salon visit to Cristophe Salon in Beverly Hills. At the time, he’d just gotten a lot of press for charging President Clinton a ridiculous amount of money to cut his hair on the runway at Air Force One. I thought that was so cool. When I got my license, I decided that was where I wanted to work. He literally made me wait in the reception area all day when I came in! He finally met with me, and the rest is history.
HOTB: Why do you like doing hair color versus cutting hair?
Alfredo: I’ve always felt connected to color. When I was a kid, I used to do crazy things to my hair color. A different color every week it seemed–blonde, black, blue, fuchsia–it was crazy. In the beginning, when I was assisting at Cristophe, I was fascinated by the transformations people would go through with color. All the gorgeous, shiny beach blondes. Creating those hues of color like we have when we are children, you know? Those gorgeous highlights that we lose when we get older. I wanted to learn how to bring that color back to the hair.
HOTB: What spring hair color trends are you seeing at the Argyle Salon? Or is it all-blonde all the time?
Alfredo: Well, we are in Los Angeles! It definitely can be all-blonde, all the time. Or at least, it seems that way sometimes. If you want to be a successful hair colorist in Los Angeles, you have to know how to do a gorgeous blonde. But not just one kind of blonde. (Check out two different examples below.) There are so many different tones and hues for blondes. The possibilities are endless. I think it is key to do a blonde that flatters skin tone, eye color, and shows off a client’s best assets. Trends are important for sure, but highlighting someone’s best features and making them look even better than when they walked in is what keeps them coming back for more. For spring at the Argyle, we’ve been doing a lot of three-dimensional blondes. I’ll do one under tone in a richer color and then come back and put two complimentary blonde tones to make the highlights really pop. As far as darker shades go, I love a rich chocolate brown with caramel highlights any day!
HOTB: How did you start doing Brazilian Blowouts?
Alfredo: Being a hair colorist, I had no interest in Brazilian Blowouts when I first heard about it. When I moved over to Argyle Salon, Britney Huinker (owner of Argyle Salon & Spa and CEO of Brazilian Blowout) was so passionate about it, and she asked me to take a class on it. Then I saw someone’s hair that had a Brazilian after I’d colored it. Their hair was so shiny and frizz-free; it made the color even more vibrant than it already was. After that, I was sold. I wanted to be a part of it and to get involved. I got certified and started doing them on my clients right away. Now I’m a trainer for Brazilian Blowout and teach other stylists about it.
HOTB: Are your clients happy with their Brazilian Blowouts?
Alfredo: It’s been fantastic. The way the Brazilian Blowout is impacting my clients’ lives is just amazing. I already had great relationships with my clients, but this has just made them even better. It sounds cheesy, but I’ve had people leave an appointment after a Brazilian Blowout crying with tears of joy! Seriously, not long ago we had to get one of my clients a box of tissue. What it’s done for my business and numbers is staggering. People who have never been into referring me clients in the past, are referring me clients now. They are sending me their friends, their daughters, sisters, colleagues. And the Brazilian Blowout is great for all hair types really. It’s been amazing. Britney’s passion is not with out merit. I feel that passion now also. I want to bring the whole world in for a Brazilian Blowout!
HOTB: With the summer comes sun, chlorine, and sea salt. Those elements are harsh on your hair color and your Brazilian Blowout. Any tips for protecting your hair?
Alfredo: Yes, this is so true! We all love the summer sun and what it has to offer, but with that we also need to take extra care of our hair. All year round, it is best to not wash your hair every day. Over washing strips your hair of natural oils that are needed for shine. Washing too often will also cause faster oxidation with your color and will cause you to need your next Brazilian Blowout sooner. I also recommend using the Acai Daily Smoothing Serum. Before going out to the beach or before relaxing by the pool, apply a small amount of the serum to your hair. The Brazilian Super Nutrient Complex of the serum will help protect your BB and your color from the elements.
HOTB: What are some of your other favorite hair products?
Alfredo: I’m also a huge Oribe and Davines fan. I love Oribe’s Beautiful Color Shampoo and Conditioner. They help protect color and make your hair smell so yummy. Oribe also makes a fantastic Anti-Humidity Spray. Davines Nounou Nourishing Shampoo and Conditioner with tomato extract are great for color treated hair. My personal fave hair product right now is Osmo Essence Clay Wax! I do not leave home with out it!
HOTB: What celebrities have the best hair color right now?
Alfredo: Number one, hands down right now is Jennifer Lopez! Stunning. Her color is just gorgeous. At the Oscars this year, I thought that Cameron Diaz was the freshest blonde in the room. She looked better than she has in a long time, and I think her hair color played a big part in that. She has a three-dimensional blonde with baby blondes and honey tones that are just off the charts. I’ve always been a fan of Jennifer Aniston’s hair color, too.
HOTB: What celebrities are in desperate need of a hair color makeover?
Alfredo: Britney Spears! If you look at her early years to now, she needs a hair makeover desperately. She used to have flawless color with no extensions or hairpieces. She goes to different colorists almost every time. Her hair is fried and dyed and then dyed again. (Laughs.) She needs to find a top colorist and trust them. Continuity is everything. I love Angelina Jolie. She is timeless, but I’d love to see her try something new. Maybe a super rich brown with sandy highlights. Lastly, Madonna. I’m a huge fan, but I just think the queen of reinvention got stuck somewhere. She’s had the same hair color now forever. I just saw her on the cover of Interview magazine with platinum blonde hair. She looked amazing, but it was a wig. It’s definitely time for her to take a chance and do a fierce new hair color!
HOTB: Anything else that Hair On The Brain readers should know?
Alfredo: I think I just talked your ear off! Just that I am blessed. I absolutely love what I do. I love my clients and pretty much have fun every day and get to make good money doing it. For that I am very grateful!
Thanks so much for this awesome interview, Alfredo! I am excited to see what we do with my color… And LA girls, head over to Argyle Salon to visit Alfredo for a Brazilian Blowout or hair color!
Argyle Salon & Spa
8358 Sunset Boulevard
West Hollywood, CA 90069