Frédéric Fekkai, renowned hair stylist and salon owner for over two decades, is the founder of his namesake haircare brand, Frédéric Fekkai. Created in 1996, the Frédéric Fekkai line features two collections: Fekkai Classic, for consumers, and The One, for stylists, colourists and other industry professionals. After selling the brand in 2008, the haircare guru is back at the helm with plans to modernize it by rebranding and reformulating.

We chatted with Fekkai about his upcoming plans and his thoughts on French beauty. 

On embracing the change:

“It’s great to be back with my brand. It has great potential and it has broader distribution. Now it needs the TLC of the founder and to be surrounded by a strong team. We are going to invigorate the brand with a new energy and are looking forward to expanding and growing internationally.

We have addressed our branding by hiring a strong agency to help us to rebrand the product, the image and the communication on all channels. YouTube is a big thing for us now, with tutorials for the consumer, and for stylists and colourists.

We have a long-standing, well-known, classic brand. We have Frederic Fekkai salons, the products and distribution abroad. [I am] very involved in the art of hairdressing, which is a big part of the brand.”

“You are beautiful already. Let me not change that. Let me enhance it.”

On his beauty philosophy: 

“Rather than tell my clients that they need a total makeover, I prefer to give them a style that fits their personality and reflects who they are. More natural; not too much makeup, not too fussy. Showcase your skin and your hair. It’s not about the perfect look or being unreal––that’s not sustainable.” 

On the New York woman versus the Parisian woman:

“The difference is that Europeans will ‘let their hair down.’ They aren’t so ‘done.’ [They have] a great hairstyle without having their hair blow-dried in a salon. The French don’t have dry bars like in North America. In Europe, these ladies will just put their hair in a twist or a bun. It’s a part of their culture. Movie stars like Bardot, Deneuve––they are effortless. North Americans are in more of a hurry. They like a more glamorous and polished look.”

In addition to rejoining the Fekkai company, Fekkai, who lives in the French town of Aix-en-Provence, recently relaunched a 25-year-old natural, clean French beauty brand originally owned by a good friend in the ’90s. Named Bastide, the brand is a collection of fragrances and body products inspired by the work of Provençal artisans. 

“Clean beauty is here to stay. It’s more than just beauty; it’s about lifestyle, health, food, nutrition––all of it. It’s a culmination. Feel better and look beautiful. It’s all correlated.”