Ahead of the UK royal wedding, hair stylists in London have never been busier. The blow-dry to launch a thousand rollers, Kate Middleton's "do" is being done to death. The same applies, albeit to a lesser degree in the UAE with one top salon handling an arm-aching 15 royal wedding-related appointments in a single day.
"There's such excitement around the wedding, nearly all our bookings in the days leading up to it are for blow-dries and up-dos. Every second client has excitedly told us about their tea-party plans for the day, with quite a few of them making a real occasion of it, asking how best to wear their hair with fascinators and hats," says stylist Beccy Ramnought of the Ted Morgan Hair Group in Dubai.
"We are a very cosmopolitan salon, and we've definitely noticed an increase in 'Kate fever' from our European clientele. There are so many photos of her in all the magazines at the moment - people are really loving the understated elegance of her style and asking us to replicate it." she adds.
Low maintenance and high impact are the appeal of Kate's look, and even those with short hair needn't feel short-changed, says Ramnought.
"The only thing is that you need thick hair, but this can be achieved with the help of extensions. This luxurious style suits all the different colours of hair as well as brunettes. The long, layered look is a hairstyle that naturally suits a lot of face shapes; if you have a rounder face you could ask for layers starting around the jaw line to frame your face."
So is the "Kate" the new "Rachel" or "Pob"? According to the region's leading stylists, the style will be a big hit with ladies this summer mainly because there's little or no cutting required.
That said, competition comes in the form of US celebrity Kim Kardashian, whose glam and glossy raven locks are very popular with American clients, says Ted Morgan. Equally, the warm chestnut tones and tumbling curls of Queen Rania of Jordan are commonly requested by Dubai residents, says Ramnought.
So who's on back-combing duty on the big day? Tending to Kate Middleton's tresses will be James Pryce, a stylist at Richard Ward's top-end salon in London. Pryce was responsible for creating the bouncy, rich-brown mane we saw in Kate's engagement photos, but might a formal up-do be more fitting for her big day?
"She's a natural girl, and I think the style that will suit her best will be half up, half down with some curls," says Muneer Yassin, senior stylist and manager of Franck Provost UAE. "It's a little more old-fashioned for royal brides to wear their hair up and I've recently seen styles become more relaxed from the UK to Jordan. However, if Kate's dress has a high-collar or closed neckline, her hair would probably be better up. It really has a lot to do with the dress."
For more information, contact Ted Morgan Hair Group at 04 430 8190 or visit Unit GF05, Al Nafura Clubhouse, Palm Jumeirah, Dubai, UAE, www.tedmorganhair.com. For Franck Provost, call 04 362 9865 or visit Level 2, Mall of the Emirates, Sheikh Zayed Road, Dubai, UAE, www.franckprovost.com.
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