The Oral Historical past of Salt Spray From the Two Hair Manufacturers Behind the Unique Variations

The Oral History of Salt Spray From the Two Hair Brands Behind the Original Versions

Pictures through iStock

Bumble and Bumble Surf Spray and John Frieda Seaside Blonde Ocean Waves created a wholly new hair product class and impressed numerous spinoffs.



Yesterday, Michael Gordon, the founding father of Bumble & bumble, shared a photograph from the shoot for the unique bottles of Surf Spray, the model’s sea salt spray that launched in 2001. It reminded us of a narrative we ran a narrative in our Summer season 2015 problem that tracked the rise the of the now iconic product in addition to John Frieda‘s Seaside Blonde Ocean Waves, now discontinued. On the time, they launched a brand new product class that went on to encourage numerous knockoffs and is now synonymous with summer season hair.

MICHAEL GORDON, Founder, Bumble and Bumble: “There’s all the time a slight wind on the seashore. I don’t know what it’s—it’s the ambiance, the humidity. Usually for those who come out of the ocean and your hair dries, it’s obtained this very distinct, cool texture. So I merely requested the chemists if they may mix stuff and provides us that type of texture. That was the concept.”

HARRY JOSH, Worldwide Artistic Guide, John Frieda: “Once we had picture shoots for Victoria’s Secret early in my profession, like 20 years in the past, I observed that the hair was superb by the top of the day and we obtained the most effective photos then. The mannequin’s hair had been blown by the wind a lot that it will clump and get piece-y and ropy, so it had this superb look.”

LAURENT PHILIPPON, International Creative Director, Bumble and Bumble: “I used to be on a visit to Tulum for an editorial shoot. We went to the ocean and when the mannequin’s hair dried, it had this superb texture. We weren’t certain if it was simply one thing within the water, so we bottled some and introduced it again [to the office].”

TIM RUSH, VP International Communications, Bumble and Bumble: “It was an ideal storm of individuals pondering the identical factor on the identical time. I knew about Surf earlier than I even got here to Bumble as a result of it was actually the primary of its form. It was a kind of merchandise that I feel folks didn’t know they wanted till it got here out. Over the course of the years after I’ve been working with different hairdressers, I hear so usually, ‘Oh, I had a bottle of sea water’ and ‘You guys had been so sensible to do it.’”

JILL LYNCH, Chemical Engineer, John Frieda: “Sally [Hershberger] actually was the motivation behind this product. It stemmed from some early work that she had been doing along with her shoppers as a result of she thought windswept hair regarded actually attractive on them.”

SALLY HERSHBERGER, Artistic Guide for John Frieda 1999–2006: “I was a surfer, so I used to be very conscious of that type of hair. I’m from California. After I come out of the ocean, my hair is genius. That’s the place it got here from. I used to shoot with Herb Ritts. His entire physique of labor from the ’80s to the ’90s with Tatjana [Patitz], Christy Turlington—all these nudes on the seashore—options that beachy, actually textured hair. I used to be wrapping their hair and twisting it with saltwater to get that unimaginable texture.”

JILL LYNCH: “Sally would cocktail jojoba oil with sea salt. She requested if there was a means that the product may very well be created. Not solely did she adore it, however her shoppers liked that look however had no means of reaching it.”

SALLY HERSHBERGER: “No one else was doing it. I used to be Herb’s hairdresser. That was our look. Steven Meisel was capturing with Oribe on the time and so they had been doing extra glamorous hair. I used to be doing extra grunge-surfer hair. Lots of people used child powder and egg whites. They used hand cleaning soap to make it extra gritty.”

HARRY JOSH: “[Before salt sprays] there have been different methods of getting the look. It wasn’t supreme, however you’ll use gel so it obtained crunchy after which put a pomade and stuff on prime of it.”

MICHAEL GORDON: “Truthfully, [the formulation] was fairly simple. It solely took two or three goes.”

JILL LYNCH: “As a result of the model’s workplaces had been in Connecticut, so near the shore, they’d really rent younger ladies with lovely lengthy blonde hair and ship them to the seashore for the day. Then they’d have them come again to the workplace on the finish of the day so they may seize what that look was and examine their merchandise.”

MICHAEL GORDON: “We had this actually fabulous bottle with black neoprene. It regarded like a wetsuit. It was not like something I’d ever seen for hair. We had a unbelievable French product developer. He mentioned, ‘What do you consider this?’ on this charming accent. We took a pair dozen of those black bottles and a workforce to Florida. We forged some native fashions and reduce their hair and sprayed these things in it. We began adorning the bottles with colored Sharpies. It was a surfer seashore occasion and everybody was adorning themselves with faux tattoos and drawing on the bottles. That just about turned the packaging.”

TIM RUSH: “They had been in search of various things that had been a cue for the seashore, so there was the [neoprene] scuba gear after which there was the form of it—like a scuba tank—and the steel hardware.”

HARRY JOSH: “That texture didn’t actually exist earlier than Gisele [Bündchen] got here on the scene. It was both the graduated bob, quick pixie haircuts, CK One—that entire marketing campaign and motion of heroin stylish, flat-ironed hair. Instantly the world needed to have her hair. It turned probably the most fascinating look throughout the board, from edgy to center America.”

JILL LYNCH: “It was actually widespread seasonally; folks would purchase quite a lot of it within the spring and summer season, however then within the fall gross sales tended to lower. And whereas it had a robust following, it actually wasn’t [strong] from a retailer stand- level—they wished to see quantity all year long. We introduced it again as a result of the pattern that we began continued and grew, and now there’s that demand year-round.”

MICHAEL GORDON: “We didn’t actually care what was occurring [in hair at the time]. It was simply what we did. Did I feel it will be a hit? Probably not. I didn’t give it some thought. In these days, Bumble was nonetheless rising, so we didn’t really feel stress to consider gross sales. I used to be pondering, ‘What’s an important product we are able to make?’ I didn’t notice it will be so profitable till it was copied. I do assume it’s probably the most unique product we’ve made—positively. I feel it’s most likely the one.”



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