Interview with Oscar Blandi: World Renowned Celebrity Stylist

I am a woman of a certain age…(yes, I’ll admit it, I’m officially 40). I have been living in the fast and furious (yet fabulous) city of Manhattan for almost half of those 40 years. As you may all know, the city is often difficult to navigate, especially when it comes to maintaining your beauty routine. Unfortunately, all of my appointments are at different locations throughout the city; my nail salon is downtown, eyebrows uptown, hair salon in the West Village…needless to say, it is almost impossible to get everything done in one day. I had always wondered why there wasn’t a salon that offered all the fantastic and necessary services we all need in one set location!

Salon Experiences with Oscar Blandi
Photo credit Ryan Kobane

Although I had heard quite a bit about Oscar Blandi, I had never been to his salon in NYC. Oscar Blandi offers a full range of services that include everything from cut, styling and color to luxury waxing and mani/pedis. I recently read an article about a new service his salon offers called “Blowtox”, so naturally, I was quick to call and get an appointment so I could learn more about this intriguing service.

Salon Experiences with Oscar Blandi
Photo credit Ryan Kobane

Before I explain the concept of “Blowtox”, I have to tell you more about Oscar Blandi himself. Oscar Blandi is a man that doesn’t need an introduction, as he is one of the most successful hair stylist of the 20th century. He has become a household name throughout the world because of his incredible talent as well as the brand he has built. Oscar grew up in Naples, Italy where he worked alongside his father who owned a successful hair salon. From a young age, Oscar aspired to one day own a salon that would expand into an empire. I recently had the opportunity to sit down with the world renowned celebrity stylist and ask him a few more personal questions.

Salon Experiences with Oscar Blandi
Photo credit Ryan Kobane

How did your father influence your career?

Oscar explained that although his father taught him a lot about cutting and styling hair, he really stressed the importance of running and maintaining the business aspect of the salon. Owning a salon is far from easy and his father taught him that carefully listening to his employees and clients was the key to success. Staying ahead of the curve is the most important aspect of owning a salon. His father also made him work at a friend’s salon so he could develop a strong work ethic in a professional environment.

What were the most prominent hairstyles when you first began working in the hair industry?

The most sought after hairstyle was a blowout that would last a week! He had numerous clients come in and specifically ask about the secret to maintaining a blowout. According to Oscar, using the right products for your hair type along with concentrating on your roots is the way to preserve a blowout.

What is the most important technique to master?

Oscar explained that blowouts are the true foundation of any hairstyle; a stylist should master the blowout before anything else. A hair stylist may be incredible at cut and color but if they don’t know how to leave you with a great blowout, you will never feel good about your hairstyle when you leave the salon. A strong blowout is at the core of any good hairstyle.

What techniques are no longer being used today?

Oscar used to have clients come in and ask for hairstyles that would last for a week but not anymore! Women now want more of a wash and wear hairstyle. He rarely has a client come in and ask for a blowout that will last a week (unless a client is traveling).

Where do you foresee the hair industry 25 years from now?

I found Oscar’s answer rather interesting; he said he expects the industry to be very similar to what it is today. Women really know what they want; they want convenience for their fast paced lifestyle. The more services they can get done at once, the more time they save. This is the main reason why Oscar decided to expand his salon to include a variety of services. He wants his salon to cater to the needs of today’s fast-paced lifestyle.

What motivated you to expand your salon services menu to include filler and botox? (“Blowtox”)

Listening to what his clients wanted and needed was the reason why he decided to add these particular services to the salon menu. Oscar said his clients “crave convenience” so he wanted to make life as easy as possible. He also mentioned his clients often ask him for beauty advice so it is wonderful for him to be able to offer them so many services; “there is nothing better than being able to walk out of a salon with your hair looking amazing and even better if your skin reflects that!”

Were you a patient of Dr. Mariwalla? 

No, but I had many clients tell me about her so I decided to reach out!

Did you feel that clients were weary of seeing someone for botox and fillers in a salon setting? 

According to Oscar, his clients were not weary at all. In fact they really seem to have embraced her. She has a very impressive resume and Oscar would ideally love to have her in the salon more then just two days a week!

Oscar paired up with Dr. Mariwalla to come into the salon two days a week and offer her expertise to his busy and fabulous clients. I myself think that this is a genius idea! I literally go to a different place for every single service…it makes sense to offer clients a way to simplify their lives while staying effortlessly fresh and fashionable! (Sign me up!). I normally would be weary of getting any sort of injection at a hair salon, but given that this is NYC and it’s Oscar Blandi, I have complete trust in his recommendations. This is truly a brilliant idea for an upscale salon such as Oscar Blandi. His clientele are busy, sophisticated women who look for his advice, especially when it comes to hair an beauty. A “blowtox” is the perfect marriage of two of the most sought after services in the beauty industry.

Salon Experiences with Oscar Blandi
Photo credit Ryan Kobane

This all leads back to Oscar Blandi’s philosophy…from day one, Oscar has had a mission to build a team of talented individuals who would come together to create an unrivaled experience for clients. He has built one of the most renowned beauty destinations in the world by carefully selecting each member of his staff and mentoring them in order to provide unparalleled beauty services to clients from all over the world. The Oscar Blandi Beauty Salon is the largest salon in New York City. It was incredible for me to have the opportunity to sit down with Oscar and personally learn more about his lifetime achievements. From moving to NYC at the young age of 19 and working at a salon in St. Marks Place to opening up his first salon within the iconic Plaza Hotel on Fifth Avenue to now expanding to his current 13,000 square foot location is incredible and truly inspiring.

Salon Experiences with Oscar Blandi
Photo credit Ryan Kobane

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Interview with Oscar Blandi:  World Renowned Celebrity Stylist