A natural hairstyle with vibrant, healthy looking hair. This is what you will get if you meet with the maestro: David Lucas, in his bright Parisian salon of Place Vendome, where you find him orchestrating in detail all the welcoming and the service of his customers. Perfectionist, he keeps his eye on everything to create a very special experience made of shared pleasure and exchange and he is always at the forefront of beauty trends with the excellence of his haircare products, his unique expertise in both cutting and coloring, and this benevolence made of simplicity and generosity. Because what matters most is the quality of human relations, so that each visit to the hair salon would have real positive impact to continue its journey.
Cutting a living material
David Lucas was born in Arcachon and he grew up close to the sea. His mother Monique is a seamstress, originally from the region, and his father is an engineer, from Bretagne. “I spent my childhood in nature: the waves of the ocean, the pine forests and the dunes of Aquitaine. At the very early age, he was attracted to the plants. My parents had a large garden that bloomed incredibly in the spring. And I started carving everything that was there!” His mother noticed he was pruning the trees and trimming the bushes, then the chives and herbs, “and even the huge weeping willow, transformed one fine morning into a raw and square shape”. Around the age of 10, he is even scolded by his father for that, and yet, a passion was born at its fingertips: that of giving forms to a purely organic, self-regenerating matter. His father used to cut his hair on his own, isn’t it? Another sign about his future job. David Lucas will initially go to oenology studies, but he will get bored very quickly, “feeling a real urgency to move and do something with his hands”. His mother is going to push him definitively in this artistic path. He will get a hairdressing apprenticeship for a hair salon in Arcachon, and will obtain his diploma two years later. His dream finally comes true!
The love of the natural
David Lucas will set off with his apprenticeship certificate in his pocket in his journeyman years, working first in Bordeaux for five years. “There, I will make a clientele: Bordeaux residents and many Parisian ladies coming to spend their holidays in the region. And they will always follow me everywhere.” His talent, his dexterity and his sense of aesthetics are quickly noticed. “I used to do the hair of the girls, who spoke to their mothers and so, by word of mouth, I quickly had many ladies in the salon.” Curious, into everything, he will constantly learn how to handle his art to excellence with haircuts, care, color and shaping, mastering tools and craft techniques. He will also test the best mixtures and create his own recipes with his personal touch. In 2000, David Lucas will move to Paris to join the prestigious René Furterer Institute, at Place de la Madeleine. He will remain there for ten years, as a star hairstylist, working in conjunction with the Director. “I love so much this natural advocating brand. It opened my eyes to the benefits of nature with a hairstyle that boost the hair and bring maximum benefit.” The brand indeed is known for its quality hair products with herbal and essential oils.
David Lucas will look into botanic with new blends to shine the hair, including plant coloring boom. “When we are a hairdresser in France, the major brands will approach you with all kind of hair coloring products and it’s very tempting to be seduced by their marketing strategy.” But to be a good colorist, you have to get to know your products and your pigments, and work constantly with the same ones, to produce the result that you want. David will practice the science of natural coloring which is an alchemy and even a special art! He will gain in maturity and experience, launching his own style and collections that all media will speak about, including the “Tout-Paris”. But he keeps being an approachable personal, with his natural freshness and kindness, and with elegance and a personal style. “Because hair styling is giving pleasure and sharing this joy with others, in a very simple way.”
A hair salon that reflects his personality
At one point, he has this intuition: create a hairdressing business in an apartment that reflects all his sensitivity and offers customer excellence in a greater intimacy. With Benjamin, his philosopher cousin, he will make an investment for a place located in Paris’ best quarters, behind the Place Vendome, on the first floor of a typically Parisian building. “That’s where I have my sources of inspiration: with fashion and all the treasures of Paris. Everything is so beautiful in this city!” He will leave his employer René Furterer exactly thirteen days before opening here. “It was quite a big jump! I remember the day before the opening; it was February 21, 2010, the workers were gone and I found myself alone in the back of the yard on a rainy day. I was gripped with anxiety: was I right? It’s such a long shot that I’m playing here.” But the exclusive address will immediately be a hit because of the location away from the street, the caring attention to the finest of details like the decorative objects, the delicacy of the teapots and the personalized welcome. David will work there alone and remarkably, setting up what will make his signature: highlighting (with a special wrapping under transparent plastic) and botanical coloring compositions, using an American brand’s fine pigments which allows lower oxygenation. The haircuts of the Master hairdresser also continue to please by their accuracy and their naturalness. “We are no longer at the time of Vidal Sassoon, with very elaborate geometric haircuts; Today, it is freedom that takes precedence with a natural style that highlights the true personality of the clients.”
A year later, David Lucas will need to recruit specialized staff and enlarge his working place to respond to an ever-growing full appointment book. The ideal place will be found on the second floor of the same building, and he will move in his new salon called “En Aparté”. “It is the creation of which I am most proud, a place of pure beauty and sharing.” In this 150 square meter Haussmann style apartment with terrace, moldings, parquet and marble fireplace, everything has been designed for a hairstyle in a refined elegance, both distinguished and simple. Indeed, the customers are welcomed as at home in this cocooning hair salon and the dozen of hairdressers and colorists are all trained by David Lucas himself, coming from all around the world. Diversity so important to him. “It’s fascinating to see all this brigade ready and able to serve its client at all times, and I have here a cosmopolitan atmosphere that is a permanent enrichment: a Japanese, an Iranian and so on.” Everyone is busy to create an experience of ultimate enjoyment, relaxation and pleasure; “a moment of total disconnection and a precious personal moment offered to oneself.”
Keep moving forward
David Lucas’s philosophy is to always listen to his clients’ desires to do their hair, then create his own style while walking his own path. “I follow my heart and I trust my instincts about people whilst being totally in the present moment.” This is how he was asked to run two prestigious hairdressing salons in luxury establishments in France. The first, in a Hotel-Spa: the Ha (a) ïtza near the dune of Pilat. David Lucas offers there all of his services, including an exclusive range of skincare products, called “Monique”, in tribute to his mother. The second salon is at the Hotel Crillon in Paris, “a perfect lounge on the ground floor which opens onto a beautiful courtyard.” There, he has built a team totally dedicated to the needs of the hotel customers or the ladies passing through Paris, and his signature has become the mark of the French excellence in demand worldwide. Hard worker and intuitive, he also continues his partnerships with Japan. In his salon for example, we can test the specific care from Japanese high technology: Tokio Inkarami, a ritual based on 8 keratins and various amino acids. He is also the exclusive hairdresser for the Kérastase brand and a consultant for L’Oréal. “Last Sunday, I worked on their new color brand that will soon appear in the salons.” A 100% vegetable range based on three pigments, henna, cassia and indigo, coated with coconut oil.
Colors and reflections full in the hair and in the eyes! This is what happens when we meet with the top hairdresser David Lucas, and each visit beautifies our body and mind. In his salon, well-being and efficiency are the keywords for an experience full of simplicity and naturalness, and we get to the essentials with all this kindness that illuminates our relationship with ourselves and others. Moreover, he wants today to put his passion at the service of all women, continuing to practice with his hands, everywhere life will lead him. May be London or Japan on day? For the moment, he leaves us his secret: the local boy is going to return in his Bordeaux lands, in a fabulous place where he can continue the story of fashion, beauty and style.
Interview held by Carine Mouradian on March 14, 2018, in Paris
Link to the website of David Lucas
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