Negin Zand is the woman the A-list call for hair colour. Be it Kate Hudson’s beach blonde highlights or Megan Fox’s dark chocolate tresses, the superstar colourist is on speed dial for some of the most famous women in the world.

The Iranian-born hair colourist is based at Sally Hershberger’s renowned salons in both Los Angeles and New York.

While in Dubai, we caught hold of Negin to talk cut, colour, and the celebrities who had the worst ‘do pre foils.

How did you begin a career in hair?

I grew up watching my Mom who was one of the biggest hairdressers in Iran, styling the royal family, actresses and singers. It was such an inspiration to watch, I wanted to be just like her.

You’re known for your natural approach to hair colouring, does this offer less maintenance?

Yes. I don’t go far from the client’s natural base; two shades maximum, whether lighter or darker. My specialism is balayage, a free hand painting technique used to recreate the look of children’s hair, with a little bit of edge. 

The upkeep for highlights is three months, placement and timing is key. When you highlight with foils, it’s woven so close that you get a line of demarcation but with balayage you don’t, it looks far more natural.

How can we make highlights last longer?

Don’t overlap when doing the base colour and rinse off the colour by holding the ends up so the colour does not get on the highlights making them dull and flat. 

With my technique, I guarantee you can go three to four months with your highlights, as they are not painted so close together. And it is nice to have depth at the root as it looks more natural. 

Also, use a highlighting shampoo once a week to remove any build-up in the hair. 

A really great tip is to rinse your hair with bottled water after shampooing and conditioning to rid the hair of chlorine and/or minerals in the hard water that makes the hair less bright.  Using bottled water on that final rinse helps make the hair shiny.

Is at-home color ever a good idea?

Not really, unless its something really simple, like touching up your parting and hairline to keep you going before your colorist appointment. Always go one shade lighter than what the colour looks like on the box as they tend to be darker than what they look like on the box.

How should we treat our hair post-highlights?

Always use good products, particularly salon shampoo and conditioner.

You have a long list of celebrity clients, whose tresses are you most proud of?

Sarah Jessica Parker, Kate Hudson, Jane Fonda, Diane Lane and Jennifer Aniston.

hair-editNegin’s celebrity colour clientele includes Kate Hudson, Megan Fox and Carey Mulligan.

Who had the worst ‘do before you got your hands on them?

Sarah Jessica Parker’s hair was too blonde and the placement of the highlights looked unnatural. 

Jane Fonda’s hair was too long, too blonde and ashy, and had no depth.

Whose hair would you love to do?

Meryl Streep, Annete Bening, Hillary Clinton and Robyn Wright – because I love her! Jennifer Lawrence’s hair would be amazing to do, and it almost happened. I had a call for her but was out of town unfortunately.  Hopefull,y it will happen soon.

How should we prepare before visiting a new colorist?

A five to ten minute consultation is necessary with a new colourist. Always be honest about what’s already on your hair from past colour, and get a haircut so when they apply highlights, it isn’t cut out. Don’t wash your hair for a day or so before the appointment so it doesn’t irritate the scalp. Always bring pictures of hair tone that you love so you have a visual, as my dark brown could be medium brown to you and vice versa.  

After years of dying, how can one switch back to our natural hair colour?

You will have to grow it out and get more haircuts. And in the process you can do vegetable colors so there’s not too much drastic contrast from natural to colour parts.

We’ve had pastel dip-dyes, exposed roots, ombré ends…what’s next in hair color trends?

I am over the ombré and pastel colors. I think we will see a return to more natural, shiny colors with depth and dimension whether it is red, blonde, brown, highlights or platinum.

Can styling products or using too much heat on your hair affect the colour?

Styling products can definitely affect colour as heat lightens hair tone and shampoos that are not for colour treated hair can also make it fade faster.

What’s currently in your styling kit, are there any new products we absolutely must try?

My styling kit contains Renee Furterer Spray leave-in conditioner, Shu Uemura Essence Oils because it ads UV protection, Shu Uemura Shampoo and Conditioning treatments and Kerastase Shampoo and Conditioning treatments. 

Because I’m a colorist, I’m more about the conditioning of the hair rather than using too many styling products.

Negin Zand is visiting JetSet in Dubai until March 12th. To make an appointment call 050 298 8787.