Exclusively Fashion Magazine:
Can you tell me in detail how your career began?
Wendy Iles: My
career began as a freelance hairdresser by accident
really. I was one of few in Sydney who had the
Sassoon training. It was not long after my return
from London and my Sassoon days that I was contacted by
Australian Vogue to do the hair on one of their fashion
series. Up until that time I was working in a
salon, so had no idea what it even meant to go out and
do hair on a photo shoot! I must have worked ok,
because I received numerous requests from Australian
Vogue and other top Sydney magazines, so much so that I
eventually became freelance. From there it was a
quick accent to NY and then eventually to Paris.
Today I work and reside between London, Paris, and NY.
What gives you inspiration?
My eyes are searching all the
time for inspiration. I visit art galleries,
art exhibitions, museums, watch old and new movies,
but mostly I watch streets in the cities I'm
travelling in London, Tokyo and downtown LA are my
favorite source's of inspiration. The kids on
the streets have such edgy individual style.
Can you describe your work ethic?
Old school and professional.
Work fast and efficiently, as time is money. I
like to be completely prepared for each job. This
is not always possible as information is sometimes not
available until on set, but I always try and pack extra
hair or some back up wigs just in case of an emergency
of some kind. Once I had a job where the models
hair had all broken off after she had been casted by a
color she put in herself. My heart skipped a beat
when I saw her hair, as we were shooting for a hair
campaign. My back up hair reserves saved that day
for me and my client.
EFM: What are some of your
favorite hair products you personally like to use on
For some years now I have been
using my own products that I have made to measure my
needs. These I will be launching to the public
EFM: Have you
always wanted to be a hair stylist (working on
campaigns, fashion shows and editorials)?
This business found me, I didn't
go looking for it, but now that I know it, I couldn't
imagine doing anything else. I love my job with
passion. I dream about hair!
What do you think it takes to become a successful hair
Be passionate, dedicated and
professional, listen to your client's needs, adapt each
style your create to the personage you are working on.
What are some of your tips to maintaining fresh and
Choice of shampoo and conditioner
is extremely important. That's why I created my
own. Finding the right products for your hair is
the best start to a beautiful hair day. Even if
growing your hair, trim the ends every 6 to 8 weeks.
This will stop split ends settling in. I rarely
use hairspray, never on myself and I find when I'm
working on set I can create a hairstyle that's stays
perfectly all day long even after a 16 hour shoot day if
I don't use spray.
EFM: So far, what
has been the highlight of you career?
WI: Having a book published on my
European archives was pretty amazing. The Berlin
Publisher was Printkultur. They did a beautiful
book on my work that makes me grateful and proud.
A 20 page preview of the book can be viewed on
As far as jobs go, I'd say working
with movie director Martin Scorsese on a film for Chanel
was a special moment. It's rare in the fashion
business to work alongside movie directors of his
caliber, so this remains a special job for me.
EFM: What are some of your
favorite things about working in this industry?