Milk + Blush Meets... Hairstylist Rikki Thomas
If you’re looking to get started in the industry then it’s definitely worth watching Rikki Thomas’s journey. He’s worked his way up and secured some huge opportunities, like assisting stylist Anna Cofone who works with Dua Lipa, working at LFW and becoming a style director at the Daniel Galvin Salon in Selfridges. He’s definitely on his way up in the industry and his passion for styling and eye for trends is what makes him stand out from other stylists.
Today he’s chatting with Milk + Blush about how he got started, why assisting is so important and the one hairstyle you need to try this winter…
M+B: How did you get your start in the industry? Did you always want to be a hairstylist?
I started working at a hotel in Swansea just after I left school. There was a salon next door that I had to walk past every day and I couldn’t help but stare into the window and be fascinated with what was going on.
The lure of the salon became too much and it wasn't long after that I found myself starting an apprenticeship with Brian Brown Salon. They nurtured and encouraged me and I worked hard to learn everything I could from the experience. I assisted him on fashion shows and editorials and this is really where my passion started to evolve. Three years later, I moved to Birmingham to continue my journey with Umberto Giannini at their Selfridges salon.
M+B: Are there any pro tools in your kit that we could incorporate into our hair routines?
The Cloud Nine Touch Iron is my number one fave! I just love the versatility of this tool and that it doesn’t have a button. You just clamp it down and it heats up instantly while the mineral-infused plates glide through the hair to deliver healthy results.
M+B: We saw on your Instagram that you’ve been assisting Dua Lipa’s stylist Anna Cofone. How important do you think it is to assist stylists as you’re working your way up?
I’ve been incredibly lucky to work with Anna over the past few years. I’ve assisted her on shows at LFW, editorials, commercials, music videos and Brit Awards performances. Anna was the very first session stylist I got to work with and for that, I’m extremely grateful. Her creative vision, passion and her positive energy makes her a favourite of mine to work with.
Whether you’re looking to pursue a career in session styling or just want to widen your experiences, working with talented artists can open many opportunities. It also presents you with experiences you wouldn’t necessarily get being in a salon. It takes discipline, but it’s worth every minute!
M+B: What are your favourite hair products at the moment?
I’m a huge fan of Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray. There are hundreds of products on the market promising to do the same job, but this spray is really unique. It’s weightless and gives effortless texture to bring hair to life!
M+B: What’s it like working at the Daniel Galvin salon?
In 2015 I made the bold move to London to continue my career with Daniel Galvin at their newest space, the Body Studio in Selfridges. I get to work with a talented group of people who love to laugh and we all motivate each other. They are like my family and we have great respect for each other. The past 4 years have been amazing and I’m very lucky to work for a positive brand that’s encouraging and supportive.
M+B: What do you think is the biggest mistake people make with their hair?
This is a good question! People often overthink the styling process and therefore tend to over-style their hair. Whacking up the temperature can have a huge impact on the integrity of your strands so I’d always recommend a medium heat setting to prevent any damage.
M+B: Do you have any tips for making your hair look good in photographs?
Always make sure your camera is clean! It really does make a huge difference. You also need to be aware that pictures will highlight strands lacking in lustre along with any small baby hairs or flyaways. So, whether your style is sleek or wavy, always pay extra attention to the top layer of your hair before taking pictures. I also use a light serum or hairspray on the back of my hand to smooth them down as I find this works the best.
M+B: What do you think the biggest hair trends will be for the winter?
A blunt bob is the biggest trend right now, as seen on Karlie Kloss, Kim Kardashian and Sofia Richie. A strong baseline showcases healthy thick ends and it looks just as good sleek as it does with a wave. You can also try changing to a deep side part for added drama or that ever-contemporary, strict centre part. It’s clear the hairstyle isn’t going anywhere anytime soon so it’s definitely worth taking the plunge.