Male Grooming

Barber Backchat: HJ Men Interviews Ky Wilson

by charlottegw / last updated August 27, 2019

ky wilson

Ky Wilson, owner of ground-breaking salon space The Social, shares his proudest moments and can’t-live-without products. Ky will be performing on the Modern Barber stage at Salon International – click here to buy tickets

How would you describe yourself in three words?
Energised, impatient and a perfectionist.

What are you most proud of in your career?
Creating The Social. It’s a place where different hairstylists can come to work in a relaxed space. I designed it to be a place that people could hang out in and express themselves.

What hair product can’t you live without?
I love a dry shampoo paste. I use it all the time to create that kind of texture that everyone wants. I’m also trying stop using aerosols to help the environment.

What’s on your bucket list?
I want to achieve a healthy work / life balance. I’m trying.

What is your all-time favourite hair image?
I love images depicting the Northern Soul era. I actually tend not to look inside the industry for inspiration. I believe images are important when it comes to the subculture, lifestyle and movement they show, however the most essential part of a picture for me is the creative process behind it.

Do you have a hair hero?
I think my good friend Luke Pluckrose is really underrated. We first met when I started out 10 years ago and he really looked out for me. He got me involved in cool stuff like doing a Coldplay video.

What’s your favourite image that you’ve shot personally?
The image that won me the L’Oréal Color Trophy Men’s Image Award in 2017. It was two years ago, but it is still really current now. This was probably one of the things I am most proud of my career.

What’s the last thing you do before bed?
I’ve started listening to a chilled playlist before bed because I find it really hard to switch off. I’ll be looking at my phone or thinking about work and suddenly it’s four o’clock in the morning.

What’s your favourite piece of art?
I like David Hockney. I went to an exhibition with my dad, the weekend I got the lead to my latest salon. Anything immersive like Banksy’s Dismaland I think is really cool too.

Where would we find you at a party?
Behind the bar or at the BBQ. I prefer to host – even when I’m at someone else’s party.

What’s the last gift you received?
My girlfriend took me to Portugal as a surprise for my 30th birthday. I didn’t know where I was going until I got on the plane. That was a good surprise.

If a career in men’s hairdressing hadn’t worked out what would you be doing?
I would like to work in tech. I’d want to create something revolutionary.

Do you have any hobbies?
I enjoy skateboarding, playing the guitar, climbing and eating a variety of food cuisines such as Japanese, Turkish and Thai.

Where’s your happy place?
Around my family or when I’m cutting hair.

Ky Wilson’s quick fire round
Cats or dogs? Dogs
Chocolate or vanilla ice cream? Chocolate
Dining out or eating in? Eating in
City pad or country retreat? Country
Invisibility or ability to fly? Ability to fly
Plain or spicy food? Spicy


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