Spanish for silk – SEDA is known as one of the most precious textiles throughout time. Known for its softness, ability to move fluidly and take on any shape, Carlos Valiente’s latest collection brings out the most prominent characteristics of this fabric. Combining Avant-Garde features and modern touches, Valiente has created a fresh feel to these elegantly elevated looks. To see his beautiful collection and the inspiration behind it keep reading.
Can you tell us a little about yourself and your experiences?
My name is Carlos Valiente and I was born in a small town in the east of Spain almost 37 years ago. 14 years ago, I became a stylist and since then I have been developing my personal style, which is demonstrated through my collections. It makes me very happy when I see the team's creations in magazines all over the world, and for a guy from a small town in eastern Spain, I still find it hard to believe that I'm doing this interview.
What attracted you to hairdressing?
When I was very young, about 15 years old, I left school and started working in a factory. A few years later, I realized that I was wasting my life and I thought I had to set myself a new goal. It was then that I decided to choose between two of my passions, hairdressing and cooking. I decided on the first one because I did not want to have to work too much. As you can see from my busy schedule, I was wrong.
What is your favourite technique to use?
I like to understand the profession as a whole. For me, a complete look has to have color, cut and styling, but if I had to choose, then it would be the cut. I love looks that feature precision and technique, where each pass with the scissors makes sense.
What has been the highlight of your career?
Without a doubt, when I was awarded the Figaro for Spanish Hairdresser of the Year. Knowing that my colleagues considered me to be the most influential professional during that year is the best thing that has happened to me during my 12 years as a professional. I am enjoying the recognition but must continue to think about the next goals.
Is there a specific place where you often find yourself looking for inspiration?
Inspiration, I seek within myself. The source is founded in the feelings, sensations and vivid memories that usually move my conscience and inspire me. I like to express what makes me an individual through my work.
What is the product/tool that you cannot live without?
The tool I enjoy using the most is scissors, and if I have to choose a product, I would not have any. What I like most is to enjoy a wide range of products that allow me to work with a wide variety of stylings that allow me to offer the best service to my clients.
What was the source of inspiration for your latest creations?
I came from within. For example, Sin Alma is a collection that is inspired by the feeling that my profession generates. On the other hand, Dona, is a tribute to all women, those who are part of my life and those who are not.
When we move through more commercial collections, the truth is that we are inspired by less profound topics, such as fashion and trends of the moment and, above all, those that are yet to come.
How do you use styling to improve your images?
I understand my images as a complete look, but you have to understand that in a collection of hairdressing, the aim is to enhance the hairstyle over everything else. That's why I like that the styles accompany the hairstyle, complement it and make sense, but always from a background perspective.
How did you work with your makeup/styling team to create a final image?
We start from a base that is the idea of the hairstyles that the collection will be composed of. From there, we set a pattern for costumes and makeup that matches the ideas we want to express or what we want to convey through the collection, always complementing the hairstyle, without lessening its prominence.
If you had a superpower what would it be?
With all the work that we currently have, the salons, shows, prizes, training, etc., I suppose I would choose the ability to clone or teleportation. A combination of both would be ideal!
Who were your mentors along the way and how have they shaped your career?
There have been many professionals that I have followed and admired throughout my career but if I had to mention a few, then it would be the English professionals who have had a great influence on my career. I have trained a lot in London, at Toni & Guy among others, and I have studied the life of the great Vidal Sassoon. Although right now, I would like to show my support for Spanish hairdressing, as I believe that now is our moment thanks to figures such as Felicitas Ordás and Mikel Luzea. Spanish hairdressing is competing at the highest levels and I love seeing how my friends with whom I have shared many experiences are becoming common faces at the main catwalks and international magazines.
What hairstyle/color trends can we expect this season?
Since the beginning of the year, we have been experimenting with disordered and very natural looks. Perfect hairstyles have been left behind and broken waves along with disheveled effects have come to the forefront of hairdressing this year. The casual styles are combined with powerful fringes, regarding both length and its lack of it; on the streets in any city, you will see a bang birkin and a babybang on the same sidewalk. Regarding color, there have been two main gradients: one is the naturalness that marks the 2019 trends with reflections and techniques that enhance volume and depth, and the other is the decision to mix fantasy colors with blond or another color, for example, the blorange or the flannel technique.
Photographer: Esteban Roca
Stylist: Salones Carlos Valiente
MUA: Nacho Sanz