Summer is sticky, it's sweaty, it's humid and it's also glorious! Whether we have an affinity to it because it used to mean "no school", late nights, swimming all day or copious amounts of ice cream – there's just something about the hot weather that tugs at our sentimental heart strings. Now, put these feelings into an image – this is exactly what Laura Frazier did so brilliantly in her latest collection. She captured the thick air, dripping sweat and the sweet aroma of what summer means to us wrapped up in a beautiful collection, Wet Hot Summer. Keep reading to get to know more about Laura Frazier and the inspiration behind her beautiful collection.
Can you tell us a little more about you and your styling background?
I've been behind the chair 10 years now, and a National Educator with Redken 5th Ave for two; facilitating classes for salons from Color and Balayage to Business, Barbering and Finishing. I entered the industry serious and focused with a love of hair color and all its aspects. As time went on I wanted to be more than the girl who was great at color and O.K. at everything else. So, I dove into education and took all the classes I could get my hands on. This part of my journey lead me to love other disciplines like design, barbering, and finishing. I've advanced my finishing skills all over the US including at The Redken Exchange in NYC. I've also had the opportunity to work backstage at events like Charleston Fashion Week, NC Style Week, and backstage at Redken Symposium. Along with the amazing education and support from my Redken family. I could never live without all their styling and finishing products, they really set my skills apart with the high quality products they supply me with.
What drew you to hair styling?
At first the glamour of finishing and all the places it could take me drew me in. Now, the hustle backstage and energy of other session and backstage artists I'm meeting is whats keeping me deeply in love with styling. Also, this avenue of the beauty industry has lead me to meet some amazing photographers and models all over the US that are just as passionate about their craft and for me theres some kind of magic in that.
What is your favorite technique to use?
I LOVE texture. From teasing it with my hands to lacing the hair against the cuticle to create large pillowed looks with lots of texture. This is an element I will always try and sew into my looks no matter what I am doing. I also love creating mock braids; I find braids are fun but also overdone. I try to take those looks and represent them in a new way like twists or rolls to mimic the same look.
What has been your biggest defining moment in your career?
Hands down, becoming a Redken National Artist. Not only do I receive the most advanced training year-round, I also get to be constantly surrounded by passionate and driven artists who nerd out about the same things that I do. I have always been an all-in person, but within the Redken network there is no lack of people trying to build you up and make you better and I really appreciate that as professional, and as a human being.
Is there a specific area you often find yourself looking to for inspiration?
Music and weather! I find bands, specifically rock and punk, inspire all my looks. If you go through some of my collections I think somewhere my favorite music finds its way into the final images to give them all a little bit of rawness. Many of my shoots are also inspired by weather, because it’s something that can swing someones mood in a moment. Summer here (in the south) is insanely hot, everyone sweats just walking to the car but still so many people flock toward the south to get away. That’s what has inspired this collection; its hot and sticky but you just wanna be here in the warmth, just hanging out.
What is the one product/tool that you can’t live without?
Until recently, it was for sure Powder Grip 03, but then I got my hands on Triple Dry 15 (before its launch), and let me tell you, I will always have a can of that on me at home, on the road, and in the salon.
How did you dream up your latest styles?
Ive been wanting to do a summer shoot that focused on simple but elegant hair. Where I live, summer is a huge ordeal since it’s usually in the high 90's and 100% humidity, so theres always a hum of talk about summer, the heat, and surviving it. But at the same time so many people flock, fly and drive to be in the center of this heat, it blows my mind. Some population avoids it at all costs while another drives itself towards the temperature chaos. Wrap all those feelings into the gear Pink Pewter sponsored me with and the inspiration of a wet hot summer was all tI needed. Sparkling sweat and sparkling crown jewels, these models make it look easy to be delicate within the temperatures of a hellish summer and hey, thats how I feel about summer.
How do you use styling to enhance your images?
I try to take techniques that everyone sees, or even utilizes at home and give them my own flair. I want people to see them and be drawn to what they know and love, but also see how they can make them their own. It’s not all about making what’s trendy, it’s about bending the trends so other artists can expand on whats happening in style.
How did you work with your makeup/styling team to craft a final image?
Honestly, I love to organize my looks and ideas onto boards to share with the team. I also work with teams I trust and after we all brainstorm I let them do their thing. Letting artists run free with a direction always works best for me; because other artists inspire me the most, so why wouldn't I trust my team?
If you had a superpower, what would it be?
Oh man this is a great question... I have always gravitated towards villains and bad guys I just love their boundary pushing edginess, so I would have to go with shape shifting like Mystique from X-men
Who were your mentors along the way and how have they shaped your career?
I have a mentor for almost every leg of my journey. First it would be Casondra Rolph, she was my mentor when I was an associate and engrained in me the importance of education and to never ever stop learning. Someone I constantly look up to as a life and career mentor Dhaniel Doud a creative director and dear friend at Redken. He always makes sure I am learning and being my own self , teaching me to blaze my own way no matter where I go in life. Industry leaders like Sam Villa and Lindsey Olsen also constantly inspire me with their work and techniques. I follow their careers closely and I finally get to work with Lindsey this January at Redken Symposium!!! Finally, another dear friend of mine, Ashley Flora, I don’t think she even knows how much I love and appreciate her guidance. Because of her and her guidance, and mostly because of her belief in me, I am the session stylist I am today. Ashley was the one who pushed me into Editorial and constantly guides me on how-to’s, where to go, and who to talk too. I hope she knows she is one of my top mentors on this journey through the industry.
What hair/color trends can we look forward to this season?
There is so much on the horizon, I cannot wait for 2019! Short is going to be the new long; as we know long hair is never out but I think we will be seeing more short texture, and cropped looks along with more limits being pushed. Blonding and not so natural colors will be in. I love the new generation of hair, there are less rules and more people open to doing what they want rather than what they're told. As a hairdresser it’s exhilarating to have guests leaving with different looks rather than them all looking alike.
Photographer: Bryce Chapman @brycechapmanphoto
Makeup Artist: Justine Green @justinegreenhair
Sponsors: Redken and Pink Pewter