Celebrity Hair Stylist: Charles Baker Strahan

Sarah Velasco: How did you get into the hair styling business and why?
Charles Baker Strahan:My mother pushed me into it believe it or not. When I was 10 my parents divorced and I wound up switching schools a lot. That is when I became aware that people assume a lot by how you look, so with each new school I switched my appearance and hair was a big part of that. I had a natural affinity for it and my mother recognized this and encouraged me. (I have an AWESOME Mother - Love you Donna)

Sarah Velasco: What is your schedule like?
Charles Baker Strahan: Well I am typing this on a plane if that gives you any impression. I have several projects that I invest my time in and also things happen in a short lead time for me so flexibility is key. No day is the same and often times I am working on multiple things in one day. I love it though and consider myself very blessed.

Sarah Velasco: Who or what inspires you?
Charles Baker Strahan: Michelangelo and Toulouse-Lautrec create art that really resonates with me. I admire the beauty of Kate Moss. I get lost in Architectural Digest Magazine. The esthetic of Tom Ford. When I am working specifically with hair, my client's essence and the influence it has on me is key. My current muse is Crystal Reed from “Teen Wolf.”

Sarah Velasco: If you had to pick the best moment of your career so far, what would it be?
Charles Baker Strahan: I have been truly blessed and have seen the world and met and worked with amazing people, but I would have to say working with Herbal Essences has been the source of the most pride.

Sarah Velasco:Who is your dream person to style?
Charles Baker Strahan: I would go back in time and work with Audrey Hepburn.

Sarah Velasco: Are there any particular disadvantages/advantages in your line of work?
Charles Baker Strahan: With the right attitude you can make the most of pretty much anything, but I do have a pretty amazing job I have to say.

Sarah Velasco: What advice would you give to someone who wants to be in the hair styling industry?
Charles Baker Strahan: Never believe someone who says there are rules or that something is absolutely right or wrong, I believe in principles but I always leave room for discovery.

Sarah Velasco: There have always been different opinions on how often one should wash their hair, how often do you recommend?
Charles Baker Strahan: I say do it when you feel the need to. The new reformulated collections from Herbal Essences with hydro-activated silkening ingredients leave hair soft, shiny and well hydrated. Hydration is KEY! It gives your hair shine, elasticity and affects how your hair moves and how product moves through your hair to make styling products most effective. I love what it does for my work!

Sarah Velasco: What are some must-have products that women should incorporate into their everyday routine?
Charles Baker Strahan: Any one of Herbal Essences new reformulated collections. I LOVE Herbal Essences Hello Hydration Shampoo and Conditioner and I start my day with that every day. I can't work without Herbal Essences Tousle Me Softly stylers, Body Envy Volumizing Hairspray and Set Me Up Extra Hold and Max Hold Hairsprays and the Long-Term Relationship Leave-In Split-End Protector.

Sarah Velasco: Can you give us some tips on how to achieve a perfect blow-out at home?
Charles Baker Strahan: Great hair starts in the shower. Herbal Essences Touchably Smooth Shampoo and Conditioner is one of the reformulated collections and it’s infused with a smoothing serum to fight frizz. Heat changes the shape of hair and coolness sets it in, so use your cool shot on your blow dryer to lock in your look. Boar bristle brushes polish the hair cuticle and close it to create great shine! Herbal Essences Long Term Relationship Leave-In Split-End Protector is great for smoothing post blow-out flyaways.

Sarah Velasco: What are the top trends this summer? What will we see for Fall 2011?
Charles Baker Strahan: For summer it’s all about top knots, braids/fishtails and natural hair texture that is freshly washed.
For fall, strong shapes in hair cuts that are classic and minimal layering will be popular.

Picture of actress, Leighton Meester and Herbal Essences national spokesperson and celebrity hair stylist: Charles Baker Strahan
You can view clips them working together here  and here