Washington, DC – The wave of change and awareness to humanity is in the air, and now it’s Iranian-American hairstylist-to-the-stars, David Babaii’s turn to make a big splash.
Working with some of the biggest names in Hollywood, serving as a guest-judge on BRAVO‘s hit reality-tv-show Shear Genius, and calling Kate Hudson a best friend, aren’t claims that most people can make, but David Babaii can. And he couldn’t be any more self-effacing and compassionate if he tried.
Born in London, England and raised in Los Angeles, CA, David has teamed up with his BFF and now business partner, the loveable Kate Hudson, to create an eco-friendly and natural hair-care line that is suited for all hair types. As David and Kate share a charitable nature and love for animals, they have chosen to donate a portion of their product line’s proceeds to the WildAid organization (a non-profit organization focusing on ending illegal wildlife trading, which Babaii was introduced to by Angelina Jolie).
We know we’re always looking for better ways to take care of our tresses, aren’t you? To get the rare organic nutrients replete in the David Babaii for WildAid products right at your fingertips visit: www.db4wildaid.com
We believe in David’s passion and his determination to beautify us: one head of hair at a time. Enjoy our exclusive interview with the celebrity-hair-designer-entreprenuer-philanthropist below.
[Images: Ben Duggan]
Who is your biggest inspiration in life?
My mother Hilda was my biggest inspiration. She was a legendary hairdresser in London and as a child I would go to the salon with her. I was intrigued at how she mastered her craft.
How and when did you get into Hair Design?
As I mentioned in the previous question, my mom Hilda was a legendary hairdresser so the beauty industr y was very much a part of my early days. However, the turning point occurred when my family and I were in Paris for vacation. At the time, I had a degree in hotel management in which I specialized in both food and beverage. Since I worked for some of the top hotels in the world, my work life was highly stressful and overwhelming.
On our first full day in Paris, my dad and sister went shopping, while my mom and I decided to visit the Eiffel Tower. We had lived in Europe for many years, but never had the time to experience this amazing site. As we gazed over the city, my mom noticed I was just not myself. Being the amazing mom that she is, she wanted to know what was on my mind. With the city of Paris before us, I began to share how I wanted to change my life and career. Yet, at 24 years old, I felt it was too late for me to make this change. She quickly responded by saying, “It is never too late to change David. Life is too short to be so unhappy”.
As a brief history, my mom was a legend in the hair industry during the 70’s so I grew up with this profession in my life. Her work was just so beautiful and I was always so proud of her. As we stood, at what seemed to be the top of the world, we began talking about my future.
Here, she asked me the magic question that started everything, “Why don’t you do what I did? You always seemed to be so fascinated with my trade.” In fact, at the time of our trip, the real irony was a hair show going on at the same time we were in Paris! My mom and I immediately bought tickets to attend. As soon as we walked in, I knew this was fate and that hairdressing was going to be my new career path.
I immediately took my new passion seriously, attending beauty school in both London and Los Angeles.
As I look back, the simple explanation was: it was just meant to be.
Describe high school in one sentence.
I miss it a lot!
How and when did you come up with this product?
During the past 7 years of my friendship with Kate, we often spoke about doing something for animals and creating products free of the beauty industry’s standard “dirty dozen”.
We were approached by several big companies, but we wanted to create change on our own. Kate and I were determined to make a line free of Sulfates, Parabens, Petrochemicals, animal products and most importantly free from all animal testing. Kate transformed into the perfect face and this is the perfect time.
Who is your product good for?
The products are great for everyone, all hair types and all age groups. The exotic natural ingredients make the line perfect for everyone.
Is it good for both straight and curly hair?
Absolutely! I designed these products so everyone could have great looking hair. It was essential that the styling products would encompass various styling needs.
How did you come to choose the name WildAid?
WildAid is the organization Angelina Jolie introduced me to. They are devoted to preserving wildlife and stopping illegal trade (poaching).
How and when did you meet the gorgeous Kate Hudson?
Kate and I met 7 yrs ago on a photo shoot. At the time, I knew Brad Cafarelli her publicist and he recommended Kate to use me for the shoot. From that day on, we became the best of friends. Kate is the friend you’ve always wanted. She is so free spirited, just loving life and fun.
How amazing or scary was your photo shoot in the wild?
Our trip to Africa was the most amazing trip of my life. I have traveled all over the world but nothing has captured my heart and soul like Africa. It is one thing to watch television, documentaries or movies about wildlife but to see them in their natural habitat places a whole new perspective on respecting life.
What did you walk away with from your trip to Africa?
When we finished the shoot, I knew that my mission to help save our endangered wildlife was the right choice. I walked away with a much different respect for living creatures.
When was the last time you visited Iran?
I have never been to Iran
What does being Iranian-American mean to you?
I feel that I have become a citizen of the world.
What’s your favorite Iranian dish?
Did you own a salon before launching this product?
No I have never owned a salon but it might be something in my future.
How has life changed for you since launching your natural hair-care line?
I have become more conscious of the environment and ingredients. A lot of my free time is spent reading about new ingredients and environmental issues.
How did you learn that Volcanic Ash from the Vanuatu Islands – can help restore hair?
Kate and I have been studying new ingredients for a very long time. We came across Volcanic Ash through research. It is great for adding body and fullness.
What are your favorite pieces from the line?
How can a parent pick one child over the other? I love them all!
What are Kate’s favorite pieces from the line?
Kate loves the Bohemian Beach Spray. When I can’t do her hair she sprays it on and viola! Her hair looks very Bohemian.
Which ones are currently in your shower?
Of course, my Hydrating Shampoo and Conditioner along with the Amplifying Shampoo and Conditioner is always in my shower. I love to switch off. Sometimes I mix them both for a special treatment.
Who is your favorite hair stylist?
My mom is definitely at the top of my list.
Who are your top favorite clients to work with?
They are all at the top of my list.
Which hair creation of yours – that’s been featured in magazines – would you consider a favorite?
I love my latest cover of Vanity Fair with Angelina Jolie. But all my covers carry their own style and statement.
What’s the hottest hair color to have this summer?
Your natural color with natural Sunkist highlights
What’s the cut to have this summer?
I am a firm believer in having a cut or style that best suits you. Having a cookie cutter style just because it’s in does not make for a flattering style. Instead, I always recommend that women look at celebrities and their hairstyles. They spend a lot of money on their hair and have the top stylists doing it for them. If you like a bang on someone but the layers on someone else, combine these to create your own look.
What’s your favorite hair color?
I love all hair colors. It’s what looks best on a woman that makes it my favorite on them.
Which products do you suggest for Persian women to use from your line?
David Babaii for WildAid is perfect for all hair types. [Persian women] have lusciously beautiful thick hair that will benefit from all the natural exotic ingredients in my line.
We’d love to see you as a judge on BRAVO’s Shear Genius, are you entertaining any offers?
Funny you ask, I have filmed a segment for Shear Genius to air in August 2008.
Which city did you have the most fun in when doing promotional work with Kate?
We did our launch in New York and it was highly successful. Kate and I appeared on CBS, Extra, The View, Access Hollywood, Hollywood Green, numerous televisions stations across the country plus several radio shows such as Ryan Seacrest and Billy Bush. We ended our launch with a huge party at ABC Carpet & Home with over 150 beauty editors in attendance. We had a great time spreading the word.
Why should people buy your line?
My line is a labor of love for animals, humans and my profession. I want to provide people with professional quality hair care that has eliminated many of the harmful ingredients and most important of all, no animal testing. My campaign states, “It’s Beautiful to be Good” now people everywhere can purchase great products knowing they are also contributing to a great cause while doing something good for themselves.
Where can consumers purchase David Babaii for WildAid products?
We should be in over 25,000 stores by the end of this year in the US. But anyone can buy on line at www.db4wildaid.com