We chatted with Kevin Murphy, the founder and man behind the do-good brand, Kevin.Murphy, at the three-day educational Back to Blue event to hear where he gets his inspiration and what’s next for this envelope-pushing company.
Where do you find your inspiration?
Sometimes it’s a mixture of ideas, but it’s never really one person because you’re sort of like a cog in a wheel. I look at a lot of fashion shows and little micro trends. One city might have a micro trend and that micro trend might grow into a larger trend overall.
Hair trends are much slower and easier to predict than fashion trends. The ‘70s are still here and they aren’t going away yet—they’re coming back even bigger, but we have to change up the hair a little bit. I’m doing a lot of looks where the hair almost seems like it’s unraveling—it’s almost a bit ‘90s-inspired. Necklines are getting higher and sleeves seem to be getting bigger, so it having a big, romantic hairstyle doesn’t work anymore. Instead, we’re creating something that looks a bit messy and almost unraveled is a mix of the ‘60s, ‘70s, ‘80s and ‘90s all thrown together.
Who influences you?
I’m influenced all the time. If I’m looking for inspirations for a new collection, I always go straight to Marc Jacobs and Karl Lagerfeld and I’m always looking at Diane Von Furstenberg—she had the best hair at New York Fashion Week.
Secret beauty weapons?
If I were stuck on a deserted island, I’d probably need to have Anti.Gravity.Spray because I can really change the hair up with it, a towel comb and a boar bristle brush. I could make anything out of that, well and maybe some clips and a few elastics, too.
What’s next for the business?
I hope more to give a well-rounded education experience. It’s really hard when you just do a show because it’s really quick, but then if you only give classes, it gets really boring. We try to give everyone a round-robin experience where they get to do a bit of business studies, a little avant-garde, a bit of how to troubleshoot your career and how to stand out in your career or market place, kicking it all off with a show.
What’s next for products?
We’re moving heavily into treatment. I’ve found that a lot of treatments are boring and one-size-fits-all, so we’re targeting certain areas and experimenting with stem cells, which is quite a controversial thing. We’re using vegetable stem cells for the scalp because that’s the only place we can actually make a difference. The thing about vegetable stem cells is they’re much stronger and faster [than animal stem cells].The idea of using vegetable stem cells is that they work really well with the body and they affect the scalp. It’s all about repair. They say any cells that have been lost or died can be regenerated with stem cells, which is quite a sweeping statement. It’s very new testing, but we’re jumping on that one.