Julien d’Ys’ D.I.Y. Surf Spray


Julien D’Ys —who John Galliano once described as "part painter, part stylist, part pirate"—is pretty much the rock star of the hair world, and all the way back in October, I was lucky enough to have him do my hair on a shoot with Peter Lindbergh. I wasn't expecting much to really go down in the grooming department (the look?  "chic, natural" and "relaxed, like herself") on this particular day, so color me mystified that, while I sat there admiring his set-up—the candle, the single white rose, the scarves, the red lacquer box full of light wood- and dark chestnut-colored hair combs, his scrapbook (which Garance photographed beautifully)—he somehow transformed my very straight hair into Greek goddess-y, beachy, wave-madness that was romantic, touchable, and stayed as is way after the shoot was over and late into dinner with friends—long after the equally masterfully-applied Stephane Marais eye makeup had melted into under-eye-puddling obscurity. How did he do it?

First, sections of my dry hair were wound into rolls that he clipped up (and that I subsequently threw a hoodie over, so as to roam around the set looking like someone’s grandmother lost in the frozen foods aisle) and set via a concoction sprayed from a label-less Windex bottle. “This is my own beach-salt-spray,” D'ys said, and his hair is what appears to be a series of faux-dreadlocks (in that sort of killer '90s movie way, where you know he bathes regularly but still gets that insouciant, mussed-up texture), which he explained he creates by washing his hair, twisting and spraying it with this same stuff. He removed the clips and tousled my hair with a blow drier, securing it half-up with one of the aforementioned combs and tying two sections of my hair into a textured knot below it. Note: I have since tried to duplicate the hair knot/comb combination myself. It has not worked, try as I might. It would appear that having your hair done by a hair genius does not, sadly, make you a hair genius. Such, I suppose, is life.

As for the secret ingredients in that spray bottle? One part Lustrasilk Set & Style Lotion to three parts water—shaken, not stirred. “The bottle is very retro, no?” he laughed, and friends, Lustrasilk looks straight out of 1950, and might be discontinued and actually be from 1950, but who am I to question greatness? If you cannot find it in your local beauty-supply store, where it would probably be gathering dust on a shelf, he e-mailed to say that Biosilk’s Beach Texture is his new favorite spray, no mixing required.

—Alessandra Codinha

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  • Muj

    omg alessandra looks so gorgeous! can she teach how she enhances her already RIDICULOUS bone structure with contouring??


  • Lucy Apted

    Your hair looks incredible. Absolutely incredible.

  • Chloe Evert

    Julien D'Ys is a genius. You, Alessandra, look BEAUTIFUL!!!!! I want to see more from the shoot!!!!

  • Sophie P

    I want an Alessandra top shelf!!!!!!

  • Nina R.

    Quoting John Galliano? Really? This blog is so much more than an ordinary blog - let's leave haters out of it. Please.

  • michelle

    Drop dead gorgeous. Top shelf needed ASAP!!

    • Lana Nasser

      Seriously. What a beaut!!!

  • Paola

    You are working it gurl!! Btw, what is this I hear about you writing a feature film and a collection of shorts!! More info needed :)

  • http://nomadic-d.blogspot.com/ Nomadic D.

    First off, damn girl, you look ridiculously beautiful here. Like, ridiculously. Second, your hair is perfection and I want to have it. My hair is super straight by nature as well, and if I can tie it up in messy knots and spray it with windex and have it come out like that, you can bet I'll be doing it all the time. Third, I know, it's not actually windex, I get it. Fourth, did I mention how gorgeous you look?


  • Kandi

    Lustrasilk is a black hair product, and I'm sure it is still used today. Revlon Lottabody was another popular one.

  • MissWix

    I've now been set on an obsessive quest to find that Lustrasilk stuff. Apparently it's discontinued, but it will be mine!

  • Maggie

    In what world is buying something from the store d.i.y?

  • http://twitter.com/matchalattewdrb Raphaëlle Lavielle

    Seems like we can't get enough of this surf hair style!


  • Bonnie Clyde

    Love it!!

  • http://twitter.com/CaptiveLouise Captive Louise

    Oh man, I wish I had these awesome hair manipulating skills. His scrapbook is adorable too, I love his sketches.
    Someone, hug him for me if you have the chance!


  • Holly

    Sooo Beautiful!

  • http://glitterandgapske.blogspot.com/ Alyssa Gapske

    I definetly will be trying the Biosilk. Your hair looks amazing!

  • michi

    hi there! so i have a few questions...

    i finally found the lustrasilk product - yay! well, actually the revlon version, but they're the same color so i'm assuming same product.

    How long did you let your hair set with the product?

    and did your dry hair have anything in it before it was tied in knots?

    looking forward to experimenting!!