Possibly the best kept secret in beauty, Rose Cannan invented the blowout. Her salon even predates known brands like Vidal Sassoon.
Here she tells us about the day she invented the blowout technique:
“It was a Friday and all the chemicals were on the trolley ready to straighten my clients’ hair, yet again. I hated straightening hair. And I remembered something that had happened a few days before. I’d been wandering past a barbershop in Brook Street around the corner from our salon in North Audley Street, and I saw the barber drying the front of a man’s hair with a brush and a hand held dryer. And this image—of the barber with the dryer—flashed through my mind and I thought, ‘Why not for women?’. So I started doing this on my clients’ hair, and Lady Clare Rendlesham (the Vogue editor and famous champion of 60s style-setters) came in, took one look at what I was doing and said, in that formidable voice of hers, ‘What are you doing Rose!?’ and went rushing back out.
“I immediately thought, ‘What have I done?’. My usual Jewish anxiety kicked in—Rendlesham could make or break a career. She reappeared with Barbara Griggs, who was a journalist for the Evening Standard, and said, ‘Look what Rose is doing!’ They went out again. The whole thing was mysterious to me. And that afternoon, this piece appeared in the newspaper about the new blow-wave. That’s how it came on the market.