Romeu Felipe on the Premium Colour Service, Brazilian Illuminage

Estetica has held an exclusive interview with the Brazilian celebrity stylist Romeu Felipe, who is Global Ambassador of Wella Professionals and one of the celebrity protagonists in artistic precision at the recent international We Create event.

Romeu Felipe is one of the world’s leading hair colourists and is considered the inventor of this iconic blonde look. In his home city of Saõ Paolo, Felipe is a celebrated celebrity stylist who is trusted by the most famous names in Brazil when it comes to colour, cut and styling. His “golden hands” and artistic precision make him a sought-after trendsetter on the international market too: 2 million Instagram followers speak for themselves. 

1. How long have you been working with Wella?

I started my career at Wella in 2004 and since then I have become increasingly passionate about the brand.

2. Women all over the world envy Brazilians for their hair. Does their hair actually lighten so beautifully from life on the beach, or are you helping them out as well?

In reality, Brazilian woman tend to have super dark hair due to the miscegenation that exists in our country. Most blonde women have highlights or other bleaching procedures.

3. Your new Brazilian Illuminage technique is quite complex and time consuming. What advice do you give other colourists when it comes to “selling” this luxurious technique to their clients?

My recommendation is that the professional should explain  – before actually starting the transformation –  that the result will be incredible hair that will last almost 1 year, because the technique leaves the regrowth hair at the roots looking very natural.

4. Does the choice of foils play a major role?

Yes, ordinary aluminum foil oxidises the hair and loosens metals in addition to making it difficult to apply the product. I always use aluminum foil suitable for highlights which has cardboard on the back, making them paper firmer.

5. Is there a trick you would like to share with other colourists?

What makes a hair colour beautiful is the care you take with the hair – with the structure of the hair. Damaged hair leaves the colour looking dull.

6. With darker hair, the effect of a Brazilian Illuminage is more intense. Wouldn’t just the Illuminage technique be more useful or sufficient for women with naturally blonde hair?

The result is also beautiful on blonde clients; it is possible to create dimension of colour and depth as well as with dark hair.

7. Can this technique also be used for a customer who has already turned a little grey?

It can certainly be used on hair already turning grey. The smudging technique helps to disguise the grey hairs.

8. The models Wella shows for (Brazilian) Illuminage always have enviable full hair. For customers who want such a look and have fine hair, the next step would actually be to start a cooperation with an extension brand (which then creates extensions in exactly these colour gradients), right?

It is not necessary to use extensions (only if the customer wants to); it is possible to create volume with styling and product.

9. Will we see you living in Europe someday?

I love Brazil, my career and family are here, but I also love Europe. I don’t know if I could ever live there, but I’d definitely love to visit more often.