Born in Bergerac, France, Charlie Le Mindu was a hairstyling prodigy at the French Hair Academy, cutting and styling hair from the age of thirteen. Le Mindu ascended from boarding school disciple to a fashionable hairdresser and stylist in Berlin and is now London’s French Master of Haute Coiffure. In Berlin, Le Mindu established himself as the resident hairdresser at night clubs such as White Trash, RIO Club, and Barbie Deinhoff’s. He performed live cuts in his champagne suit at countless private parties and set up several en suite salons. He cultivated his own technique and style and is known for creations ranging from classic to trashy, wearable to insane.
The French designer set up his East London flat and hairdressing residencies around the city’s nightspots and developed a regular clientele, including Carrie Mundane, the B-52’s, Adamski, Peaches, and Jodie Harsh. Charlie Le Mindu drew inspiration from local East London personalities like Slayer, John Waters, and even animals, claiming, “The hair is so much more interesting here!” After being featured in Vogue Russia, Elle, French Vogue and being selected as The Observer’s 22nd coolest person, Charlie decided to take hairstyling to the next level. In February 2009, Charlie launched his first wig collection at London Fashion Week, surprising London’s fashion scene with his dramatic large-scale wigs.
Having presented his 7th collection at On|Off during PFW, the Master of Haute Coiffure has now been featured in publications such as Vogue Italy, Vogue Hommes Japan, i-D, and The Guardian. His repertoire of clients includes the likes of Lady Gaga, Kap Bambino, and Ayumi Hamasaki, to name a few. Having been showcased at the V&A in London and opening the Art Athina Fair in Greece, Charlie Le Mindu’s work truly transcends the boundaries of fashion. His most recent collaborations include projects with Disneyland Paris, Colette, Cartier Foundation, and Underground Shoes. If that weren’t enough, Charlie has participated in the 18th Annual Watermill Summer Benefit curated by Robert Wilson; his signature “Lips” headpiece is currently displayed at the Power of Making Exhibition at the V&A; and finally, Charlie continues to increase his artistic collaborations with L’Oreal Professional. Charlie also collaborates with Lana del Rey, Peaches, Kate Moss, and Azealia Banks.
FSHN: Hair is something vivid. How does this fact affect your creations?
CLM: I mean, for me, hair is the most important thing ever. It is the first material I ever knew to work with; it’s the material I know the best.That’s why I only work with real hair! I need to work with the best quality hair.You can do so many things with hair— shapes, volumes, colors.That’s why I love it.
FSHN: Hair is sexual?
CLM :Yes, hair is sexual to me—like leather and latex! When I work with hair, it’s like a sexual act!
FSHN: Could you give us some details about the way you work?
CLM: For starters, I am a hairdresser, so I constantly think about HAIR!!! Hair dreams! Hair extensions! That’s where everything begins! The way I work stands between a couturier and a coiffeur.That’s why I call what I do Haute Coiffure. I draw, I do patterns, I cut hair, I color it! I shave it! I do it all!
FSHN: To be a hairdresser for the stars, is it a necessary have a career in hairdressing?
CLM: People are the new models and give you perfect exposure! But stars don’t pay, so I like advertising jobs too! It’s another way to create.