Industry News

Hair-Raising Olympians

Lauren Salapatek | July 10, 2011 | 8:55 PM

With the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics in full swing, that’s got MODERN watching out for stylish, fun and crazy hair styles worn by the athletes. Here’s a collection of Olympic competitors whose hair styles I thought were particularly interesting:

SHANNON BAHRKE may have won a bronze medal in Women’s Mogul Skiing this past Saturday night, but in my opinion, she definitely won a gold medal for skier with the best hair. Besides plowing her way through bumpy and treacherous terrain, she’s known for her distinctive glitter make-up, platinum hair and of course, her bright pink highlights!

The word is, (in an interview with the New York Times), if Bahrke had won the gold medal she would have dyed her entire head pink! I think we would have all liked to see that — I mean, who doesn’t like pink hair?

 Hair-Raising Olympians 
Shannon Bahrke sporting her platinum hair with pink highlights.

Wondering what’s under APOLO OHNO’S signature bandana and helmet? Long, wavy hair. Here are some tips to achieve this six-time Olympic medalist’s hair style:

 Hair-Raising Olympians 
 Apolo Ohno

Products to use:

Root amplifier, wax or pomade
1.   Spritz in root amplifier at the roots of the hair to create more volume.
2.   Brush hair upwards as you blow-dry away from the head, lifting slightly at the root.
3.   Smooth out the hair with a flat iron and add some pomade for texture.

Interesting fact — Ohno's father, was a high-fashion hair stylist and owner of the salon, Yuki's Diffusion, in the Seattle area.

Olympic Snowboarder, SHAUN WHITE, earned his nickname “The Flying Tomato” for a reason — his trademark shock of red, curly hair. His curly hair suits him well with his oval-shaped face.  I think his full head of red and his half-pipe achievements make him legend.

  Hair-Raising Olympians
 Shaun White

Whether she’s on or off the slopes, LINDSEY VONN always manages to look her best, playing up her natural beauty. As an Olympic alpine skier, all the wear and tear of the cold weather must take a lot out of her hair. No wonder Vonn opts for the tousled, beachy wave look – it keeps her thinking warm.

Hair-Raising Olympians Hair-Raising Olympians 
 Lindsey Vonn

To achieve her look:

1.   Towel-dry the hair and mist in some of Pravana’s Beach Wave Control Mist, to keep the hair soft and supple.
2.   For extra hold and texture, add mousse.  
3.   Either air dry or blow-dry the hair using a medium (2 inch) round brush.
4.   Finish off the look with a light-hold hair spray.

So when we generally think of figure skaters, we think of slicked back hair, ballet buns, ponytails and tight updos; but for male figure skater, JOHNNY WEIR, he did something a little more creative.

According to, to prepare for the Olympics, Weir recently had his hair styled by Eric Alt, owner of Eric Alt Salon in Wood-Ridge, New Jersey. According to Alt, he said the look was very fashion-forward: a modified Mohawk with a curly top that was dyed a jet blue/black color with cool blue undertones. “He is very flamboyant in the way he dresses and is an icon in the fashion world,” says Alt. “We wanted it to go with his costume.”

 Hair-Raising OlympiansHair-Raising Olympians Hair-Raising Olympians 
 Johnny Weir
 Alt styling Weir's hair
 Eric Alt


the gold medalist in Vancouver’s women’s moguls has a trademark hairstyle — braided pigtails tucked into her goggle straps. The tufts of hair make her unique to the other competitors. According to Kearney, she regularly deep conditions her hair to combat the elements.

 Hannah Kearney

Last but not least, what better way to display Olympic pride than by wearing a symbol of the Olympic games on your head?

This inukshuk-inspired design was created by Toronto hair stylist, Robert Barker of Robert Barker Hair'Sociates.

Tune in next time,


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