Join celebrities like Emma Willis in celebrating #ICanIAmAndIWill, as hairdresser Louis Byrne launches the empowering project to help you own your identity
He’s the man responsible for creating TV presenter Emma Willis’ signature styles, he’s worked on shoots for Vogue, ELLE and L’Official and even spent four years on the team of legendary hairstylist Sam McKnight. From working on shows at Fashion Week to spending a lengthy stint with singer Ellie Goulding as her personal hairdresser, when it comes to hair, Louis Byrne sure knows his stuff, and he has the celebrity clientele to prove it! One memorable week featured a private jet, a performance for Donatella Versace and a gig on the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury.
But along with the ups, there have been downs and like so many of us, Louis felt overwhelmed by the pressures of social of media. After falling and breaking his leg late last year, Louis used his recovery as a chance to take back control of his relationships, his health and his time. Instead, he wanted to use social media as a platform for positivity, and from there #ICanIAmAndIWill was born.
Celebrating its first anniversary this month, the personal empowerment project has been created by Louis to break the cycle of negative behaviour that is so often associated with various social media channels. As part of the programme, Louis has created a motivational workshop based on a three-step empowerment formula of skill, creativity and wellness. There’s also a series of podcasts and a YouTube channel, all based around enhancing natural beauty and encouraging us to love who and what we are. The podcasts discuss his relationships with his celebrity clients but with topics exploring themes ranging from life in the public eye to pregnancy, cancer and gender fluidity.
A major part of the project is a photographic shoot series, which focuses on unique people who have a story to tell – cancer survivors, travellers, adventurers. Shot on location across London, Lisbon and Ibiza, the powerful images celebrate just how much hair is part of one’s identity and strength.
Alongside #ICanIAmAndIWill, Louis continues to work closely with Emma Willis, whose hairstyle (The Quaff) has become part of her celebrity brand. “There is a mission behind Emma’s haircut,” says Louis. “Together we aspire to motivate and inspire women to have the courage to try something new and to break with the norms of what a ‘feminine’ haircut should be. We want to empower women to ‘go for it’; to show that short hair is versatile, sexy and cool. Working together as Emma Willis and Louis Byrne, I think we have achieved that.”