Crowning glory

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By Dil Chahta Hai gave Adhuna Akhtar a chance to showcase her passion for hairstyling
  • Published 22.07.12

As a child I used to regularly visit a salon with my mother, Ann. She was very particular about her hair and there was something about the ambience of that place which made me want to become a hairdresser. There have been many high points in my life and just as many turning points. For instance, when I was training at Worthington Hair, a salon in Northwest England, I participated in, and won, the under-21 national junior hairstyling championship. I was 17 then — I haven’t looked back since.

Needless to say that I’ve grown to be passionate about styling hair — and have tried just about every cut on myself too. From the punk rock of the ’80s to hair that’s long one side and short on the other! Launching my salon, Juice, in 1998 in Mumbai along with my brother and business partner, Osh Bhabani, was another turning point. But we subsequently changed the name to b:blunt.

I made my Bollywood debut as a hairstylist in 2001 with Farhan’s Dil Chahta Hai. It was a path-breaking film in many ways — including the looks of the actors. It posed huge challenges for me as we had to create special styles for each of the actors — Aamir Khan, Saif Ali Khan and Akshaye Khanna. The film proved to be a major turning point for our business and the hairdressing industry as a whole.

I also did the hairstyling for the Hrithik Roshan starrer, Lakshya, in 2004. Preity Zinta was given two looks in the film — a long-haired one and a short crop. It was hard since we were working in Ladakh’s extreme conditions. I recall a harrowing time — the first day of the shoot — when Preity’s wig began to expand due to the wind and temperature. At the end of it, both Preity and I were in tears, but we managed to make the look work somehow.

For now, I’m trying my hand at something different — my first television show called Be Blunt. In this I’m showcasing what we do everyday — that is, giving women complete makeovers.

(As told to Varuni Khosla)