Jazz Shaper: Josh Wood

Posted on 01 May 2021

Josh Wood is an internationally celebrated hair colourist and the Founder of Josh Wood Colour, the expert-led, home hair colour system.

Josh grew up in Barnsley, where he was always very creative. Despite being told on a youth training scheme that a career in this field wasn’t for him, Josh went on to forge a prestigious career, training at the Vidal Sassoon salons in Leeds and London before working alongside Vidal himself in New York. After spending twenty years as a celebrity colourist, including dying David Bowie’s hair red for his Earthling album cover, Josh decided to open his own space with his partner, Jonathan Davies. In 2018, he launched his disruptor brand, the Josh Wood Colour System, to bridge the gap between home treatment and the salon experience.

Highlights

I think there was a need probably to be able to be me, to be better accepted… I always felt that I wanted to somehow try to express myself through my work

Being gay, it wasn’t the easiest in the early 80s coming out.

I fell into understanding that being me, being creative, visual, I needed to align more with those things than maybe more, you know, more traditional ways of education or starting work.

I’m still very inquisitive, I think that keeps the creative mind really on point and it’s interesting because I pick apart everything that I do creatively to try to understand that process and improve the process. 

I’m excited that I can apply the creativity to really re-engineering something that feels quite old and dusty. 

In some ways [hairdressing] was always the career that one did if you didn’t take further education. It can really appeal to people that want to learn in a very different way and I think I was one of those people. 

The key to success for me in the creative world – and probably I take that over into my business world – is this true need to co-create and that takes listening skills and responsive skills.

I love growth, I love innovation, I love inspiration, I like people, I like making people feel good and those are the principles today that are at the centre of our business which is we only make products that our clients or customers tell us they want and make a difference to them. 

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