From the Isles of Greece to these Manhattan streets, renowned stylist Ilias Zarbalis has brought his talents to millions of people of New York after successfully opening, and running, five namesake salons – four in Athens and one in Nammos at Psarou Beach, Mykonos. Yesterday, during the grand opening of his stateside salon, I was fortunate enough to see Ilias in his element; snipping away a young woman’s hair to artistic perfection.

Now as Fall is upon us and scientists theorizing 2016 to be the hottest year to date [Yes… this humidity will most likely last further into the year than expected. I know, totes gross.], we asked the hair master himself for Fall tips that take this weather into consideration.


What styles do you recommend for Fall that are easy to do in the morning, will last a normal work day, and don’t require much upkeep?
A short bob is a timeless style that will work with varying facial structures and hair types. It’s also an easy look to maintain simply by going over it with a flatiron to create a smoother look. Applying a smoothing cream or spray will help prolong this style throughout the day.

If you have curly locks, it is always a safe bet to stick with your hair’s natural texture, especially when dealing with humidity. Using a hydrating cream or curl hold spray will allow you to preserve volume while taming frizz, giving you a long-lasting look.

Are there products you can recommend to assist in the maintenance of the aforementioned, but won’t weigh your hair down, be sticky, or have an overpowering scent?
Regardless of your hair type or style, maintaining healthy locks always begins with a good shampoo, conditioner, and deep conditioner. Even if your hair tends to be oily, conditioning is essential for avoiding split ends and breakage.

Applying a heat protectant before blow-drying or using any type of hot tool is also very important. Even if you air-dry, I still recommend using a leave-in formula, such as a moisturizing cream or a light oil.

Some mornings you just have bad hair days. What tips can you give for those bad hair days that don’t include putting your hair in a pony or bun?
No matter how well you maintain your hair, everyone has bad hair days. If you are dealing with frizz or relentless fly-aways, a casual side braid is an easy, trend-forward solution.

What about tips for color-treated hair with roots growing, but they are trying to go a while without re-coloring?
Using a Sulfate-free shampoo will help prolong the life of permanent hair color as it is mild and will not strip color out like harsh detergent-based shampoos.

Temporary color will fade as you wash it, but this process can be sped up through heat styling— so again, a good heat protector will help retain your color and I also recommend using a blow dryer, rather than curling irons or straighteners as there is less direct heat, resulting in less damage.

If you’re trying to disguise grey hairs coming in— I always suggest changing up where you part your hair.