Stylist Robinson gives China's most eligible debutantes hair of elegance for their first ball
Celebrity hair stylist and long-time Hong Kong resident Kim Robinson was in Shanghai at the weekend for China's first Debutante Ball, where 13 wealthy young women were introduced to the cream of high society.
The event, at the Waldorf-Astoria hotel on the Bund, hosted debutantes aged between 17 and 22 from Hong Kong, Taiwan and Britain. The line-up included Jen Hau, whose father is Taipei mayor Hau Lung-pin, and Hongkonger Vivien Lee, who is studying economics at Britain's Cambridge University.
Having worked with A-listers worldwide, Robinson was not overawed at the prospect of styling for the girls at such a major social event.
'Classical elegance and natural beauty are the keys,' he said. 'I want to take a relaxed approach to the hair and keep it young and fresh - not at all your typical evening hair. The modern woman wants something soft, not overly worked ... I want to highlight the natural glow of their youth, rather than distract from it.'
His biggest challenge was a race against the clock. 'I studied photographs of the women, but it's important to meet them in person, as their hair should reflect their individual personalities,' he said.
'The experience was great, as we were introducing haute coiffure to China for the first time. Everyone kept asking us about the different looks and they all wanted to know how it was done. There was a hunger for knowledge about these very classic and refined styles.'