Julien Farel, the hair stylist to the tennis stars, is having a very different US Open experience this summer. The Frenchman usually spends the fortnight working around the clock in his pop-up salon next to the player's lounge.
Last year, he even styled champion Bianca Andreescu ahead of her trophy photoshoot at the Top of the Rock. This year, a US Open salon was an impossibility with all of the COVID-19 restrictions.
But at least Farel got to spend the summer in The Hamptons getting closer to Patrick McEnroe. The stylist has helped McEnroe get prepped for his ESPN stint at the US Open, while McEnroe has helped Farel stay connected to the sport he loves.
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Over the years, Farel has cut and styled the hair of pretty much every player in the game, including Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Stan Wawrinka, Andreescu, Madison Keys and many, many more. He's kept in touch with them during the pandemic, having been a part of the US Open since 2007.
Though he can't personally work on their hair this tournament, he still has a solution to help them feel their best. Athletes focus heavily on body, joint and muscle health, but the scalp is important, too. Farel has developed a line of shampoo, conditioner and treatment products called RESTORE that are perfect for players who are constantly in the shower, sometimes even washing their hair twice a day.
"The thing about this shampoo is a) it doesn't foam and b) it doesn't have any sulfates," Farel says. "For those who are on the court all the time, when you wash your hair with RESTORE you don't dehydrate your hair, you actually treat your hair, your scalp and your hair follicles to make them stronger."
The product might be unlike anything you've ever used before. It requires adding a splash of water after applying to wet hair and then massaging and combing through before leaving for one minute and rinsing out. Your hair feels frizz-free, shiny and bouncy without any signs of residue or damage, and the revitalized texture lasts.
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Players are big fans of RESTORE's effects after spending so much time on the court and in the shower.
"It's important to hydrate permanently and properly with a shampoo without chemicals that are too harsh for their scalp and their hair," Farel says.
Players will have to wait a year to get firsthand pampering from Farel at the US Open, but at least they'll be able to get RESTORE year-round.