I tend to be quite outrageous with my fashion. I love trying new things and making bold outfit choices, but when it comes to my hair, I prefer to keep things natural. I’m so happy with this colour as we’ve kept it brunette – with a lot more polish and depth.
OLYMPIA VALANCE, L’ORÉAL PROFESSIONNEL AMBASSADOR
She’s one of our nation’s most beloved starlets. Now, actress Olympia Valance is lending her face – and hair – to the beautifiers at L’Oréal Professionnel, as the brand’s newest celebrity ambassador.
How’s that for a match made in hair heaven?
Best known for starring roles in Neighbours, Playing for Keeps, and now Dancing with the Stars Australia, the brunette beauty will front L’Oréal Professionnel’s new #ColorMeFrench campaign; celebrating the sophisticated, natural-looking professional colour that has come to define French hair.
But of course.
We caught up with the stunning small screen siren, fresh off her recent colour transformation by L’Oréal Professionnel International Ambassador Peter Thomsen.
TJ: Tell us about yourself; what are some things most people might not know about you?
OV: I’m a huge foodie! To be honest, I think that comes from my Greek heritage. Whenever I visit a new city, I make sure to visit all of the restaurants. If you visit Melbourne, I can definitely show you the best food or cocktail experience! The same goes for LA or New York… food is my thing! Good food, good service, good cocktails! Something else few people know: before becoming an actress, I was actually a makeup artist! I’ve always loved doing makeup and still do.
TJ: We’ve heard you come from quite the family…
OV: I come from a large family; I have eight siblings and they’re all continually blossoming. My little sister Athena is at the Victorian College of the Arts, directing, producing and writing… my little sister Billie is 6ft.1 and looks like Kendall Jenner… my brother Dimitri is 18 and has his own streetwear label… my brother Rad is in the musical arts and has the most incredible voice. Everyone’s got their own thing happening; the Vallance’s are taking over the world!
TJ: That’s quite the dynamic… would you ever consider doing your own reality TV show?
OV: My family is meant for reality TV! Anyone who knows us knows there’s always something entertaining happening. Even in my own life… sometimes I wish we had a go-pro rolling to capture all of the hilarious things that go on behind the scenes! I have no filter at the best of times, but I think that’s what makes for a successful show. I’m incredibly candid and unapologetically myself. I’m all about working hard, and playing harder. What’s the point if you can’t enjoy your life!
TJ: Tell us about your new ambassadorship role with L’Oréal Professionnel – and your recent hair transformation!
OV: It’s really exciting for me; a huge honour! I’m thrilled to be a part of the brand as I’ve always used L’Oréal products. I love them! I tend to keep to my natural hair colour as I love being brunette! Pete really tszujed up my hair and added some depth to my [natural colour]. He used L’Oréal Professionnel’s INOA No Damage Colour, which is oil based and ammonia free. After your colour service, your hair feels healthy and strong, rather than dead and brittle. I feel amazing… and my hair feels amazing!
TJ: How do you typically choose the hair stylists and makeup artists you collaborate with?
OV: It really is a vibe thing – who I love to be around and hang out with. I like to have happy people around me; it really helps when you’re getting ready [for shoots and events]. There’s a buzz; an energy. I love being surrounded by talent! It’s been great working with the team at L’Oréal Professionnel; Pete is amazing! Ross Andrewartha has been doing my makeup in Sydney; he is incredible.
TJ: #ColorMeFrench celebrates effortless French beauty; natural yet subtly enhanced… how does this align with your own personal style and aesthetic?
OV: I tend to be quite outrageous with my fashion. I love trying new things and making bold outfit choices, but when it comes to my hair, I prefer to keep things natural. I’m so happy with this colour as we’ve kept it brunette – yet it looks more done; more stylised. There’s a lot more polish and depth to it – but it’s still my hair!
TJ: Have you experimented with any other hair colours or shades in the past? Any plans to do so in the future?
OV: I have experimented with lighter hair, but it didn’t suit my colouring. You have to at least try it once… but I won’t be doing it again. I love being a brunette; I feel more like myself with brown hair. I have no plans to change my colour any time soon. Plus it’s really difficult to [sport pink and purple shades] with brown hair; you have to bleach your hair before-hand… I’m all about healthy looking hair.
TJ: Are you a high or low maintenance at-home styler?
OV: When it comes to styling my hair, I tend to opt for what’s easiest, yet looks the best. I love a good beach wave, and L’Oréal Professionnel TecniArt Beach Wave is great for this – all you do is apply product to your wet hair, crunch it up and let it dry. Sometimes I’ll blow-dry my hair or use a straightening iron for a dead straight look – it’s one of the only hair looks I’ve mastered! The TecniArt Gloss Control shine spray is great for this; it makes your hair look as though it’s just been professionally done. After styling, I spray it all over for that shiny, glossy finish. I think that’s what everyone wants; that professional finish, at home. It’s all about playing around with the products and finding out what works for you.
TJ: Any hair styling hacks you’d like to share with our readers?
OV: This one’s for curly hair. The other day, I really wanted my hair to be curly, but I didn’t want to use a curling tong. So, I scrunched through plenty of Beach Wave, flipped my hair upside down, and used a diffuser to dry my curls. I finished the look with plenty of hairspray to keep the curls in place; it was so easy! Another tip for creating volume: the TecniArt Volume Lift Mousse – work it through and you’ll feel the difference.
TJ: Tell us abit more about your style vibe; you mentioned you favour bold looks?
OV: My style is forever changing so it all really depends on my mood. If it’s a casual look, I’m all about a black jean with black boots – you can tuck in a simple tee and it looks cool, or pair them with a sophisticated shirt. If I’m going out for a dinner, I have a couple of staple dresses that come in at the waist and out at the hips – it’s all about dressing for your body type, and I’ve found the styles that work best for me. I like colour, I like patterns, I like texture. I enjoy working with different stylists and designers on ideas; I’m forever drawn to creatives, and I love watching the different ways in which they put clothes together. I love clothes!
TJ: Do you have any favourite designers?
OV: I really like Rebecca Vallance – and not just because we have the same last name! Her clothes always fit my body quite nicely. She also plays with different colours and shapes – which I love.
TJ: What’s next for Olympia Valance?
OV: I’ve signed on for the new season of Dancing with the Stars Australia and will go straight into filming the second season of Playing for Keeps after that. We had such a great time filming Season One; I can’t wait to be back on set… and see all the fashion! We’ve also got Fashion Week coming up with L’Oréal Professionnel, and much more in the pipelines! If I have time between shows, I’ll spend more time in LA. I also have a trip to Greece planned after Playing for Keeps wraps.
Photo credit: L’Oréal Professionnel