We talk pampering and motherhood with the billionaire socialite before trying her glamorous new offering
Tamara Ecclestone is multi-tasking while we meet.
Today she launches her SHOW Dry Beauty salon in Harvey Nichols, Manchester - her third salon in the UK and the first in the city. Dressed to the nines in a long flowing floral maxi dress and trademark voluminous hair, while sitting poised on a sofa, she’s the picture of a billionaire heiress pin-up. Her joyous three-year-old daughter, Sophia, is skipping energetically through the HN styling room (transformed into a playroom with fish nuggets and Playdoh). The interview gets interrupted with urgent mummy toilet duties. Glamorous socialite or not, toddlers don’t wait for anyone.
How’s she finding motherhood and being a businesswoman?
“It’s really hard but it’s manageable. You feel like you’re juggling plates all the time. But when you’re passionate about something you’ll do what it takes to make it work.”
SHOW Dry is Tamara Ecclestone’s other baby. After launching her hair care range – which boasts ingredients such as caviar and truffle oil – the daughter of Formula One tycoon Bernie Ecclestone ventured into blow dry salons.
“I basically started out with a styling product and then we developed the shampoo and conditioners, then we opened the salon London – two in London – Newcastle and then here. We had a pop-up in Dubai and then the salons took off really quickly.”
The Manchester salon is a sleek black and rose gold boudoir (complete with large portraits of Tamara dotted throughout, naturally). The staff wear all-black and the female stylists wear stiletto heels – good job a typical treatment takes 30 minutes. There are thirteen stations and treatments also include a full range of cut and colour services, including balayage and highlights. It's an opulent service, meant to entice the Manchester women who 'love to look glamorous and enjoy a luxurious salon experience'.
I think it’s accessible, I want everyone to come in and feel pampered and feel great about themselves
“We have the big bouncy blow dry, it’s my go-to look: I always feel my best when my hair’s like that. We also do braids, top-knots and, what I’m most excited about, ‘hair lingerie’ hair extensions. No one in UK has these – I had them done in LA and they’re taped in. They don’t damage the hair and they last two months. Amazing. They take 40 minutes to put in – extensions usually take forever. So I’m obsessed with these.”
SHOW’s big bouncy blow-dries look as expensive as their founder, though the prices aren’t the price of oil. The signature blow-dry costs just £30, while a full head of highlights start from £90. Is the SHOW Dry salon more accessible than some may think?
“I think it’s accessible, I want everyone to come in and feel pampered and feel great about themselves. I feel like a blow dry is quick – you’re in and out in 30 minutes – I just want everyone to feel great. You can have a glass of champagne, popcorn, your hair done…”
“Yes popcorn, mainly because my daughter loves popcorn,” she laughs.
Day-to-day I’m so low maintenance, I’m lucky if I brush my hair or scrub my teeth just to get us out the door
The salon uses exclusively SHOW beauty hair-care products. They’re all designed for silky, voluminous locks, which Tamara uses herself - though she admits she’s quite low maintenance.
“I love using the dry shampoo in between blow dries to give it a bit of volume. And on holidays I just use the hair mask, braid my hair and leave it in. Then I put oil on the ends of my hair when they feel a bit dry.”
“Day-to-day, I’m lucky if I brush my hair or scrub my teeth just to get us out the door."
"The the thing I like about a blow dry is you can see the results immediately – it’s not like a facial where first your skin looks shit and then it takes a week until you look better. Instantly you look great and it also lasts a lot longer than make up: you don't wash it off on the end of the day.”
Speaking to Tamara on a day when she's wearing her full-glam attire, it's hard to picture an unkempt woman with an unbrushed mane and morning breath – isn’t pampering a key part of her life as a salon owner, former lads mag model and, you know, a billionaire?
“I think pampering's important. Being a mum, working mum, working full time, whatever – you’re so busy. Especially as a woman, you’re always thinking about everyone else. Does everyone else feel good? And we forget about ourselves. I think it is really important as a woman to take care of ourselves. When you look a certain way it does make you feel a certain way. It lifts your spirit, especially with your hair. It doesn’t matter what you’re wearing - as long as your hair looks good, you're good.”
The SHOW Dry salon is now open at Harvey Nichols, Manchester - find out how to book on the website.