My Morning at Yann’s (Varin Salon)

The Yann Varin Salon has a pleasant, relaxed atmosphere

It was a rainy day as I trudged up Madison Avenue between 65th + 66th Streets, but as I walked, I spied Steven Spielberg (or at least it appeared to be him), and a number of fashion models, and a lot of very well dressed matrons. I was on my way to meet Yann Varin at the Varin Salon (762 Madison Avenue). I worried that my black jeans and sparkly sweater might not be quite “the outfit” for the tony address. I needn’t have worried. I was warmly greeted by Philippe at the desk, and then spent a very lovely time with Yann, himself.  The atmosphere was intimate, and relaxed. I was there for a blow-out, pre-vacation to Cancun.  Mexico is a mecca of humidity. My hope was that a blow-out that would last all the way there, and for a few days afterwards.


Yann Varin & Alison Blackman

Before my blow-out, Yann took a long, critical look at my hair. He looked at it’s condition, the color, the layers.  He pointed out that my ends were dry and somewhat damaged.   He didn’t just send me to have my hair washed, and then “fixed” with a blow dryer, too much product, and a flat iron.  He asked what I liked.  This charming man listens!

The Varin Salon uses high quality L’Oreal Professionnel products, After a shampoo and a treatment (Absolut Repair Cellular)  that made the proverbial sows ear into a silk purse, my hair felt soft, shiny and manageable.  And after Yann took a blow-dryer and a skilled hand to it,  I loved the results.  While some of the L’Oreal Professionnel products are specifically for in-salon services, you can purchase some of these products for at-home maintenance and hair enhancement. For example, The Advice Sisters have just reviewed L’Oreal Professionnnel’s Mythic Oil in January.  *be sure to purchase L’Oreal Professionnel products only from authorized salons (check the L’Oreal Professionnel Web Site to find locations near you).

Yann made me feel so comfortable, I couldn’t resist casually interviewing him to find out his thoughts on the upcoming Fashion Weeks, runway hair, and trends.  Yann said he didn’t think that runway styles really reflected the way women want to look, as women have become a lot more knowledgeable about what they want, and what’s possible. This is especially true in large cities. “women of all ages come in knowing what they want, and how they want to look,” he said. As to the runway, he confessed that it is sometimes difficult to get a designer to ask for something in hair that’s more intersting than a little twist or an updo. And it also depends upon the models.  As Yann pointed out “most of the models are young, and most all of them have very long hair.”  Of course you can add extensions to a model who has short hair, but there is a time constraint. Yann told me he doesn’t love extensions for his clients, but admits that some times, it is the only way to get the look of long hair that’s either past it’s prime, or just simply, thin.  But apparently body waves are not just in fashion, they’re in demand. Yann says that in his salon, he uses a soft roller and fabric wrappings, that are much like the old fashioned knot waves women used to tie into their hair before bedtime.  So Little Women!  But Jo, Meg, Beth and Amy didn’t have the modern chemicals that make the magic, last.  Yann, does!  And the approach he takes gives women a soft wave that looks Brigitte Bardot sexy.  For those who want straight, frizz-free hair, Yann offers Keratin treatments, but he actually had OSHA come to the salon and make sure that every precaution had been taken every precaution to protect both staff, and clients.


hair by Yann Varin, Makeup by Alexis Ansell

While I was at the salon, I was also offered a makeup touch-up by Alexis Ansell, a talented, young makeup artist. There’s nothing better than leaving a salon with both hair and makeup, perfect!  Alexis has a really interesting new business that is called Your Makeup Bag. She’ll assess your makeup, and then go shopping with you for cosmetics, make-over of sort.  It’s like having a personal shopper for your makeup! Her website is under construction right now, but you can contact her there.

Tne end result was a blow out that didn’t even need any product or extra heat, just Yann and his blow dryer and a brush. It was impressive, and yes, it lasted for days. When I finally had to wash my hair, I felt lieYann Varin does a lot more than just blow-outs and hair treatments, he is a talented hair stylist in all ways.  But prom, wedding, and graduation season is nearly upon us, and a trip to the Varin Salon for an updo or special style is a lovely treat.  Call 212.734.9055 for an appointment

About Advicesisters

Alison Blackman Dunham aka. “Advice Sister Alison” and “The Advice Sisters” is a writer, photographer, online advisor, and lifestyles consultant. She has built her reputation offering readers a unique perspective on life, in print, in person and through the camera lens. Her focus is on advice, beauty, fashion, lifestyles, relationships and things that help make life easier, more successful and more fun. Please follow Alison on Twitter @advicesisters and check out her other web (advice-related) sites: &

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