By Angelique Serrano
Updated: Jan 22, 2019 @ 5:04 pm
Courtesy

When she was 15, Mara Roszak decided she wanted to drop out of high school, and one of the last things she expected was support: “I was always kind of struggling. I didn’t feel connected to the education,” she says, crediting her artist mother for being so open-minded. “There’s something [about] really seeing your kids for who they are and trying to help guide them.”

After Roszak got her GED, her mom came through again, urging her to enroll in the beauty school across the street from their home in L.A.’s Laurel Canyon. “It wasn’t fancy,” she recalls. “They were kind of teaching us as if it were still 1965. It was like, ‘You’re going to do a roller set and finger wave — who cares about trying to be cool?’ I think I tried to storm out one time.” 

RELATED: I Got Emma Stone's Exact Bob from Her Hairstylist

But mastering fundamentals paid off: Not only can Roszak set curls like nobody’s business, she’s made it her business, as an in-demand red-carpet stylist and a co-founder of the chic West Hollywood salon Mare. And, much to her delight, Roszak even tended to the locks of a ’60s-era icon: “I got to do Paul McCartney’s hair recently,” she says. “In the moment I had to be cool, but … that’s a Beatle!”

Roszak’s first brush with celebrity came circa 2003, following her graduation from beauty school. “I got a call from a family friend, a publicist [who worked with] Sarah Michelle Gellar, asking if I could do her hair. I had no idea what I was doing.” She went on to style Gellar for an overseas press tour, eventually making connections and collaborating with stars like Zoë Saldana and Emma Stone.

Getty Images

Roszak's clients include Madeline Brewer, Zoë Saldana, and Cara Delevingne.

But her creativity was fully on display while she was working with Cara Delevingne for the Valerian press tour in 2017. Using stencils, washable paints, and foil, Roszak adorned Delevingne’s crop through its growing-out stages after the model-actress shaved her head for a role.

Fifteen years into her career, Roszak still approaches hair like a sculptor: “It’s about touching, feeling, and molding it into the shape I have a vision of,” she says. “It sounds really woo-woo and weird, but I sort of listen to the hair.” 

Her Signature Staples

For tousled waves, you’ll always find a texturizing spray in her kit, like this mist from Sachajuan. Spritz it onto dry strands for an instant post-beach effect.

Courtesy

For a smooth blowout, “I love hair oil. It makes it a lot easier and faster to do a blowout.” When it’s humid outside, a lightweight layer of this elixir helps keep your look sleek, she says. “It’s one of our top sellers at Mare.”  

Courtesy

For extra oomph, “I always have to have a volume root spray,” Roszak says. “I like this Phyto one. It’s nice and dry, not tacky or sticky.”  

Courtesy