By Marie Scarano
Despite having its roots back in the 1960s, family-run Olivia Garden continues to thrive globally. The secret to its success? Passion, know-how, research and, of course, education.
Olivia Garden was created in 1967 by Jean & Micheline Rennette, a school teacher and a hairdresser, in Liège, Belgium. From the very beginning, the mission was to provide hairdressers with high quality, innovative, beautiful & cutting-edge salon tools. Now in its second generation, Anne Maza and her brother Pierre Rennette are at the helm of a global enterprise that enjoys a position as market leader and not holds over 55 patents, making its products widely popular with hairdressers in more than 102 countries.
Estetica joined Anne and Artistic Director, international educator and celebrity hairstylist Cherry Petenbrink on a zoom meeting to present Olivia Garden’s High Performance Professional Titanium + ion and Ceramic + ion Flat Irons as well as the OG Brush Collections.
Anne explained the technological foundations behind each iron, while Cherry gave live demonstrations on how to achieve the latest beach-wave looks trending this summer and other styling tips. Both irons share important features like total temperature control and a Digital LED display, and ergonomic thumb rest. The premium ion generator on both irons helps keep hair healthier and smooth for more shine & less frizz. The main difference lies in the coating of the plates: the ceramic finish is recommended for more delicate hair and frequent use, while the mirror-like coating of the titanium provides more tension and grip for faster results on coarser hair.
Cherry reminded us all that everything, from the plates of the irons to both the handle and cushions of the brushes can be easily cleaned with any topical sanitizers commonly used in salons. Anne also added that Olivia Garden is also responding to the crisis by providing a range of PPE equipment, like masks, face shields, disposable capes and chair covers, and even a “clean bag” where sanitized tools can be stored until the next time they are used.
Research and brainstorming with hairdressers worldwide is fundamental to the development of new products. “Our first approach to the hot tool category has been to take the most popular and valuable features across different tools and gather them into one appliance,” reveals Anne. “Then we design our own body shape based on intense R&D of how a flat iron is handled and used, as well as the optimal length and width.“
As always, time is of the essence, but Olivia Garden refuses to compromise on quality as well. And the focus is always on market demands with a view to getting started as early as possible. For example, when asked about the company’s line of bamboo brushes and combs and working with other sustainable materials, Anne replied, “Sustainability is very important to Olivia Garden and we are currently working on several projects to meet the challenges that our planet is facing. As with all that we do, we innovate from scratch and that takes time to come up with the idea, test and sometimes go back to the drawing board, but we hope to have some exciting innovations in 2021.”