Pascal Van Loenhout (BE), creative director / hairdresser, Antwerp

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“I‘ve been fascinated by tattoos ever since I was young. But my parents were never keen. It took me years to find enough courage. I was 40 years old when I had the first one: a black and white portrait of my daughter. This first one opened the floodgates.  Now, only four years later, most of my upper body and arms are tattooed. They are all still very shiny and bright. I don’t know how they‘ll age, but maybe them fading is a good symbol for my transiency… I do look forward to have a big grey beard and a Tom Ford suit when I’m 65 years old.

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I don’t really like my skin. I‘ve always felt insecure about it. Too white, too fragile. But now: the bright tattoos work fantastically well on my type of skin. Finally I‘m confident enough to show my body.

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I’m a hairdresser. Barbers and tattoo-artists have been connected throughout history. It makes sense: it’s intimidating, intimate and quite personal to give part of your body literally in the hands of someone else. I do have a big impact in the way someone looks. But I prefer to have carte blanche. I don’t like trends, but I love style. Style is timeless. The best hairstyle in the world is the one that embraces your personality. That is the baseline of our shop.

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I have a lot of old-school tattoos, because they are timeless and so beautiful. On my hand I have a nurse from World War II. She is litterally nursing my hand, it’d be a disaster if anything happened to my hand.

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My job requires that I travel a lot. And sometimes I bring a tattoo. Sometimes one session then takes six hours, and I seem to cope real good. I guess my body makes endorphins well enough? My favourite shops? La Main bleue in Saint-Ghillain in Belgium, El Bara in Madrid, Sam Ricket in Swindon in Engeland, Xam from Londen and El Monga from Barcelona.”

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www.vanloenhout.be