“My collection gives an impression of how the absence of harmony, awkwardness, and deconstruction can still bring character to an overall beauty look.”

Dick Sum Low

Ambassador for GHD Malaysia

What country are you from and where do you live?

I live in the capital city of Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur which is in Southeast Asia.  It’s known for its beaches, rainforests, and a mix of Malay, Chinese, Indian, and European cultural influences. 

Title of what you do and the company you work with.

I am a Senior Stylist in A Cut Above Group of Salons founded by award-winning pioneer Datin Dr. Winnie Loo.

Education background.

I graduated from A Cut Above Hairdressing Academy.  I continued my training at Vidal Sassoon.

What is your signature style/artistic expression?

I am very blessed to be gifted with the strength of natural artistic flair.  Since I was young I was sensitive to the beauty in art.

What is your signature style/artistic expression?:

With my avant-garde work, I constantly challenge my vision to see beauty in strangeness and awkwardness.  In my thoughts, I have decoded the key to my creativity to produce looks that haven’t been seen before.  I try to be inspired and push the boundaries of what hair can be done as sculpture and deconstruct the basic shape that every hairdresser knows (line bob, graduated bob, ponytail, long hair shape). I deconstruct the shape with details replicating broken marble sculpture carving and stalagmites. The finished visual appearance of hair is characterized by unpredictability, and raw, controlled chaos. The collection gives an impression of how the absence of harmony, awkwardness, and deconstruction can still bring character to an overall beauty look.

I don’t think I have a signature style in my commercial work as I am always designing my client’s hairstyles according to their facial proportion, skin color, and dressing taste.  

What was your career turning point/your big break?:

The biggest break moment in my career was winning the Shiseido Beauty Innovator Award which is the largest photography competition in South East Asia.  I won a car!

What was the scariest and proudest moment in your career?:

My most challenging times would be managing the deadlines of all the hair shows I did.

As a perfectionist, there is no end to trying to improve my ideas while looking at the calendar and realizing I really need to finalize my work!  The proudest moment is the moment I see my work gracing the runways and magazines.

I created the Deconstructivism Collection and became the first Malaysian to be the top three finalists in the International Hairdressing Awards 2020. Fast forward to 2021, I won the best international avant-garde collection with my MOTIONISM collection and was also nominated to compete in International Hairdresser of the Year 2022/2023.

What is the latest project you are working on?

My latest project will be my first-ever education project “PATH TO CREATIVITY” where I try to invent a series of syllabi to inspire the new generation on how to be creative, and original using an easy formula to create photography looks. At the end of the course, my students will create their final photography looks under my creative direction. I have to say, I put in a lot of effort in my avant-garde education series and it’s jam-packed with mind tricks on how to be a hair artist.

What is next for your career goals?:

I hope I can further my dream of becoming a trainer/art director to conduct training for fellow hairdressers on how to create amazing hair shapes from the fundamental to the complex and how to produce breathtaking images for their professional portfolio.

What advice would you give to someone starting out in your business?:

Do it with passion or not at all – is my life quote.  As long as you are passionate about your work, it will lead you to a successful road.  You have to keep yourself inspired at all times with the latest trends.  And most importantly stay true to your work.

Instagram:  @dicksumlow

Website:   www.acutabove.com.my

ACCOLADES:

Dick Sum is the creative director of Malaysia’s prestigious group of salons. He has shown his passion for creating avant-garde hairstyles and he also travels globally representing a Cut-Above Artistic Team in every hair show performance. Throughout 17 years in a Cut-Above group of salons, he has received awards like the Asian Hairdresser Festival Excellence Award, MMFA-Most popular fashion show hairstylist of the year,  Shiseido Beauty Innovator Award, Harper’s Bazaar Hair Award Hairstylist of the Year, International Hairdressing Awards Best Avant-Garde. He is currently the brand Ambassador for GHD Malaysia.

DECONSTRUCTIVISM collection inspired by deconstruction, and marble sculpting.

2019 avant-garde collection by A Cut Above Group Of Salon Malaysia.

Photo:  Aaron Lee

Concept, Art Direction, Hair:  Dicksum low

Assistant:  Ehsmond

Makeup:  Fyn Han

Fashion Design:  Dicksum lo