New York’s Eiji Salon: Behind The Art Of The Renowned “Dry Cut”

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Eiji Yamane is a renowned leader in the world of hair and beauty, yet a name I had not heard of before I ended up in Scarsdale New York for an entirely different reason this past month and needed a haircut.

Needing to kill 3-4 hours without a car to get around, I decided to research a few hair salons within a mile radius of my other appointments. Nearly every salon was closed because it was a Monday however Eiji Salon had availability in both their Scarsdale location and their primary location in Manhattan on Madison Avenue.

While I didn’t get to experience a cut from Eiji directly due to a scheduling conflict, I was able to experience his work through someone who trained with him on performing the art of the “dry cut.” Before opening his salon on Madison Avenue, Eiji studied for ten years under the direction of the late stylist-guru John Sahag. Eiji mastered and re-defined Sahag’s legendary technique known as the “dry cut” which he believes defines a beautiful hair style.

Below, Eiji in action.

The idea behind a dry cut among other things, is that it allows for more precision so you can get not just the cut you want, but the shape you want. A dry haircut isn’t just about getting rid of damaged ends, it’s about understanding its natural shape, what you want it to be and how it naturally falls when it’s completely dry.

Training in the “dry cut” method, stylists focus on the hair’s natural direction, the shape of the head and of course how it falls to shape it to best enhance your features. Thomas Douglas Duffy, who trained under Eiji, cut my hair, and during the process, he constantly sectioned various parts of my hair off (a bit like they do with a wet cut) but a tad differently because he was focused on the sections that fall seamlessly together when dry, which is not necessarily the same as when your hair is wet.

When you take the weight away from the ends, the hair can sit and fall more naturally, the way your hair is actually designed to fall. Once dry, Thomas straightened each section of my hair with a hot iron before he proceeded to cut. Below are some shots taken during my cut in their Scarsdale location so you can get an idea of the process.

What I noticed most immediately about the cut afterwards was how “light” and “airy” it felt, as if extra weight had been removed. The angles were also more precise than you’d typically find with a wet cut although this too depends on the artistic talent of the stylist.  If you’ve never experienced a “dry cut” before, I’d suggest booking an appointment with Eiji directly if you can get him next time you’re in New York but if he’s not available, remember that all his stylists have trained with him, so your results should be great regardless. I was certainly happy with mine. A We Blog the World Two Thumbs Up!

New York City Manhattan Location: 
601 Madison Ave #5, New York, NY
Phone:(212) 838-3454
Scarsdale Location: 
2 Spencer Place, Scarsdale, NY
Phone: (914) 722-2192
  • Kathy Dwyer

    Dear Renee,
    Eiji left John a good 10 years before his untimely demise and so demonstrates the Sahag Dry Cut Technique from a particular moment in time. He is a great hair dresser but we would like you to expereince the “real” thing, here at Sahag Workshop.
    Our Master Craftsmen worked with John for over 20 years and as John evolved
    his technique so did they.
    It should not take 3-4 hours to get a fabulous result and this is one of the
    evolvements that Eiji missed.
    Please take me up on my offer. I can be reached at 212 750 7772 and we
    are located at 425 Madison Ave. the 2nd floor right where John left us. If
    I am not here, please ask for Erin our General Manager.
    Best Regards,
    Kathy Dwyer
    President Sahag Workshop