It’s not just about who you work with, it’s about how you work with them.
— Daniel Koye
Even if you’ve only just met Daniel Koye, you’ll feel like you’ve known him for a hundred years. That’s why celebrities ask to work with him again and again. His signature line of hair products is another way he adds a little sparkle to everything, and everyone, he touches. Whether he’s styling Vanessa Williams for her role in Trip to Bountiful or creating his first can of hairspray for Heidi Klum, he intuitively knows what’s needed in any given circumstance and enthusiastically seizes the moment.
At the start of Daniel’s Broadway career, he worked on productions of Spring Awakening, Chicago and Jersey Boys. His first full-time hair gig was on Patti Lupone’s Gypsy, followed by a production of Hair both in New York and then in London. When Heidi Klum asked Daniel to design a wig for one of her notorious Halloween costumes, D-Koye the hairspray was born. Initially intended as a fun contribution to her gift bag, the rhinestone-studded can became his staple beauty item.
From Hair, Daniel began working on Follies with Bernadette Peters, where he created a smoothing cream just for her. The opportunities kept coming and his reputation grew. While working on his product line, Daniel became the New York hairstylist for Elaine Paige and had increasing requests from other film, stage, and television celebrities. From Follies, he was hired on Leap of Faith, and then became Hair Supervisor for The Heiress with Jessica Chastain, and Trip to Bountiful, where he met Vanessa Williams, Cicely Tyson, and Cuba Gooding Jr. He’s since styled wigs for Big Fish, Cinderella with Carly Rae Jepsen, and After Midnight with Fantasia Barrino and Patti Labelle. In between stage shows, Daniel was hair product sponsor of Ru Paul’s Drag Race. He then went on to Love Letters with Carol Burnett, Brian Dennehy, Candice Bergen, and Alan Alda. As Daniel’s credit list grew, so did demand for his artistry and products. Stars like Jeff Goldblum, Susan Lucci, Blair Underwood, Shirley Bassey, Eve Plumb, Joyce DeWitt, and Carol Channing were among those who sought him out and put their trust in him.
Many of the celebrities he worked with encouraged Daniel to develop and manufacture his product line. His shampoos, conditioners, hair sprays, and smoothing creams were improving the condition of their frequently styled and restyled hair, and prevented flakes and damaging. They also loved the fragrance, ingredients, and high quality results. Now that D-Koye — The Product is appealing to a wider audience, Daniel can barely keep up with the demand.
So, what’s Daniel’s secret to his success? He really cares and people know it. As a former stage performer, he fully understands that being in the spotlight is not just about looking good. It’s vulnerable, even for the most seasoned performers. There’s an intimacy attached to working with someone’s hair and that requires being fully present for whoever is sitting in his chair. Whether they are seen by one or by tens of thousands, he intuitively knows what’s needed for each person to feel comfortable, confident, and ready to role.
Daniel is also dedicated to coming out from behind the stage to share his knowledge with others. In his spare time, he teaches theatre students about wigs and how hairstyling techniques can transform the look of any character. In 2007, he wrote The Broadway Magic Workbook, which outlines everything an actor should know as they prepare to work with a hair-and-make-up artist. The second edition of this book is already in the works.
Since childhood, Daniel always dreamed of being on Broadway. His success has taught him that anything is possible if you focus on the positive and think outside your comfort zone. He loves the theatre because it’s a safe space where people gather with a common purpose, put on a show, and become a family in the process. Even though he’s touched a lot of famous heads, he believes that everyone is a star. This philosophy extends to all the people who use the products he’s created. Not only does he put years of experience into each D-Koye bottle, he ensures that everyone can have vibrant and healthy hair — maybe even enjoying a little sparkle along the way.