For more updates about the The BoF 500 subscribe to the Daily Digest newsletter

For more updates about the The BoF 500 subscribe to the Daily Digest newsletter

{alt missing}

Sam McKnight

Hair Stylist

Over his five-decade career, the award-winning hair stylist has worked with major brands, lensmen, and celebrities like Princess Diana.


A celebrated high-fashion session hair stylist, Sam McKnight boasts a celebrated career spanning over four decades encompassing catwalks, editorials and advertising campaigns for an extensive list of clients. Chanel, Fendi, Balmain, Burberry and Tom Ford are just a few of the top fashion houses McKnight regularly works with. He is regular contributor to Vogue (internationally), W, Dazed & Confused, Harper’s Bazaar, i-D, Love & Numéro magazines.

McKnight has worked alongside prominent photographers, such as Nick Knight . A long-time stylist for the late Princess Diana, McKnight created her iconic short, slicked back hairstyle in the 1990 Patrick Demarchelier shoot for Vogue, and became her personal hair stylist for seven years.

Credited as the original “session stylist,” McKnight initially trained as a teacher before working as an assistant at a local hairdressers in his native Scotland. Moving to London in the early 1970s, McKnight secured a position at Molton Brown. He worked on projects for London-based magazine19 and Honey before landing his first editorial shoot with Vogue in 1977. Moving to New York in the early 1980s, McKnight secured representation with leading agency Bryan Bantry and was introduced to stylists Liz Tilberis and Lucinda Chambers, who were instrumental in hiring him for work on high profile editorial shoots.

McKnight has been the recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award at both the Scottish Fashion Awards and Creative Head Awards.

In November 2016, Somerset House launched Hair by Sam McKnight, an exhibition documenting his career. McKnight also released his first book, Hair by Sam McKnight, which showcases his numerous Vogue covers, editorial shoots and overall experience working in the fashion industry. 

Vital Statistics


United Kingdom

United Kingdom
Member since

Similar Profiles

Stephen Gan

Founder, Fashion Media Group; Creative Director, Elle

Thomas Lohr


Gary Gill


Doug Lloyd

Founder & Creative Director, Lloyd & Co

What is The BoF 500?

The people shaping the global fashion industry, curated by the editors of The Business of Fashion, based on nominations and on-the-ground intelligence from around the world.