Nov 30, 2009

FW New Black- Gray

For Fall/Winter 2009, it’s a gothic ingredient that describes this season’s wardrobe and makeup looks, and if you’re someone who appreciates all the blackened looks but wants to stay classic yet with a dark edge and in the trendy now then the hottest color for you is the new black ‘Gray’.

We are seeing a variety of gray’s from designers, makeup company’s nails, and even men’s wear, and the keyword here is sultry rather than scary. No matter what eye color, hair color, or even skin color there is a gray shade that can suite everyone. Try combing grays with purples, tans, white, navy, and of course black. And wearing dark gray, charcoal, heather gray’s this winters new black is sure to bring less gloom from old man winter.

Nov 27, 2009

Dirty Blondes

Dirty Blonde hair is a term we use when describing either ones natural hair color or someone who wants dirty blonde hair, another term that is also used is dishwater sounds attractive huh? I have always considered these to be flatter ashier tones and personally I hate the word ash, so let’s call it cooler and while we’re on that let’s call dirty blonde or dishwater blonde, "Smooth Blonde". The first time I ever used that term to a client was when she asked me for dirty blonde highlights I said “so you want a cooler matte tone yet not flat a smoother neutral blonde” she said exactly.

And when this beautiful color is described as a smooth blonde remember that the tone is ever so slightly darker (still blonde), and it’s a great season to start adding or using this shade, and for all those blondes who want this it’s the right time as matte, neutral blonde is the perfect complement to some of this seasons makeup and fashion color trends

Nov 25, 2009

Inspirations #1


Stimulation of the mind or emotions
A thing, person or work of art, that moves the intellect or emotions or prompts action or invention.

Nov 23, 2009

Hair & Hair Color Challenges

HCC Email/Question #4

I have probably 70% grey and have always had almost black hair. My stylist kept the color pretty well and then my hair went bluish black and flat. I went to a colorist who told me it was too dark for me (I am 55). She stripped my hair and put a medium brown on which has a lot of red and it fades after a week. I hate it and do not think that I look good. Any suggestions?

When grey hair is present between 50% and higher the darker the color you go the faster you get a demarcation line, roots (not pretty). It is true that as we age our hair colors should be softer , remembering that hair color can in fact bring attention to favourable features as well as unfavourable ones, so I steer my clients away from black tints because it is that one color that not only brings attention but it is the hardest to change. Cleansing out (stripping) has a process to go through color stages, as the black lifts it goes into a red, and when we put a brown on it the color becomes a brown/red hair color. With this situation there should be blue or violet or better both blue/violet in the formula, and it is more than likely a 10 volume developer was used. This might be a perfect scenario when combing through the hair color, mid-ends, with what volume developer do you use 10 or 20, I would use 20. . I have blogged about my theory on developers and how I use them and after removing hair color from hair that new tone needs still a lifting and deposit of tone at the same time, 20 volume developers does just that.

So I suggest to tell the hairdresser you want more blue, violet in your formula, and to comb through the hair color to your ends with 20 volume developer, I am most certain this will help in the fading issue. It is also vitally important that you maintain proper homecare for your hair, invest in color treated shampoo’s and products that protect color treated hair. Embrace warmer colors; add different colors to both your face and wardrobe, if we change our hair color we have to do the same for makeup and clothes, this often can change our idea of how we look with a newer hair color (trust me).

My Product Suggestions
Aveda Clove Shampoo and Clove Color Conditioner
Aveda Color Conserve Shampoo and Conditioner
Find an Aveda salon near you;

Nov 20, 2009

Hot Roots

Hot roots is a term we use when the tint went to bright on the roots which ends up lighter than the rest of the hair, it’s a common challenge when coloring hair but the easiest to avoid. There are several reasons why this happens, 1/ did not formulate correctly 2/ used a higher then needed developer 3/ color was removed to early, not following manufactures process timing. Whichever reason it might be that this happens it looks awful and clients notice it and end up unhappy primarily because they usually sit there for another round of color application on their head. The first mistake a hairdresser makes is reapply the same formula which will not solve this situation, it might possibly give the client as well as the hairdresser the illusion that it worked only to realize that within a couple of weeks the brighter lighter roots came back because you added more of the same .
A hot root is one of my pet peeves knowing that it could have been prevented by correctly assessing the individual’s natural level, percentage of grey if any is present, and what is the desired result. And when a hot root happens a lot of hairdressers are fearful of this and most of the time will approach it as “let’s reapply” which is the correct thing to do however using the exact same formula is not the correct thing to do unless hairdresser and client both think brighter roots is cool!
A suggestion on how to correct the hot root challenge.
Add a little bit of a lower Natural level to formula, many times using a lower developer can possibly add another challenge, root stay darker. Only time I use a lower level of developer is when I am working off a natural higher level (lighter hair color) to going darker or when there is 80% grey and higher.
When a hot root does occur the best way to go about fixing it is too reapply, make a formula that has the same level “N”as the original add a little lower level and no other pure tones or accent tones just a straight N series to the formula and use 20 volume make sure you are on top and watching it carefully. The reason I prefer to use 20 volume instead of 10 volume is because the 10 volume will only sit on top of the hot roots and temporarily tone roots down, using a slight darker shade with 20 volume will enable that shade to cover and believe it or not it will hold better.
kitty said...
makes sense,, cause if you put same formula on it will dull down, but 20 volume will clean and deposit, leveling it out with a bit of darker level ,, learnt that from the best ;=)
Me said...
@ kitty absolutely ,, 20 vol is the way to go if you do go with adding a lower level , 10 vol can work as well but you have to know there are more possibilities that it might fade, were i found going with a slight lower level, and 20 worked neutralized and lasted longer, remember when you paint a wall no matter lighter or darker you primer, to me 20 volume is just that , cleans and deposits =)

Nov 18, 2009

Hot Purple-Plum Hair Colors

From amethyst to violet plums this hue of color is making wave’s not only in makeup and nail colors but it’s popping up in hair color. It is a bit different then the past violet shades we have been doing, this year purples and plums are more vibrant, intense and not for the shy, however having said that I always believe a variation of the colors can work on anyone, whether soft or bold it’s become popular and not just for Goth and Punk as it has shown up on the runways.

These shades to me are a reminiscent of the 80’s the difference is today there more polished and shinier. When I first started in the business and my mentor had me doing tints (root colors) all day long the trendy hair colors burgundy’s, aubergines, lucy reds “and they were just that “, no natural looking colors here, and of course there were the punk colors which was its own category of statements through hair color and cut, style.

As with everything coming around again and in a world of economic uncertainty and challenging issues going on, globally people need a little brightening up change with classy edginess. Hair color is both a psychological and physical uplift, and it is only fitting that purple-plums are reappearing with statements.

To get these shades of pop, I say add more intense tones of violets mixed with blue in the formulas, and play around with your developers higher for mid-ends.

Nov 16, 2009

Hair Product Spotlight: Tool #2

Aveda Brilliant Anti-Humectant Pomade

This satin pomade not only repels moisture from your hair and helping in the frizzy department but it also provides a few more aids to hair color. I use this product for a few reasons in my work as a hair colorist, my #1 reason, to prevent staining (color) around hairline, ears and neck when coloring hair.

My trick and for best results; to always apply the hair color(tint) first, making sure that even those stubborn hairline grey’s you hardly can see are covered then apply the pomade, even if you slightly overlap it’s safe. Another reason I love this product is that I can use and apply it on areas of the hair that might have or taken darker creating bands (uneven color), this we see mostly around front hairlines, or root area due to mainly overlapping of color. For this trick I take a small tint brush a quart size depending on head size and situation of pomade into a tint bowl, apply lightly pomade onto the hair that has banding then apply the color. The Brilliant Anti-Humectant is a fantastic styling ad but it as just as such merrit for use in hair color, if a product repels moisture then logic tells me it can repel color, it works and it is a tool I keep beside me.

Nov 13, 2009

Color Accent Is On The Bang/Fringe

This Fall/Winter add a little accent color to a bang/fringe making it the color focal point in the style, and whether there blunt bangs, side-swept bangs, choppy bangs, wispy bangs it all looks just as fabulous when colored. And what could be more fun than getting vibrant color or any color on your bangs, which could instantly perk up any style, they also are easy to get, maintain and get rid of. Colored bangs can be darker or lighter tones, bold or hidden (peek-a-boo) all depending on the effect you want to radiate, and there great for a hint of change since these can be matched with all types of lengths and cuts. From short to medium, blunt cut and razored almost all hairstyles are perfectly complemented by this accessory. So get inspired create a personal statement hairstyles, the key to stealing the show is indeed wearing your bangs/fringe with great confidence.

Nov 12, 2009

The Bowl Cut: Old To New

The bowl cut has an ancient history; it has reappeared throughout the centuries, often with a different name associating to this shape. During the 1960s the popular British rock group the Beatles introduced a modern version of bowl-cropped hair, it has also been called a mod cut, mushroom cut, and I am sure we each had either a girl or boy in grade 4th that sported this haircut.

The bowl haircut is making its reappearance both for men and women with new twists for fall/winter, models Irina Lazareanu and Tao Okamoto are already wearing this cut and many designers have chosen to showcase their collections with bowl shape hair inspirations. Merging with the traditional bob with heavy style bangs being the focus and cut in a rounded manner to give lots of flow and movement to the hair. This is one of my favorite haircuts to color and perhaps it’s because really it is a bob which to me as a hair colorist is the ultimate shape to paint on, it is a shape that with hair coloring can look either soft, strong, bold or classic, Any color (techniques) approach can be applied to these haircuts in fact the sky is the limit with these cool shapes and hair color.And it is definitely a strong possibility that the bowl haircut and variations of it will be popular for 2010 for both men and women.

Nov 10, 2009

Androgynous Chic

In the early 1930's, Marlene Dietrich shocked Hollywood by dressing in trouser suits, bow ties and masculine hats; it was certainly a look that shocked the more conservative Hollywood; however when this androgynous style was copied by the mass market and Dietrich was cited as a style icon many more started the trend.

Katherine Hepburn was also famed for her androgynous style, preferring wider trousers and natural make up, unlike painted lipped Dietrich, which made her style even more radical. And since then the androgynous style has made it onto the trends list every decade, and it was in the 70’s we started seeing it on haircuts sharp lines, undercuts, boyish shapes done on women, and up until then it was only in clothes. Today we are seeing a revival with androgynous touches in haircuts and styling, it’s new and fresh and just as hot. However not everyone wants it or can wear it, but I do believe with all of the variations out there anyone who loves a soft yet masculine touch can find a way to incorporate it into their style. I love it!!!

Nov 6, 2009

Hair & Hair Color Challenges

HCC Email/Question #3

Are there any tricks to preventing foil bleeding when I am hi-liting hair? No matter what I do I always seem to bleed some color onto the natural, don’t know what I am doing wrong HELP...
Thank You

The dreaded bleeding;
I do have a few simple suggestions and insight that I can share and hopefully help you or any hairdresser that faces this very daunting challenge. In my experience I feel that bleeding is caused by application and runny products, and possibly digging to deep with the weaving, but mostly applying way to much product on the brush then onto the hair. I have seen this over and over again and every time I am amazed at this and what I feel is a bad habit that has been developed. Coloring small sections of hair is like painting details on a canvas and should be approached that way, having the correct width sized brushes not tinting brushes which cover more space, as well dabbing the brush into the color bowl picking up just enough color for the small sections you are coloring , after all we are coloring hair not painting a wall.

When we mix the colors you make sure that it is a bit thicker (pudding) texture this way the color will stick onto the hair and foil better which means no slipping. Always apply the color in the middle of the foil working up forwards the root, then back down towards the ends (remember it is much easier to go back into the bowl and get more color then getting rid of some after it is already on the hair and foil this is an overlap). I truly cannot give a measurement to as how far away from the root you stay when you are doing highlights because this depends of the natural texture, density of each individual, but what I can say is practise and keep practising and the real key is simply how much color you apply on the root area, be more mindful and don’t rush approach highlighting hair as an artist.

Nov 4, 2009

Brunettes with Spice

Fall has always been a much-loved season for me for many reasons, and I am sure all you fall lovers all know it is also the best fashion season. As the leafs start to change and give us these wonderful natural tones and being completely inspired by nature I start the process of adding some spice into my hair colors. One of my favourite colors to play with are browns, I love adding depth to my brunette clients not in the conventional way which typically is going darker when we think of fall/winter hair colors but with several tones of browns being completely inspired by nature ranging from dark to bronze shades with either a cool or warm accent running through the hair.
And depending on the cut of the hair which for me as a hair colorist is key in mastering the art of hair color is to look at the shape and find and accentuate the details in the haircut i.e. longer bites, around the face, on top of head etc. etc, this should apply to all haircuts and color. Layering browns on brunettes is beautiful, classic and mysterious, as a brunette should be, with tones such as cinnamons, nutmegs, acorns, bark wood, dark whiskey and antique brass to play with either as highlights, lowlights, melting, slicing whatever technique is used it is sure to bring brunettes a little more spice to their fall/winter this year.