RSS Feed

The Dangers of Hair Hopping

Posted on
The Dangers of Hair Hopping









In John Waters’ seminal film “Hairspray,” hair hoppers have heavily ratted hair ending in a flamboyant flip. Perhaps a kicky bow at the top. Lots of, duh, hairspray. It was the ’60s, pre-Beat, when hair was big and hopping.

To me, hair hoppers are something else altogether. They are folks who jump from salon to salon, walk-ins at random salons. They are people who never build relationships with their stylists.

I was a hair hopper. A bad one.

I would walk into a mall salon without an appointment. I would see one stylist twice and decide he or she didn’t get my hair. I would cut my own hair in between and I didn’t have my color done at a salon until I was 33. I know I was a nightmare client in that regard (although, to my credit, I think I was marshmallow soft in the chair and took opinions without conflict and pretty much let the stylist have free reign. I even brought pictures.)

The truth is, folks, it can take someone more than one or two visits to learn your hair — and, depending on your history, your stylist might be working in some tough circumstances (hair that’s been over-texturized, over-processed, box colored or, in my case, cut or bleached by moi).

Barring egregious errors in your hair, or personalities that don’t quite mesh, give your stylist several stabs at your hair. Let them learn you and your locks. It is, ideally, a relationship that will last through many styles and many years.

Have any of you been hair hoppers? What makes you click with your stylist?




Fun with Color

Posted on

All color is fun, but some color is more fun than other color.

Like, highlights and lowlights are intriguing and I enjoy them. A full foil using just bleach can have beautiful results. But let’s be honest — some color really stands out from the crowd.

I did the multi-colored dummy head for Beacon; the colors are semi-permanent rinses and a couple hits of Joico — basically any color I had left over from previous coloring on my own hair. This multi-girl was great practice for this multi-girl:

That’s my friend and fellow student, Misty, modeling the peacock colors I gave her. Using Aveda colors, I placed (side by side) green, blue, and purple chunks in her hair, leaving one patch a golden color (like the eye of a peacock feather). Around the sides, we did a blush copper demi. Misty loves it.

Bang Bang!

Posted on

When I was 16 or so, my mom cut my bangs. This was a regular thing; we rarely had extra time to run to a stylist for a simple bang trim. My mom usually used her sewing shears, which were nice and sharp and never used for cutting paper. With one quick slice, she took my fringe above the middle of my forehead. The mistake instantly registered on her face. “Eeep,” she said, backing away. Before she allowed me to look in the mirror, she grabbed some Scotch tape and taped my now super-short bangs to my foreheads and spraying me liberally with some spray.

I think that was the last time my mom cut my bangs for me.

I still wear them, though, and this is the fringe I cut for myself last week:

Finally, I can share these

Posted on

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

I did this shoot in January. It was inspired by the work of Piet Mondrian. Kenneth Rhem did the photos. Marian and George modeled for it. They didn’t place in the contest into which I entered them, but I am still very proud.

Foiled again

Posted on

“Curses. Foiled again.”

OK, foils weren’t my strong suit when I hit the floor at AFI. Although I’d practiced on my mannequin (just highlights, I believe), and then on my friend (the lovely NPR radio personality Melissa Davis), I was still quite afraid of foiling. My second foil on the floor was on very curly hair, and I’m afraid to say my placement was not the best, and my very patient client was subjected to roughly five hours of my company, foils that dangled precariously from a sad wad of hair, and possible (oh dear) a couple of bleeders).

This simply would not so. I began visualizing foils, considering placement in my head. I thought about how I would hold my comb, how I would weave, and how, honestly, I would not move at the speed of L.A. rush hour traffic.

Today, I had a full foil intended to break up my client’s brown. She’d always been a blonde, but had colored her hair to about a level 7. Using bleach, heavy density, and fine/medium slices in the back and fine/medium weaves on the front and sides, we ended up with a gorgeous, natural effect that was so lovely my fellow students we remarking on it before it was even dry.

Natural highlights creating using bleach and foil placement

Wooden nails

Posted on

Anyone who has talked to me in the last year knows I am mad about wood grain. I can’t even say I have a preference — I like burl, fiddleback, bird’s eye, quilted — wood is warm, elegant, and has a lovely energy to it.

I wanted to extend that energy to nails.

Photo by Kenneth Rhem. Model is Mia Carter

I’m not going to give away all of my secrets, but I found a good wood grain and applied it to nail tips, which I modified and placed on the model’s nails, then applied my favorite top coat, Seche Vite, for a freshly-waxed shine.

Artistic vision

Posted on

Since starting at Aveda Fredric’s Institute, I’ve been able to put some of my dreams into motion.

Mondrian hair. Geometric cuts. Fantastic colors in every color.

Of course, not every service is based on my vision. A pixie cut, a bob, a slick one-length cut. The client’s vision is the art.

I have been cutting my friend Andy’s hair for a few months, once I took my men’s cutting class.

Andy before.

We took it easy the first couple of times; then he wanted something a little more dramatic.

I trimmed up Andy’s back to finger-length, then busted out the clippers for an asymmetric fade.

This is the result:

Andy after.

He is happy.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.