Beauty, Business, Hair Care, health and wellness, That girl in the red coat, Uncategorized

You can take the girl out of the 80’s but you can’t take the 80’s out of the girl…

I have a confession to make. I love big hair. The more volume the better. Being a child of the 80’s I know for a fact that is where my love for big hair began, and the love affair continues to this day. I used to think I had thick hair, so I would purchase products that were formulated to add volume for thick hair. I would skip down the sidewalk and up to my front door, sing my hello to my parents as I ran up the stairs two at a time with dreams of big hair. I would set down my new found products on the vanity, and get to work. Within about 30 minutes the tubes and jars were in the garbage and I was a crumpled mess on the floor with flat, sticky strands dialing the number to the nearest Salon making an appointment to “chop it all off!”.

Fast forward 10 years. I am now in my late 20’s. Thanks to a stylist who took more than a minute to speak to me, yours truly learned that I do not have thick hair. I have fine hair – just lots of it. This is why all the products I had purchased did not deliver the volume promised by the package and the Hollywood Starlet on the commercials. The products were too heavy for my hair type – hence the weighed down, flat drowned rat results. I am about to have my 42nd. birthday, I have had great hair for over 15 years, now you can too. As you know, my goal is educate and enlighten. Today’s tale covers some beautiful products, tried and tested and used by yours truly, that offer great volume and control.

20140721_113444 JOICO JoiWhip

This gem is my favorite. I have been using this since the 1990’s when it was known as IceWhip. A great mousse for all hair types, for hold, volume, control…you name it. A little goes a long way – I find dispensing an amount that is about the size of an egg is more than enough. Emulsify in both hands, apply to towel dried hair, blow dry and style. * a lovely product for those with curls looking for hold without having to blow dry. ** It smells heavenly

IMG_20140112_095342 JOICO Structure Animate

A lightweight styling cream that offers volume, hold and shine. I found the best results when I applied the product at my roots before blow drying (dispense about the size of a quarter, emulsify in both hands then apply). It can be used on dry hair, but can tend to get sticky if too much is applied – on dry hair – stick to about the size of a nickel, emulsify in your hands, then apply were needed. *smells like candy!

20140710_103134 Schwarzkopf Session Label Series – Dust It Flex

The newest addition to the Schwarzkopf family of products, the Session Label series. This product is AMAZING. It is a powder, that when applied to dry hair, lifts and holds your hair without a powdery mess or sticky residue. It offers a workable hold, so if you add too much (which for me isn’t possible), you can rework your hair with your hands or a brush. You can apply the powder directly into your hair or shake some into your hands and work it into the hair – I found the latter worked best for me. It offers a matte finish. *terrific for longer styles.

20140721_113542 SOMA Volumize Thermal Spray

This finishing spray from SOMA is a gem. It will not leave your hair feeling sticky or crunchy and adds volume, hold and humidity resistance (no frizz!). Although it is a finishing spray, it can be used on towel dried hair and on dry hair as you are styling. *Great for updo’s – holds curls all day.

IMG_20140411_105000SENSCIENCE Pro Formance Polish

Lets just say, when I used this, the angels sang. For those of you familiar with my tales, you know a few tears were shed when Joico discontinued Brilliatine, and I was known to stomp my feet when Senscience discontinued Pliable Shine. Well beauties, let me tell you, Senscience stepped up to the plate and delivered a home run with their Pro Formance Polish. This pomade offers great shine with  a flexible/workable hold. I love it to add that little extra boost of volume at my roots and to add to my ends to give a smooth sealed look. A little goes a long way – scoop out an amount the size of your thumb nail and emulsify into both hands and work in to hair. For a pieced out/textured look to your bangs – apply to your finger tips and work into hair. *a great product for slick/controlled styles.

 

 

 

Beauty, Business, communication, Hair Care, health and wellness, That girl in the red coat, Uncategorized, Women, writing

Let’s clarify the situation

Everyday at the shop I am asked if I carry a “clarifying shampoo”. The answer is always yes. Almost every professional Salon line has a clarifying shampoo available in a retail size. Before I hand it over to my customer’s, I always ask them why they are looking for a clarifying shampoo. The reason I ask is this – many people have been given the incorrect information about clarifying shampoo’s, and you know me, I gotta educate, I gotta enlighten.

Clarifying shampoo’s are exactly that. They clarify the hair – they remove product build up, mineral deposit/build up (from well water for example), and chlorine buildup. Professional clarifying shampoo’s will not lift color, will not make you more blonde or remove your perm. It isn’t recommended to use a clarifying shampoo if you have just had your hair colored – it could affect the vibrancy of the color – try to wait at least a week or two. Some people have been told a clarifying shampoo will help with dandruff, not always the case. Some people may get a build up of product on their scalp, so yes, a clarifying shampoo would work and stop the flakes. If you suffer from psoriasis or chronic dandruff all a clarifying shampoo is going to do is dry you out more and cause more flakes. – check out my blog “Save your shoulder checks for changing lanes” archived April 2012 for awesome products custom made for those issues. Also, some people have been told clarifying shampoo’s will help with an oily scalp. Again, not always the case. Drying out the scalp may cause the scalp to produce more oil. Suffering from oily scalp? – RUSK Purity, Senscience Specialty Shampoo and JOICO Daily Care treatment shampoo are gems!

You may have heard that clarifying shampoo’s dry out the hair. Yes, in some circumstances they can, usually when they are over used, or not a professional salon brand. Being me, I have compiled a little go to list to clarify the situation…couldn’t help myself.

JOICO Kpak Chelating Shampoo – contains a triple action formula that removes mineral deposits, chlorine and styling product buildup while moisturizing the hair.

KMS HAIR STAY Clarifying Shampoo – leaves your hair feeling clean and healthy, not dry or feeling stripped. Gentle enough for daily use *Great for swimmers!

AG Renew – Mild yet massively effective. Cruelty free – they love bunnies

REDKEN Hair Cleanse – formulated with fruit acids to add shine while removing buildup.

SOMA Clarifying Shampoo – Awesome at removing the green chlorine stains on blondes. Vegan, Biodegradable, Alcohol free, Paraben free and Formaldehyde free.

So there you have it. Clarifying shampoo’s may be used once a week or once a month, depending on how many styling products you use, your hair type and how often you wash your hair. It is an awesome idea to clarify your hair before a color service – think of it as a blank canvas for an artist to work upon. Situation – clarified.

Beauty, Business, communication, Hair Care, health and wellness, Uncategorized, Women, writing

Uh oh…you thought my civility meant softness

As you know, I manage a retail shop/Salon. I love my job. I get excited when I have helped a woman love her hair. Yes, I am 41 years old and I will clap my hands and exclaim “YAY!” when a client thanks me for introducing them to the product that saved their hair, be it KMS HairPlay Molding Paste or SOMA Solace. I show my excitement. I giggle. I clap. If they are a regular customer and we have a good rapport, I even hug. I also show my genuine concern when a client is not happy with a product. I listen to their frustrations. I clarify what exactly was the issue with the product. I ask them how they are using the product and help them figure out if it is the right product, just being used incorrectly, or if there may be a better product for them. I say please. I say thank you. I make eye contact. I also, on some occasions, must keep my cool and stand there as someone loses their cool. Of course sometimes I have to duck – flying flat iron – enough said.

The reason I gave you all a fly on the wall glimpse into my daily life is this – to prove, once and for all that being a happy, positive person does not mean you are stupid and have your head in the clouds. That having manners does not mean you are fake and trying to impress everyone in the room. That keeping your cool while someone is losing it does not mean you have no back bone.

Every once and a while I meet someone who takes one look at me with my blonde hair and big earring and high heels and decides what ever they are gonna decide about me. After they speak to me for a few minutes I seem to hear the same things;

– “I thought you were going to be a snob” – because I said please and thank you and had so much manners. (actually said to me…yep.)

– “I thought you were a diva!” – because I like my bling. (I would so bedazzle this post if I could.).

– “I thought you were too young to know anything about this stuff” …thanks for the genes Mom & Dad

– “I’m sorry”. – said to me after I asked if they were going to calm down or did I need to call the police. Yep, a grown woman lost her shit because I wouldn’t take back a flat iron that had no receipt, no box, no proof of purchase and had a broken plate, which after the threat of police (from your truly) and apology for throwing said flat iron (from said crazed customer) she admitted she dropped it on the ceramic tile floor in her bathroom.

The point of today’s tale is this; be kind and never assume anything of anyone, good or bad, beautiful or ugly – in the end they will show that themselves.

– If you are fortunate enough to meet someone who is kind, do not treat them like they are simple and stupid because they offer their kindness. (see above title)

– When you see someone excited about something, join in the excitement, don’t roll your eyes and tell them “to grow up”.

– When you see someone, lady or gent, impeccably dressed, compliment them. Do not scowl at them – they are not trying to “out-do” you – that’s your problem honey, not theirs.

– When a woman has her hair done, make up applied and is wearing heels, it does not mean that she is after your man, or that she is a bimbo without a brain, or that she is craving attention. Maybe, just maybe, she likes herself.

– When you are talking to a sales person, do not belittle nor berate them. It makes you a bully. A bully picking on someone’s child.

…oh, and never mistake civility for softness.

Beauty, Business, communication, Fashion, Hair Care, health and wellness, Uncategorized, Women, writing

How do you look?

So it has been over a week since my last tale. I could come up with every excuse in the book, the truth is I didn’t make myself a priority. As you know, I am a wife to a wonderful man and a mother to a glorious 16 year old young woman. Calm down ladies…I know I am not the only “career” mother out there…this is not a competition nor an episode of “The real housewives”…it is just a tale for today. Now, back to the tale at hand. As you also know I am the manager of a salon/retail shop. Everyday I make sure my hair is coiffed just so and my makeup applied and my pants pressed, and I look good. Yeah, I said it. What I came to realize this past week is I may have looked good on the outside…but my inside left a little to be desired.Not to sound all “Oprah”, I had given away my power. As last week progressed I could see that I wasn’t the only one.

I had a few customers that were, let say, interesting. One woman was being quite abrupt with her answers to my questions about what kind of hold she wanted from her hairspray. So, being me, I asked her if there was something I had done to upset her. She stared in silence. After about 10 seconds she said “I am sorry, I just got this new cut that I didn’t want. My stylist said I was to old for a bob and that I needed a short style.”. (I get severely pissed when I hear this, and I hear this often. Yo Stylists! Who are you to tell people that they are too old for a cut? Seriously…get a grip and become a professional). So, I assured her the cut was cute (which it was) and sold her some KMS Hair Play Molding Paste for some funky styling and she likes her hair to look shiny so we added some SOMA Prism shine spray to the mix…and I also gave her our Salon price list.

I had a customer this week that introduced herself as “stupid and useless”. I shit you not, that is what she answered when I asked “How ya doin’ today”. You see, she was trying to grow out her hair for her daughter’s wedding in the fall and gave up because she listened to the wrong people – the people who told her that a flat iron was “too complicated” for her. (Who the hell are these people?!?). I took her over to our flat iron demo display and told her to pick one up as I picked one up. We both were in the mirror’s reflection, so I told her to copy what I was doing. After about 30 seconds a smile crept across her face and she said “I can grow out my hair!”. I looked her straight in the eye and told her to stop listening to the “Can’t” people in her life and listen for the “Can” people…they are out there. They are a little harder to hear over the annoying antics of the “can’t” court jesters.

A woman has lost some weight. She has lost 22 pounds over the course of 8 months. She began to exercise. She began to eat a healthy diet in support of her husband’s health issues. She didn’t lose the weight to “show off” or “rekindle her twenties” or “to keep her marriage alive” or because she was having a “cougar crisis”. The weight loss was a positive perk of embracing a healthier lifestyle, for her family and herself. That woman is me, and yes, the above comments have been directed at me. 10 years ago, I would have listened to the nasty comments and gone and ate a cake…or two. Guess what buttercup…not anymore. I have come to realize that those who are negative, nasty or assholes – take your pick, are empty inside…plain and simple. They are so miserable that they have to pull you down to their level so no one will see how crappy their lives are. Funny thing is, they cannot even fathom the idea that no one really gives a shit, except them and others like them.

I know I say it all the time, but I was raised on Little House on the Prairie and Happy Days so get used to it. BE KIND. Raise others up, do not push them down. Your BFF gets a new cut and loves it? Love it with her. A friend is struggling with her hatred of her thighs? Go to the gym with her – don’t agree and tell her she “really needs to work on that”. A friend loses weight? Applaud her efforts and ask her how she did it. Do not  mock her and ask her “cutting out the calories trying to be a cougar?”.

“If you don’t look good, we don’t look good”. – Mr. Vidal Sassoon

Beauty, Business, communication, Hair Care, health and wellness, Uncategorized, Women

Great hair isn’t only for carnivores

Lately, I have come to realize that the public at large has been misinformed and me being me, I feel I must correct the situation. As of late I have been hearing phrases along the lines of “Hair products are toxic to the environment.”, “All cosmetic companies test on animals”, “There are no real vegan hair care products.”. All the above phrases are not true. No offense to your bff but she doesn’t know what she is talking about, and unless you see a salon within 10 feet of where you are purchasing your product, the sales person who is selling you the product and answering your questions most probably doesn’t know what they are talking about either. Plain and simple.

I can only speak for the Professional Salon products because, they are what I sell and they are what I have had extensive product knowledge training on. (…see, more to me that a pretty face and a sassy sense of humor). Being me, and not to let any of you down, I have compiled a list of some awesome environmentally friendly/vegan/cruelty free Professional hair care alternatives. (* Cruelty free = no testing on bunnies, playboy and mammal.).

JOICO Structure – The newest collection from Joico. It is a cruelty free line and 3 of their products are certified Vegan – Cleanse (the shampoo), Condition (the conditioner) and Renovate (the conditioning treatment).

Bain de Terre Purite – the newest addition to the Bain de Terre family. It is a cruelty free line that is sulfate free, paraben free, free of colorants and formaldehyde and is Gluten free. The line offers a beautiful shampoo, conditioner and leave in spray.

SOMA – One of my favorites that I have blogged about on many occasions – check out Sulfates, Alcohols and Parabens…Oh my!  in the April 2012 archives. It does hold a soft spot in my heart for it was one of the first lines to be vegan and alcohol free and I was fortunate enough to be trained by the original chemists of the line. SOMA is organic, 100% vegan, 100% biodegradable, paraben and formaldehyde free, cruelty free and most of the line is alcohol free. The packaging is also 100% recyclable. The SOMA line has a product for any hair type or hair styling woe, from limp lifeless hair to unruly curls.

ALTERNA BAMBOO – A beautiful line brought to us by Alterna Hair Care. This line has everything from shampoo to shine spray, mousse to conditioning treatments for all hair types from frizzy to fine. It is Paraben free, Gluten free, contains no sodium chloride, phthalates or synthetic colors. It is a cruelty free line. By the way…their Kendi Oil can give Moroccanoil a run for their money…just sayin’. Oh yes, and Katie Holmes has now partnered with them, again…just sayin’.

So there you have it, a little more information than you had a few moments ago. You now know that is it possible to have great hair and love our Mother Earth. No longer will you have to hug a tree to prove you care for the environment…of course if you feel the need at least you will have great hair for your photo op.

Beauty, Business, communication, Hair Care, health and wellness

Saving the planet with great hair

At least once a week I am asked if there are any products that are either vegan, cruelty free or environmentally friendly. The answer is yes, and yes, anyone can use them. You do not have to own a poncho or have a rescue dog as a pet to purchase these products. (trust me…I had to clarify in writing because I have had to clarify said fact verbally to a woman sporting a complete ensemble of fur and leather…really…I wish I made this shit up…you have no idea).

Many professional hair care lines have jumped onto the environmentally friendly, cruelty free, vegan train. Yes, they care about our drinking water and they love bunnies. Their products are low in sulfates or sulfate free, alcohol free, gluten free and paraben free…Al Gore will be so proud. The following are lines that I am familiar with and sell in our shop.

SOMA – This line is organic, 100% Vegan, 100% Biodegradable (making Mr. Gore so happy!), paraben and formaldehyde free. Their products contain wheat/keratin proteins and all their packaging is recyclable.The SOMA line has a product for every hair type and every hair issue. If you want a sleek look or a spiked mohawk – SOMA will deliver the goods. Oh…and they love bunnies too.

JOICO Structure – The newest addition to the Joico family that has 3 products that are vegan – Structure Cleanse, Structure Condition and Structure Renovate. * An important piece of information about Joico – Joico cares about the environment, investing in alternative energy sources to better the environment, they are committed to eliminating their carbon footprint and leading sustainable business practices & they have also joined forces with Verus Carbon Neutral. 

Bain de Terre Purite – The newest addition to the Bain de Terre family. The Purite line is sulfate free, paraben free, gluten free and is free of colorants and formaldehyde. They love bunnies too.

Alterna Bamboo – A lovely collection that consists of a volumizing, frizz control, shine and color line. All the products are free of parabens, gluten, sodium chloride, Phthalates and synthetic colors. They love bunnies too.

So there you have it. You can have great hair and still love the environment. You can have a rockin’ look without the guilt of leaving baby bunnies motherless. When standing in the shower you no longer have to feel guilt of possibly mutating a fish with the shampoo that is going down the drain. 

Beauty, Business, communication, Hair Care, health and wellness, Uncategorized

Save the alcohol for your martini

Ahhh, the sounds of summer. Children playing in the streets  squealing with delight as they hear the ice cream truck, the roll of the waves at the seaside, the chime of a bicycle passing you  on the sidewalk, the whimper of a woman fighting the battle with frizz and losing. Yep, we have all been there. We have all been her…you know who…the woman who turns into a five year old little girl yanking the brush through her hair and stomping her foot exclaiming “I hate my hair!!” sending every man within a 10 mile radius to make a run for the hills. (who could blame them, honestly.).

Today’s tale is about alcohol free products. Alcohol free products are less drying and some have found that using alcohol free products helps eliminate frizz and said products have been known to save a marriage or two. (of course a glass of alcohol has been known to do the same but that is another tale for another day). The best way to eliminate frizz is finding the magical combination of alcohol free AND humidity resistant…don’t be so doubtful…such products to exist…read on. Since all these products are Salon professional, they are all color safe.

I have compiled a list of some of the favorite products sold at my shop that are alcohol free;

JOICO JoiWhip Mousse – adds great volume and hold (a little goes a long way…too much and can tend to be sticky…dispense so foam is about the size of a small egg)

GOLDWELL Glamour Whip Mousse – adds volume and hold

RUSK Jelle Gloss – Works great as a setting lotion or for that slicked back look

AG – Liquid Varnish – A serum to add shine, can be used on wet or dry hair (a little goes a long way…use too much and you will look like Danny Zuko from Grease)

AG – Spray Varish – A shine spray, to be added to hair after you have the look you want, just with a little more shine. (lightly mist it over your hair)

MOROCCANOIL oil treatment – use on wet hair to reduce drying time and to control fly-aways

MOROCCANOIL Glimmer Spray – A shine spray, apply to add shine to your lovely locks.

SOMA Hot Body – A volumizing gel, great hold and no flaking.

Now, the list of alcohol free and humidity resistant products…told you they existed;

SOMA Curly Cue – an awesome gel formulated for curls, keeps them soft and bouncy, and free of frizz

SOMA Prism Shine Spray – a lightweight shine spray that never leaves a build up or greasy look.

SOMA Rage out – a styling cream that can be used  for straight or curly styles.

SOMA Solace – A cuticle sealer. Meant to lock that cuticle shut so no matter what the weather, the humidity cannot open up that cuticle and create frizz.

I hope this helps silence the tantrums and whimpers from behind the bathroom door, if not… I can give you a great apple-tini recipe, you will still hear the whimpers, they will just become more bearable.