Splashlights – The Haircolor Trend You Should Be Wearing

Done with balayage? Over ombré? You might be ready for the next color trend. Splashlights are going to be big this summer and fall. What are Splashlights? Well, imagine you are standing in a room and light is shining through a window onto your hair. This technique replicates the effect of natural light. The look can be bold or subtle, bright colors or soft washes of color. Whatever the expression of this trend, you can bet you will see more and more of it.

This technique first started to emerged last year. One of the early commercial images was this one posted in Allure magazine. When I first saw it, my immediate reaction was, “What in the world did that girl do to her hair?!” But as I continued to look at it, I thought it was amazing, creative and artistic. This is not a row of soldier foil lines across the head. This is placement that is as unique as the stylist performing it.

Redken has launched a Splashlights collection. They have identified four versions of this trend: crown lights, bold lights, fringe lights and spotlights. Here are the images that visually match their description.

As I work with this technique in the salon and travel across the country teaching, I share these images to stylists and salon guests and people’s initial reaction is similar to my own. From a hair professional’s perspective, it challenges our belief of how we place color in the hair. When I show a client an image of, let’s say, bold lights, it’s a little overwhelming for them. Keep in mind my client base is primarily 30-55 years of age–they are moms and professionals. For many, it’s hard to picture yourself on the sideline of your kid’s soccer game with bold lights in your hair. Therefore my job as a stylist is to translate this trend in a way that my salon guests of any age and lifestyle can wear a version of this trend. 

Ready to give it a try? Below are some tips that can help make it the perfect fit for you:

  1. Look at a lot of images to adjust your eye to the trend. The more you see it in all its versions, the easier it is to understand it. Google #splashlights you will get hundreds, if not thousands, of images.
  2. High Contrast. Want to go bold? If you want to walk in a room and have everyone’s attention immediately directed to your hair, choose a Splashlights technique that is high contrast. Dark base and blonde light focus, brown base with bright copper light focus. The higher the contrast, the more it will stand out.
  3. Low Contrast. Want to be subtle? Low contrast. Light brown on dark brown. Golden blonde on medium blonde, light red on dark red. With less contrast people will see you first and your color second, or they may just think that light is softly hitting it from across the room.
  4. Work with a stylist who is comfortable with the technique. In the same way that you are taking the time to look at images and let your eye adjust to the look, your stylist should do the same. Ask them if they have done it before and if they have pictures of their work. This technique is more creative and artistic than traditional foils. Be sure that your stylist’s vision is a fit for your hair.

Here are a few of my salon guests that are now fans of Splashlights. You can see how we personalized it to each of them based on their lifestyle and personality.

Let me know if you have any questions. If not? Go for it! We are early in this trend so lead the pack! I promise by next year, if you don’t have it, someone else will.

This Girl Changed Her Haircolor 25 Times in 3 years. Here’s Why…

Stephanie was my salon house model from 2009 until last December. During that period she became a chameleon of styles and colors. Every salon visit was an opportunity for me to be an artist with her hair. She never flinched when I said “let’s go lavender and short today!” or “how about pink?”. This year Stephanie has left Seattle to experience change bigger than her hair. She is now traveling through Asia. I thought this would be the perfect time to reflect on her past looks.

To many of us how we look is such an ingrained part of our identity we are hesitant to go for big changes regularly. I wanted to get Stephanie’s take on her 3 year experience as a hair stylists muse. What did she love? What didn’t work, and how did each look effect how others perceived her. Read on to hear her response.

Why were you so open to change with your hair?

” I don’t think I’ve ever obsessed over my hair. Before I started working with you, I would get a haircut once or twice a year. The only two looks I ever really went with were ‘long’ or ‘short’. I also had never dyed my hair, mainly because in my family being a natural blonde was part of my familial identity – my sisters and I were the “Neapolitan” sisters, with my older sister being a natural redhead and my little sister being a natural brunette. I think I just reached a point where I was bored with my hair and ready for a drastic change, so when you asked “How would you feel about going red?” I immediately replied “Sounds good to me!”

The first color we put on you was red. How did it make you feel and effect where you were in life?

“I loved becoming a redhead! It felt like I had donned a whole new persona, as though I could be whomever I wanted to be. The timing of it was apt, too, in that I had just gotten a new job after a long period of unemployment due to the recession. I was starting a new chapter in life and putting a very difficult time behind me, and the new hair color helped give me confidence to embrace all the great opportunities I was coming across.”

How did constantly changing your cut and color affect how people viewed you?

“I think one of my favorite parts of making drastic hair changes is how people respond. When I moved here from Georgia I was a super shy wallflower who did NOT like to draw attention to myself. Changing your hair makes it an instant talking point, and made me a lot more approachable to people – it eventually became a game at work where people would try to guess what color I would go with next. The more extreme the style, the more people I had coming up to me to tell me how much they loved my hair. The only person who ever expressed dislike for my hair was my mother, who was convinced that boys would never want to talk to a girl with a mohawk. I tried to tell her I got hit on more when I had a mohawk than when I had my long blonde hair, but that didn’t change her mind. Oh well.”

Which style was your favorite?

“The mohawk!! More specifically the blush pink mohawk. I was surprised by how much I loved that hairstyle. I was so nervous to get it – I wasn’t sure I could pull it off and I also wasn’t sure how my employer would respond to it. I still can’t believe the positive feedback I received from my bosses as well as my more conservative clients.”

Which style was your least favorite?

“My current cut. I knew that for traveling I wanted to tone down my look – I wouldn’t have room for any hair products in my backpack and I wanted to blend in as much as possible. It’s exactly what I asked for and you did an awesome job, but after several years of fun colors and styles, going back to a blonde bob feels really tame and no longer representative of who I am as a person.”

As Stephanie was preparing to head off to Asia we needed to create a look that worked for travel. It needed to be easy to maintain and she is traveling alone so she needed to blend in more than stand out. While it isn’t her favorite look it will certainly fit the bill. Safe travels and best hair wishes Stephanie! Until we get you back in the salon….

Stephanie's final look as she heads off on new travels.

Stephanie’s final look as she heads off on new travels.

If you’d like to follow Stephanie as she explores Thailand and the surrounding area follow her blog: www.thewayfaringwriter.com

Why Buying Shampoo at the Salon Will Save You Money

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Where do you buy your favorite hair products? At the salon? Drug store or discount market? Many people have the impression that the professional brand your salon carries can be found for a lower price at stores like Target or Walmart. I wanted to do some comparison shopping myself so I did a little research and the results were surprising.

For this post, I am focusing on salon professional products. These are the products that are typically sold in salons by salon professionals. Redken, TIGI, Matrix, and American Crew are a few examples. Professional products typically provide better results for any hair type that is not healthy, un-colored, medium weight hair.

For this process, I visited a variety of stores. These include Bartell’s (drug store), Walgreen’s (drug store), Target, Walmart, Safeway (grocery) and Ulta (a mega beauty supply). At Fix Salon, we use Redken products exclusively, therefore, this was the brand I looked for, checking both availability and price.

What did I find? Ulta was the only location that carried the entire Redken line. All other locations carried bits and pieces of the line. Legally, salon professional products can only be sold by licensed professionals in salons. This means that the location has to have a salon in order for them to carry the professional lines. Ulta does have a salon, so it makes sense that they carry Redken as well as many other brands. If a store does not have a salon, yet you see professional products on their shelves, it means it was diverted to them. Diversion is a hot topic in the salon world. When I visited Walmart, the only Redken product on their shelf was All Soft Shampoo and Conditioner. When a store sells diverted product, they do not necessarily have access to the entire line and there is never any consistency to which items they carry. They are simply picking up what “fell off the truck” from their diversion retailer.

In addition to low options and inconsistent inventory, I also found that almost all products carried were discontinued Redken packaging. Sometimes the products  were outdated by as much as 8 years! While it’s hard to pinpoint an expiration date on hair products, most manufacturers will guarantee the effectiveness for 2 years. When I see hair gel that is 8 years old on a shelf, I have to wonder where has it been? Was it stored in a temperature controlled warehouse or has it been collecting dust in a warm storage facility somewhere.

In addition to incomplete and outdated product lines, the most impactful discovery of my comparison shopping was the price of the products. I consistently found the prices to be more than the manufactures suggested retail. Always. The range was anywhere from $1 to $5 more, and typically $3-$5 dollars more. When you shop for your hair products outside of the salon, you are spending more money for a potentially inferior quality product.

In addition to higher prices and expired products, you also add the guesswork of trying to figure out what your hair really needs. Why not let your stylist guide you to the product that will give your the best performance for your hair? Otherwise, you end up wasting money on buying the wrong products that eventually end up collecting dust in your bathroom.

As an added bonus when you purchase your hair products from your salon you are supporting that business and stylists. Many times the revenue generated from retail sales go to improvements to the salon, which make your visit more pleasant, or to continuing education for your stylist, which makes your hair look better. Your stylist will guarantee your purchase and you will have more success in getting the end result you desire!

Home Hair Treatments – Simple steps to keeping hair healthy

Home hair treatments are a great way to keep your hair healthy between salon visits. But as discussed in this post, there is science behind real results.  Doing it correctly allows beneficial ingredients to penetrate deep in the hair strand, producing effects you can see and feel.

Before diving in, it’s a good idea to talk with your stylist about the right treatment. When it comes to hair treatments, there are so many products to choose from that it’s easy to feel confused. Masks, serum, conditioners…matching a product’s purpose with your hair type and desired outcome is key. Let your stylist be your guide to narrow down the search. She can point you in the right direction and match you with the perfect product. Once your ready, follow these simple steps to bring out beautiful, healthy hair at home.

1. Start with a deep cleansing shampoo

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Before applying any treatment, it’s best to be working with a clean surface. Find a deep cleansing shampoo to remove any product build up on your hair. This will create a “clean slate” that will better accept the treatment. A deep cleansing shampoo can be used prior to treatments or alternated with your daily shampoo about every 8 washes. At Fix Salon, we love Redken’s Hair Cleansing Cream. It has a yummy citrus scent and a foaming lather for squeaky clean results.

2. Towel Dry

After rinsing out your shampoo, take the time to really towel dry your hair. This should be done by scrunching your hair in a towel, rather than wringing it dry. Removing the excess water gives the treatment more room to “live” in the hair.

3. Watch where you apply the treatment

Hair treatments should be applied to the midshaft and ends of your hair first. These are the areas that benefit the most. Afterwards, you can apply a small amount to the hair near your scalp. If you tend to have an oily scalp, avoid your scalp area altogether. With most quality products, a little goes a long way. Make sure you cover the hair thoroughly and evenly, but don’t over apply.

4. Bag it up

If you are stepping out of the shower while your treatment processes, put on a shower cap to protect your hair and your surroundings. You can buy light weight disposable shower caps from a beauty supply or better yet, grab the complimentary caps when you stay at a hotel. In addition to keeping things tidy during the treatment, bagging your hair provides the added benefit of trapping in heat. When your hair warms up, it expands, allowing for better absorption of the treatment into your hair.

5. Warm it up

In addition to using the shower cap to trap heat, you can also stay in the shower for the processing time or sit in a warm place. Hair treatments are perfect when you are sitting at the beach or by the pool. The sun warms your hair for a better result.

6. Rinse well

Be sure to give yourself extra time to rinse out your treatment. Treatment masks are typically heavier than a daily conditioner, so it requires more effort to get it out of your hair. If you do a quick rinse, you run the risk of leaving residual treatment in your hair, causing it to feel over conditioned and heavy.

Treating your hair at home can be a fun, relaxing event that produces noticeable results. By using the right treatment in the correct way, your hair will look amazing. For best results, always use a professional salon product and save the avocados and mayonnaise for the sandwiches.

These Should Be Your 2014 Hair Resolutions

As we head into 2014, it’s the perfect time to set new goals. How about giving your hair a little extra love? Here are a few ideas to make sure your hair is healthy and beautiful the whole year through.

Commit to getting your hair cut more frequently.

Short hair (above the shoulders) should be cut every 5 weeks. Medium lengths (around the shoulders) require every 6 weeks. Long hair should visit the salon every 8 weeks. If you want to maintain your length, trim 3/4″ to 1/2″ off. If you are in the process of growing your hair longer, cut about a 1/4″ off. Getting your hair cut more frequently keeps your hair looking healthy and reduces the risk of split ends. Set yourself up for success in the new year by pre-booking your appointments with your hairstylist. Typically your stylist will give you a reminder notice prior to your visit, making it easy to keep track of your appointments.

Do a hair product overhaul.

Many times it may seem like hair products are breeding in our bathrooms. That hair gel you’ve had since 2005? Time to let it go. Ask your stylist to add 15-20 minutes onto your next appointment and bring in any and all hair products from home. Your stylist can consult with you, narrowing down what are the best choices for your hair and what products you may be missing to help create your dream style. Everything that is not relevant to your current style should be recycled or donated to a local women’s shelter. This way you have only what you need for your hair and you don’t have to worry about it being too old or expired.

Treat yourself to a color glaze.

Kick off the new year with incredible shine. Treatments designed to rejuvenate the health of your hair are important, but to really turn up the shine, treat yourself to a color glaze. A color glaze is a demi permanent color with a life span of about 6-8 weeks. If you love the color you have, a clear formulation can be used to enhance it with amazing reflect. Want to give a little more tone to your hair? Your colorist can add a bit of copper to spice it up, gold to give a warm glow, or a deep rich brown to cool it down. Whether you have previously colored hair or no color at all, this is a service with highly visible effects that everyone can benefit from.

Try something new.

How long has it been since you changed your hair style? This is a great time to add bangs, go a little shorter, add layers, go darker, go lighter, turn up the red, add highlights. Shake it up by doing something different from what you have now. In need of some inspiration? Every time you see an image of a style or color that you like, save it in a file. Before long, you’ll have a photo album of hair you like. Don’t worry if the styles are right for you. Go through the album with your stylist at your next salon visit. Talk to her about what attracted you to the pictures. She can consult with you to help figure out what will work best with your hair type, facial shape, and personal style.

Happy 2014! Enjoy all that is to come and be sure to kick it off with beautiful, healthy hair.

Ready for Change? The Perks to Going Pixie

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Short hair is having a moment. This week, Jennifer Hudson, Kristin Chenoweth and Pamela Anderson all dared to do what we sometimes only threaten: they cut their hair into stylish short pixie cuts. They have joined the likes of Halle Berry, Michelle Williams, Gennifer Goodwin, Robin Wright and Emma Watson, making Team Short Hair that much more alluring. Thinking about making the snip? Tempted to go to your stylist and give them permission to change your identity? I want to give you three reasons why you might want to consider it.

1. It Exudes Confidence

Robin Wright cut her hair in preparation for her role as Claire Underwood in House of Cards. Her character is not your usual politician’s sidekick. She is determined, strong and confident. She walks in step with her husband’s drive and ambitions, as well as having ambitions of her own. Her short hair is the perfect look for this character. It’s a “power” look that makes you take notice.

Pamela Anderson has been pigeon holed into voluptuous California girl her entire career. By cutting her hair short, it gives her an air of maturity. She looks stronger, defined more by who she is as a person as opposed to  her over-sexed persona. Her new look is a remarkable change and an amazing statement about the next chapter of her life.

2. It’s Easier

Maybe it’s a no-brainer, but short hair is easier. Beyoncé and Jennifer Hudson are women who juggle career and new babies. Their new short looks can simplify their personal prep, giving more time to the valuable things in their lives.

Have you ever felt like all you do is throw your hair back in a pony tail every morning? What if in the same time you could create a fashionable statement with your hair? Sometimes I feel like short hair acts like an accessory in that it’s easier to style it to our mood and day. Even when you’re in sweats shuffling kids around, picking up groceries and running errands, you can feel like you have a little umph to your look.

3. It Changes People’s Perception

This can be scary or empowering. Be fearless with your identity! Let people see you are more than the hair style you’ve worn since high school or college. Switch it up. If you’re hesitant to let it all go, go shoulder length at your next hair appointment. Keep people guessing. Who you are as a person is what stays consistent. Your outward persona can change with the chapters of your life. Many times people put us in a box, trying to stereotype who we are. Changing your hair can bring new opportunities in your life that you never imagined.

In conclusion, I’m super excited to see these women fearlessly change their hair styles. These celebrities are setting a trend, so we can bet we will see more of it in the next couple of years. Will you join the club? If going pixie seems too much like the bad dream of forgetting to get dressed, go to a bob. But have the courage to do something daring! Hair grows. I promise. Find some images of women with styles that empower you and take the inspiration to your stylist. They will help you create a new defining moment!

UPDATE!

Add Jennifer Lawrence to the list!

 

The Top 3 Salon Services Your Hair Needs This Fall

Nina DobrevSummer is over. Time to get your hair ready for fall! Here are the top 3 salon services I am recommending to all of my salon guests to ensure they have a season of beautiful and healthy hair.

1. Customized Salon Treatment

When was the last time you treated your hair to a salon treatment? Professional salon hair repair services are more effective than any home treatment. Your stylist can determine what your hair needs and create a custom blend for you. Strength, softness, frizz reduction, and color retention are just a few of the options. These treatments take minutes to apply and the effects are long-lasting. It’s the perfect way to say goodbye to sun damaged hair and hello to healthy hair for fall.

2. A Super Shine Color Glaze

At the end of summer hair, is flat and dry and the color is usually washed out or lightened from the sun. A Demi Permanent Color Glaze is an easy way to bring back intense shine and reflection to your hair. Demi Permanent color is ammonia-free, making it gentle on all hair types. The glaze can be clear in color adding shine to your current color or it can tone down the color creating dimension and richness for the next season. This service requires little maintenance, shows almost no grow out, and doesn’t lock you in as a “color client” for the future. A beautiful way to give new life to your hair.

3. Steam Infusion Flat Iron

Love the look of flat ironed hair, but worried about the damage it can create to your hair? Redken has partnered with small appliance specialist Rowenta to create a steam infusion flat iron that actually cares for your hair as it straightens it. This system can only be found in salons and is partnered with specialty Redken products. After experiencing this in-salon flat iron service, you may never want to use your home flat iron again. Hair is silky, shiny, and feels incredibly healthy. The steam allows beneficial ingredients to drive deep into the hair strand for ultimate effectiveness, something a traditional flat iron can’t do.

A change in seasons is the perfect time re-asses your hair’s needs. These services aren’t “treats” for your hair, they are required maintenance to keep your hair healthy and beautiful. Take the time to give back to your hair and trust your stylists recommendations. You deserve it!