Hair Brush 101 – What You Need to Know

Hairbrush 101It’s amazing how much easier it can be to style your hair when you have the right tools. For most of us, the most widely used tool when it comes to our hair is the brush. Because all brushes are not created equal, I want to break down the basics and brush up your styling tool expertise. I’ll cover the different types, what they’re designed to do best, and where to get them.

Flat or Round – Columbus learned the hard way, but you don’t have to.

From a general stand point, there are 2 types of brushes: flat or round. Flat brushes are designed to smooth the hair with minimal volume or fullness. Round brushes do just the opposite; they can be used to make hair bigger and add fullness and movement. First, let’s break down flat brushes.

Types of Flat Brushes

Vent Brush

  • Vent Brush–Vent brushes are literally vented, or have spaces between the bristles for air to flow. The bristles/teeth are usually a thick stiff nylon or plastic. This brush is designed to allow hair to dry quickly when partnered with a blow dryer. The teeth of the brush are spaced pretty far apart.  But because of its design, the user has very little control over a polished finish and the end result may be fuzzy. In order to refine the finish of your hair, the next step would be to use a curling/flat iron or a round brush.

Best Use: A vent brush is the perfect choice for anyone with short to shoulder length hair who needs a quick rough blow-dry.

Denman 9 Row Brush

  • Denman Brush–Denman is actually a brand name, like Kleenex is to tissue. The Denman brand, a London-based company, actually produces many different types of brushes. From a professional standpoint, if a stylist refers to a “denman” we are referencing a flat brush, without air vents. The nylon teeth are close together and secured in a rubber mat base. Note, there are many companies that produce this Denman style of brushes. In the salon it is one of my favorite brushes. Because the teeth are close together it creates more tension than a vent brush, and the rubber mat helps to eliminate static and frizz. I can get much more control and a more polished finish with this brush.

Best Use: This brush is perfect for anyone with short to shoulder length hair wanting a smooth straight end result with little volume.

Paddle Brush

  • Paddle Brush–A paddle brush is somewhat similar to a denman in that it has many teeth close together to provide tension for drying and smoothing the hair. The difference is that the base is much wider than a denman and the teeth are more flexible. The wide base gives more exposure to the dryer for longer lengths and the flexible teeth help gently work through the hair reducing breakage.

Best Use: The paddle brush is a great choice for anyone with long hair. The paddle brush can give a head start on pulling out wave and curl to then be followed up with a round brush or iron. I love it for smoothing out my own hair. To see it how it’s used, check out the video “Quick DIY Blow Out”.

Oval Cushion Brush

  • Oval Cushion Brush–This is another brush that is a classic and used by professional hairstylists regularly. A rubber cushioned base with nylon or boar bristle or the best is a blend of both. It is typically used on dry hair for perfect smoothing. Great for getting every last hair in place for your ponytail or special occasion hair. The cushion brush can also be used as a detangler on dry hair.

Best Use: This brush is the best choice for smoothing and detangling any length of hair.

Wet Brush

  • Wet Brush – While not considered a classic style of brush, I am seeing more and more of this style on the market and it is quickly becoming a must have in my brush collection. Wet Brush is a brand that makes an oval flat brush with very flexible nylon teeth. It is the ultimate detangling brush on wet hair. The flexible teeth causes it to go through the hair and gently work through knots without damaging or breaking the hair. Other manufacturers  are producing their own version of this style, so keep an eye out for it.

Best Use: A Wet Brush is ideal for any hair length, but it’s particularly effective for longer lengths. It is best used on wet hair for detangling, but can also be used on dry hair. This is my number one recommendation for any parent who has a child with a sensitive head. It will save many tears and make your morning routine that much easier.

Types of Round Brushes

Round Brushes come in various dimensions and materials depending on their use. Compared to a flat brush they are able to create more volume at the base or scalp and deliver soft rounded shape and movement.

Metal/Ceramic Round Brush

  • Metal/Ceramic Round Brushes–Because heat causes a more effective change to the hair, the base of these brushes are designed to heat up. The bristles are usually nylon and distributed further apart than a boar bristle round brush. When used correctly, they can mimic the effect of a curling iron to a certain extent.

Best Use: Perfect for creating a smooth rounded finish on almost any length of hair. Your length of hair will determine the diameter of round brush you use. The shorter the hair, the smaller the diameter. The smaller the diameter, the more curl or bend you will get in the hair. The larger the diameter, the more fullness and “c” shaping.

Boar Bristle Brush

  • Boar Bristle Round Brush–As you can probably guess, a boar bristle brush uses actual boar hair for the bristles. The bristles are packed tight to create tons of tension and to coax every cuticle to lay down for the ultimate smooth and shiny finish. Boar bristle brushes get better over time. After continued use and exposure to heat, the ends of the bristles start to pop open a bit, much like split ends. The effect gives even more polish to the hair. This brush can be difficult for a hair novice. Because the bristles create so much tension, it can be difficult to work through your hair. It takes some practice to use this type of brush, but the results can be amazingly rewarding.

Best Use: Boar Bristle Round Brushes are perfect for almost any length of hair. Choose the diameter based on your length and desired end result. You will also find boar bristle brushes with a blend of nylon bristles mixed in. This version will be a little easier to use on yourself.

Final note about the difference between boar bristle and ceramic/metal round brushes. Boar will give you ultimate shine and polish with a looser curl or wave. A metal/ceramic brush will give strong shaping and volume and a little less shine.

Resources

All of the brushes mentioned are available at Fix Salon through special order. If you are not in Seattle, I always recommend that you support your local salon and stylist for all of your professional tools. If you live in the Alaska tundra and have limited options, all of these brushes can easily be purchased online at amazon.com or ulta.com then delivered to you via dog sled. (Just seeing if you were paying attention; )

There are many choices out there, but these are my sources for brushes:

  • SamVilla.com – I work with Sam and use his professional tools daily. Some of my favorite brushes! Great paddle, denman style, and boar bristle brushes. Amazing quality and I love the heart of this company. See website for your nearest retailer.
  • Denmanbrushus.com – U.S. website for all Denman brand brushes. If it’s mentioned above, you will find it on this site.
  • thewetbrush.com – Home for the up and coming Wet Brush. The tender heads in your home will thank you.
  • Cricket – My preferred ceramic/metal round brush brand. This link will take you to Amazon, the easiest way to shop for this family of brushes.
  • yourtearsheets.com – Another company owned by fellow Redken Artist and Editorial Stylist, Giovanni Guintoli. Beautiful professional quality brushes.

Give me your feedback! Questions about brushes or shopping for them? I’m happy to help. Questions about buying other hair tools? Check out Hair Dryers 101 for the inside scoop!

Now go brush your hair.

Adding Big Volume to Your Blowout – Video Tutorial

Here is the second My Hair Fix video tutorial! I would post them more often, but I am realizing I am a much better hairstylist than video editor. Our last tutorial was recreating a salon blowout at home, so for this video I wanted to take it one step further by showing you how to add dramatic volume that will last all night.

I mention it in the video, but it’s worth saying again: using the right styling product is the key to creating a long lasting look. When you purchase product from your stylist, be sure to have her take the time to educate you on how to use it to get the result you want.

Some of you have left comments about the video topics you want to see next. Thanks! It’s been noted and we are working on it. Hopefully this process will get more streamlined so you can have a entire video library at your fingertips!

My Hair Fix – Volume Blowout Video

PS – I also want to give a big shout out to Inti St Clair, the photographer who took some great photos, giving me the new clean, pretty picture for the blog! She does amazing work! Check her out!

Changing Your Identity with Hair Color: Are you ready for the challenge?

Tiffany "The Blonde"Meet Tiffany. Tiffany has been one of my best friends for over 20 years. Tiffany is a blonde. I’m not using this as a discriptor as much as I am using it as a title. Tiffany is “A Blonde”. It’s her identity, philosophy and lifestyle. Two years ago we took her from a dimensional foiled blonde to a full on platinum blonde. She LOVED it. When she walked in a room you couldn’t help but turn to look at her. Blonde is an attention grabbing color. Why do you think so many Hollywood celebrities take on this look? Unfortunately, after two years of heavy lightening every three weeks, her hair surrendered. It couldn’t take the demand of such intense treatments. It weakened, and became damaged beyond repair. Tiffany had to make a decision: change her hair color or cut off the damaged ends into a short haircut. Both of which were the kiss of death to her identity. Here’s where the journey to her new identity began….

The Consultation (Intense Therapy)

If Tiff couldn’t be platinum blonde, she wanted to find a new color that would still “pop.” She started to talk to me about becoming strawberry blonde like Nicole Kiddman. My concern with this choice was her skin tone. Tiffany has a pink complexion, and pink skin tones look best when complimented by cool colors. (Warm tones make the pink stand out more.) I also needed to make sure that my client and best friend understood that whatever choice she made, she would have to stick with it. Her hair was in no condition to handle  re-lightening. Of course, explaining this is difficult. Since seeing is believing, I decided to take Tiff on a field trip to prove my point.

A Wig Shopping We Will Go

I asked Tiffany to meet me at a beauty supply store that carries tons of wigs. Here we chose wigs of different tones of red for her to try on. It became immediately clear that strawberry blondes were a miss. They didn’t compliment her skin tone and they provided no “pop.” Then she tried on a dark cool cherry red. It was perfect! Initially Tiffany would have never thought to go from lightest blonde to this strong red, but getting to “test drive it” first gave her a whole new insight on the possibility. At my suggestion, Tiff bought the wig to take home so she could warm up to her potential new look.

Decision Time

I checked in with Tiffany 3 days after the wig purchase to see how it was going. She had experienced mixed reviews from her husband and friends. Remember, Tiffany’s blonde was a signature statement for her, so a new hair color not only changes the way she views herself, but also affects the way people see her. We discussed how it was important that she love the choice and to be ready for further mixed reviews. At the end of our conversation, she was ready to commit. Tiffany was going red!

The Process

In an earlier post, I documented my client, Christin, going from brown to peach. Christin and Tiffany’s processes both fall under a color correction service. Many times we see celebrities go through extreme color changes in what seems like overnight. I think it’s important to recognize the investment of time and money, as well as the value of working with a colorist who understand the importance of maintaining the hair’s health and integrity through this service. We took pictures of Tiffany’s entire journey to red so you could understand the process.

Step 1: Pre-Tre

Before we could apply any color, I performed two different protein treatments on Tiff’s hair. When hair has been extremely lightened, it needs protein to strengthen it. Additionally, the protein gives the color something to hold on to. If we skipped these protein treatments, the color would have a hard time looking dimensional and fall out in the first few shampoos. Redken CAT treatment was applied first, then followed by a Redken Chemistry Strength shot and sealed with a 3.5 pH spray.

Step 2: The First Fill ProcessFirst Fill

In the salon world we use numbers to refer to lightness and darkness and color as the tone. Our goal for Tiffany was to achieve a level 6 Red. If I applied a level 6 red on her blonde hair as the first color step, the end result would be flat, chalky and pink. This is because red needs yellows, golds, and oranges to give it vibrancy. To build these colors in the hair, it must be done in layers, a process we call “filling” the hair. A fill formula is a color application designed to put base tones in the hair that will support the final color. Each layer is applied and processed like a traditional color application. For the first fill, I chose a Redken Shades EQ gloss with copper and warm gold tones.

Step 3: More Protein

Firs Fill Result

After the fill formula processed for 20 minutes, I shampooed it and followed up with another protein treatment to continue to prepare the hair for more color.

Step 4: Second Fill Formula

Second Fill Application For the second fill formula, I chose more copper and gold tones with a little bit of red. Shades EQ cream was the perfect choice for its low alkalinity, but rich deposit.

Step 5: More Protein
Are you seeing a pattern here? Protein is a big deal in color correction!

Second Fill Result

Step 6: Final Formula ApplicationFinal Color Application
After two fill processes, I had built up a warm base to support the final red color we wanted. For the final formula I went with Redken Chromatics. This is a permanent color with no ammonia. That means is will give a rich deposit and is gentle on Tiff’s hair. Chromatics uses an oil delivery system which also helps to reduce future breakage in hair. I love the Reds in this line because they are strong, vibrant and dimensional. I applied the color from roots to ends and let it process for 35 minutes.

Step 7: Last Treatment
For the last treatment, I blended protein with a color sealer to lock in Tiffany’s new hue.

The end result: beautiful show- stopping red! This picture barely does the color justice. I added a second picture Tiffany took of herself the next day! Guaranteed to make you notice.Final Red!

Tiffany’s hair looked and felt amazing. It was worth every effort to get such a beautiful end result. Tiffany was so excited with the finished look. From start to finish, this was a 5-hour process. If I had skipped a treatment or fill, I would have sacrificed this awesome end color. For color correction services, I charge by the hour to ensure that every step is included.

Changing your identity with hair color can be scary. If you are known as a striking blond, rich brunette or fiery red head, it can be life altering to you and those who know you when you make that change. Take the time to research what you want. Try on wigs in the color you are considering and work with an experienced colorist who can be honest with you about the expectations, maintenance, and end result. It can be one of your biggest and exciting life adventures.

And this is Tiffany now:

Tiffany's New Identity

A transformed and gorgeous “redhead”!

10 – 100 – 1000 Gray Hairs. No matter how many you have, here is what you can do about them.

Gray HairMy 30th birthday was a milestone for two reasons. First, I was lucky enough to celebrate 30 years without any major life mistakes. Whew! Secondly, and less celebratory, was finding my first gray hair. Ugh! Within the next few years, that gray hair seemed to multiply. I now have a collection of about 15 angry silver hairs around my hairline. Aside from the color, or lack thereof, the texture is coarse and wiry. Whether you’re dealing with your first few gray hairs, a mix of natural with gray, or you have a full head of gray hair, there are options. I want to share the secrets of beating your gray–on your schedule and within your budget.

To start, let me define a few terms we use in the salon world. These are terms we use to describe the types of coverage we can give gray hair. Color can do one of two things:

  • Blend – This is usually done with a demi-permanent color. Demi-permanent color will deposit a tone of color on the gray without totally covering it. The dimension of the hair will still show, but it will soften the silver to a warmer finish. It “blends” the gray hair with your natural hair color. Everyone’s gray is a little different in the way it takes color, therefore the deposit may be varied at the end result. The benefit of this process is the soft grow out it creates. The longevity is about 6-8 weeks. At the end of that time there will still be some color on the hair, but it will not be as intense as the day it was treated. If you want to soften your gray and not deal with an obvious regrowth requiring frequent visits to the salon, this is the perfect solution.
  • Cover – When a permanent color is used, gray hair can be 100% colored to match your pigmented hair. Once this product is applied and processed, no one will know you have gray hair. This type of service can make you look immediately younger and soften the coarseness of gray hair. Because it is permanent, it is on your hair, well, permanently. It will cause a line of demarcation as your hair continues to grow, this will mean more frequent visits to the salon for maintenance.
  • Percentages – Your stylist measures how much gray you have by percentage.
    • 0-25% = minimal gray
    • 25-50% = low to medium
    • 50-75% = medium to high
    • 75-100% = high percentage. Depending on your percentage, we decide what type of color to choose and how to apply it. The higher the percentage, the more effort and maintenance it will take to blend or cover it.

Now using the percentage scale, let’s talk about your gray hair and what to do with it….

Starter Gray 0-25%

You have a few gray hairs around your hairline and temples, or a small amount of gray hairs throughout your scalp. For my clients in this situation, I recommend gray blending. When your hair is 0-25% gray, it can typically be managed fairly easily with a demi-permanent color. No need to create a high maintenance program if you don’t have to. A blending process with demi-permanent color will soften the harshness of those hairs and add incredible shine to your entire head of hair.

Somewhere between 25-75%

The grays have multiplied. Maybe they are concentrated in the front or perhaps they have popped up throughout your head. Either way, they are noticeable and a distraction from your natural or desired hair color. For a low maintenance process, you can choose a blending service. To eliminate the gray all together, go for full coverage with a permanent color. A third option would be to weave in some of your natural color. This can hide some of the gray, yet still provide a forgiving grow out.

Silver Fox 75-100%

With a high percentage of gray, there are still many options. Blending with demi-permanent can soften it, but will not be as effective as with lower percentages of gray. Full coverage with permanent color will last longer and give you back the hair you had when you were younger. Foiling is also an option and it can create beautiful dimension with your natural color. Hair color can do amazing things to make you look more youthful. Permanent color will be an investment of time and money, but the difference can be worth it.

Growing out your hair after coloring it

So what if you’ve been coloring your hair and now you want to grow out your gray? Maybe you have been coloring your hair for years and feel ready for fewer salon visits and to let your natural color be the star. This is a conversation I have had with many of my clients. First, let me say that once you have permanent color in your hair it can’t be colored to match your gray. I know it’s a bummer, but it’s a fact. You have one of two choices. You can start foiling in your color instead of an all over color. Keep in mind, this will start allowing more of your natural color to grow in, but there will always be a line of change as your hair grows out. Then eventually you can back off on the foils until you are at your natural color. This process can easily take over a year or more depending on how long your hair is. My recommendation is to bite the bullet and go cold turkey. Stop coloring all together and let it grow. Again, the longer your hair is the longer this process takes, but if you have shorter hair it will go faster than you think. It is a test in patience, but with the right stylist to coach you through it, it can be a freeing experience.

Embracing your gray, at any percentage

There are so many women who look amazing with gray hair. It can create a statement that others admire. Remember, gray hair doesn’t have to be seen as something that needs to be corrected. The choice is yours, and your stylist can help you settle on a look that right’s for you. When you’re ready to embrace your gray, I suggest a glazing service with a clear demi-permanent color to really help your silver hair sparkle.. This will give you softness and incredible shine, making your new natural color look its best.

When dealing with gray hair always remember there are options for every price level and lifestyle. Let your stylist help you decide which is the best path for you.

Hair Gone Wrong. How to recover from a bad salon appointment.

screen-shot-2013-06-18-at-9.59.13-amWhen I was about 10 (1983) my mom took my sister and I to the salon and told us we could have any style we wanted. After carefully going through magazines I found a picture of a women who was a vision of the 80’s. Bi-level haircut with a perm. I imagined how great I would look and was sure my friends would think I’d gone high fashion with my new hair. Fast forward to leaving the salon. One haircut and perm later my sister and I were both crying as we walked out with Q-Tip fuzz hair that looked nothing like the picture and took a year to get back to it’s former self.

Most of us have a salon horror story from some time in our life. Bad haircut, horrible color, or missed expectations that left us disappointed or devastated about the outcome. As a salon owner and hairstylist I have been on all ends of this process. I have had the bad hair, I have fixed the bad hair, and yes, I will admit I may have created the bad hair at some point. In this post I want to share how to handle this experience from talking to the stylist who performed the service, knowing when it is time to give another stylist the opportunity to repair your hair and when to ask to be reimbursed for your bad hair service.

Hair Gone Wrong. What to do next:

1. At a commission salon…

If your salon service took place at a commission salon the stylists are employees of the business. This means the owner or a manager is ultimately responsible for offering a course of action.

Call the salon, ask for the owner or manager and explain what happened. Share your experience, what your desired outcome was and what was your actual end result. Typically they will ask that you come back in so there is an opportunity to resolve the situation. They should give you the option of seeing the same stylist or meeting a new stylist for this appointment. You can decide who you would like to see based on your comfort level.

2. At a lease salon.

At a lease salon stylists rent and run their own business from the salon owner. The owner typically wants to maintain a respected reputation for the salon, but ultimately is not responsible for the services provided by the stylists.

First contact the stylist who performed the service. Explain what went wrong. The stylist should give you an opportunity to return for them to correct the color or haircut. If you aren’t satisfied with their response reach out to the salon owner by phone or email. While they aren’t responsible for the services performed by the leasing stylists, many times they want to maintain a positive reputation for the salon. The salon owner may offer other options for you.

3. When to ask for your money back

Was your hair damaged to the point that you had to visit another salon or stylist to have it repaired? You can ask the original salon or stylist for your money back for the service. As a stylist I consider how successful the consultation was at the original appointment. If I felt confident that I understood my clients requests and gave accurate feedback on how short the hair would be or what colors I would be using and fulfilled that by the end of the appointment I am less likely to return money to a client. If I was unable to fulfill the expectations I promised at the beginning of the appointment I will ask that they return for an opportunity to better meet their desired end result. After that appointment if I still have not achieved the promised goal I will then consider returning the cost of the service. For example; if a client came in with a desire to cover their gray and have no sign of red in their hair and I promised it would happen then at the end of their service the grey was not fully covered and the hair had some red tones I did not fulfill my promise. Alternatively, if a client came in with the same expectations and I felt I could not cover their gray to their specifications and shared that in the initial consultation I am less likely to return funds after the service if a client is disappointed.

A few tips to save you from a bad salon service.

Your consultation is kind of a big deal. Make sure your are prepared with pictures to share your vision. If you want to learn more about how to find the perfect hairstylist and get the hair you want go back to this post. Every stylist should take the time for an in depth conversation with you. If you don’t feel that they share your vision do not continue your appointment. There are thousands of amazing stylists out there so it’s worth it to take the time to find the one that “gets” you. It can make the difference between hair your love and hair that’s not so great.

You get what you pay for. This doesn’t mean you have to spend tons of money on a cut or color, but the cost usually represents the experience of the stylist. Do you have naturally curly, thick hair and want to reduce the weight and have it look great when it’s air dried? I would be hesitant to recommend a junior stylist. You would need someone who has more experience and even specializes in curly hair. It may cost more initially, but an experienced senior stylist will cut your curls to your vision in a way that causes less upkeep and extend future hair cut appointments. Now if you have long hair and want and inch taken off the length and your bangs trimmed this is a perfect job for a stylist early in their career and a time to save some money. Don’t forget to always ask how frequently a stylist attends continuing education. A stylists who charges less but attends frequent classes may have more to offer than a senior stylist who rarely takes a class to keep up on trends, techniques and technology.

Bad hair sucks. Dealing with it and getting it repaired takes time and energy from other things in your life. With that being said stylists can’t improve what they do without honest feedback from our clients. Take the time to follow up when you are disappointed with a salon service and when possible give the stylist the opportunity to correct the work. Hopefully your bad hair days are behind you and nothing but happy hair ahead!

Growing Your Hair – Pop Quiz


Grow Your Hair
Want to grow your hair? Do you know the best way to do it? Take this Growing Your Hair Quiz and find out if you know the facts about what makes your hair grow faster, stronger, and better than ever before.

Answers

1. On average hair grows how many inches a month?

On average, hair grows an 1/2 inch per month. This means it would take 6 months for your hair to grow 3 inches and 1 year to grow 6 inches.

2. Frequent trims cause hair to grow faster.

False. Hair grows at the rate it grows. Frequent trims can make the hair healthier as it grows, but keep in mind the ends should really just be “dusted”, meaning about an 1/8 of an inch or less taken off through your growth process.

3. Styling products can make hair longer.

True. While the right products can’t necessarily make your hair grow faster, they can make your hair seem longer by keeping the ends healthy. Heat protectants, conditioners, and protein based products help to reduce split ends and breakage. This will make your hair seem longer and reduce the amount you need to cut off during salon trims.

4. Eating / taking this can make your hair grow faster….

Trick question. Many believe that taking specific supplements or eating certain foods can make your hair grow faster. The truth is, just being healthy and taking care of your body overall will result in healthier hair. Eat a balanced diet with fresh fruits and vegetables, proteins, and whole grains. Also, don’t forget to exercise. By doing these things, you give your body everything it needs to produce healthy hair quickly.

5. Hair grows faster in which season?

Summer! Hair grows faster in warm weather. There is more blood circulation when your body is warmer, therefore generating faster hair growth. Your body recognizes temperature more than seasons, so if you take a warm weather vacation in January, that can stimulate follicle growth.

Above all else, growing your hair takes patience. The right stylist can be your biggest cheerleader and support you through the process. There may be some days where the process is driving you crazy and you’re tempted to cut it all off. It may seem like it’s taking forever. In those moments, reach out to your stylist to help keep you on your path. For all of my clients growing our their hair, we extend their haircut appointments by 2 or 3 weeks, but schedule 15 minute “clean up” appointments in between. A “clean up” may consist of a bang trim, neck trim, cleaning up around the edges, or sometimes it is just a counseling session where I check in with them and encourage them through the process.

Now you have the facts. Go grow your hair!

Donating Your Hair – Resources and Tips

Donate Today!Our hair is a part of us. Many times it defines who we are. The idea of losing our hair can create feelings of anxiety and depression, especially if it is coupled with a debilitating illness. There are many amazing organizations that help women and children who have experienced hair loss as a result of illness by providing them with wigs. These wigs are produced with generous donations of people like you who have sacrificed your hair to help them through the process. Locks of Love is probably the most well-known organization for hair donation, but there are even more. Each facility has different requirements for donation. I thought it would be helpful to list these resources to make it easier to provide the gift of hair to these deserving individuals.

A few facts about hair donation:

  • It takes 20-30 donated ponytails to create one wig.
  • Hair that is shorter than the minimum length and gray hair is sold to help offset the cost of wig manufacturing.
  • Adult wigs are more plentiful, but do not fit children. Therefore, these organizations focus on providing smaller systems that fit snugly and comfortably on kids.
  • The cost of manufacturing one wig is approximately $1800. Your support helps to cover the expense so that wigs can be donated to deserving women and children.

In addition to donated hair, many of these organizations also accept monetary donations and/or you can choose to sponsor a child or their hair replacement program.

Locks of Love

Locks of Love is a public non-profit organization that provides hairpieces to financially disadvantaged children under age 21 suffering from long-term medical hair loss from any diagnosis. They meet a unique need for children by using donated hair to create the highest quality hair prosthetics.

Requirements for Donation

  • Hair must be 10 inches in length
  • Colored and permed hair is acceptable
  • Highlighted hair is not acceptable
  • Gray hair is accepted

For all other requirements and a donation form, go here.

Wigs For Kids

Wigs for Kids is a private, non-profit organization relying solely on donations to make durable, custom Hair Replacement Systems that look just as real as a child’s natural hair. Additionally, Wigs for Kids has a link to partnering salons who help with the donation process.

Requirements for Donation

  • Hair must be a minimum of 12 inches
  • Hair that has been colored, permed, or highlighted is not eligible for donation
  • Gray hair is accepted

For all other requirements and a donation form, go here.

Children with Hair Loss

Children With Hair Loss was created as a resource for all children who have medically related hair loss. It is their mission to empower these children to become whole again by making hair replacement available to those who may be financially challenged and might otherwise not have a means of obtaining the hair they want and need.

Requirements for Donation

  • Hair must be a minimum of 8 inches
  • Non-chemically treated hair is preferred, but any hair in good condition is accepted
  • Gray hair is accepted.

For all other requirements and a donation form, go here.

Childhood Leukemia Foundation

The Childhood Leukemia Foundation is a national non-profit organization that provides multiple services to children battling cancer and their families. It’s hair Hugs You Wear program focuses on helping children experiencing hair loss from leukemia.

Requirements for Donation

  • Hair must be a minimum of 10 inches
  • Chemically processed hair is not accepted
  • Hair that was cut years ago is not accepted

For all other requirements and a donation form, go here.

Pantene Beautiful Lengths

Beautiful Lengths is a partnership between Pantene and the American Cancer Society, the largest non-profit health organization committed to saving lives from every cancer and improving the quality of life for people facing the disease. The role of Pantene is to help women grow long, strong, beautiful hair and provide the funds to turn this hair into free, real-hair wigs for women with cancer.

Requirements for Donation

  • Hair must be a minimum of 8 inches
  • Chemically processed hair is not accepted
  • Hair can have a maximum of 5% gray

For all other requirements and a donation form, go here.

As you can see, there are many organizations passionate about helping women and children living with hair loss. Your charitable contribution of hair or money can greatly impact the way a child feels as they go through treatment. Thank you for taking action on this life changing cause.

The Best Online Summer Hair Inspiration

It’s unusually hot in Seattle and I’m trying to remember where I put my 2 pairs of shorts from the last time our temperature peaked at 85 degrees. Hot weather is not typical here and as a result we don’t have air-conditioning, box fans double in price, and we squint because we aren’t used to seeing this much sun. Hair can be a whole other issue. How do  you stay cool and look good at the same time? Celebrities like Nicole Kidman, Kate Hudson, and Jennifer Lopez make summer hair look so easy and tons of online magazines create summer hair tips and tricks. I spent some time online looking for the best and compiled them here for you. So grab a popsicle, turn on the fan and take a few minutes to get inspired.

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The Quickest Easiest Summer Hairstyles Ever – redbookmag.com

Cute simple suggestions for warm weather styles featuring Amanda Seyfried, Kerry Washington, Jennifer Lopez, and Kate Hudson

10 Easy Summer Hair Ideas – allure.com

This article not only features celebrities like Zoey Saldana and Jennifer Lawrence, it also mentions great hair products and tools to achieve the looks.

10 Ways to Get Easy Summer Hair (Without a Blowdryer) – glamour.com

This had me at “Without a Blowdryer”. Perfect hot tips for cute hair without heat.

How To: Easy Summer Hair – luckymag.com

Special event in warm weather? These looks from Luck Magazine take a little more time but are worth it for that summer wedding, cocktail party, candle light dinner or Girls Night Out.

20 Quick Celebrity Hairstyles – more.com

I am a fan of More magazine for focusing on health and beauty of women over 40. Here are 20 easy up-styles inspired by celebrities that look great on any age.

Hopes this helps to keep you looking good in that hot weather!

Quick DIY Blow Out

It’s our first vlog! My clients are always asking, how can I get my hair to look like it does when I walk out of your salon? To answer that, I’ve created this step-by-step video. Watch as I coach Fix Salon model Stephanie through a do-it-yourself quick blow out at home.

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Video: Quick DIY Blow Out


Here are a few additional tips to keep in mind.

1. When you think your hair is dry, keep drying.

Have you ever taken the time to blow out your hair only to have it frizz out a few hours later? Chances are it wasn’t completely dry. When you think your hair is dry, continue to dry it for another 5 minutes or so. Lots of times there is still moisture in the interior of the hair. Unless all the moisture in your hair is completely dried out, your hair will revert to its natural texture.

2. Practice makes perfect.

For the first couple of blow outs, find a time where you are not in a rush and make sure you have all the right tools and products in front of you. You might assume that as a hairstylist, drying my own hair is easy. Believe me, it isn’t. It used to take me 45 minutes to get a perfect finish. Now, because of practice, I can do it in about 20 – 25 minutes.

3. Pick your tools and products wisely.

The difference between so-so hair and show stopping hair is highly dependent on the right products and tools. You just can’t get a salon-looking blow out at home without using the same tools used by the pros. For a quick reference of everything we used in the video, see below. All products are available at Fix, either in stock or by special order. If Fix Salon is far from you, you can find these items online.

Tools and Product Resources:

My favorite tools for a DIY Blow Out

You now have everything you need to know to get a fantastic looking blow out at home. Want a one-on-one blow dry class like Stephanie had? Give us a call. We do that!

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Your Hair on Vacation – Tips and Tricks to Keep it Easy

You Hair On VacationYour vacation is coming up. You have your packing list, reservations, and some fun planned. What about your hair? Have you thought about how you can make it easier to keep your style fresh while away? Here are some easy tips and tricks to make your hair look great with as little effort as possible, giving you more time to enjoy the view.

1. Consider getting a salon blowout.

Getting a fabulous salon blowout the day before you leave can save tons of time on your trip. The style will last longer than a do-it-yourself style and make you look fantastic as you jet set to your destination.

2. Schedule a professional smoothing service with your stylist.

Smooth Lock Stay Sleek

Smooth Lock Stay Sleek

At Fix we offer the Ultimate Blowout that gives you smoother, more manageable hair for up to 13 shampoos. It’s perfect to combat frizz in those humid tropical climates or to keep your hair sustainably sleek for your city adventure. For details, check out The Ultimate Salon Blow–Beat Your Frizz This Summer. Short on time? Smooth Lock Stay Sleek Leave In Cream is your next best option. This styling cream reduces frizz, fights the humidity, and makes your ‘do shiny and smooth.

3. Don’t forget your dry shampoo.

Powder Refresh 01

Powder Refresh 01

As I’ve mentioned in past posts, dry shampoo is a girl’s best friend, especially while traveling. Why take up precious site seeing or beach time by going through an entire wash and blow dry process? Instead, spray dry shampoo at the root to absorb accumulated oils and you are ready to go! My favorite is Powder Refresh Dry Shampoo. I love it because it smells minty fresh and is easy to apply with the aerosol nozzle. A little goes a long way, so not only do you really get a bang for your buck, but you can extend your style for 2-4 days!

4. Pack travel size hair products.
Just about every hair manufacturer makes most, if not all, of their full size items in travel sizes. Perfect to stash in your bag when you are limiting yourself to carry-on or giving you a bit more space for another pair of shoes. Tip: Ask your stylist if they have any of your favorite products in sample sizes. These are generally small thin packets with one or two applications and are typically complimentary!

5. Leave your styling tools at home when heading to Europe.
First of all, there is always the issue of needing transformers for your dryer, flat iron and curling iron. In my experience, even when planned well, I’ve blown my best styling tools. Total pain. Plan on using the dryer at the hotel or consider purchasing inexpensive tools at a drug store once you’ve arrived. They will be calibrated to the electrical outlets causing less trouble during your styling. At the end of the vacation, donate them back to the hotel, hostel or housekeeping for them to pass on to future guests.

6. Let the air do the drying.

Full Swirl

Full Swirl

In hot sticky locations, it takes twice as long to dry your hair with a dryer and the humidity can potentially reverse the result rather quickly. Talk to your stylist about tips and tricks to let your hair air dry using the appropriate products. I love Curvaceous Full Swirl 2 in 1 Cream. This 2 in 1 cream/serum is a great way to conserve space and blends the best remedy to control curly hair. It controls frizz and locks in moisture to keep curls fresh all day. You’ll save time and fit in with the relaxed atmosphere of your destination.

7. Embrace the bun.
If your hair is long enough a bun can make for an effortless look. Whenever I travel, I make sure to have ponytail holders and hairpins in my purse, backpack, beach bag, make-up bag, and any thing else I may be carrying around. These are my favorite bun hairpins. I get them at Sally’s beauty supply. They are inexpensive and even the thickest hair can be “bunned” with four of them and a hairband. The perfect way to transition from day to night in any location.

8. Mask by the pool.
Sitting by the pool or beach all day? Do you hair a favor by letting it sit in your favorite

Deep Facets Mask

Deep Facets Mask

treatment mask. Try Diamond Oil Deep Facets Mask. It’s a patented blend of rich oils that will give your hair shine and flexibility.Wet your hair before you head out, preferably in the shower but pool or ocean will work too. After towel drying your hair, add the mask. Wrap it on top of you head in a loose bundle and you’re set! Now let the sun do the work by warming it up to get maximum effect. Don’t forget to rinse it out at the beach shower or back in your room so you’re not adding mask to the pool.

9. Scope out the best blow dry bars.
Recently in New York I treated myself to an amazing blow out at Blow, a blow dry salon. City trips can get so hectic! It was the perfect way to have some relaxing down-time and saved me the trouble of doing it myself. In most larger cities, salon blowouts range from $35 – $65, and the feeling of being pampered is priceless.

10. Have a great hat.
Last year I had a salon guest who was going on a safari in Africa. She was staying at a beautiful camp resort, but was going to have very little access to electricity and water. When all else fails, pull out that hat. For this occasion she purchased a simple black baseball style hat, but depending on where you’re visiting, you can buy a great wide brimmed beach hat, fedora, or a casual cowboy hat and have a memorable souvenir from your trip.

There you have it! Everything your hair needs for your vacation. Now go get packing.