Saturday, May 9, 2009

The Executive Advantage

When it comes to getting the job, earning the promotion, landing the big account, or in these harsh economic times, keeping your position, how you look is as important as what you know. The most expensive suit, designer necktie, or status handbag won't matter if you are not only impeccably groomed but also up to date in your fashion statement and youthful looking.

According to a nationwide survey conducted by the Day Spa Association, the number one anti-aging treatment available at salons and spas is haircolor. This is true for men as well as women. As we age, the face needs the softening effect of a lighter haircolor. (That's why Mother Nature makes us gray.) But gray hair, even the most flattering shade, still makes anyone look older. And in today's youth obsessed culture, looking younger is always better than looking "distinguished."

So whether you are already gray or just starting to notice some gray, a good haircolorist will be able to advise you on the most flattering shade of haircolor to complement your skintone, your style, and your age. If you don't want a dramatic overnight change, a good colorist can reduce the gray gradually, over time, so one notices. This technique is especially popular with men.

With women who are just starting to go gray, highlights can camouflage the gray initially so an all-over color is not necessary. When an all-over color becomes necessary, a good colorist may recommend a shade lighter than your natural color for the base and add dimension by foiling or painting additional shades. The biggest mistake people make is trying to recapture the look of their youth by choosing a haircolor that is too dark and one dimensional which makes them look even older. You see this all the time with those who color their own hair at home.

For the best haircolor possible, always put your hair in the hands of a qualified, experienced haircolorist.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

How to Get a Great Haircolor

If you're frustrated from going to one salon after another in the hopes of finding someone who can give you the haircolor you want, there is a better method than trial and error.

Know that there is a big difference between a hairstylist and a haircolorist. Not all stylists have
invested the time and money in years of continuing advanced education that is necessary to become a good haircolorist.

When you see someone whose hair color looks great, ask them who does their color. (They'll be be flattered that you asked and happy to provide the information.) Collect pictures from magazines of models and celebrities whose haircolor you like.

If you're going for a dramatic change, try on a wig first to make sure it's what you really want.

Schedule an appointment for a color consultation with a recommended colorist. Bring your photos. If you sense an "attitude," or an unwillingness to listen to what you want, go elsewhere.

Once you've found a colorist whose willing to listen to you attentively, ask for his/her recommendations. An experienced, good colorist will be able to tell you exactly why the color in the photos will be right for you or not, depending on your natural hair color, skintone, eye color, desired hairstyle it will have to complement, and your body proportion and weight. Another major consideration is how much time and money you are willing to commit to maintain your color. If his/her recommendation is different from the exact color in the photo you've brought along, take his/her advice over your own emotional choice.

When it's time for a retouch, a great haircolorist will always use one formula on the roots and a different formula on the rest of your hair.

A great haircolorist will protect your hair by using quality shampoos and conditioners at the sink, and by recommending periodic deep conditioning and reconstructing treatments.

Finally, a great haircolorist will take the time to prescribe the right color-friendly products for you to purchase for home care, an investment worth making to prolong the life of your color and health of your hair.

Friday, May 1, 2009

How to Find a Good Haircolorist

If your hairstylist is coloring your hair, you probably already know that what you really need is a haircolorist.

In Europe, one becomes a hairdresser by becoming an apprentice in an established salon and mentoring under those with experience for perhaps two to three years before being allowed to perform services on clients. In the U. S. however, to become a hairdresser one must atttend a cosmetology school for a certain number of hours which varies from state to state. (In Florida, it's 1200 hours.) Anyone who pays their tuition, completes the required courses, and passes the State exam receives a license which allows them to cut, style, color and chemically process hair with less than a year's experience, most of which is theory rather than practical experience.

So what distinguishes a competent haircolorist from a licensed hairstylist? Continued education.

When looking for a haircolorist then, years behind the chair means nothing. Hours of advanced education outside of the salon is what is important. So how do you find someone who has invested time and money in ongoing, continuing advanced education in hair color?

Schedule a color consultation at a recommended salon. Most salons offer this as a free service; some charge for the consultation but apply the full amount to your service. The consultation is your chance to interview your potential new colorist and ask important questions.

More on this in my next blog.