Monthly Archives: September 2011

Explaining Extensions

Extensions

Extensions add thickness, length, or cool colors to your natural look. The different applications of extensions sewn, glued, clipped in, or strand by strand applied.


                          

 Sew in’s require hair be iinitially braided in cornrows covering the bottom half to the whole head. If you have fragile thin hair this might be a less viable option. After cornrowing is complete  your selected hair extensions of human or artificial hair are sewn into the braids. Since there’s an unnatural ratio of real hair to artificial hair weight, the weight of the extensions and the tightness of the braids over time can cause Traction Alopecia.

When a person or an animal wears their hair in tight styles such as pony tails, braids, or by wearing certain hair accessories (barrettes, rubber bands instead of hair bands, etc) repeatedly can cause Traction Alopecia.

        

Depending on the skill and time put into application glued extensions can last for a couple of weeks. If you apply them by yourself be precise, and meticulous. I suggest you get a friend to help, otherwise things could get messy! A small chance exists that you are allergic to the glue, so do a predisposition test 24-48 hours prior! A great set of hand glued extensions last close to a week and a half. If you put the money into glued extensions you might as well have a set of GOOD clip-in extensions that have been tailor cut and colored for your use. Ask your stylist to show you how to properly place them yourself. I suggest human hair for clip in extensions, which extends styling capabilities to drying, curling, and straightening as well as color if desired. Sheen or oil is necessary for the upkeep of your extensions.

    

 Strand by strand extensions also known as heat applied extensions. A stylist uses a hot implement to fuse the extension to the shaft of your hair.  If your hair is healthy and thick enough hold and blend out to the extensions its the closest thing you’re going to get to having real hair. However they are exactly what their name implies…lots of your time. This specific type of tend to be expensive when done correctly. Don’t skimp and let a cheap inexperienced stylist apply these to your hair, you will not be satisfied.

Day 18

As you can see flat-iron curls are bigger, softer looking curls than the Marcel curls I did for day 17. You can achieve this look by using small sections of hair. Think of your flat-iron as a pair of scissors, and your hair is a piece of ribbon. Depending on how tightly you want the ribbon to curl the sharper you rotate your scissors. The same concept applies with the flat-iron curls. The slower and sharper you turn the flat-iron the sharper the angles on the curl thus a tighter curl. The faster you rotate the iron through the hair the more the curl resembles a larger barrel curl. Don’t just look to your flat-iron as a straightening implement, but as a curler as well!

Heating Things Up

“When red-haired people are above a certain social grade their hair is auburn.” -Mark Twain

STOP THE HOT!
Your hair like any other part of your body needs some kind of protection from the intense heats of your blow dryer, flat-iron, and curling iron. Heat from your styler of choice must be hot enough to break and reform those hydrogen bonds we’ve been talking about.
 This is an imperative step in keeping healthy hair when you iron on a regular basis.

  Some irons can reach temperatures in excess of 400 degrees Fahrenheit (~204 celcius).  That is the temperature you cook a roast, so this extra step is crucial to the upkeep of your locks.  Most heat protectants have at least one or more of the following products; silicone, silk, jojoba, and some UVA protectants. You need to know what type of hair you have before choosing either your iron or protectant. Thicker coarser hair need heavier formulas while finer hair need more lightweight products. Just make sure to use some kind of heat protection, though I prefer ones that have natural ingredients such as silk or macadamia nut oil.

Hair Care Basics

“I’d love to kiss ya, but I just washed my hair.” -Bette Davis

 I have a couple hair maintenance requests for you all out there, they are as follows.

  1. CLEANSE and CONDITION your hair regularly. If your hair is thick or dry you can go a couple more days than the rest of us, so this rule use at your discretion. 
  2. Put some kind of OIL in your hair when its wet. Just about every major hair product line has an oil, you just need to find one that works well with your hair. If your hair is extremely dry try argon oil or macadamia nut oil, they are heavier natural oils. 
  3. SEAL your hair with some kind of spray conditioner. This helps not only condition your hair by sealing in moisture, but it can also stabilize the pH of your hair and seal out pollutants from your daily environment. 
  4. Always use a HEAT PROTECTANT. This is crucial to the health of your hair especially if you flat-iron on a regular basis.

These four simple steps will improve the health of your hair, while protecting it in the long run. You can compare this to the cleaning and moisturizing of your face and body to keep everything looking young and healthy. You wouldn’t walk around with chapped lips would you? 

Wet Hair

“I don’t consider myself bald, I’m just taller than my hair.” -Lucius Anneaus Seneca

Your random bit of knowledge for today is:
Hair is significantly weaker when it is wet. You could be causing your own breakage problems by styling your hair when it’s not fully dry. I know drying your hair is a boring step in styling, but it is one of the most important and influential steps in the overall styling process. When your hair is wet, the outer most layer of the cuticle has been in contact with water. The chemical composition of water is two hydrogens and one oxygen, H2O. The bonds in the  hydrogen of your cuticle weaken when wet because they want to bond with the water of your shower. Until this extra hydrogen has been dried out of the hair, the hair has less elasticity and can break easily. Yes I know hair is made out of Keratin protein, but the hydrogen bonds are what link the Keratin proteins to create the hair shaft. It’s these hydrogen bonds that are broken when the hair is wet to form around things such as rollers or your round brush that re-bond when dry  to create those curls we love so dearly.

Products and Advice to Make Your Life Easier.

 

“I’m undaunted in my quest to amuse myself by constantly changing my hair. “- Hillary Clinton
The picture below aided my decision in writing this category of my blog. Use it as a guide for products and practices I have found that helped improve not only the health of my hair but its’ styling ability as well. 
I don’t know if any of your mothers decided it would be a great idea to perm your hair when you were younger…but mine did. One of my earliest memories of the salon is my first perm. That’s me pointing like an idiot next to my sister with my perm.

 Of course my hair being straight as a stick went from smooth to frizzy instantly! To treat this mishap, my mother kept us stocked on Matrix shampoos and products to save the furry mess my hair had become. I remember the smell of the detangler and conditioner we used everyday to repair the damage. Since then I have been faithful to Biolage and Matrix products. I was cleaning out my parents house when I moved into my new apartment when I discovered these wonderful retro styling products! How old school! I still use gelee as my go to gel when I do my curly or crimpy styles. With gelee you can achieve any look from a wet shine to a controlled look that’s full of body.



I took a picture of the newest Matrix products in our display case that I use now. The picture above shows them with color coordinated matching labels. The green bottles of curl keeper are what I use now to style and extend the life of a perm. What’s so great about these products is the fact that you can literally treat your specific type of hair need with a specific product. You can choose the look you’re wanting to create and use the prescribed products, then poof your stressful styling days are over!  The sleek products are my personal favorite, it has a great deep conditioned feeling yet with lightweight results. The oil is also fantastic for all hair types because it is not a heavy oil that will weigh your hair down.  

 


Day 17

This style is not difficult but very time-consuming. You need to section your hair into tiny sections before you Marcel the hair. Longer or straighter hair may require you to spray the hair with hairspray before  you curl as well as after. Make sure the hair spray has dried before you apply heat to the hair, otherwise that sizzling sound you hear is you boiling your hair. Curls are always feminine and romantic, so this style would be great for date night when you really want to be noticed.

 

Day 16

Rockabilly is my favorite retro look of all time, because it’s quick and unique. Split your hair ear to ear into three section. Taking the middle section to the side, twist the hair around your hand into a pin curl. Continue curling this section till it lies on the head where you can pin it. I always leave a little bit at the base of the pin curl so you can create a bumped bang. Do the same pin curl technique on the side sections making sure to curl them towards the top curl so you can pin the curl over your parts. It is important that you don’t see scalp. You can always add a flower to cover up mistakes, but I think it looks just as lovely without.

 

Day 15

This style I chose for the Red Dress fundraising event for the Wig Bank of Lenoir. This style is not difficult just time consuming, make sure you take small sections to ensure perfect curls. You need to braid the lower third of your hair, at least from your occipital bone down. Leave this braid for last. Curl your remaining hair  with differing sized curling irons, or use your flat iron to create different sized curls. When finished curling your hair, wrap the braid around your hair loosely anchoring with pins as you go. I leave a few curls down in the front just to frame the face and give it a more feminine look.

Day 14

This is one of those more difficult styles I was referring to in my introduction. You need to separate your fringe (bang) away from the rest of your hair and pin it up for last. Secondly the middle half of your head, from behind the bang to right below the crown of your head. You need to make a large pin curl out of this hair and pin it to the crown of your head so it almost looks like a hair halo. Curl the hair below the pin curl in small sections with a larger barrel curling iron or a flat iron so the curls are more natural looking. Leave these curls down to flow. After you’ve done this you need to grab your ribbon of choice and wrap around your head like a headband, and pin underneath your hair you left hanging down. Make sure this ribbon is pinned securely otherwise it will slip. Your bang section should be parted the way you like to wear them. I wore a side part so I could create my flower using my hair. Curl your bang and wrap it on itself to create a flower and pin. The remaining curls can either be left to frame the face, or can be pinned over the ribbon to frame and accentuate the pin curl.