Hair Ball

I often get asked "how did you do that?" for various shoots that I do so I decided to put up a how to guide for what I like to call Hair ball.
On clean dry hair.
1. brush hair.
2. Place product evenly in hair ie; volumiser, mouse etc.
3. Blast dry hair.
4. Reapply product.
5. Blow-wave hair smooth.
6. Position intended ball.
7. Brush hair into a firm high pony tail and secure with elastic.
8. Use pomade and fine brush (toothbrush) to smooth fly-away hair from hair line to pony tail.
9. Pay attention to the nape and sew a seam using needle and thread to give nape a smooth taunt finish and tension.
10. Back-comb pony tail in fine sections.
11. Place 1st ball/doughnut into the centre of the ball at its base.
12. Pin and secure ball/doughnut.
13. Smooth hair around ball using a fine brush or comb.
14. Secure 1st ball with elastic.
15. Repeat step 10 to 14 to add more balls/doughnuts.
16. Use long fringe pins to add buoyancy to the design and shape.
17. Place hair fine nets to smooth all fly away hair
18. To finish, use a fixative for hold and shine.

Lost art of finger wave

This was originally written for cosmetiholic.com but didn't make it.

Finger Waves takes some practice to perfect.

1) Start with a freshly washed, damp hair and apply setting lotion or liquid gel. I like to use a light setting lotion such as AVEDA SCULTING LOTION. And part hair as you normally would, for better results part hair lower than you normally would i.e. corner of your eye brow. Now beginning on the side with more hair, using a fine comb, comb down from the part about two inches, pulling the hair tight along the way towards your face. 

2) Place your finger above and parallel to your parting and over the center of the wave you are shaping. Now comb down about 1/2 inch away from your finger, following the natural wave of the hair, keeping the comb parallel to your part move the comb back away from your face making a ‘C’, or half an ‘S”. Make sure you comb every layer of hair down to the scalp. Then hold your first wave in place with a sectioning clip.

3) Now create the second part of your “s” curl by firmly combing towards your face again. Your index finger should still be firmly in place, again, making sure to comb all the layers of you hair to the scalp. And use sectioning clips to secure hair.

4 Repeat the process on both sides until you are about two inches away from your nape.

5) The excess hair at the nape can be curled and pinned into a flat ringlet with a little setting lotion. For short hair, the ends can be wound around your finger and pinned flat against the head, creating a pin curl. For longer hair, I like to form a bun to hold the non-finger waved hair. Again, use section clips to hold hair in place. 

6) Place hairnet over head & blow-dry thoroughly until it is bone dry.

7) Gently remove hairnet and sectioning clips. Now gently brush your hair in the direction of your waves using a MASON PEARSON BRUSH or something similar. For softer results, keep brushing.

8) A light spritz of gloss such as BUMBLE AND BUMBLE SHINE SPRAY.

9) For durability, apply your favourite hairspray.

The first cut is the deepest-From Matrix Magazine

I had been dreading this phone call for weeks. First, the hollow pleasantries, the how-are-yous, and the what-have-you-been-up-tos, until, at long last, we got down to the nitty gritty. Jessica wanted a haircut.

I could’ve said no. I could’ve said that I was busy. I could have told her my sickly mother needed tending to. Anything. But in a moment of weakness I relented. After all, she was my ex girlfriend.

Okay, for the record, Jessica and I were inseparable for five years. And in that time, as my lover and my muse I had grown her hair into long blonde locks, pixie-cut it short and dark and all the variations in between, as my mood took me from season to season. Hell, I even styled her hair to go to work in the morning. I made her wake up at 6am to cut and baby-pink wash her fringe. Her hair became her crowning glory. All and sundry would stop her and tell her that it looked fantastic.

Until one day she decided that she needed to be alone. Away from me that is. It was one of those it’s-not-you-it’s-me conversations that left me feeling like my insides had been pulled out of my chest and stomped on repeatedly, until I begged for a crack in the ground to open up and swallow me whole.

Months went by and I hadn’t seen or heard from her as I licked my tender wounds and soldiered on. I thought she would have moved on to another…err…hairdresser. But as fate would have it, she wanted, no, needed a haircut from me. A little bit of something she had grown accustomed to: very well looked after hair.

Imagine having to make your ex (insert gender here) friend look good! And for whom? To add salt to the wound, did she expect me to make her pretty and prepared for her new single life?

I couldn’t help wondering what would happen if I made her look like something dug up from the garden, with third degree burns from over-processed bleach. What about telling her green was the new black? Or perm and colour, also known as CURL UP AND DYE! What about a military short back and sides, or would only leaving a single tuft of hair send her to Single Hell for eternity.

But appointments were made with business-like efficiency, deciding it best be dealt with in the salon, and not at home where wondering eyes and hearts could be broken.

In the chair Jessica still looked great, just as I remembered. I noticed her new kitten heels and her blonde roots competing with her rich chocolate hair, and her fringe that hung like a clump over her eyes, giving a glint of a smile.

I swiftly placed ten magazines and five different beverages in front of her, to keep her from speaking. With my tools in hand and my heart on my sleeve, I began her new look. A single mantra circled around in my head as I incised and dyed with great authority: “Be Cool”.

After the last primping was over, I felt emotionally stretched. But - and I say this with no ego - Jessica looked good. No, in fact she looked better than good, she looked great. Sleek shoulder-skimming chocolate brown hair - something she could do herself without a hairstylist on hand - and a fresh splash of caramel in her new swept fringe to bring out those pretty blue eyes. She stood up and gushed in the mirror, flicking and giggling like a schoolgirl. She hugged and squeezed me tight, which was something I had longed for since she left.

I could never deliberately give her bad hair, not with our history together. Besides, that would be bad publicity. Truth be told, I just wanted us to get along, and start anew, even if we were no longer lovers. I gave her something fresh, something with spunk, something that would say that Jessica and I were still connected, and still in each other’s lives. Because I needed her, as she needed me.

So if the first cut is the deepest, will the next cut be any better? I guess I’ll be finding out in six to eight weeks.

What's in my kit

Mason pearson brush
Large Round brush
Small round brush
Tooth brush
Fine brush
Wide tooth comb
Fine tooth comb
Cutting comb
Tail comb
Teasing comb
Hair scissors
Craft scissors

Booby pins
Fringe pins
Long hard fringe pins
Section clips
Pin curl clips
Hair nets
Hair rollers (24)
Hair slides
Sewing kit

Thermal fixative/setting lotion
Dry shampoo/dry clean lotion
Hand cleanser

Small/medium/large hot tongs
Hot rollers
Straightening irons
Power board

Switches of black hair
Switches of blonde hair
Switches of dark blonde hair
Switches of red hair

Brown wig
Medical gauze

Live and let dye- from Matrix Magazine

Sarah had been on a waiting list for three weeks for an appointment with Alison, our notorious colourist extraordinaire. “I wouldn’t see anybody else”, a friend told her. They had been trying for years to persuade Sarah to have a colour, without success. But with a small patch of grey coming on in her late twenties, Sarah had decided to bite the bullet.

Alison had the ability to push her clients — and the boundaries of chemistry. ‘The same as last time’ was not in her vocabulary. She would make clients go from red to blonde to black as she wished. Her favourite saying was “we’ll do it my way or you can go somewhere else darling”. And judging by her devoted followers, who kept her booked solid for weeks on end, her way, was indeed the right way.

“What are we doing today?” Alison asks a sheepish Sarah, while simultaneously fixing her own hair and make-up in the mirror.

“I was thinking of going a little lighter, for summer, but I still want to look natural.” Sarah says. “What do you think?”

“We don’t do natural here. I’ll tell you what I thinking. Blonde bombshell. Darling you’ll look stunning!”

Sarah looks horrified but before she can utter a word, Alison interjects with: “You’re a colour virgin, so I must warn you it will hurt. Beauty is pain darling, beauty is pain. First we bleach-bath you then we place foil all over your head and let you cook for an hour. Then we’ll have a look because we may have to do this all over again before we tone your hair.”

“Um, I’m not sure, will my hair feel the same after? I don’t want to look like a Russian prostitute,” Sarah stammers.

“Well darl, you have to break some eggs if you want to make an omelette.” And with that, Alison saunters to the backroom and mixes up a potent cocktail of bleach and peroxide.

Let’s have a brief history lesson. Extreme hair colouring rituals go way back.

Renaissance women enhanced their flaxen hair by mixing black sulphur and sulphate of aluminium, which they got at the local sulphur merchant, then they would apply the crude mixture into their hair, spreading their tresses over a brimless hat until the sun helped them achieve the shade they desired. Honey was then poured over the head to cover the stench.

Ancient Roman women used Mineral quicklime to give their hair a lustrous, red-gold-carrot tinge. However, they found that if you get quicklime on your skin it will severely irritate. And prolonged exposure will see the quicklime starting to eat right through your skin.

While Alison worked her magic Sarah sat stunned like a rabbit in the headlights unable to get out of her chair. After hours of lotions and potions, six coffees and an endless supply of magazines Alison finally said “ready”.

By the time Sarah got to my chair for the cut and styling I could see through the straw-like hair that her scalp was slightly red and blotchy. But judging from her big smile, it didn’t seem to bother her.

Alison hollered out across the salon.