Photos by MacKenzie Wilson
Of the questions that I get asked from time to time, most are about my hair. Now I’ll be the first to admit that these tresses are far from perfect. I’ve been coloring and using heat on them for as long as I can remember! However I have found what works best for me and caters to my particular taste, so I thought I’d answer a few of the questions that I get most often in hopes that maybe it can help you find what works best for you too.
Q: What do you ask your stylist for when you go into the salon? What advice can you give for achieving the hairstyle you want?
A: I’m very picky, especially when it comes to my hair (it is on my head after all!) So whenever I go into the salon, I always bring lots of photos. Here’s the catch with that though: I never expect my hair to look exactly like any particular photo. One thing that you have to realize is that everyone’s genes are different. Everyone’s hair is made up of different elements and reacts differently to certain products. That said, I try to bring in plenty of photos that feature different characteristics I like. For example, I may like how piecey the color is in one particular photo or like the length of a certain haircut in another.
As far as what I ask for goes, I tend to let the hairstylist do what they think is best. I love the natural look that balayage creates, so I typically request a more hand-painted feel for my color and bring in lots of photos of Julie Sariñana. As far as cuts are concerned, I’ve been trying to grow out both my hair and my layers. But when I do get a cut, I ask for a lot of lived-in texture and for the weight taken out, since I have pretty thick hair!
Q: What do you do to maintain your color in between salon visits?
A: Because my hair is thick, difficult to lighten, and prone to brassiness, I always try to do a few different things in between salon visits to keep my hair looking fresh and prevent it from fading. First, I use a blue shampoo or treatment religiously. I especially love the L’Oreal Professional Color Corrector for Blondes. I’ll use it once or twice a week when my hair is feeling brassy, and it truly does help to combat that! Additionally, I’ll try to wash my hair in lukewarm or cold water and use heat styling products as little as I can.
Q: What shampoo and conditioner brands do you use?
A: I tend to be a big product junkie (everyone who has taken a peek inside my shower can attest to this.) I love trying new products! However, there have been a few brands over the years that have made it onto my tried-and-true list, the brands that I always seem to come back to no matter what.
First is Kérastase. I have yet to try a product from this brand that I don’t like! A few of my favorite shampoos/conditioner lines from Kérastase are: Cristalliste (for long, thick hair) and Elixir Ultime (for deep nourishment, softness, and shine.) Another shampoo/conditioner that I can’t live without is the Pro Fiber system from L’Oreal. It has completely changed the look and feel of my hair for the better! You can read my full review here.
Q: What other products do you suggest for achieving a piecey, lived-in look?
A: For me, I love a dry texturizing spray and some kind of wax or pomade for the ends. You can check out this post to find my top five dry texturizing sprays of all time (even though the Ouai Texturizing Hairspray and the L’Oreal Next Day Hair would be added to that list now!) And if you’re searching for a good pomade to create those piecey ends, I love the Bumble and Bumble Sumowax.
Q: How do you curl your hair?
A: It depends on the day, but typically I use a 1.25″ curling iron. If you’re interested, you can find a full tutorial here. I have also been trying the flat iron waves method from Jen Atkin and love that too!
Q: Where do you recommend that I go to get my hair done?
A: It all depends on what you’re looking for and where you’re located! If you’re in Omaha though, I definitely recommend Suite Simplicity. All of the women who work there (my mother and hairstylist since birth included) are amazing and talented and so very good at what they do. If you’re in Nashville, definitely check out Parlour and Juke (Marwa and Mary Ellen) or Hunter at J.Bangs!
If you’re not in one of those areas, I recommend doing a bit of research. Search for different salons on Instagram. Look for different hairstylists’ work that you admire, see what they specialize in, and ask for a consultation! This will help you find the stylist that’s right for you.
One thing to remember is that I am, by no means, a professional. These are all just my personal experiences from a long history of trial and error with my hair! Hopefully my experiences can help you discover something new about your hair and the processes behind it.
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