Thursday, 8 August 2013

Holiday Hair - Blonde Hair Gone Green!!!

We recently commissioned a survey to find out thoughts and beliefs on hair colouring. One of the statistics revealed, is 6% of people believe Tomato Ketchup will 'strip out' green tone in blonde hair (found after swimming). Is this true? The answer is both yes and no.

Why does blonde hair go green?

Firstly, the misconception is exposure to chlorine will turn blonde hair green. This isn't true, in actual fact the green occurs in blonde hair due to oxidized metals found within the water - not the chlorine.

Preventing and resolving green hair

The best way to prevent blonde hair turning green in the first instance is to use a product which produces a barrier such as Philip Kingsley Swim Cap. However, if the hair has (already) gone green you simply need to remove the trace metals from the hair with a clarifying shampoo. Again, if you are on holiday and cannot find a clarifying shampoo - a local convenience store would certainly stock bicarbonate of soda and you can use this ingredient via the Bicarb clarifying method I outline here:-

So does Tomato Ketchup really work?

 Actually whilst tomato ketchup cannot strip the green from the hair (as people believe) it can neutralise it. In most cases, clarifying the hair (as outlined above) will remove the green from the hair easily, however if you are on holiday, discover green and want it gone immediately, locating a tomato ketchup sachet from a dining room, restaurant or fast food outlet is obviously very easy.

How to use Tomato Ketchup on green hair

To neutralise green with tomato Ketchup, firstly wet the hair and apply a small amount of regular white conditioner throughout. Then squeeze an equally small amount of the Ketchup into your hand and work through the hair to create a pink cream. Leave for 10 minutes and rinse out with cool water. Remember, the ketchup is only neutralising (and masking) the green - so look to clarify as soon as you can (or when you return home).
Remember, the best solution to unwanted green blonde hair is to clarify, so if your hair is prone to turning green, make sure you pack a clarifying shampoo or even baby shampoo before you travel.  Ideally purchasing a product such as Philip Kingsley Swim Cap (and taking on holiday with you) which will prevent the issue occurring. The latter product is especially worth using if you are a regular swimmer throughout the year anyway.

Saturday, 3 August 2013

Beach Hair How To

Beach hair is a great look which can work for either day or nightime.   It's obviously based on the texture naturally wavy hair will go when exposure to sea water has occured.  However, if you have naturally straight or very silky hair - the look won't happen simply by applying salt water.  The below how to is a simple method to achieve the look.

Here is a quick how to for you that's pretty simple:-

1. Wash the hair in a clear, simple or baby shampoo (you don't want the hair to be too conditioned for this one).

2. Spritz the damp hair with sea salt spray (if you don't have sea salt you can use my method for creating this at home here).

3. Tip your head upside down and rough dry to 100%. Make sure you rough try and avoid trying to smooth out the hair. The hair will feel quite course and textured at this point - which is good.

4. Next take some large sections of hair and plait to midway down. You should have around 6 plaits across your head, bound midway with the bottom lengths free.

5. Now take a straightening iron and clamp down along the length of the plaits to heat up.

If you want a curlier beach effect, when you get to the free (bottom) lengths twist the hair around in the iron and create a traditional curl in this unplaited hair. You can do this by twising the iron or simply winding the hair around the iron as you would a tong.

6. With your plaits all heated and curls created in the bottom lengths, leave the hair for around 20 minutes or longer if you wish.

7. Finally, remove the bands from the plaits and use your fingers to break up the hair. Shake the hair loose and if you wish, you can add a little Argan Oil to the ends to give some shine.

Considering a Perm?

Perms are fantastic for creating curl, texture and controlled foundation for styling. If you suffer from hair which is prone to flopping and not holding a curl - changing the hair's internal structure and memory will enable roller setting, blow-drying and general styling to hold in the hair between washes.

Here are 10 facts you might not know about perming:-

1. A perm uses a lotion which softens the keratin fibre in the hair and breaks the interal structure (shape). When the hair is wound around a tool (be it curler, rod or other) the shape of the hair will reform to match the tool. A second lotion (a neutraliser) is then used to affix the hair bonds in their new permanent shape (typically the curl).

2. Traditional perms were created over 100 years ago, however their purpose was to change the texture and allow the hair to be roller set or styled without the result flopping or falling out. Women would never be seen with their hair in it's wet perm state and would always set and style.

3. It was hair icon Vidal Sassoon who created the 'wash and wear' perm in the late 1960's. When cutting a models wet hair, he liked the wave and texture he was noticing (from the perm foundation) and made the radical decision (back then) to not roller the set the hair. This was the first time a perm foundation had been displayed in the hair without it being set on larger rollers.

4. In the 1970's the wash and wear perm became very fashionable and women stopped roller setting their hair and instead went with loose curly texture. By the mid 1970's Barbra Steisand's then hairdresser (now producer) Jon Peters created the iconic bubble perm look - whereby the perm was created on very small rods to create a tight effect, this was the birth of the curly perm.

5. The tight curly perm remained very popular into the mid 1980's, when Trevor Sorbie created the 'Scrunch Dry'. Until this point it had been very difficult to blow-dry curly perms without smoothing them out. However, Trevor created a method of scrunching the curls in the hand (as the hair was dried) and using hair mousse. Later diffusers would produce this same effect. The scrunch perm allowed much looser perms to be produced and was sported by many famous women including Madonna, Kylie Minogue and Demi Moore.

6. The negative misconceptions around perming happened at this time, because along with scrunch

perms came heavy use of both bleach and heat (to create the effects). No heat protection products were available in these days and the hair began to look dry and frizzy. The perception was the perm had caused this, but in most cases it was the combinations of two many chemical and heat processes which caused the hair to be compromised and in most occassions over bleaching.

7. Whilst the desire for curly hair went out of fashion in the 1990's (when straight looks begun to appear), many famous women continued to use perm foundations to retain blowdries and curl sets as the technical treatment had been used for decades prior. Julia Roberts famous spiral perm in the 1990 film Pretty Woman was retained by many women well into the straight hair era of the 1990's.

8. In the 2010's, the issues women are now facing with their hair have gone full circule and we are back to the principles of 1960's styling. Women want volume, movement and roller set looks - but are finding these looks do not hold.

9. Another unknown fact about perms, is they should also be applied on very curly and unruly hair. Applying a perm structure to naturally curly hair will create a smooth controlled curl that can be washed and worn. The perm foundation often encourages the hair to grow in a more unform hair pattern.

10. Perms remain in the hair based on the length and size of curl. A loose body curl could be expected to last in short hair for around 8 weeks, whilst a long spiral perm will remain in the hair beyond 18 months.

Despite popular misconception, perms are not scary, nor dangerous but they are often misunderstood (even by today's hairdressers).  If you are considering a perm be it for wash and wear curl, beach wave, curl ombre or style retention you need to absolutely understand what look you are aiming for and then research the best type of perm method for you. 

Staying Platinum Blonde

If you are quite dark (naturally) remaining a platinum blonde shade can sometimes be problematic with the regrowth. Unless the bleach is expertly applied to the new growth, if overlapping occurs (this is where the bleach applied crosses onto the previously lightened hair), you can start to get quite noticeable breakage.

Switch to a lightening blonde colourant

You can ease up on the regrowth bleaching, by switching to a lightening blonde colourant. Lightening blonde colourants are still strong, but not to the degree of bleach. On dark natural bases, these products will not produce a pure blonde - but a deep golden, however it will disguise your roots and give your hair a few months rest to allow the previously full head bleached areas to grow down.

Use Highlights to break up root straps 

To break up the noticeable warm blonde strap line, either ask your salon to apply foils and only run the bleach onto the dark areas weaved out (near the roots), or if you are using a kit or Magicap - once you have pulled the hair through, only apply that lightening product onto the darker areas of the highlights pulled.

Keep it toned

If you then tone with Iced Platinum Colour Restore, the hair will remain crisp and pale and the growth areas will be fully blended.

By carefully looking at the photograph, you can see this is how Gwen Stefani is maintaining her pure white look, between complete bleach regrowth applications.   You just have to remember, the key with platinum is to retain the hair health.  So consider this when retaining the shade with regrowth applications.

Quick Tip: Hiding Dark Roots

This is a very quick tip and whilst not perfect does work!

If you are showing (unwanted) very dark roots, you can blend them out by spraying Batiste directly onto them. You need to spray the dry shampoo quick close to the area so it 'powders' and then just rub it in. Go along your parting and where the dark roots show most. It won't erase them entirely, but it will blend them out.

If you have a tonal hair colour (such as deep blonde or red) you can use one of the Batistes coloured shampoos for the same method. 

QUICK TIP - Creating Sea Salt Spray At Home

Sea Salt Spray is a great way to produce beach style hair, if you want to know how to actually create the 'beach waves' check out my blog on the subject here:- 

If you don't have any Sea Salt spray at hand, there is a quick method I can give you to produce it yourself and apply.

1. Simply put 1 tablespoon of table salt into a mug and pour in boiling water and stir to dissolve the salt.

2. Allow the salt water to cool and then pour into a small bowl.

3. Take either some kitchen roll or a new J cloth and absorb the salt water.

5. Apply to sections of your damp hair and comb through and proceed to your styling method.

NB: You should always apply Sea Salt solution to clarified and non conditioned hair. If the hair is conditioned there will be a barrier on it and the cuticle will not raise to give the texture you want.

Rather than using table salt, I find Dead Sea Salt really good for creating this solution.  It's not very expensive and one box lasts for ages.  Dead Sea Salt can be found in health shops and on sites such as Amazon.