Key things to keep in mind when considering a major mane makeover.
You know those kids that show up to school wearing a cape, striped knee socks and a tutu? Yeah. That was us. Our parents were always of the opinion that we should wear what we loved; the same could be said for our haircuts.
Nothing was off limits; be it Libertee’s Roxette rocker-chic do (just in time for grade seven school photos), or Lecina’s Sonic the Hedgehog inspired spikes (circa grades six through eight) . . . anything went. Grant it, a part of us wishes we were kidding, but another part of us, the bigger part, is grateful that our parents were rad enough to be so liberal with our locks-related-decisions.
Our hair is such big part of our appearance and it gives us the opportunity to express even just a bit of who we are on a daily basis. Unlike make-up that can change depending on the day and outfit, our hair is a bit more of a pillar in our appearance.
It is because of this permanence, that decisions related to our hair should be well thought out and deliberate. Yes, hair can always grow back, but there’s nothing worse than leaving the salon pulling on your hair as you fruitlessly try to make it longer.
... and Alex and Brutus (their fur baby)
We love her. Libertee has known Colleen since forever and the two have survived a myriad of adventures including a wide-sampling of various hair-cuts and colours. Colleen is a master stylist with M Salon, located in Calgary and, in our opinion, is one of the best in the business.
Like any relationship, trust is imperative. Because we trust Colleen with both our secrets and our hair, we wanted to get her take on the dos and don’ts of a major mane makeover.
Lay it on us, Colleen!
Transformations are fun, and I love being a part of them, but if I could give any advice it would be to do your best not to make a spur of the moment decision – hair can’t be uncut! First and foremost, I recommend that if your are considering a major change (think going from brunette to blonde, or long to pixie) it’s a good idea to start with a consultation, or a quick “appointment before your appointment.” It’s not only helpful to the stylist as this conversation will help them in determining how much time they need to block off for your service, it’s also a great time to ask questions that will help you determine if you’re really ready to make a major change. Be sure to talk about:
Your ability: Be honest; can you recreate this look on our own? Do you have the tools and the dexterity to utilize those tools to make it happen?
Maintenance: How often will your new style require touch ups? A blunt bob will require more upkeep and cuts than hair that’s half way down your back. Similarly, bangs grow mad fast, so be prepared to be able to see your stylist more often. As an FYI, most shops will offer complimentary bang trims, so it’s simply a matter of being able to pop in for a quick touch up.
The growing out process: Most women cut their hair with the anticipation that they will eventually grow it out again. Be aware of the sometimes patience-testing process and how to handle it. Talk about styles that you can use to carry you through the awkward phases.
Products: Talk to your stylist about whether or not your new style will require a new product regime, and get some recommendations! Long hair styles and short hair styles often require different products; be conscious and prepared to arm yourself with the products that will give you the best shot of recreating the “I just had my hair styled,” look.
Their thoughts: Your stylist is a professional and should have a good grasp about face shapes and forehead lengths that will and will not accommodate certain haircuts, well. To be sure that your stylist really understands the look that you’re going for be prepared with pictures! The internet, specifically, Pinterest, is a girl’s best friend – use it!
Your thoughts: Talk about what’s inspiring the sudden change – are you frustrated with your current haircut, or are you simply looking for something new? A stylist’s understanding of these ideas will help them assist you in deciding on your new look. Also – be specific; your understanding of an inch, and what an actual inch is, might be two different things, so be specific, and get clarification.
The cost: Making a major change can mean more than one process during a hair appointment which can translate to costing the client more coin. As a general rule of thumb, be sure to have a clear understanding of how your salon charges for various processes like toner, highlights, color and lowlights. Knowledge is power.
Your trust: I always advise clients to avoid making a major change with a stylist you’re seeing for the first time. If you’re new in town, or in the market for a new stylist, I always recommend asking a stranger; if you like their hair, ask them who is responsible for it and go in for a consultation. As a rule of thumb, use the consultation to not only ask them questions about their thoughts on your hair, but also to get a feel for how you get along with them as a person. Hair appointments can last for hours, and there’s nothing worse than sitting through an appointment with someone that you don’t feel at ease with. Additionally, make a point of asking your stylist where they get their training. A positive sign for any salon is if they answer: “in house;” this means that the salon is actively investing in their own stylists, and it’s more likely that your stylist will be there the next time you return and be up to speed on the latest trends.
See! You love her too, right!?
We bid you great hair and happiness, ladies!