HOW TO GET A LONGER PONYTAIL

photos/post: Kristin Ess

Sometimes if you have super curly hair it can be frustrating to wear it in a ponytail because it just gets so short! Wanted to share my favorite quick trick for lengthening a ponytail. This can be done on any hair type really, but you’ll see the best results with curly hair. Basically all do you is add a second pony underneath the first one. Split your hair in two sections as you see Meskie doing below, secure with a ponytail holder and then let the top one fall over the bottom one. Once you have the ponytails in place, twist a couple of the curls together to bond the top and bottom ponytail and that’s it! It’s a quick trick and super-handy for anyone trying to get more length instead of “poof”. Throw in a cute accessory and you’re good to go.

NATURAL HAIR CHIGNON

PHOTOS/POST: KRISTIN ESS

It’s definitely not easy to find tutorials online for girls with curls, frizz or natural texture so we’re going to try and remedy that by bringing more of these to the blog. We don’t claim to be natural hair experts, but we certainly know a cute updo when we see one! This particular chignon is great for anyone with lots of natural volume. It’s a great way to pull it all together when you’re rushing out the door to dinner or going on a date. Here’s how this sweet chignon was done…

  1. Start with all of your hair down. I personally like this chignon best with a side part, but you can do center, too.
  2. On one side make 2 twist braids. Try making one smaller than the other to mix it up.
  3. Take all of the hair behind your ears and down to the nape of your neck and make a bun. We went for a more “round bun” rather than the typical ballerina style bun that’s twisted into place. You can get a rounder bun by pulling the hair 3/4 of the way through your ponytail holder and pinning the rest underneath.
  4. Once your bun is in place, take your two twists from the first side and pin them over the top of the bun.
  5. Next, make a single twist on the opposite side.
  6. Now pin that over the bun as well. When pinning this section we used a larger bobbypin for extra support.
  7. Finally, you want to roll the remaining hair in front toward the back. We rolled “up and back” for this look but you can roll under and back if you prefer. Pin into place right above the bun in back and tuck in any remaining pieces.

How cute is Meskie!? Best hair ever and such a natural at doing updos! Looking forward to bringing you many more! xo

HAIR COLOR GUIDE (REDS)

POST/GRAPHIC DESIGN: KRISTIN ESS

The best thing in the world is when a client walks into the studio and says “I think I want to go red.” It’s hard to keep from jumping up and down. First thing you have to do as a colorist is find out what kind of red your client is attracted to. And if you’re doing the color at home, you have to figure out what tones you want to have. I made this chart to show you the 4 main red families. It’s important to know because there are so many different names for red– colorists, am I right? One person’s chestnut is another person’s auburn, and one person’s copper is another person’s strawberry blonde. This guide gives you a clearer understanding and something to take with you when getting your color done or shopping for the right box to use at home. Below I’ve listed the 4 main families of red and some helpful info about each one…

  • Ginger. This is the kind of color you see on someone who is a natural redhead. Think of Nicole Kidman, Julianne Moore, Isla Fisher, Jessica Chastain, etc… Gingers are typically a lighter shade because as this tone goes darker it leans more toward “a hint of red, which we discussed in the last color guide post. Ginger is not an intense red so the darker you go, the less you see the red. I suggest you go for this if you have fair skin and light eyes.
  • Copper/Orange. This is one of the most popular reds on earth thanks to Christina Hendricks and Taylor Tomassi Hill. Admit it! You’ve definitely wondered if you could pull of that sparkling shade of Joan. It’s vibrant and rich and reflects so much light. The good news is it can be done on almost any skin tone as long as it’s done right. A true copper will have a very “orange” tone to it so you’ll have to work hard to keep it from fading but it’s so worth it. Bright copper/orange tones are stunning. I tend to put this on the girls who love a very vintage vibe and have great style.
  • Blue Reds. Don’t let the blue part scare you. It just means this is more of a true red. Think koolaid, think red velvet cake, think Jessica Rabbit. Just like the copper/orange family, I vote you can put this one almost anyone who’s willing to try it. It looks great on any skin tone if it’s done right. I’ve put this on girls with every skin tone and I can tell you it works, but you have to have a very special attitude to pull this off. I like to discribe this as decadent, rebellious and glamourous. This color isn’t for the shy girl.
  • Purple Reds. We’re talking merlot, black cherry, plum and berries. These are my favorite for girls who have naturally dark hair and want to dip into the red family. It tends to go well with a more olive skin tone. I usually like to stay away from putting purple-reds on girls with redness or pink tones in their skin. The purple tones can bring out the redness. Purple based reds aren’t supposed to look natural! Shine and intensity is what this color is all about. When I do this on someone, I encourage them to wear their hair wavy because it really helps give it a little dimesion and keeps it from looking wig-like.

Fading: Synthetic reds (as in anything you use color to achieve) are known for fading fast.

  • Use a color shampoo. Either one that deposits color or one that is intended to keep the color longer. (Stay tuned for the color shampoo round up! I’ll spill my favorites for keeping color in place next week.)
  • Start strong. I always formulate my color so that it’s extra bright for the first week and then fades out to a perfect shade by the second week, then it holds that color for weeks to come. Try going a slightly brighter color so it settles where you want it!
  • Give it some time. With red, you have to apply it over and over and over in order for it to really stick– especially if you’re going red from a lighter color. My red faded out so much for the first year, but once I got into the second year there was a major decrease in fading. Think about it– if you put red dye on a white towel and wash it, it will be pink. When you dye it over and over it will start to keep the color more. Give it time.
  • It’s easier to keep the color in if you’re going from a darker shade to red vs. a lighter shade to red. Natural dark hair color has so much red under it already that it supports the red and keeps it from fading so fast. Lighter hair doesn’t have the same underlying red tones to support. Just know it may be a little harder. (Talk to your colorist if you want a more indepth understanding of this.)

Hope you guys have loved these color guides! If you missed any, see them here: ASHE, NEUTRALGOLD, WARM GOLD, HINT OF RED.

HAIR COLOR GUIDE (HINT OF RED)

post/graphic design: Kristin Ess

Tis the season, hunnies!! This color guide revolves around “hints of red”. This is my absolute personal favorite family of all because it introduces people to the world of warmth in a non-commital/non-scary kind of way. Scenerio: let’s say you’ve been a blonde or a brunette forever but you’re suuuuuper bored with your color. And let’s say you want to venture out and try something new! “Hints of red” would be a great way to test the waters because, again, you can try this out using a gloss or temporary color before going with a more permanent option. Glosses and temporary colors will fade out nicely over the course of 6-8 weeks so if you decide warmth isn’t for you, you don’t have to keep it– just let it go away. Ask your colorist about a gloss or if you’re buying a temporary box of color to use at home, look up the reviews and make sure it fades nicely. When I talk about hints of red with my clients, I use fun descriptive words like apple cider, pumpkin latte, cinnamon stick, and copper penny. They’re not quite reds, but they have more warmth than anything in the gold family. These are all a bunch of “almost colors” that never fully cross over into the red family. BUT… this color should come with a warning– it’s extremely addictive and a total gateway drug to real reds (which are the next hair post). Here are some things you should know when considering “hints of red”.

  • Contrary to popular belief, reds are actually GREAT for those with pink/redness to their skin. Red tones in the hair will often “upstage” the red tones in your skin and make blemishes, acne and rosacea less obvious. I speak from experience– I have red hair and I have a lot of pink/red in my t-zone and the it downplays the tone of my skin. When a client is going through a really rough time with their skin, I tend to take them to the “hint of red” if not red family because all of the sudden the hair color pops and the redness in the skin takes a back seat. I know this is a sensitive subject for many of you, but believe me, this is something can really help. The red tones of the hair does not make the red tones in the skin stick out more. It’s magic and it’s one of my all time favorite tricks for helping someone through a hard moment/trying to repair their skin.
  • Conserve that color! You paid for it and if you like it, you should try to keep it! Use a color conserving shampoo instead of your normal shampoo. My favorite is this one but it gets very expensive, so if you’re on a budget, try the cheaper version here! I like to get both and alternate!
  • What if you hate it? If you try a having a “hint of red” and you decide you hate it, use a clarifying shampoo once or twice a week to make it fade a little faster. One I really like is this.
  • Who can wear hints of red? Pretty much anyone can wear hints of red. I would suggest putting a tiny bit of color on your brows though. You never want to be that girl with warm hair and grayish/mousy brows. It pulls everything together and makes it look so much more natural. Don’t leave the color on your brows the full time. You just want to take the ashe away, not make them too warm. I tend to apply mine with a clean mascara wand (called a spoolie) and leave them for 10-15 min max.
  • Play with your makeup. The makeup you used before may not be the right makeup after you get your “hints of red”. Maybe instead of black liner, you try a dark brown. Or maybe instead of lipstick, your new go to becomes a gloss. Who knows! Play around. Go to a counter and ask for advice. If you were terrified to wear an olive based shadow before, maybe now is the time! My favorite makeup tones for red hair tones are bronzes and rosy pinks. Luckily a rich cherry red lip still works with red hair so feel free to go bold there.

Next up: Full on REDS! All types!