Posts Tagged ‘pomade’



This is the biggest secret to gorgeous brows that I can share with you. A client actually taught it to me back in 2003 and it blew my mind! It seems like it wouldn’t make much of a difference but I promise you, it’s a game changer. Brows are such an important facial feature because they frame your eyes. And people shouldn’t be able to see the work you did to fill them in and define them. It’s not  detail work like the wing of a cat eye or your cupid’s bow. It’s about the big picture. So you need to take a step back to get perspective and fill them in from there. Here’s how:  (more…)


photos: (top) (bottom)

The only real secret to braiding is patience. And while it can take some serious time to really perfect “the plait” (as our friends from across the pond like to call it), there is one thing that I always depend on when doing braided hair styles on my girls… Redken Rough Paste. The words paste + pomade may seem a lil’ sketch at first, but this has been my secret weapon in the war on clean hair for years. It’s water-soluable, oil-free, inexpensive and one tube will last you a good year or so. Before braiding, if my client’s hair is freshly washed + blown dried it’s lovely, but it’s a bit too soft, slippery + hard to control. And while we know braids are always easier to do on hair that’s a little dirty, it’s never as shiny. Here’s how I solve that problem…



Nearly 4 years ago, my friend Tracee was diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer. She was only 33. Hair + boobies are EVERYTHING at that age– especially to Tracee considering she was quite blessed with both. The news was shocking, but in typical Tracee fashion she soon requested we all “get it together” so we could support her in her fight. One night she called and asked if I would cut her hair off before she started chemo. I was thrilled to do that for her. We made it really fun. She always wanted to know what she’d look like with short bleach blonde hair anyway… Wish granted! We set aside 4 or 5 hours and gave her all KINDS of different haircuts on our road to a platinum pixie. We laughed so hard at some of the cuts and kept some in mind for when her hair grew back in. Seeing her so happy before bravely heading into chemo was pretty unforgettable. If you’re going through or about to go through chemo, I strongly recommend that you cut your hair short prior to fall out. Long or even medium hair can be really scary when it falls out because there’s so much more of it. Minimize the shock. No one wants to loose their hair, but on the flip side, you never know… you may love chopping it off!

During chemo therapy, a lot of your time is spent in doors, resting, eating popsicles + trying to get well. In this down time, watch some youtube videos. Learn how to draw in your eye brows when you don’t have any, and learn the trick to giving yourself lashes when there’s nothing there. Figure out how to properly wash a wig, practice putting it on, learn to style it. Figure out how to master scarvesturbans! You’ve got a lot of work to do. There is so much info on the internet, and though some is out dated, keep searching! Tracee ended up like Samantha from Sex In the City. She got multiple wigs and had fun with them. As you can see in the pictures below, she added roots to a blonde wig, cut bangs (always helps a wig look more real), styled it with headbands and braids, etc… She always looked gorgeous. How you feel about yourself is really important during recovery. Anyone will tell you, positive feelings are MAJOR.

I get asked about wigs a lot from people going through treatment. Luckily, if you live in a major city you can waltz right into your local wig shop and try things on. If you don’t, unfortunately it’s a little harder. If you can’t go try something on in person, my absolute favorite for women who have lost their hair is the Racquel Welch wig line. They update their looks, you can get synthetic or human hair, they’re easy to style and they’re not too itchy on your head like some others. If you can’t really afford a wig, check out this donation program! If you’re  young enough, check out this one! You can also ask around to see if there’s a hair stylist who’s willing to help shape the wig for you. Sometimes a ready-made wig can use a little adjustment or shaping, depending on the person’s head size.

As far as regrowth, I can’t recommend any particular regrowth products because you need to ask your doctor or dermatologist about that when going through chemo. That being said, there are some incredible hair growth boosters out there! I can tell you that the new hair will usually be really soft like a baby’s hair. Sometimes even with a slightly frizzy texture. Smartest to trim the neck and around the ears as it’s growing in so you don’t grow a mullet. Look for inspiration on short cuts like this or this or this! Get a water based pomade (google it or ask your hair stylist, there are SOOO many) and learn how to use that for your short hair. Products for long hair don’t really do much for short hair.

photos: tracee manzanares post designed by kristin ess

I hope these tips are helpful and that you’re recovery is QUICK! Leaving you with some links that I love…

Xx Kristin (and Tracee!)


photo: Pascal Le Segretain, Getty Images post designed by bri emery

It’s pretty safe to say that Michelle Williams, Halle Berry and Ginnifer Goodwin currently take the cake in the short hair competition. But just like Mia Farrow, Edie Sedgewick and the many, many pixies before them, it’s important to find ways to switch it up. Here are some suggestions on how you can keep that cropped cut fresh:

~Products: TRY THEM ALL! Go into Ulta or Sephora or your local salon and ask questions. Every short haircut reacts differently to product depending on the natural texture, and when you put it on. One product can look totally different when applied to damp hair vs. dry hair. Try matte pomades that have no shine, then try regular pomades that do have shine. Try pastes, spray waxes, control creams, you can even try hand lotion. Product is your best friend when it comes to short hair and you have to be a little bit of a Goldie Locks to find the one that’s just right. It’s what gives you the most versatility and milage with a short haircut.

~Parting: Changing your part is so much fun with short hair. Perfect example here and here. It’s a great remedy for boredom. If you have a stubborn cowlick in front, blow dry it the other way right when you get out of the shower for more control. Also, try parting your hair on the diagonal. Start with a deep side part and then split the hair diagonally. This will keep your hair feeling balanced and not too side heavy.

~Slick it! Call me crazy, but I’ve always loved this look and it’s a fun way to change things up for a night out. Generously apply a strong holding gel to damp hair. Set into place with a fine tooth comb. For a more subtle version, try this instead.

~Accessorize. Bobby pins, thin headbands, and earrings. Short hair begs for some sweet accessorizing. Somehow, exposed bobby pins always look rather cool in short hair. In my opinion, thin headbands tend to look better than thick headbands in shorter hair. And, well, earrings are the BEST on girls with short hair. You notice them more. Plus, it’s a great way to keep the look super feminine.

~Go for some edge. Absolutely LOVE THIS! Before you decide you’re totally over your short hair, live it UP! Take the sides super short for one last hurrah. It’s so SO chic and you might just find a new love for short hair.

~To bang or not to bang. Bringing your bangs down typically helps to soften your look. Pushing them back tends to bring out your facial features, bone structure, and allows your face to take center stage. If you need help with styling your bangs, we’ve got you covered right here.

xx Kristin Ess