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Two things that have been consistently problematic for most people I meet (or hear from via email) is that they are confused about layers and equally confused about how to ask for what they want from their hairstylist. I wanted to start a new series to help us get through that together! My hope is that with a little extra information, nobody will have to suffer through a haircut they didn’t want ever again!

For this first post, we’re going to deal with straight and slightly wavy hair. And for the next post we’ll do stronger waves to curly. There’s so much information and I don’t want to confuse anyone further, so if you’re rocking strong waves or curls be patient and wait til my next post. I promise it will be worth it!

Below I’ve created some visuals for some of my favorite types of haircuts. I didn’t do the haircuts below, only the one up at the top, but these are great examples for what you need to know. Take these with you when you go to the hairstylist if you need to! I promise, we appreciate a good visual becuase it helps us to identify what you see.


  • a blunt cut that clears the shoulders.
  • no layers
  • ask your hairstylist to help you decide on the most flattering length for your face, somewhere between your chin and your shoulders.
  • if your hair is superfine but you have a ton of hair, you may want to ask your hairstylist to do a subtle undercut in the back so it doesn’t appear too bulky and unflattering behind your head.


  • making fine hair appear thicker.
  • anyone who likes to wear their hair straight.


  • the haircut you want, and then some subtle layers added to it. Short layers don’t mean that your top layer is short in length. Short (when describing layers) simply defines the distance between one layer and the next. Think of it like this– it’s just a “short distance” to the next layer.
  • ask your hairstylist to help you decide where the layers should go. Around your face? All the way around? Should there be some in the back? Each person will need weight taken out in a different spot or maybe all over.
  • I like to point cut when I do subtle/short layers but each stylist will do it differently. If you like a more subtle looking layer, just ask for exactly that! Make it clear that you don’t want choppy and you don’t want tons of piece-y-ness. (Is that actually a word??)


  • removing that “bell” shape or “triangle” shape that can be left behind by a blunt cut.
  • those who like to part their hair in different places on different days. Flipping or parting your hair on one side and then switching to the other can cause one side to look very heavy. Subtle soft layers will remove some of that.
  • anyone who gets bored with a blunt cut.
  • someone wanting a short cut but also wanting to add volume.


  • a blunt cut on the bottom with some piece-y layers for movement and texture.
  • something low maintenance that can be blow dried or air dried, curled with an iron or look good straight.


  • bloggers. HA! I’m kidding. But isn’t this such a blogger haircut.
  • those who love the EVERY DAY WAVE.
  • anyone growing out their fine to normal hair.


  • a classic women’s layer cut.
  • nothing too “textured”.
  • subtle layers in back, medium face framing layers in front.


  • normal to thick hair.
  • anyone who lives for their 1 1/4″ curling iron and/or a perfect ponytail.
  • all Lauren Conrad, Rosie HW and Kate Middleton lovers! These ladies all carry a very classic and timeless look that can also be amped up to the next level with some messy waves and good product from time to time.


  • texture, texture, texture!
  • weight to be removed or thinned out.
  • soft, subtle undercutting to enhance texture on the ends and keep dense ends from appearing too thick.


  • volume seekers.
  • those with tons of hair.
  • anyone who loves a more lived-in look or “undone” hair style.
  • someone who has natural wave and loves to air dry.


  • long layers. Again, just as I mentioned above in the short layers section, it’s not about the length of the layer you ask for! It’s about the distance between the longest layer and the shortest layer. As you see in this photo, Lily has some really long pieces and some much shorter pieces. The distance between the bottom layer and the top layer is significant. This would be considered long layers.
  • tell your stylist you love a boho vibe. Most hairdressers know exactly what that means by now– long layers with natural-looking messy waves. When my clients like things like this I typically reference “Free People hair” and “Olson hair”. Both of those scream natural texture and we always end up on the same page.


  • natural wavy hair.
  • long hair that is fine (but lots of it), normal, thick or wavy hair.
  • those who love using a wand to curl.
  • anyone who loves to air dry.


  • major texture! Maybe even to be cut with a razor if your hairdresser thinks you need it. Razors generally give lots of texture but can also be bad for certain hair types– let your pro decide. I typically only use razors on fine hair when it needs a little bulking up.
  • something that will bring out some waves in your hair.
  • to remove any unwanted weight or bulk by adding lots and lots of layers.


  • anyone who wants to rough dry and rush out the door.
  • those who love to wear their hair down.
  • face framing and those with bangs.

Stay tuned for the next “Language or Layers” hair post this week where we’ll tap into which layered haircuts are best for WAVES & CURLS!

(and yes, I’ll be doing a tutorial on how to get the waves in the top photo soon as well!)



You might have seen the 1990′s brown lip that I did on Sarah Hyland at the VMA’s last month (if not, check it out here), or Kylie Jenner sporting it around town. It’s a little grunge-y and a lot bold… and kind of a blow off to the sweet and innocent pink lip pop. Honestly, I don’t know why we ever took a break from it and I’m so thrilled it’s on its way back, hopefully this time for good! Here’s how to achieve it and an eye to pair it with:



  1. Start by lining the perimeter of the lip with the lip liner.
  2. Continue filling in the entire lip area with the same lip liner.
  3. Now grab the lipstick and press hard as you apply two coats (this is not a sheer look so don’t be afraid to load it up!).
  4. Apply the sienna shadow all over the upper lid and crease.
  5. Apply the same shadow along the bottom lid, exaggerating it so it’s half of the lid, not just the lower lashline.
  6. Add a coat of mascara and you’re good to go!

If this eye is a little too grunge-y for you, pair it with a more defined eye like I did earlier this month for a Charlotte Russe campaign (see it here).


Lately I’ve been super into wearing my natural waves. You know, a new haircut with lots of layers makes wearing your hair wavy/curly look a lot more fun and it definitely makes it a whole lot easier to style. (The right haircut is EVERYTHING for curls and waves!) The problem a lot of us have with wearing our natural texture is the dryness factor. I put product in my hair (like this and this) to boost my waves but that doesn’t do me any favors in the moisture department. I always think my waves look best (aka: BIG) on the 2nd and 3rd day but they tend to feel pretty dry by then.

To solve this issue, I started out by spraying water on my hair (Evian spray to be exact), and that helped refresh the look but didn’t give me any moisture. I then turned to my favorite leave-in conditioner in the photo up top which you can find HERE. Depending on your curl or wave this may or may not be right for you. It’s a tiny bit heavier when it’s sprayed on dry hair than it is when you spray it on wet hair. When you put it in wet hair, it dissipates and soaks in as it dries. When you spray it on already dried hair it seems to just sit on top of the hair but don’t get me wrong, it doesnt feel bad! I personally like the way this one works with my hair. It makes my waves soft to the touch and helps them lock together better.

If you’re looking for a good refresher, try that one or some of these gems. Spray the suggested amount on day 2 or 3 to keep that “crunch” away!

click the links to shop…

  4. ORIBE
  6. PHYTO



It’s fun to transition from a light Summer eye to a moody Fall eye! Chunky knits and faux leather jackets demand something strong and a little bold… so don’t be afraid to change it up! For this tutorial, I called upon the very special makeup artist JKissa to donate her skills (and her face!) to break down this look for you. It’s easier than you think; take it away, J!


  1. Apply a gunmetal shadow to your lid, this will make the products we put on later pop that much more.
  2. With a fluffy brush, apply a tangerine color to your crease. Don’t be afraid to blend this high up! This is going to make the rest of the colors blend effortlessly.
  3. Using that same fluffy brush, apply a charcoal brown shadow into the crease.
  4. Take a flat stiff brush and apply a silver pigment all over your lid.
  5. Take a smaller blending brush and a matte black shadow and apply this on your outer lid and into the crease just a touch.
  6. Taking whatever is left over on that blending brush, run this on your lower lash line, tapering in as we go.
  7. Apply a glitter-y gold shadow (wet it first) to the inner third of your lower lash line. This color is going to play off of the silver really well because it is not too warm of a gold.
  8. Apply a shimmering light gold shadow on the inner corner, but you can totally use a matte color. This is going to attention to your eyes.
  9. Apply a mechanical black gel pencil on your lower lash line.
  10. Apply black mascara and you are good to go! If you want to, you can totally add false lashes here. I personally recommend a thinner band just because it will hide better, since we do not have any liner.

Pair it with a pale nude lipstick to keep the attention on your eyes. As you transition into fall, snap a pic and tag us @thebeautydept on Instagram so we can admire it!