How Do They Do That?
Must-have hair secrets from the pros
Someone once said the solution to a bad hair day is to wear a low-cut blouse, but on your wedding day that is not an option you can or should want to pursue. Getting a perfect hair day is something you’ll want for all the events leading up to your wedding, so it helps to know some tips. Whether you want voluminous curls or a sleek bob, we searched for the secrets to three popular requests when it comes to hair: volume, shine and thickness.
How To Do Volume
For volume, everything starts in the shower. Use the right products for the look you are trying to achieve, and the technology in them will work. If you are looking for big hair, use volumizing products. The right shampoo will strengthen each hair from the inside out, adding firmness and creating lift from the root.
Only put light conditioner on the ends, so it won’t weigh your hair down and find one that only moisturizes where needed.
“When your hair is wet, use a thickening full-form mousse to fatten up the hair strands,” says Lisa Marquette, owner and stylist at Salon M. You should then use a root lifter for reinforcement, Marquette continues. Apply the product before blowing, from the midshaft to root. If your hair is fine, then just apply at the roots.
There are collagen products that plump out the hair just the same way as they do the face. Whatever the products you want to try, get the shampoo and conditioner together and buy the travel sizes so it doesn’t become too costly. Most important, start with different products as soon as you know the date and stop experimenting a month before the day.
When you start the blow-dry, lift each section of the hair upwards directing the heat to the scalp, to create lift. Start at the bottom layers of your hair and work upwards. After you have blown each section, blast it with cool air to “set” it. For added bounce, pin each section up as you go along.
If you are looking for curls, use a diffuser, but only on a moderate heat. If it’s too hot, you will create frizz, so take your time and be gentle with the hair. Do not flip your head over – it makes the hair wide, not high.
Be careful when teasing, as it can damage the hair. Use a good brush, like a Paul Mitchell or Mason Pearson flat-backed brush, to back brush.
Marquette says a good hair spray is essential for your hair to last all day. However, don’t spray it down on the hair; instead, spritz it into the air to fall on the hair or spray it on your hands and run it through.
Some people with curly hair find the volume they have is at the root and their ends are thin. “Whatever kind of hair you have, if you use rollers or a curling iron you will gain extra movement,” Marquette says. “You have to remember to allow time to let them cool before taking them out.”
How To Get Shine
Shine is created by the hair follicles lying flat and reflecting the light. This is why straight hair is shinier than curly or wavy hair. However, using the right products and tools, everyone can have shiny hair.
Penelope Gozza and Nicole Turner, co-owners and stylists at Maison de Cheveux, say you should start working on your hair months before your wedding to get maximum shine. “Invest in a good quality deep-conditioning treatment such as Oribe, and use it once a week or come into the salon where we can nourish the hair with a treatment or mask,” Gozza says.
In the months before your wedding, avoid heated curling and flat irons because they can damage the hair. Try to let your hair air dry instead. Gozza and Turner also recommend having a trim a couple of weeks before your big day to rid the hair of any split ends.
“If you have been using a lot of products recently, use a clarifying shampoo for a few washes in a row to clear your hair of product build-up which definitely dulls the hair,” Gozza adds. “On the day itself use heat-activated shampoos and conditioners that have built-in moisturizers that are released by the heat of the dryer. Finish with a cold rinse to seal in the conditioner, making it easier to style and adding lots of shine.”
For straight hair, wrap 2 inches around a round brush and blow dry straight. If you have curly hair, separate the hair with your fingers, not a brush as this can cause it to frizz. Diffuse the curls gently.
The heat of the blow dryer, curling or straightening irons can be used at the end to finish the look. The heat flattens the cuticle to create shine and smoothness. Add a glossing spray with your fingers.
“If you are still not achieving the shine you are looking for, consider a color treatment,” Gozza says. “It will add shine and light reflecting properties to the hair.”
How To Fake Thick Hair
Sometimes however, no matter what you do, you can’t achieve the look you want. It might be time to take a leaf out of the celebrity playbook and think about hair extensions.
David Chimento, a stylist at Brooks and Company Hair Salon, says hair extensions are a great option if a bride is looking for thickness. Some people’s hair only grows so far until it becomes thin and unhealthy-looking, so extensions provide opportunities for a longer style. If the bride’s natural hair isn’t as healthy-looking as she wants it to be, she can add chemical-free, pieces to create a smoother, frizz-free look. A thicker head of hair will even make an updo more successful. Extensions are also another way to add color to a style without having to dye the bride’s own hair.
“It takes about three hours to bond them in depending on how many extensions a bride wants,” Chimento says. “With all the shades available, I can match the natural color of the bride’s hair 100 percent of the time.”
At-home maintenance is critical and extensions are best if you shampoo and condition with silicone-free products as the silicone can make them fall out. Deep conditioning is good for the ends but avoid the bonds. They need to be brushed gently twice a day at least otherwise they can tangle easily.
Application should be done approximately one week in advance of the big day but extensions can last between six and eight months. Visit your salon every two to three months to have them cleaned and moved up the shaft of the hair.
“The extensions blend with your own hair and you take care of them as normal,” Chimento says. “However, it’s important to blow-dry them, and if you are doing any outdoor activities braid them or put them in a ponytail so they don’t become tangled. If you are in the water, wash and condition them and use a protective leave-in conditioner.”