I know I say this every time, but combining me and hair is a Stranger In A Strange Land situation. I am a helpless child when it comes to my tresses. Hair as a technical concept flies past me, expert patter leaves me struggling to keep up. ‘A ponytail,’ I cry, latching on to something I recognise. Hairdressers are gods walking amongst us, benevolently wielding the power of scissors and sagely advising us mortals not to Skrillex our hair.
I am trying to learn, really. I want to be at one with my hair. In that spirit I put myself into a room with six of Australia’s best hair dressers recreating their signature looks for Hair Expo 2012, wished I’d taken the time to run a GHD over my wind-blasted tresses, and asked them them for their favourite tip for achieving effortless hair on a chilly winter morning with minimum effort and maximum sleep-in time.
Caterina Di Biase recreated a look from her ‘Eastern Spirit’ collection, featuring a fierce warrior-inspired custom-made studded headpiece threaded with wefts of violet hair. Caterina described the delicate peep of violet as being an ideal compromise for people who want shake up their hair but can’t or don’t feel comfortable with getting super wild: “Don’t be scared to make your hair an accessory. Bright hair extensions or a trend headband are the easiest way to try something different without making it permanent. Keep trying new things!”
Hmm. I have some darling little Lady Jayne clip-in skinny extensions in lush violet and candy orange that I’ve never used. Now I’m feeling super inspired!
Caterina’s top tip for winter morning hair? “Klorane dry hair shampoo! I call it ‘doing the powder puff’ – powder your roots and fluff it through with your fingers, pull your hair into a high ponytail and tease the ends, wrap it around in a knot and pin it down. Five minutes and you’re out the door!”
Joey Scandizzo reinterpreted balayage by combining it with three defined steps cut into the hair to create a look that’s edgy and forward looking, but also realistic and achievable for someone who’s not afraid to make their hair into a statement.
Joey’s top tip for winter morning hair? “Embrace the undone look. In the evening tie your hair up into some plaits, then the next morning comb them out with your fingers for easy, sexy waves. Easy!”
Ryan Mitchell created a look that contrasted smooth body and rough texture, inspired equally by 60′s beehives and retro sci-fi gals. Deft use of padding and root direction gives super volume without the need for teasing and ratting, and the look is balanced by leaving the top layer of hair loose and textured, sweeping it back across the crown and letting it hang unpinned. The result? Chic and retro, not old fashioned.
Ryan’s top tip for winter morning hair? “Roughly blow dry your hair the night before, add a leave-in treatment to nourish your hair, twist it all up into a knot on the top of your crown and go to bed. In the morning just shake it out, give it a brush with a Mason & Pearson and you’ll end up with a loose Marcel wave.”
Jayne Wild created a look inspired by a recent collaboration with Toni Maticevski, elevating the humble ponytail into something that played around with shape, off-kilter placement and texture. Sections of hair were left out of the pony in order to create a sheet effect, letting long blowdried hair fall free behind a neat wrapped pony.
Jayne’s top tip for winter morning hair? “If you’ve got a fringe, focus on that. Focus on what’s around your face and run a styler through any flyaways, and pull the back into a pony. You’ll always feel groomed if you’ve tidied the hair around your face.”
Frank Apostolopoulos created possibly my favourite look of the night, cutting a super sharp take on a pixie cut. The nape of the neck was shaved up to the bottom of the model’s ear and the hair above cut into a blunt shelf. It’s a little Rosemary’s Baby, a little geometric Vidal Sassoon, and it’s an update on the shaved section trend. If shaving out a section of hair at the side of your head is a little too edgy (or in my case, a little too Skrillex), this is a more achievable way to tackle the shaved trend.
Frank’s tip for winter morning hair? “Invest in a diffuser for your hairdryer. It makes drying your hair so much quicker and, if you add a little texture spray first, you can get effortless beachy waves in under five minutes.”
Last but never least was Brad Ngata creating a brilliant graduated blue look topped with a crown of budgerigars. The model’s hair was swept up into a high bun and holographic shimmer was painted onto the hair, starting with white at the hairline and finishing at the crown with cobalt blue. He described the look as ‘hair as art’, pointing out that haute couture looks like his creation filter back into the average hair maiden like you or I experimenting with a coloured hair band or looking at candy coloured hair extensions.
Brad’s top tip for winter morning hair? “Try washing it only every second or third day. It becomes so simple to style and all you need is a quick brush and you’re out the door. Leave it go and sleep in!”
Hair Expo Australia is on this coming weekend, Saturday June 9th through to Monday June 11th at Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre. Tickets are available now and the show is open to non-professionals. I’ll be there taking notes and desperately trying to sound knowledgeable, so come along with me and get hair educated!