For the millions of women who tuned in each week to TLC’s highly rated makeover show called “What Not to Wear,” one of the highlights was the hairdressing segment where the hairstylist, whether it was Nick Arrojo or later Ted Gibson, gave the women who appeared on the show a hair transformation.
These style-challenged women, and the home audience were often left stunned at seeing their outdated, lifeless and dull hair be reimagined in new ways and cutting-edge styles. The change always made the women look and feel younger and more confident than ever before, and more importantly, the new styles could be easily maintained at home. That’s the power of a great cut and frequently some amazing color added. Today’s hottest hair trends still include color but in some more interesting ways than in times past.
Here are three of the most sought-after hair looks that you can’t afford to miss.
Balayage looks like a pretty-sounding foreign word that doesn’t easily roll off the tongue. Name aside, it’s one of the most requested hair techniques in the nation. Usually, it’s confused for the ombré style, which may look similar but has noticeable differences—and if you read the previous line carefully you would’ve caught that one’s technically a “technique” while the other’s a “style.” Both produce a transitional effect where the hair color gradually goes from darker to lighter. With balayage (pronounced bah-ley-ahge), there’s usually no use of foil in the color application process and the color is “hand swept” in. Ballotage, which you’ve likely seen on Sofia Vergara, Olivia Palmermo, and others, also produces an effect of color gradation that begins higher up on the head, while ombre is much lower. Women love that with balayage they don’t need weekly or biweekly touch-ups, but can simply wait to get some upkeep work done even seasonally, instead of on a more regular basis as ombré styles require. You’ll find that many of your more modern salons, such as Elle B, a Denver hair salon, have hairstylists who you can make an appointment with to have balayage done.
These days, more celebrities are showing up on the latest award show red carpets with hair that would make Samson jealous. Thanks to super long yet supersleek hair extensions, stars like Naomi, Nicki and Kim K. (if you need the last names, then this style probably isn’t for you) are channeling Cher and showing the world that if “long hair don’t care” then “extra-long hair definitely don’t care.” The Rapunzelesque hair extensions, which can cost upwards of $2,500 for 32 inches, add a surprising amount of gloss and glamour and can take an ordinary do to new style heights in no time flat. Ask your hairstylist—or drop by a wig studio—to show you a few pieces and see for yourself how they can instantly transform your look and your attitude.
Color’s always really been “in” in one way or another. It’s really been a matter of which shade is ruling the runways and Instagram. For example, now platinum blonde is the color to get, as Katy Perry and Cara Delevingne can testify to. Zoe Kravitz has been seen sporting this powerful, icy color and soaking up all the fashion magazine rays in the process. Another color that’s having a moment is an interesting mix called bronde, which is a beautiful combination of brown and blonde. If you’re looking for the best inspiration for this intriguing shade, then look back to your 2007 fashion magazines to catch a shot of Gisele in all her blonde glory. Another interesting development in today’s color story is that some women are getting pastel hues. They’re not as wild as, say, the colors in Starbuck’s Unicorn Frappacinos, but they’re not far off in many instances, either. Some even call it Kool-Aid hair. To get a sample for yourself, try coloring just a few of your own strands in a crazy pastel shade just for fun. Clearly, this trend is for the girl who wants to truly express her individuality and freedom.
As you contemplate trying one of these looks out for yourself, keep in mind some good, practical advice from the former hairstylist on “What Not to Wear” and author of “Great Hair: Secrets to Looking Fabulous and Feeling Beautiful,” Nick Arrojo!
He says, “Every year, evaluate where your hairstyle stands and ask yourself is it time for an aspirational new you?”
If you want to look fabulous and feel beautiful every day, pick up a copy of Great Hair!