Creating Polished Curls On Curly Hair

by Modern Salon on Thursday, June 25th, 2015

Most stylists don’t understand the amount of product curly hair needs to maintain any style,” says Holli CadmanPaul Mitchell Schools Advanced Academy member. “When curly hair is styled, you need about twice as much product as you need for straight hair. This will allow for a soft, conditioned style whether the hair is worn naturally curly or straight.”

Cole ThompsonSassoon creative director, and Traci Sakosits, Sassoon North American creative director, agree that when styling, products must be distributed evenly and hair should be dried completely. If it is worn naturally, the hair can be finger-combed or ribboned in sections to close the cuticle and then diffuse-dried. Here, minimal manipulation is key, or you’ll end up with frizz.

Damage from the excessive use of heat styling tools is a concern for everyone, but especially for clients with textured hair, who suffer when breakage results in curls looking dull and lifeless. Fortunately, there are non-thermal options that stylists can offer clients to avoid direct heat.


“Curls can be delicate and at times prone to damage,” says Melanie Fahey, assistant vice president of creative and education for Ouidad. “Excessive manipulation can fragment curls and cause fraying and frizz, so it’s important never to force a curl into submission. The key to styling is to position curls as they transition from wet to dry.”

Ouidad’s “rake and shake” is a simple, effective styling method that encourages and sets curl formation with just product and the touch of fingertips. For this technique, a client’s hair is sectioned off in to a unique pattern that best suits her curl type, and the prescribed product recipe is applied to each curl section individually, allowing the hair to form defined, breathable curls. Each section of the hair requires special attention to ensure there’s an even distribution of product.

For this reason, many stylists recommend applying product when the hair is wet. Hair product usually reacts better to wet hair because the hair is able to absorb product more effectively. Hair will only accept the amount of product it can absorb—layering the hair with too much moisture will produce limp, unresponsive curls.

“When defining curls with water or a styling product, stylists should let the hair crest or dry momentarily before manipulation,” says Mizani educator Toni Garcia-Jackson, who is also a salon owner and textured color artist for Product Club. “Running your fingers or a tool through wet hair separates the cuticle and contributes to the frizz factor.”

originally published on

Cutting Curls and Coils

by Modern Salon on Thursday, June 11th, 2015

Every service on a curly haired client should start with a thorough analysis. Each curl has its own identity and will react differently.

Michelle Breyer of TextureMedia says failure to account for shrinkage is one of the most irksome curly community issues. When stretched, a tight curl might be one and a half to two times longer. Remember — the smaller the diameter of the curl, the more it will shrink. Due to the amount of shrinkage and frizz that is naturally associated with curly hair, cutting hair wet or pre-straightened can be deceiving and often creates inaccurate results.

Wet vs. dry

“Always cut hair the way it will be worn — blown-out or natural — and cut within the curl, where it twists, never straight across,” says Mizani’s Evie Johnson. “For instance, if you blow dry curly hair, cut it dry and then wet it, the hair will end up shorter, and the client won’t like it for three or four months. Cut it wet for versatility. For coily hair, blow it out and cut it dry. You can wet-cut it, but when the various curl patterns are blown out, it won’t look good. It’s also difficult to maintain even moisture when cutting coily hair.”

Textures vary and so should your cutting approach. When hair is curly, there are many advantages to cutting it dry. Nevertheless, wet hair also gives stylists lots of information about the hair’s shape, elasticity, texture and behavior. For those reasons, educators and master stylists such as Arrojo Studio Educator and Master Stylist Lina Arrojo, tend to judge each head individually.

“We shampoo and condition the hair, let it dry or almost dry while observing its behavior, and then do the cut,” Arrojo says. “Once done, we will rewash the hair and observe its behavior again before refining the cut as appropriate.”

Selecting your tool

A razor is a precision tool, and when used correctly, it offers natural-looking results for wash-and-wear hair styles. Using a razor helps to enable more movement, redefines the texture of the hair and thins out thicker textures.

“What many stylists seem to forget is that a razor can also be used to cut length, add weight and even create blunt lines,” Arrojo says. “A razor can do many things that shears can do, and the single blade allows for more versatility and detailed work on curly hair. If the blade is sharp and glides through the hair, it can be used to define, enhance and create beautiful, soft, fluid movement in nearly all types of curly hair.” Dull blades can cause frizz on all hair types, which is exacerbated on curls and coils.

When razor cutting, be careful not to remove too much weight or add too much texture. According to Arrojo, density helps the structural integrity of the curls and thinning out the hair too much will cause curls to fall flat. Due to the coarseness of coily hair strands, avoid razor-cutting on highly texturized hair. This curly type is prone to shred when met with the blade, which makes it difficult to create a consistent cut.

Similar to a strand test for chemically treating the hair, Arrojo recommends cutting a few strands with a razor to test how the hair will react. If the ends do not shred, it’s OK to proceed. However, if shredding occurs, switch to shears.

Curl-specific methods

Ouidad, renowned stylist, salon owner, educator and founder of Ouidad products, recognizes and identifies four specific curl types — loose, classic, tight and kinky — and offers the only trademarked proprietary carving-and-slicing cutting methodology for the four curl types.

“It’s not about thinning; it’s about strategically cutting with the curvature of the curl pattern to allow the client to have movement,” Ouidad says.

The technique is designed to remove the bulk that causes pyramids and enhances the natural curl pattern to achieve well-defined ringlets that interlock into each other like puzzle pieces. Carving and slicing allows the stylist to lighten the client’s hair without reducing the volume. The result is hair that will hug the head more instead of expanding outward to the sides. For clients who are concerned with elongation, this is a great method to achieve the illusion of length.

“At Ouidad, we firmly believe in mastering our certified carving and slicing method when the hair is freshly cleansed and treated and in its natural wet state,” says Melanie Fahey, assistant vice president of creative/education for Ouidad. “A Ouidad-certified stylist analyzes each client’s unique curl pattern and texture, listens to their history and defines their goals—then formulates a tailored plan to optimize their curls.”

According to DevaCurl Vice President Shari Harbinger, “For coily hair, dry-cutting allows the true curl behavior to be seen.” The Deva Cutting technique is a trademarked method by Lorraine Massey for cutting curly hair. Hair is sculpted curl-by-curl in its natural state according to the client’s lifestyle, personality and preferences. This method of cutting combines technical and visually artistic techniques to offer a customizable design tailored to the needs of every curly client.

What makes this cutting technique unique is that the hair is cut curly and dry. According to DevaCurl, cutting curls wet does not allow the true nature of the curl pattern to be seen and therefore does not translate visually once hair is dry.

Original article found on Modern Salon

Curl Consultation: Offering Solutions for Textured Hair Concerns

by Modern Salon on Monday, June 8th, 2015

Moisture loss, damage, detangling and maintenance are four major issues curly clients experience. Learn about the varying causes for these curl concerns and what you can do to help combat them.


Concern: Hair clumps in sections during the shampoo and conditioning process.

Friction when washing

Hair is at its most fragile when it is wet or damp. Water breaks down the natural hydrogen bonds in hair, which is the reason curls loosen up and lose their shape when wet.

“Use a pH-balanced moisturizing shampoo that is conditioning enough to allow for some slip,” says Karrie Fonte, Macadamia Professionalassociate vice president of education. “After shampooing, apply conditioner and distribute through hair with a wide-tooth comb. This will help detangle and evenly distribute the conditioner.”

Forgetting to pre-detangle

“Removing tangles before adding styling products is mandatory to avoid breakage,” says Scott Musgrave, curl specialist and owner of Curly Hair Artistry. “Use your fingers as a giant comb and pre-comb the hair before cleansing to remove hair that accumulates in curls.”

Not enough moisture

“If you are not using the proper shampoo and conditioner, stylists can create an even worse tangled mess when washing the hair,” says Verb stylist Keila Rokkan. “After shampooing and conditioning with something that is hydrating, rinse and use a light detangler, like Verb’s Leave-In Mist, and a wide-tooth comb to gently work through the hair.”

Brushing dry hair

“Curly hair needs a little TLC,” says Matrix Artistic DirectorNick Stenson. “Brushing dry hair causes breakage, reduces manageability and depletes shine. Wash and condition hair with products that renew moisture, such as Matrix HydraSource Shampoo and Conditioner, which help optimize balance. Detangle curly hair after each wash with a wide-tooth comb and a good detangling spray like Matrix HydraSource Detangling Solution.”

Other causes: Use of dehydrating products, split ends, very dry hair, overly porous hair and sweating.


Concern: Hair appears dull, is prone to dryness and loses vibrancy easily.

Environmental factors

Changes in atmospheric temperature, weather and humidity, all contribute to hair looking and feeling dry. “The key to keeping textured hair hydrated is layering products and applying them where the hair strand is most in need,” Fonte says. “Start with Macadamia Professional’s Weightless Moisture Leave In Conditioning Mist from scalp to ends after every cleanse to help protect from everyday stressors, detangle and add moisture. Follow with a treatment oil from the mid-lengths down where the hair tends to be more porous and dryer. If using heat styling tools, add a layer of heat protectant to wet hair with a blowdry lotion to lock in moisture and prevent future damage from the dryer, flatirons and curling wands.”


Cleansing hair too frequently can result in the removal of natural oils. “Cue the moisture treatments and leave-in conditioners,” Rokkan says. “A daily conditioner will not be enough. Try using a hydrating mask for 10-20 minutes and make sure you are always using a leave-in like Verb’s Leave-in Mist. Also, have your client check their water supply to see if they have hard water—water high in mineral content. If so, recommend a water filter.”

Prescription medication

If your client takes prescription medication, it can affect the hair strands and give hair a dull appearance.

“I would suggest using a very mild clarifying shampoo, which still has a healthy amount of moisture and won’t strip the hair,” says Melanie Day, stylist and owner ofYou’ve Got Curls Hair Loss Center. “This should only be done on an as-needed basis. When hair is clarified, go back in with a hydrating shampoo along with a hydrating conditioning treatment.”

Excessive use of heat styling tools

Heat tools, if any, should be used at a minimum on a low setting to avoid burning the hair.

“Use a botanical cleanser, conditioner and styler to add moisture to the hair and scalp,” says DevaCurl VP of Education Shari Harbinger. “A hair masque will give added hydration to thirsty curls.

Over-processed hair

“I would recommend Mizani’s Fiberfyl Fiber Strengthening Treatment to care for any over-processed and damaged hair,” says David Thompson, Mizani artist. “This treatment acts as a strand-by-strand restorer. Formulated with five percent filloxane, a molecule that penetrates the hair fiber as a liquid, transforms into a flexible solid that fills in weak areas with a protective shield to provide damage protection without hardening. Finally, I would apply a leave-in conditioner and also style refresher; if hair needs added moisture during the day.”

Other causes: Dehydration from chemicals, harsh products, the sun, chlorine, poor diet and /or high-porosity hair.


Concern: Curls are limp, lifeless. Hair looks straw-like and breaks easily when manipulated.

Split ends

When hair is curly, it is difficult to recognize and see split ends. A schedule of regular trims with textured clients will result in less breakage and shedding. To help repair weak strands, a deep condition is key.

“Use a penetrating intense treatment like Mizani Supreme Oil Satin Crème Moisturizing Mask, which is rich in natural rice bran, argan and avocado oils; will help protect from dryness and brittleness while leaving hair soft and supple,” Thompson says.

Improper cleansing

Textured hair is prone to tangles and if stylists aren’t gentle they’ll rip, tear and cause breakage.“Curls are delicate and need to be handled with care,” Fonte says. “Using a conditioning cleanser or a co-wash product is best for curls. Macadamia Professional’s Ultra-Rich Moisture Flawless Cleansing Conditioner is perfect for this type of hair. This product allows stylists to condition and deliver much needed moisture to the strand while gently removing daily impurities without over-stripping and drying. Once a week, use a traditional shampoo and follow with a treatment mask like the Nourishing Moisture Masque to strengthen and repair.”

Thermal abuse

At this point, a haircut is in order.

“Communicate with your client about how much length you would like to cut, but be open to listening to her concerns about how much she would like to keep,” Rokkan says. “If your client is concerned about length, try a dry cut; you will have more control and be able to see better about how much of the dead ends should be removed. After a healthy cut, continue to do moisture treatments and be gentle with the hair. Try to limit the use of heat tools.”

Lack of protein

Hair is approximately 91 percent protein and is made up of long chains of amino acids. To maintain optimal health, naturally curly hair relies on a proper balance of proteins, nutrients and oils.

“I recommend using a protein treatment once or twice a month for hair that is breaking off,” Musgrave says. “Mop Top Deep Conditioner has a bit of protein for structure to damaged hair. Jessicurl Deep Conditioning Treatment has a lot of moisture for hair that needs hydration but not the structure that protein can offer.”

Product build up

“Detox with a sulfate-free cleanser,” Harbinger says. “Scrub vigorously and rinse thoroughly. Then use a lightweight moisture masque on the mid-lengths and ends only. Take a break from manipulating the hair. Try letting your curls dry naturally.”

Other causes: Chemically treated hair, improper at-home maintenance, lack of moisture and not getting regular cuts.


Concern: Curls lose their definition, volume and appear frizzy after the client leaves the salon.

Friction when sleeping

“Achieving longevity with your clients’ curls requires proper placement when sleeping—it’s what we call the pineapple, and no, it doesn’t look cute,” says Morgan Wilhite creative director at Ouidad. “But it helps your clients look good on their second day.”

Using a soft, scrunchie-like hair-tie, show your client how to gather her hair and position it on the crown for a high pony. The outer layer of hair will protect the surface curls, eliminating frizz. Clients can also wrap the hair at night with a satin scarf to help prevent moisture loss. Avoid fibers such as cotton, which will absorb natural oils and leave the hair dry.

Excessive drying

“Letting hair dry naturally is best but if necessary and using a diffuser, dry to 90 percent only,” Fonte says. “Removing too much moisture will cause frizz. You can then use your fingertips at the scalp and in small circular motions to create lift but never pull through the curls. Lastly, to lock out the moisture and lock-in the style, mist the entire head with an anti-humidity product. Brand new to the Macadamia Professional line is the Anti-Humidity Finishing Spray. It will never weigh down curls and will add an invisible barrier to protect and maintain curls all day long.”


“To maintain second-day day curls avoid using a brush and opt for finger-brushing instead,” says Keratin Complex Artist Abraham Sprinkle. “To help diffuse second-day texture, use a texturizer like Keratin Complex’s Sweet Definition Texturizing Sugar Mist. For best results mist lightly all over hair and, using a slight touch, scrunch or push into areas that need revamping with fingers.”

Other causes: Incorrect product selection and application, roughing the cuticle during the drying process, over-use of heat tools, and temperature and humidity.

Textured Hair: Understanding the Canvas

by Modern Salon on Monday, June 1st, 2015

When you talk hair texture, get your terminology right first, then key-in on what’s different.

“Many people consider curl pattern to be the distinguishing factor between waves, curls and coils, but that is only one aspect of hair type,” says Michelle Breyer, president of TextureMedia Inc. in Austin, Texas. “Porosity, density, width and length greatly impact how hair will react to products, cuts and styles.”

How it grows

Time for a beauty school brush-up! In lay terms, textured hair is wavy, curly or coily. What determines it: the follicle shape and the angle at which hair grows out of the head.

The follicle, which molds the hair’s shape, is either close to round (in straight hair), oval or elliptical (wavy and curly hair), or a very flat elliptical (coily hair). Additionally, straight hair grows perpendicular to the scalp, waves and curls can grow on a diagonal or oblique angle, and tight coils grow parallel to the scalp. As the coils grow out, they twist around themselves.

“Imagine a drinking straw; it’s what a cross-section of straight hair looks like under magnification,” says Sam Villa, founding partner of the Sam Villa brand and education artistic director forRedken 5th Avenue. “Now visualize slightly pressing on the sides of the straw to make it more oval shaped. This gives you an idea of what textured hair looks like. The tighter the curl pattern, the flatter the oval becomes. If you look at extremely tight coils, they are almost similar to a thick ribbon.”

Adds Shari Harbinger, vice-president of education for DevaCurl, “the growth pattern of textured hair—which makes up 65 percent or more of the population—typically follows a horizontal when growing, as opposed to the vertical growth of authentically straight texture. The tighter the texture, the longer it takes to see visually perceived length. Once you elongate or stretch the hair, the actual length is revealed.”

Additionally, says Josephine Salvatoriello from The Avenue Salon in Caldwell, New Jersey, it’s a common misconception that curly hair grows slowly—it grows, on average, at the same rate as other textures at about half an inch each month.

“The reason you may not notice the growth is due to hair shrinkage, which tends to cause the hair to grow out or at an angle, causing it to grow big instead of grow down,” says Salvatoriello, who is also a Lasio-certified keratin specialist and educator.

Textured hair vs. hair texture

So, what does texture really refer to? According to Lakeisha Weston, an educator for Empire Beauty Schools in Memphis, Tennessee, “Hair texture is the thickness or diameter of the individual hair strand. A single strand can be coarse, medium or fine. Hair density measures the number of hair strands on one square-inch of scalp. Density is low, medium or high. So, a client might have low-density (thin) hair, but large-diameter strands or a coarse texture. Two people with the same hair texture can also have very different densities.”

Straight, wavy, curly and coily are really hair types. It’s just that wavy, curly and coily are commonly called “textured” types.

Any client with a textured hair type can have different curl patterns throughout her hair, or even along a single strand. And a tighter curl pattern doesn’t necessarily mean a coarse hair texture—often it’s the opposite.

“Hair that waves usually starts getting wavy at the mid-shaft,” says Evie Johnson, a Mizani artist who works at E & E Hair Studio, Upper Marlboro, Maryland. “Curly and coily hair can have very mixed curl patterns throughout the head and on a single strand. Additionally, super curly or coily hair can be fine, fragile and break easily, unlike coarser hair, which has a large diameter.”

Adds Villa, “An easy mistake to make is to assume that tight curl has more density to it. It can appear to because each strand occupies more space due to how close together the pattern is. I’ve had many experiences where a guest comes in with natural curl and it seems like a massive amount of hair, but after blow drying it smooth, I realize that the overall density is quite low or sparse.”

The porosity impact

The final major player in working with waves, curls and coils is porosity or the ability of the hair to absorb moisture. Porosity is directly related to condition of the cuticle, which ranges from flat or smooth and resistant to overly porous, which is damaged, dry, fragile and brittle.

According to Paul Mitchell Schools Advanced Academy member Holli Cadman, porosity is a key factor with textured hair types. The cuticle of straight hair lies flat more easily, allowing for lower porosity, a closed cuticle and shine. As the hair increases in movement, that changes. Wavy, curly and coiled—or tight, compact zigzag formations of the cuticle—make the hair less able to lie flat, because the hair itself isn’t flat.

“The more open the cuticle, the greater the porosity and less light reflection off the cuticle or shine,” Cadman says. “Porosity must be taken into consideration when working with textured hair.”

Understanding the Needs of Different Textured Hair Types

by Modern Salon on Tuesday, May 26th, 2015

You don’t need a microscope to determine your client’s textured hair type. Each has its own personality that’s easy to see, according to Traci Sakosits, Sassoon North American creative director.

“Wavy hair has a curl pattern, but looks softer because the curve of the hair is larger and farther apart,” says Cole Thompson, Sassoon creative director.

“Wavy hair tends to lay flatter to the head shape. Curly hair has a wave pattern that is closer together and tends to look more three dimensional, while coily hair has the tightest and smallest curl pattern. In the latter case, the hair is naturally in an expanded form because it stacks out, on top of itself.”

To remain at the center of every curl conversation, you must understand the needs of different textured hair types, uncover the client’s desires and offer solutions that will guide clients to their fullest curl expressions, says DevaCurl Vice President of Education Shari Harbinger.

According to TextureMedia Inc. President Michelle Breyer, TextureTrends’ market research shows that the biggest concern of those with wavy hair is frizz. Curly girls care most about definition, whereas those with coily hair types are most often looking for moisture.

Texture shape: True wavy hair has an S-shaped formation. Neither curly nor straight, it can undulate back and forth or have more of an open loop, as though it were iron-curled. Highly versatile, it retains curl because it already has natural movement.

Client personality: “Frizz and volume can contribute to the wavy story and concerns,” Harbinger says. “This client wants either volume at the crown for height and hold, or a flatter crown with soft, beachy waves at the bottom. These needs are met with products and a cut that either supports volume at the crown or encourages waves at the mids and ends. For more volume, the cutting approach focuses on the crown.”
Adds Paul Mitchell School’s Advanced Academy member Holli Cadman, “Wavy hair tends to need control products and hydration to have definition in its formation. For fine wavy hair, volumizing products also are ideal to aid in styling or diffuse drying.”

Primary needs: Frizz reduction, lightweight definition, hydration, volumizers and shine enhancers.

Texture shape: The curly demographic has a wide span. Sam Villa, founding partner of the Sam Villa brand and education artistic director for Redken 5th Avenue says that curl, which often has mixed patterns, has two movements to look at: the size and expansion of the curl, and how tightly the curl wants to sit together.

Client personality: Harbinger notes that most curly clients understand their curl’s behavior and want shape, definition and frizz-control. In addition to products that meet those needs, a cut designed to remove heaviness at the crown is key. “Some curlies might also enjoy a fuller, more voluminous triangular finish, which you can get when the hair is properly hydrated,” she says. “This client is often misunderstood and complains that the cut is too short, too wide and frizzy.” Without the correct moisturizing products, the hair expands.

Primary needs: Hydration, strengthening treatments, volume control for either a smooth or defined finish, and shine enhancers

Texture shape: Coily hair grows close to the scalp and ranges from medium coils to springy ones, or interlocking ones that have a zigzag pattern. “Clients with this hair often complain their scalp hurts,” says Mizani Educator Evie Johnson. “The cuticle is raised, the hair is very porous and it tangles easily. It has a shorter lifespan, meaning the average growth cycle is 2-6 years, so it doesn’t grow very long. This hair needs moisture, but product over-use doesn’t help; diet will. The need for moisture and detangling is major, which is often true of curly hair as well. If coily hair is weak, add protein treatments if needed, but they must be balanced with moisture; using only protein can harden the hair.” To determine protein needs in any textured type, perform an elasticity test. Coily hair is often dry, frizzy and fragile because sebum cannot travel far down the hair shaft. Coily hair can range from coarse to fine, and often has low tensile strength—the more open the cuticle due to movement, the more porous and less shiny the hair.

Client personality: Clients with coily hair increasingly favor wearing it natural as opposed to chemically altering it.

Primary needs: Intense moisturizing/strengthening (moisture and protein must be balanced), frizz control, smoothing products and shine enhancers.

Original article on

Hair styling: Ouidad Creative Team | Photography: Jessie English | Makeup: Stoj Bulic
All images courtesy of Ouidad

Heat Exhaustion

by Modern Salon on Thursday, October 2nd, 2014

Curlies have new options for limiting their hair’s exposure to thermal tools.

DAMAGE FROM the direct heat of flatirons is a concern for everyone, but especially for clients with textured hair, who really suffer when breakage causes shortened, frizzed-out ends. The frizz factor also comes into play when hair is not completely dry, but blowdrying heavily textured hair takes forever! No wonder textured hair clients look for products that cut blowdry time.

“Time is the new currency,” says CosmoProf Marketing Director Rachel Jud. “When clients can forego adding the step of heat styling, that’s adding time to their day.”

Kenra’s client campaign, “Live More, Dry Less,” invites clients to share what they do with the time freed up from blow-drying by advanced products. “It might be that they read, spend more time with their kids or hit the snooze button,” says Kenra Brand Manager Stephanie Ulmer, who points out that quick blow-drying adds time to the stylist’s day as well, permitting you to book tighter appointments to fi t in more clients and increase your income.

With lots of natural looks emerging on fashion runways, textured clients are encouraged that they might not need heat at all.

“Sometimes it takes more effort to look effortless!” Jud says. “As the professional, you can help clients to make the effortless look truly effort-less to achieve.”

Luckily, today’s technology helps curly clients both avoid direct heat from irons and reduce all heat-styling time.


Advances in simple tools can help to direct and control curl. Experiment with different patterns to achieve varied curl effects.

  • Mizani Lacers

Mizani’s circle-shaped foam tool gently defines even the tightest coiled hair while boosting dimension and controlling frizz.
Apply True Textures Leave-in-Conditioner along with Mizani Foam Setting Lotion and True Textures Moisture Stretch. Then lightly blowdry to elongate hair and remove excess moisture.
Using a 1-inch-wide brick pattern, begin at the nape by closing an open lacer and winding an endpaper-wrapped sub-section toward the base with medium tension. Secure the lacer by looping the right side of the lacer through the left side to create the Mizani Lacer Top Knot.
Place client under a hooded dryer until completely dry.
Emulsify Mizani Velvet Gloss in hands to add additional shine as you fi nger-style hair into place. Finish by spraying a light veil of Mizani Humidity Resistant Mist.

  • Colour Bunz

Created to replace foils and make balayage easy, these spongy rods are great for curl-styling as well. “As a styling aid, they can be used to create volume, French twists and chignons,” says creator Barbara Forgione. “As a roller, the options are endless, and they can be folded in half to create a larger diameter roller. They are best used on slightly damp hair when refreshing or creating curls, as wet hair takes longer to dry; a light mist of a spray gel before wrapping is perfect.”
Mist a section of hair with water or spray gel, or wet Colour Bunz, squeeze out excess water and use damp.
Wrap hair around Bunz in a spiral formation, and clip to hold. Continue wrapping around the head.
Mist with a spray gel, let dry, then remove Bunz and scrunch for bounce and separation.

  • Curlformers

Now with a drying hood to pro-vide overall indirect heat, these spiral rods shape beautiful curls and waves.

“Runways are the key to trends for the coming season,” says Debra Blake, founder of Curlformers and managing director of Shirley Valentine Salon in Manchester, England.
“This style is a classic look worn by many A-listers, and it’s great for all occasions—crossing over to more structured finish for the evening. It’s a simple solution to a frequent client request for a day-to-night look with boho waves that look effortlessly styled.

  1. Smooth the base by blast-drying with a bristle brush while leaving moisture at the mid lengths and ends.
  2. On each side of the parting, take six vertical sections including one going back to the crown.
  3. Apply a smoothing cream, mousse or anti-humectant to damp hair, and insert the long-barrel Curlformers from mid lengths to ends.
  4. Allow to air dry, or use the Curlformers Softhood attachment to achieve soft, bouncy curls within 30-40 minutes.
  5. Remove the Curlformers and allow curl to drop for 5-10 minutes before applying a finishing product; a light oil or serum is okay for the finish.


“New smoothing systems smooth hair without straightening it,” reports CosmoProf Brand Manager Jill Franklin. “The result is shortened dry time and reduced frizz, and the service lasts up to 90 days.”

  • Kenra Smooth

Designed for thick, coarse, unruly hair, this smoothing system reduces curl and frizz up to 99 percent without flattening texture. “It allows clients to embrace their curl but makes it manageable on an everyday basis to do so,” says Stephanie Ulmer, Kenra brand manager. “It’s cumulative; the more times the client receives the service, the more impact it has on the hair.”

  • Lasio Tropic

“The best way clients can reduce time and save hair from heat is to invest in a keratin treatment,” says Lasio artist Carmela Zampieri. “Lasio’s new Color Pro Keratin Treatment contains revolutionary polymers that shield hair and protect it from heat up to 450 degrees F.”

  • Matrix Opti.Effects Surf Wave

Smoother looks are in demand, says Matrix artist Robert Santana. “What is trending for textured hair is subtle, soft texture with an organic, touchable feel,” he notes. The Matrix team created this look with Opti.Effects Style Wave.

  1. Part hair and divide the front from the back with an ear-to-ear parting.
  2. Taking horizontal sub-sections and using large flexi-rods, wrap hair starting at the ends up to the mid-lengths. Secure rods by bending. Note: The closer you wrap the rods to the scalp, the higher the waves will start. Continue wrapping until all sections are completed.
  3. Gently mix Opti.Effects Activator with waving lotion and swirl gently. Unscrew the cap to release any gases, screw cap back on and snip applicator tip. Apply, process accordingly and, when complete, rinse with lukewarm water for 5 minutes. Towel-blot each rod to remove excess moisture.
  4. Apply Wave Customizer to all rods and process for 5 minutes. Do not rinse.
  5. Apply Neutralizer and process for 5 minutes.
  6. Unwrap rods, re-saturate and work in for 1 minute. Rinse with lukewarm water for 5 minutes.
  7. Spray in Matrix Total Results Moisture Cure 2-Phase Treatment on damp hair to detangle and prevent frizz. Apply Total Results Super Defrizzer Gel for added definition, and dry hair using a diffuser. Spray Total Results Amplify Flexible Hold Hair Spray to finish the look.

Cool Front

by Modern Salon on Monday, September 22nd, 2014


They deliver video tutorials, testimonials, test curly products and report on trends. They’re curl authorities your curly clients look to for insight and ideas. Following and learning from some of their tactics could help in your quest to become the texture expert in your salon and market.

MOST OF US SPEND TOO MUCH time on the internet, whether it’s scrolling through Pinterest, sharing work on Instagram or keeping our followers up-to-date with our everyday life on Facebook. But for the top texture influencers on social media, spending time on the computer is more than a pastime; it’s a way of life. These curlistas started creating YouTube videos and blogs as hobbies but have spun them into successful careers. With a loyal following in the hundreds of thousands, beauty vloggers and bloggers are winning big on the web. Just look at the numbers: Beauty content on YouTube accounts for more than 700 million videos each month and continues to grow rapidly year after year, reports Pixability’s “Beauty on YouTube” study. As a result, bloggers and vloggers are changing how many clients discover, use and purchase beauty products. But why?

Texture! went straight to the source to get the answer. These are the social mavens you’re going to want to get to know: Nora of Shalimarcat; Francheska of Hey Fran Hey; Jenell Stewart of Kinky Curly Coily Me; and Alison of Modern Mrs. Huxtable. Here they share their thoughts on how the blogosphere is transforming the texture industry and the importance of authentic, personal connections on the web.

Why do viewers respond so positively to you?

Jenell Stewart, KinkyCurlyCoilyMe: It’s the phenomenon of, “This girl has hair just like me.” I was able to appeal to an audience of women with a kinkier texture and shorter hair. Additionally, I’m very down-to-earth. I created a platform based not on pretending to be an expert but on promoting my learning experience and explaining myself in a way that people could relate to. I wasn’t authoritative or pompous. I was just me.

One thing that keeps me successful is that I do everything because I’m passionate about it. I communicate with my audience. I call all of my fans my “loves,” and reply to them on social media. As challenging as that can be sometimes, I reply. I think people can really feel that connection with me, and I make myself available so I can meet the women who support me.

Alison, Modern Mrs. Huxtable: It probably sounds cliché, but I just try to genuinely be myself. I also view my subscribers as equally important in the YouTube process—this doesn’t mean that I am “number-crazy” about how many followers I have, but rather that I value my viewers’ comments and messages. I feel that the viewers are a part of every video I create—their input and feedback contribute to the creative process and finished product.

I believe my new purpose in life is to inspire and uplift. I want people to feel elevated, to feel motivated after they have spent time watching my videos. This is as simple as starting every video with a huge smile and warm greeting. People need messages of empowerment, happiness, hope, sunshine and love, so that is the energy that I strive to embody and put out into the universe.

Nora, Shalimarcat: I think it’s because I am an eclectic vlogger: I like to play with styles a lot! I am not a curly-hair-obsessed person, so I occasionally use heat or silicones, and I have nothing against coloring your curls. My motto is do what makes you happy!

Francheska, HeyFranHey: My readers know I’m not in this for any kind of financial gain or any personal fame. I think they understand that everything I put on YouTube is to solve a problem and be helpful. Word-of-mouth has been the most influential tool for me to become so big. I’ve actually never done a sponsored video. I think the key to the growth of my brand is in the integrity. I’m going on three years of being on this social media wave, and that’s been my biggest thing: to keep the integrity of it all.

How do you believe YouTube is changing the beauty industry and the texture community?

Alison: When I went natural in 2009 there were only a handful of brands that I could find in stores. Now, there are whole aisles dedicated to natural haircare. People don’t really understand how huge that is!

There are thousands more natural hair bloggers and vloggers. There are tons of natural hair companies sprouting up every day. Technology and social media are such a huge part of our generation, so it means a lot to see blogs and Instagram and YouTube accounts dedicated to studying, capturing and celebrating natural hair. Natural hair is not necessarily new, but I think the YouTube world allows people to identify and relate to vloggers in a way that makes natural hair seem fresh and trendy. It means a lot for girls to see people on the computer screen who look like them.

Francheska: In reality, we are the people who are closest to the consumers. We have an emotional thread with the clients. We aren’t celebrities or actors who are completely detached from reality. We go to

meet-and-greets and connect with our subscribers. We email with them and respond back and forth on Twitter. We have relationships with our viewers, and we’re all on the same playing field.

How are beauty brands embracing the beauty explosion in shaping the blogosphere?

Francheska: They’re definitely responding. Many of the trends in hair are based on what’s popular on YouTube. Now every brand has a natural hair category. They’re paying attention and seeing our influence and rebuilding their brands based on what’s working for us.

Remember when models got mad at celebrities for taking over the cover of magazines and ad campaigns? I almost feel like YouTubers are going to be the new celebrities and start pushing out traditional celebrities.

Jenell: Beauty brands are realizing that women with multi-ethnic hair are paying attention to ingredients and what products promise and deliver. Consumers take very seriously what a product label says, and if the product’s performance doesn’t match that, then we are vocal. We’ve made our mark by saying we want products that are more moisturizing and conditioning. So you are seeing an influx of co-washes and moisturizing conditioners in the category.

Alison: I think beauty brands know there is now a greater level of power and exposure in the hands of vloggers when it comes to product reviews. A good review plug from a popular YouTuber can mean a huge boom

in business, while poor reviews can stifle business or prevent people from trying a product.

Viewers can also start to change the level of trust or credibility that they give a vlogger based on the vlogger’s decision to be sponsored or partner with a beauty brand. There are a lot of politics and layers that go into the relationship between blogging and beauty brands.

How are YouTubers helping to bridge the gap between beauty brands and clients?

Jenell: By watching a YouTube video, you see the step-by-steps and experience live. On my YouTube channel, I have so many videos showing me applying the product from start to finish. Consumers get to see what it looks like, get to hear what it smells like and learn how it works. So even if content is branded, bloggers and vloggers can still offer that same value to a video. Vloggers offer incredible opportunities for companies. It’s phenomenal how many people they will be able to reach and grasp by the engagement vloggers offer in their videos. To the watchers and readers, if the vlogger is genuine and authentic all the time, then there’s definitely a way for the person to do branded content and make it work. There’s also a way to do branded content without talking up something that you don’t really believe in.

Alison: YouTube vloggers bring a more personal and relatable angle to products than national marketing campaigns do. Consumers feel

like they are getting advice from a friend or coworker—someone they trust and know—and that type of positive coverage is huge for a beauty brand. It is also really amazing to see YouTube vloggers branch out and become entrepreneurs making their own products—essentially the client becoming the beauty brand. It creates a connection or closeness to the brand when it is a YouTuber the consumer has been watching and supporting for years.

What does the future look like for you and your brand?

Alison: I hope I can continue to grow my fan base and reach more people globally. I would love to have more meet-and-greets in the states as well as overseas. YouTube is a great platform to reach people outside of your immediate geographic location.

I hope that I can continue to build an entrepreneurial base for myself built on my YouTube success. Most importantly I hope that young women and men leave my channel feeling inspired and motivated. If each video I post leaves a viewer with a pocketful of hope, then I have fulfilled my purpose.

Nora: YouTube is becoming more and more important, so I hope to keep my viewers interested in what I do and in what I have to say.

Francheska: I’m such a little hippie. I’m very in the moment. For me, it’s all about the momentum. I try not to limit myself by saying what I’m going to do in the next five years. I don’t know; I could be doing things that I never would have imagined. I never really thought I’d be on YouTube. That was never in my plans, and it turned out. I’m just riding the wave. Every opportunity that comes and feels good, that’s where I’ll be.

Jenell: I’m growing my website. I’m looking to do more speaking engagements and talk with women about healthy hair growth, natural hair and wellness. I look forward to those opportunities.

  1. Engage Your Audience: Audience engagement is like superior customer service. A successful blogger knows the importance of connecting with followers and always letting them know when they’re appreciated. Although time consuming, replying to emails, comments and messages is essential to building a relationship with your clients, and encourages them to turn to you for texture advice and product recommendations.

  2. Solve Problems: Clients want content that delivers a benefit like how to use a product, demonstrates how to create a celebrity-inspired look, or executes a new industry trend. You don’t need a professional studio to deliver powerful imagery and share valuable information. You can create and post your own professional beauty advice without worrying about professional lighting! Make it personal and be sure to always mention your salon name, location and how to book a texture consultation.

  3. Stay Relevant: It’s important that you not only produce tips and how-tos to share on your or your salon’s social media outlets or during a consultation, but that you stay relevant to your followers by providing current information. They’ll look to you as being “in the know” and will think of you for special occasion styles, visit your site or pages for what’s trending, and listen when you recommend a new style, an updated finish and product recommendations to help them get the look.

  4. Collaborate: Collaborating with popular YouTube personalities, celebrities and brands is a way to instantly introduce yourself to an entirely new network of people. Simply commenting and introducing yourself and your salon-based solutions is a great way to start. Maintaining an authentic voice is crucial and will allow you to increase your own following organically. Keep the emphasis on what you know and experience as a salon professional. Share more about the techniques you use, less about specific brand preferences. Promote yourself as an authority.

  5. Promote Yourself: As you increase your texture expertise, be sure you are telling the world about it! If you decide to post YouTube videos or texture tips on a blog, use other forms of social media to get your content out there. Share teasers of your latest YouTube video on Instagram or a sneak peak of a new texture product on Facebook. Even sharing your favorite tips from other texture sources can help position you as a resource for your clients. Just remember to add your professional voice to explain why you are sharing it, and to include a call to action to come for an appointment, consultation, or personal product demo and recommendation.


Francheska - HEYFRANHEY

Francheska of HeyFranHey started her Tumblr after being diagnosed with a health condition. It was her journey to become a healthier person inside and out that propelled her to speak about beauty from a holistic approach. After healing her body through nutrition, fitness and natural/organic products, she wanted to share her knowledge with those willing to listen.

In addition to making her posts relatable and easy to incorporate in everyday life, Francheska attributes her success to speaking from an honest place and solving a problem. Her advice for people interested in YouTubing is to find out what’s missing in the marketplace and determining: how you can contribute to that open space.


After a big chopping in March 2010, Jenell Stewart of KinkyCurlyCoilyMe decided to embrace her natural hair. With no friends or family members who were natural, Stewart found joy in blogging about her journey and created KinkyCurlyCoilyMe as a way to track her progress and share it with others.

The actual name of the website is a derivative of the textures that appear in her own hair. Within the first two years of blogging, Jenell transitioned her blog into a natural haircare site for women in need of hair education and support. Stewart has been featured in Essence and on,, SoloDovePR,,,,,,,, and Stewart has also contributed to

Whitney -

Whitney, known as Naptural85 on YouTube, is a graphic designer, vlogger and blogger. Whitney started her YouTube channel in August 2009 with an upload of her “Natural Hair Journey”—her transition from relaxed to natural hair—which was intended to thank the YouTubers who’d given her the inspiration to go natural. But people told her that they were inspired by her story and encouraged her to upload more. The rest is history! Five years later, Whitney is still sharing her journey and has expanded her channel with daily vlogging videos that chronicle her life as a wife and new mom.


In 2013, Alison got her start on YouTube with her channel Modern Mrs. Huxtable, aimed at advocating for positive female role models as well as educating women on the secrets to healthy, long hair. She is dedicated to sharing her results with others and using her background as a university instructor to inform and educate other women on how to reach their personal hair goals. Alison spearheads an initiative to share female empowerment messages and encourage positive, well-rounded depictions of women like that of the iconic Clair Huxtable from The Cosby Show. Alison focuses on uplifting women in areas such as self-esteem development, finding purpose and creating sound value systems.


Gina of Hairspiration has been blogging since 2008. She blogs about natural hair, beauty and lifestyle. She is an advocate of green brands and small business and is currently in the process of “cleaning up” her makeup bag. Gina has been featured on numerous websites, including,, Fashion Bomb Daily, Style Pantry, BGLH and Ebony Glam, as well as in Pride, Marie Claire, Grazia, Jones and Blackhair. Based in the UK, Gina has a background in fine arts and has spent the past nine years working at Aveda and other high-end hair salons, where she has gained useful knowledge in hair care, beauty and trends. By day, Gina is currently working as a freelance PR consultant and sometimes columnist.

Sarah - WATERLILY716

Sarah started her channel to provide education about curly hair basics and to help others learn how to care for and love their natural curls. A-soon-to-be teacher and self-proclaimed hair junkie, Sarah realized several years ago that there weren’t a lot of girls with her looser-curl hair type making videos or sharing advice. From that concept, her channel evolved into what it is today.


Jessica started vlogging on YouTube in March 2009, sharing her natural hair journey with women around the world in hopes of inspiring them to love and embrace their hair. Jessica has been featured on LA Talk Live radio,, and many other social media platforms and is currently a natural hair blogger for Over the years, Jessica has drawn the attention of many women worldwide.

Shanti and Antoinette - AROUND THE WAY CURLS

Shanti and Atoinette are the best-friend duo behind Around the Way Curls. The two created a community for women to connect, encourage and inspire one another. Around the Way Curls is an online publication that infuses pop culture and issues of women’s interest with an emphasis on the beauty, originality and spirit of naturally kinky, curly hair. With hair as the catalyst, Shanti and Antoinette work to redefine beauty and to recondition women not only to embrace their natural state of being but to value their individual uniqueness and overall worth.


A medical student and model with a passion for beauty, fitness and health, Nora of Shalimarcat made the decision to embrace her natural texture six years ago after two years of relaxing, blow drying and straightening. Nora was inspired to create her first video when she entered a giveaway on Naptural85’s channel, at the time her favorite YouTuber. Filming was so much fun that she thought, why not create her own channel for wavy hair? At the time, the majority of the channels were geared toward women with tighter texture patterns.

Drink Up!

by Modern Salon on Thursday, September 11th, 2014

The answer to curly hair woes probably won’t come from one magic product. Luckily there’s cocktailing, where you can play mixologist to achieve the exact results your client wants. Check out these texture experts’ custom hair brews.

EXPERT: Dianne Nola, Curly Hair Specialist, Nola Studio, San Francisco

CHALLENGE: Reviving distressed curly hair

INGREDIENTS: DevaCurl Heaven in Hair, Styling Cream, Mirror Curls and DevaCurl Light, Ultra or Arc Gel

“When working with extremely dry, gray or colored hair, I like to use Heaven In Hair as a leave-in, then cocktail Styling Cream and Mirror Curls to add to it,” Nola says. “This leaves the hair in an extremely hydrated state. Unlike most serums in the industry, Mirror Curls contains no silicones and truly does add shine to the fi nished locks. Then I add one of the gels (Light, Ultra, or Arc) to the mix or apply next. Not only is the actual weight of the cocktail crucial in creating length, but the various techniques to hold those coils down.”

EXPERT: Robert Santana, Matrix artist

CHALLENGE: Moisturizing dehydrated coils

INGREDIENTS: Matrix Oil Wonders Indian Amla Oil, Amazonian Murumuru and Egyptian Hibiscus Oil

“Select your appropriate oil based on the desired result for your client,” Santana says. “Oils can be used in many ways with di- erent benefi ts. Indian Amla Oil strengthens weakened hair inside and out, Amazonian Murumuru de-volumizes rebellious hair for infi nite smoothness and control, and Egyptian Hibiscus Oil shields color treated hair for restored vibrancy with shine. Utilize oil at every step for the ultimate care experience, shampoo, condition, treat, style and fi nish, blending as you go.”

EXPERT: Sara Smith, Stylist, Barbara Forgione Salon, Tampa, FL

CHALLENGE: Creating soft curls with shine

INGREDIENTS: Amika Leave In Cream, Straight Up Smoothing Balm and Curl Defining Cream

Start with two pumps of Amika Leave In Cream from midshaft to ends says Smith. Then apply one palm-press of oil. Palm pressing is when you press the opening of your oil container into the palm of your hand, she explains. The small amount of oil in the palm of your hand is the perfect amount. Next, mix together two pumps of Straight Up Smooth and two pumps of Curl Cream. Work through the hair and scrunch.

EXPERT: Stacy Hill, Owner, DyeVerCity Hair Salon, Martinez, GA CHALLENGE: Long-lasting hold

INGREDIENTS: Urbanbella No. 7 Non Lather Cleanser, Mop Top Conditioner, Mop Top Light Hold Gel and Obia Curl Moisture Cream

“I start with Urbanbella non-lather cleanser,” Hills says. “Urbanbella gently cleans my hair from all residue build up while giving me a cool sensation on my scalp. My conditioner of choice is Mop Top daily conditioner. It doubles as a leave in. When rinsing, you only rinse 80 percent out of the hair. For styling, I use Mop Top light hold gel coupled with Obia moisture cream. The key is don’t over use the products, a quarter/half dollar size goes a long way. The seaweed extracts in Mop Top and moisturizing oils in Obia keep my curls intact for up to 3-4 days.”

Real World, Real Curls

by Modern Salon on Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014

IN THE SALON INDUSTRY, there are two types of people— those who say they can do textured hair and the select group of stylists that specialize in texture hair. Cesar Ramirez, the newest Mizani celebrity stylist and our cover artist, is definitely a member of the latter. Having grown up amidst hairspray and rollers in his family’s small hair salon, the Puerto Rican curl guru knows his way around a diverse clientele base.

Ramirez has trained with some of the beauty industry’s top stylists, and his a-list looks have been featured on shows including Celebrity Apprentice, All About Aubrey, and Lala’s Full Court Life. He also offers his magic to a long list of celebrities (Beyoncé, Jennifer Hudson, Demi Lovato, Ciara, Adrienne Bailon and Rita Ora). But beyond Ramirez’s celebrity work, his unique, artistic approach has graced the runways at Mercedes-Benz New York Fashion Week and have adorned the pages of everything from Vogue and Harper’s Bazar to GQ and Latina Magazine.

With a following of more than 30,000 on Instagram alone (@cesar4styles), it comes as no surprise that the inspiration for this shoot came from social media. While researching, Ramirez found that the super-photoshopped hair images on Pinterest weren’t receiving a lot of attention. Instead, it was the shots of everyday clients and selfies of girls with beautiful hair that were trending. “We wanted to create a ‘real’ feel to the collection; that attracted consumers to see what Mizani can do,” Ramirez says. Mizani products were used on set at the shoot—including the recently released Fiberfyl treatment. “Fiberyfyl is a new strengthening treatment with breakthrough Filloxane technology; a strand-by-strand restorer that fills in weak area of the hair,” Ramirez says. “Traditionally, protein treatments are used for strength, which can result in the hair feeling hard or brittle. Fiberfyl maintains the hair’s pliability and softness.” Since models are constantly on set, the hair takes a beating, so using the Fiberfyl system set us up for success.” With New York City as his backdrop, Ramirez was able to successfully capture the understated cool that every curly girl craves. “Textured hair can be a challenge, but it can also be exciting when you realize the beautiful fabric that you are working with,” he says. “When you successfully achieve the perfect shape and style, it’s so fulfilling.”

Texture! Behind the Cover

by Modern Salon on Saturday, September 1st, 2012

Our Cover Style for this issue’s Texture! was created by Kansas City stylist and 2012 NAHA finalist Rusty Phillips. It’s the beautiful result of Phillips’ participation in Modern Salon Media’s Artist Session, a workshop designed to guide salon professionals through the process of freelance styling as they develop their photo session skills and connect with like minded salon professionals. The owner of Belle Epoque Salon, Phillips has not only taken the class several times himself, but has sent staff to experience the session.

Since launching seven years ago, Belle Epoque has twice been recognized as one of SALON TODAY’s 200 Best, and Elle magazine has highlighted the business as one of America’s 100 Best Salons for the past three years. A stylist for more than 30 years, Phillips has forged a bond of trust with clients through his genuine desire and ability to and make a difference in their lives as he customizes each client’s visit. Although Phillips is the consummate styling pro, he has enjoyed each Artist Session as a haven where professionals learn from each other.

“I’ve learned to really go for it!” he says. “I held back a bit at my first session and, although pleased with my results, I knew I could do something more exciting. For this last session, I really pumped up the volume and texture. It was an unforgettable experience!”

It was the model’s own hair, along with a tool tucked into the Artist Session Goody Bag, that inspired Philips to create the look seen on the cover.

“My model had massively thick wavy hair, the kind of hair every woman dreams about,” he explains. “I wanted to create over-the-top volume and curl, and in the Goody Bag was a micro-crimper. This gave me an idea to create a distressed curl that was somewhat frizzy and  lived in.’” After prepping the hair with styling cream, Phillips dry-pincurled all of the hair and pressed each one with the crimper. He brushed out the set, then shampooed the hair with a dry shampoo to produce even more texture and volume. His finished look along with the Artist Session Creative Team resulted in a fabulous look for this issue of Texture.

The Texture! cover look was shot at a recent MODERN SALON Artist Session. Join editorial styling expert Maggie Mulhern with NAHA-nominated David Maderich and Roberto Ligresti for the next Artist Session workshop in New York City, October 2-3, and learn how to get your work published in magazines. Go to Modern Salon’s Artist Session to sign up.

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