Over the past two months, I have been on a hair journey. I have always loved bright, fun hair colors. Before working at a law firm, I rocked the blue and purple and bright reds and pinks. Hair has always been my form of self expression. Unfortunately, I was always too poor to afford proper hair care. For years, I committed the ultimate sin of bleaching my own hair and cutting corners to achieve a look I wanted at the fraction of the price (and a fraction of the professionalism). My main mistress was Manic Panic semi-permanent dyes. What drew me to Manic Panic was the ease of use. It came in tub, you applied it like conditioner, and BAM! Cool hair.
I’ve been rocking a red/black look for about four years now. I always loved red hair and I wasn’t really looking to change my style. That being said, I recently had shoulder surgery and doing my own hair had become a burden. After pondering it for awhile, I realized that I am no longer that living paycheck-to-paycheck gal. I can afford to get it done correctly.
Finding the right stylist. All good hair starts with finding the right stylist. We are at such an advantage these days with social media and the Internet. Back in the day, you had to go off of word-of-mouth which didn’t always go in your favor. When I decided that I wanted to commit to a stylist, the “shopping” began. I looked up local salons that received high ratings from its patrons. From there, I went and browsed ALL of their stylists’ social media. That is how I found her. Her photographs on Instagram and Facebook showed that she was familiar with the type of styles that I liked. Her color/balayage styles were ON FIRE. In addition, I saw we both had frizzy, not completely curly hair. In my mind, if you have curly/frizzy/ethnic hair, you want a stylist that has the same hair. Not saying it’s gospel, but I figured if they have to struggle with the same type of hair, they will know what your hair needs.
Hair Consultation. DO NOT SKIP THIS STEP. If the stylist doesn’t offer a consultation, find someone who does. This allows you and the stylist to have a real talk about your expectations and the reality of what can be achieved. I think a stylist that is willing to work on complete hair makeover without one is setting themselves, and you, for disappointment. I’m not just talking about a simple cut that a stylist can do in their sleep. I am talking about the more involved cut/color/style that may take hours or multiple visits.
Here is where things took an unexpected turn. When I contacted my stylist, I sent her this picture:
I was looking into a more blended look. I’m getting older and keeping up with my roots was becoming a problem. I have naturally dark brown hair, but I also wanted to keep the red. However, as I waited my turn, the more I looked at her hair color, the more I wanted it. In her profile pictures, she had a very bright, orange copper color. By the time she finished her bridal updo and I took my seat, I made up my mind. I wanted her hair color.
My stylist looked at the health of my hair, evaluated my botched highlighting, evaluated the texture, length, thickness. All things she couldn’t get from a picture or a written description. Through casual conversation, she determined if I had the time to upkeep what I wanted. She was very open and honest that there would be upkeep to keep the color fresh. She went over what she did to maintain her hair. It was a very informative meeting and I think if you are looking for a complete hair makeover, that you shouldn’t skip it. Know what you’re getting into. By the end, she had a good idea of what she had to be prepared for and was able to give me a pretty accurate estimate of costs.
Time and Money. If you want good hair, it takes time and money. Celebrities don’t look the way they do because they cut corners. They have a team of stylists and makeup artists that constantly work on their image. The same theory applies to us common folk. Good hair is maintenance.
I spent four hours in the salon that day and spent $450 on services, the recommended shampoo, and toner conditioner. I also gave my stylist a $60 cash tip (I probably should have tipped more…). Keep in mind that I had A LOT done. If you want to see the before and after, check out my YouTube linked at the end.
The Maintenance. I mentioned that there is maintenance involved. If you want to maintain the work your stylist put into your hair, it takes time. My new style is relatively low maintenance as far as certain styles go. I did not get permanent color. In layman’s terms, she gave me a blended all-over highlight and used toner to achieve the color I wanted. I use a color-depositing conditioner every other wash to keep it vibrant, because the color does fade. It’s not permanent. If it fades too much, I can go in and get it toned again. I won’t have to go in for any salon maintenance for six months, but this style I can also allow to grow out and look more like an ombre style.
Overtone. I will be the first to admit that I am a sucker for Facebook ads. I know some of you LOATHE targeted ads, but I am a fan. I love being introduced to new products without having to look for them. I hate shopping. I really, really do. I don’t go “looking” for things to buy. But, if I get a targeted ad that piques my interest, I go look them up. That is how I stumbled on Overtone.
I purchased a copper conditioner that the salon carries, but I felt like it wasn’t as bright as the same brand’s professional toner. It definitely helped revive the color and is a great product, but it left me wanting more. That is where Overtone comes in. I saw an ad for their product in Ginger and I thought, “Well, that looks closer to what I want.”
The real question is: Would I recommend it?
YES! Check out the video below to see the end result!