Very few people can look at themselves objectively in the mirror and recognize exactly why they look best with long hair or short, curly or straight. We are so used to the way we look that an unbiased outsider’s opinion is often the best. This is why, if you have a trusted hairdresser, he should be allowed to do what he thinks suits you — he is probably right.
But you are asking for trouble if you have someone totally unknown give you a dramatically new look. Let him get used to you, and your hair, before any drastic restyling takes place. And, most important, always ensure that your hairdresser knows you as a person — not just as a head with a body wrapped in overalls sitting in front of a mirror. If he sees you standing up and dressed normally, he can then see your height and width (so he can design a hairstyle in proportion to the rest of your body), and he can also see you as an individual who would look best with a simple, uncluttered style, or who isout for something really sophisticated or dramatic.
You too can take an intelligent interest in what your hairdresser is doing by understanding the proportions of your own face. There are two simple rules which everyone knows and everyone forgets — vertical lines make things look longer, horizontal lines make things look broader!
HOME PERMING AND COLOURING
Home perms and colourants are so safe these days and come in such a variety that there’s no question that they can be used very effectively at home.
Safety doesn’t mean foolproof, however — manufacturers of these products have files of letters that often boil down to one thing: the consumer didn’t read the instructions. That’s a rule that should never, never be broken, simply because perming and permanent colouring actually alter the basic structure of the hair.
If you apply a permanent colour on your hair which you don’t like, then there’s no point in trying to cover it with another colourant — you will simply get a strange combination of the two. Permanent colourants remove the pigmentation in the melanocytes and replace it with their own colour so, if you don’t like it, you’ll have to try to get a professional to strip out the colour first and then apply another colour which is an approximation of your own. Often professionals will not correct wrong treatment, and you should contact the manufacturers of the colourant who can often suggest a professional willing to do something about it.
The same goes for perming. It alters the structure of the cortex so, again, if you’re not happy with it, you’ll have to get your hairdresser to do a professional straightening.
If you want to go from straight to curly, know exactly what you will look like when the process is completed. If you want to go from dark to light, understand that your skin tone and make-up should be adapted accordingly. In both cases, if you’re not sure of the results, do it gradually or go to a local department store and try on a wig of the style or colour you had in mind. And take your best friend with you! In addition, you should always check with your hairdresser that your hair is suitable for perming. For example, hair that has been bleached or has had highlights put in should never be permed immediately afterwards.