You know when you go to the hair dressers, and walk out looking like a knock out, only to get home and try to recreate the same look and it NEVER looks as good? Your curls turn to tight ringlet sausages, instead of luscious waves, you dislocate your shoulder trying to blow-dry, and a simple pony ends up looking like a disheveled broom in less than 20 minutes after you put it up. If you can’t relate to any of the above problems then congratulations, you’re amazing, read no more, but for the rest of us hair challenged individuals read on because what I’m about to reveal to you is going to change your life forever.
Yesterday I had the privilege to hang with the amazing Sarah Laidlaw who is a session stylist (basically the genie that makes models look out of this world amazing), a Cloud Nine Artisan Ambassador. If you haven’t heard of Cloud Nine, in a brief history it’s at THE hair tool of the moment, created by the mastermind behind the original GHD before it was sold off and shipped off to be made in a cheaper factory.
Sarah walked us through every question that you wish your hairdressers would tell you when you walk out of the salon on how to style your best accessory, your hair.
We learnt how to get sexy Gisele like, wavy, luscious curls, instead of “stripper” sausages (her words not mine). She then tackled the long line bob (what I’m currently sporting at the moment), and how to get that sexy textured, beach look that fabulous "i woke up like this" look (no one wakes up like that). Finally she tackled my ultimate hair failure - the pony tail.
Sarah used an array of Cloud Nine tools, and although they may seem pricey at first, I have to say that I’m sold because if there is ANYTHING out there that’s going to give me gorgeous hair and make me feel fabulous with the least amount of effort, then it’s worth it.
So here we go.
To create this look Sarah went straight for the big guns - the Cloud Nine Waving Wand. This guy retails for about $320 but seriously will change your life.
The most important thing to do before you start curing is actually to STRAIGHTEN your ends. Why? Because you know when you try to curl over straightened hair and it never holds, that's exactly what you need for sexy waves. Straightening the ends will stop them from curling and creating "ringlet sausages" or "dancer curls", instead letting each billowing wave fall perfectly with an ever so sight bend at the end.
The beauty about a Cloud Nine Iron is that it has a temperature controller which allows you to select a temperature appropriate to your hair. This means that unless you have mega afro hair, you don't need to fry it with such a high setting so turn it down and keep your hair healthier and shiner for longer.
Sarah then proceeded to use the want as you would the old curling tongs and clipped each strand into place.
The trick to getting your curls to fall properly and not clump together is to section vertically rather than working your way up in horizontal sections which is what I normally do. Start on the left or right and work your way up through one vertical section, then move onto the next, clipping each curl into place to hold as shown.
When all the sections where finished Sarah brushed out the look, then pinched the hair at the roots before sealing with an anti-humidity hair spray, which she says is a must for Queensland weather, as opposed to a slick, greasy serum.
After chopping all my hair off recently, I’ve secretly been crying and wishing it would grow faster as I haven’t been able to quite get the look I’ve been hoping for at home. After a few of Sarah’s tips I’m now sitting with perfect hair that took way less time to do and now actually suits me.
Firstly I moved my part to the middle. Why? Because as Sarah explained your face shape will impact what hair you can wear. An observer's eyes will always go to what's between widest point of your hair. For me my widest point is currently around my jaw line, which is a square jaw, so my widest point is actually making my wide jaw even wider (aka the fat face I've been very unsatisfied with). Instead of losing 10kg you can correct the visual (dis)illusion by re-framing your face. Sarah does this by creating a more visually appealing oval shape (which apparently is the preferred shape by us human animals), by parting my hair down the middle which allows my hair to frame a much smaller face and cover up some of that jawline. Magic. I now have a slimmer face. The same goes for round faces too.
A similar principle is applied to creating this look. Sarah used “The Wand” which has a very clever shape which allows you to use it on different hair lengths. The thicker base is great for longer hair, and the thinner tip is great for pickup the shorties. All “Wands” come with a heat protective glove, that (as the name implies) protect you from getting burnt but also set the look just like the clamp on the old curling tongs would, except without the hideous clamp mark. You just use you gloved hand to bring it all together.
For this look Sarah worked across rather than vertically except rather than curling all the pics the same way, she would curl some to the left and some to the right. Working her way up all the curls were done in no time.
Finish the look with anti-humidity hair spray, firstly pinching at the roots as shown to get that little lift, and you're glammed and ready to go.
The number one thing that goes wrong with every home job pony is that they all fall down. Why? Because of gravity. To defy gravity, you don’t need extra strong hair spray, rather a new "anchor". Say what? Let me explain. When you tie your hair up the traditional way your anchoring point is literally at the front of your head (if you had a widdow's peak it would be right there) where your hair line begins. As you can imagine, it’s like mooring a boat in seaweed, it’s not going to stay very well. Instead section off a triangle shape at the top of your hair and create pony underneath it like shown.
You will then work the section you left out with a little back combing for texture and then secure with an elastic over your exiting pony and voila you have a perfect pony.
As for that bit under the pony that you need a million bobby pins to hide, Sarah's trick is to tilt you r chin up when you tie your hair up. The reason is "stretch" explain Sarah. If you tilt your hair down you have stretched your hair to accommodate that length, whereas if you shorten it by lifting your chin then it will be perfectly flat when you straighten your head. Try it.
There is also one other very important thing to know about pony tails. It's called this the “secret language of pony tails”
Up high - fun and flirty
Middle - slick and sporty
Low - Sophisticated and ideal for job interview or even dress worthy events.
It’s important to wear the "appropriate" height for the occasion. It’s one of those things that everyone notices, but we don’t necessarily understand. “Like when an older woman wears a really high pony and you know there’s just something not right with it,” Sarah explained.
For anyone thinking that thier face is too wide for a pony, Sarah reminded that you need to remember that the eyes will go to your widest part so it’s all about manipulating your hair to frame your face. Lift it up a little at the top and keep it neat on the sides to elongate the face.
There you have it, the secrets you wish your hair dresser would tell you. Now here is something even more exciting.The lovely folks at Cloud Nine are offering one of you lucky readers the chance to WIN your own Wand or Iron.
Simple email visit the Cloud Nine website then email email@example.com with the name of the three Wands that Cloud Nine offer and a short explanation off why you simply must have a Cloud Nine in your life. Don't forget to list your preference. This competition is for Australian residents only. Entries close 6pm 24 June 2015. The winner will be notified on Thursday 25 June, 2015. By entering this competition you agree to sign up to The Well Nest newsletter.
Good luck and may you all look absolutely fabulous!
Juggling a flurry of businesses and passions Sarah Leung is the ultimate multi-tasker. She is the owner and manager of award winning wellness centre, Healthy Energy Holistic Lifestyle & Wellness Centre, Founder of our beloved Alg Seaweed, casual lecturer at La Trobe University, Ballet Student Nutritionist, Food Stylist and Photographer and did we mention that she's also an all round lovely soul? We managed to catch a moment of Sarah's time to talk about all things business, iodine deficiencies and how she manages it all, her answers might surprise you.
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