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Why Every Single Woman Needs a Hairstylist

Let’s face it girls, we love to talk! We talk to our mothers, our friends, strangers, basically anyone who will listen (or at least pretend to). When we are talking to one another we will visit 10 different subjects in 5 minutes and never once consider the possibility that we are saying too much. As a hairstylist, I consider myself a professional conversationalist. I have heard so many crazy stories that I can and will talk about any and everything. While I’m working and getting to know a new client, this is a very valuable skill. However, recently it has become a problem for me because I am a single lady and I’ve started online dating. As it turns out, men have different preferences when it comes to conversation and I’ve had to learn the hard way that in the world of dating and getting to know someone new, less is way more! After being brushed off a few times after what I perceived to be great connections, it occurred to me that I must have a slight handicap in this arena because I’m so used to talking! I get paid to do hair, overshare, and listen and I just don’t know what’s ok to talk about with a guy I barely know and what I should just keep to myself. To avoid making the same mistakes I did I encourage you to head to the hairdresser and talk your hearts out so that when you find yourself sitting across the table from a hot guy you can focus on them not your drama.

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First things first! Let’s go over the types of things that you absolutely want to mention to your hairdresser. These topics should come up during your consultation but if your hairdresser forgets to ask about them please feel free to bring it up or just fling it out there.

1.) Your Hair History: This includes every single chemical hair service, including hair color, that the hair on your head has been through. It’s imperative that your stylist have this information so that they don’t ruin your hair! Don’t hold back even if you think it’s not important, here’s your chance to overshare!
2.) Your Budget: To avoid the awkwardness of a money misunderstanding I recommended bringing this up right away! Don’t be shy – just ask, or better yet tell! I love it when someone tells me what their budget is because it opens up the conversation and allows me to strategize about what I CAN do for that price instead of what I CAN’T – and I love to say “I can do that!”
3.) Your Hair Routine: By this I mean what, when, why, where and how. What do you expect your hair to look like when we are all finished? When are you coming back to the salon to get your hair done again? Why do you want your hair the way you are asking me to do it? Where are you taking this hairdo; to work, to the gym, on a date? How will you maintain this look with hair products and styling tools?

Now let’s move on to topics that you should talk about with your hairdresser NOT your date, or any other man for that matter, unless your hairstylist is a man.

1.) Emotional Stuff: This includes anything that gives you “feelings”; a bad breakup, any insecurities you have about your physical appearance, arguments with family and friends, childhood traumas, and everything in between. Your hairdresser actually needs to know where you’re at in your life to help you avoid making any emotionally charged hair changes, like shaving your head after you just had a baby.
2.) Your Dreams For Your Future: So you want to get married and have 10 babies and save the whales… That’s awesome! Tell me about it and I’ll give you all the love and support you are looking for I promise!
3.) Your Favorite Things: This includes anything you like a lot and may go on and on and on about. TV shows, movies, food, gym exercises, shoes.. You get the picture.
4.) Gripes: I like to stay positive as often as I can but I know it’s not easy! If you need to get something off your chest you can tell your hairdresser about it. Sometimes a girl just has to let it out so they can let it go! If you feel the need to have a good cry go ahead, just do it before your hair is done or it might get confusing.
5.) Your Children or Pets: I have kids and I’ve had pets so I know how easy it is to talk about this subject. It’s a great way to fill the potential silence of a hair appointment, so feel free to share.

It’s safe to assume that anything you might talk about with your hairdresser is a subject best avoided with a man. If you can’t help yourself and you accidentally bring up something like this I suggest wrapping it up quick and moving on to a better subject. This happened to me recently and after I noticed and dialed it back a little my friend assured me that a “fly by” is ok, which I appreciated! If you want my advice on what to talk about with guys I say stick to topics about physical activities or just talk about them, they love that subject! Once you have someone in your life that’s decided they like you enough to hear all this about you then it’s fine to share but keep in mind that they still would probably rather that you shared it with your hairdresser.

Are You Living Up To Your Potential?

Want to know every hairdresser’s least favorite question? Here it is: “If you could do anything you wanted with my hair, what would you do?”  It seems like this would be our ultimate dream come true; a potential green light to do whatever we want to you – but it’s not! It’s frightening! The reason is because you haven’t really said that we CAN change your look, you’ve thrown in that annoying word “IF”. For a customer, flirting with change can be brought on by a myriad of reasons and as your stylist, it’s our job to read between the lines of your request and determine if you really are ready to embrace a change. Being a mind reader, a magician, a therapist, and a cutting edge trendsetter is a challenge, and for our credibility to stay intact, we must employ all of these roles in less than a minute. Even the best hairstylist can’t do a thing for you if you’re not willing to play with your hair’s “positive potential” and commit to a new look.

Speaking of “new looks”, what do think of the changes I made to my studio? Lots of remaining potential left to play with too.

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With all the new beginnings in my life I’ve been really thinking about potential and what it means to be open to possibilities. I’m into my third week in my new studio and I’m really enjoying the new sense of empowerment I have as a result of feeling more influential over all of my career’s potential. My customers are loving my new space, I’m finding my new rhythm, and I’ve definitely been busy this past month. I’m full of ideas and energy, I have goals that I have mentally mapped out an achievement strategy for, and I’m already waist deep in change. By all accounts I should be ready to soar, but something is looming over me like a dark menacing cloud. That annoying voice in my head is back and it’s hosting self-doubt, fear, and “negative potential” thoughts.  Do I have the skills I need to navigate this change and rise to my full potential? Will I be able to commit to the necessary maintenance needed to nurture my dreams?! What if I suck?! What if I fail!?! Looks like it’s time to take my own advice again and shift my perspective to see the limitless “positive potential” that is right in front of me and really commit to making my dreams become reality!

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When we focus of the good possibilities instead of the bad possibilities, then we give life a chance to surprise us! Just look at the change of seasons; Spring always shows up no matter how cold and long Winter seemed. Have you ever worried that the flowers wouldn’t bloom, the temperatures wouldn’t rise, and the days wouldn’t get longer? Of course not! The things that are meant to happen always do, we just need to get out of the way a little bit and let them. Speaking of Spring, change, and potential; everyone in my house has received some type of Spring makeover. I started the adventure by cutting about 6 inches off my mane, dying it dark auburn and adding a red “freak streak” (as my niece called it). Then my oldest daughter begged to have her hair cut short to match, so I lopped off about 6 inches of her hair leaving her with a stylish little square shaped bob. She loved it! As for my baby (now 18 months), the makeover process is proving to be a bit more challenging. Her shaggy do is out of control and after an attempt to transform her hair into an “anything is better than a mullet”, we’ve ended up with a “Dumb and Dumber-esque page boy”, a subtle but important improvement.

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Looking at children is a great way to reacquaint yourself with the amazing potential that all of us have. Did you forget that there was a time when you were just a zygote – just a little ball of cells that would become what you are today? Maybe you didn’t realize that potential energy never diminishes and that the same power of transformation is always inside of us, we just need to remember that we are all highly capable and powerful beyond measure. Just think back to when you thought you’d never grow up, or pass that class, or fit into the dress again. Now think about what it took to get from A to B and what type of mindset you had to get into to make it happen. Was it easy? Probably not! But, was it worth it? Trust that you CAN do things and remind yourself that change doesn’t have to be scary, it can be an exciting adventure.  It takes just as much time and energy to say  “What if I succeed?”, instead of “What if I fail?”, but it feels a million times more inspiring!

image (5) Who ever could’ve guessed that I would grow into the person I am today? When you line up all my school pictures from K to 11th grade it really shows the magic of change and potential!

I want to challenge everybody to think about changing something in their life. It doesn’t have to be a makeover, it can be something little. Pay attention to the thoughts that pop up in your head when you think about this change. Are these thoughts fear based, “negative potential” thoughts or are they adventure loving, “positive potential” thoughts? How do you feel when you visualize this change becoming a reality?  I’m going to challenge myself to change the wording of that dreaded “IF” question I mentioned earlier in this post so that you can use it without annoying your hairdresser. I’m thinking something like, “What do you think my hair is capable of because I’m open to the possibility of a change?” Or even better, “I’m ready for a change and I want to hear about my hair’s potential. Can you give me your professional opinion on a fresh new look for me?” Armed with these improved questions, a “positive potential” attitude, and a sense of adventure, you will be well equipped to welcome change into your life, just like we are all welcoming in Spring right now! As usual, I am interested to hear about your experiences with change (negative or positive), so please share!

Doing the “Just Do It”

If you are not a major procrastinator like I am, than you may not understand why anyone would wait until the last minute to start a project or get a task done.  I’ve tricked myself into believing that this gives me some sort of competitive edge by telling myself things like, “I’m better under pressure” and “I don’t want to overthink it”. Normally I wouldn’t encourage ignoring the present for the dream of the future, but there are times when “living in the moment” can make a task unbearable! A good example is washing the dishes. I don’t have a dishwasher so I have a tendency to let the dishes pile up and then I’m forced to spend hours sweating over the sink. The only way I can get through it is to focus on how good I will feel when I’m finally done and how much I love not seeing dirty dishes piled up to the ceiling.

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I don’t just do this with my dishes, I do this with everything; getting out of bed in the morning, taking a shower, writing a post… yes I admit it, I have been procrastinating my posts lately! When I wait to the last minute to do things I don’t feel more capable or motivated to do them, which makes the task even more intimidating than before.  What Is it about that “just do it” part that is so hard for me and my fellow procrastinators? Whenever I have a session with my coach and I’m talking about something that I want in my life I notice that she often will ask me,  “How would that feel?” or “What would that look like?”. She wants me to visualize what life would look and feel like if I had already achieved my goal. The theory is that in focusing on being done with a task, imagining what it would be like to already have that thing you want , or be the person you desire to be, that you will naturally start to head in that direction.

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Waiting too long in between hair appointments can make your stylist’s  job ten times more difficult, just like procrastinating on any task. Hair grows, on average, a quarter of an inch a month. That’s not very much when you want your hair to get long, but when you are someone spending money for a professional quality haircut or a color touch up, it can become hard to keep up with. I have some clients that never want to see the sparkle of grey roots so they come in every 2 or 3 weeks. On the other hand, I have some customers that come in a few times a year. In most cases, waiting this long in between appointments can be like starting from scratch and add extra time and cost onto the appointment. It reminds me of all the money I had to pay recently to have my car fixed. If I had taken it in for the regularly scheduled maintenance then I probably could’ve avoided the hefty bill and the hassle of being stranded. Keep this in mind when you are deciding on a cut and color for yourself and be sure to ask your stylist how often you will need to come in and how much it’s going to cost you. Looking great is an investment and just like anything else that you invest money into, there will be regular maintenance costs and requirements. I recommend that my customers come see me every 4 to 6 weeks .If this seems like too much for you then I want you to ask yourself how much you would pay ( per day ) to have hair that you liked, because your hair is the accessory you wear EVERY DAY!

PS: YOU’RE WORTH IT!!!

The visualization technique I will be using as I push through my ” just do it” could also work for motivating you to get your hair done more often, especially when you’re thinking about the cost of it. Don’t focus on spending that money, focus on how good you will feel looking in the mirror and how that will affect your mood for the day.  I have a goal by the end of February to clean out and organize my apartment so that I can empty out a storage unit that I have that is costing me $120 a month. I’m reasonably sure that more than half of the stuff in it is stuff that I don’t want, which makes the task extra annoying because then I have to decide what to do with it. I’m sharing this with you because I know that you all have some big, daunting task that you’ve been procrastinating too. So let’s make an agreement that we will get it done. We can take the first important baby step together and start by closing our eyes and visualizing what it will feel like and look like to have this done! Now let’s JUST DO IT!!!!!

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If you are a fellow procrastinator like me, then please share with me the task or goal you have decided to tackle. Sharing your goals with others is a great way to get the ball rolling.  Once you’ve told a few people, they are probably going to ask you about it again, so now you have someone holding you accountable for the chore. If you are not a procrastinator, then please share some of your tips and strategies for getting things done.

 

 

Highs and Lows of 2013

Have you ever looked up and seen the constellations in the daylight? Would you know how great if felt to be wrapped up in a warm blanket if it wasn’t cold outside? If we didn’t have the dark and we never felt the cold then we couldn’t enjoy the simple things like a night sky peppered with stars or a good snuggle on the couch. The same is true for your hair. You may not be able to appreciate a great haircut if you’ve never had to suffer through a bad one. Without the bad stuff in life we could never have the good stuff because the two exist because of one another.  A blonde highlight will only appear when it is placed next to a darker lowlight, otherwise the color will look flat and boring. Of course this is true in life as well and if we didn’t have to deal with the yucky stuff then we may never really know a good thing when we have it going on already.
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This month I’ve been in a major seasonal funk – I mean an mega funk! I tried my hardest to ignore all the “holly jolly” going on around me but I have a very outspoken 6 year old and when she dramatically accused me of not having any Christmas spirit and “only thinking of myself” (ouch!),  I knew I had to snap out of it.  You know that expression “when it rains it pours”? Ya, well I know it! Fighting my mental funk has been hard enough but then my whole house came down with the flu which zapped the last bit of zip I had left, called me out of work 3 days, and displaced many of my customers. I know my whole vibe here on my blog is to stay positive and blah blah blah, but I have a side of me that is opposing this happy go lucky, sunshine and lollipops persona, and I’ve been letting it take over my life. What a great way to start the new year right?

Actually, this IS a great way to start the new year! I’m so tired of feeling this way that I’m starting to remember all the lessons I’ve learned in life and the things that happened to me so that I could learn them. I can honestly say that every good thing that has ever happened to me can be traced back to some awful thing that I thought I could never live through.  I guess I’m just starting off the new year with an extra batch of lemons and it’s up to me to turn them all into a delicious batch of lemonade. I encourage you to do the same thing and if you have to, make a list of all the worst things that have happened to you and challenge yourself to turn it into a positive thing.
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I’ll start….

If I hadn’t lost my make-up bag with all my favorite makeup in it, then I wouldn’t have had to buy all my new makeup and I actually ended up finding some pretty awesome stuff to replace my old things!

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If I hadn’t fallen behind on my rent and bills while living in my old rental house, then I wouldn’t have moved into my cute little apartment and met a good friend living next door!

If I hadn’t felt lost and alone missing all my hometown friends in CA, then I wouldn’t have made the effort to start to do their hair so that I could afford to visit more often! This worked out so well that I was able to visit 5 times last year and the added bonus was that I was forced to learn another color line.
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If I hadn’t become restless in my career and started to feel like I needed more in my life, then I never would’ve started this blog or began thinking about what the “more” I’m looking for might be!

I don’t know what is in store for me in 2014 but I know it will be a roller coaster filled with ups and downs. I may be in a low point right now, but when you’re at the bottom the only place left to go is up, right? And I suppose if I felt perky all the time then you might not believe that I had to make any effort to be that way, you may think I wasn’t authentic and my words of wisdom may just go in one ear and out the other. Happy New Year to you and  I wish you all the best of life for the coming year!

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The Gift Of The Present

When you are an ambitious working mom with a busy social schedule, living in the moment is more like surviving moment to moment. This week I’ve been so scattered I’ve forgotten where I set down my cell phone numerous times, officially lost a set of car keys within the mess of my car, and misplaced my precious make up bag! I’ve also failed to pay attention to the urgency of a few important matters in my daily world. Like I said in my first post, I am a major procrastinator and because of that I often let things erupt into a five alarm fire! For example, my recent string of bad luck with my car. Two breakdowns that left me stranded and over $1,600 in repairs later, I’m wishing I had taken the check engine light more seriously. I also have been ignoring a flea infestation in my apartment – the side effect of letting my cat cruise around outside on the balcony. For about a month I’ve silently prayed that they would just go away but after I noticed that I was literally being eaten alive, I had to accept that I was losing the battle of the bugs. My first instinct is to blame life for these major inconveniences but I know that the blame is on me. I’ve been too distracted by things that already have happened in the past or things that I think may happen in the future, to pay attention to what’s happening right in front of me!

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Whether I’m cutting, coloring, or styling a clients hair, I have to stay in the moment. If I don’t I risk hurting myself or my customer and their hair, while at the same time ruining my reputation as a master hairdresser. Once I was in a rush to add caramel lowlights to a blonde client’s hair and in my haste I mistakenly grabbed a level 1 (black) tube of color that was hanging out with the level 7s (dark blonde). Black streaks in blonde hair does add dimension, but it definitely wasn’t what my customer was looking for that day. Oops! Another time, I had my head in the clouds during a haircut and I nearly cut my finger off!  I knew immediately after it happened that I wasn’t paying attention and I was thankful I had sacrificed my finger instead of my clients ear. Being out of the moment can be dangerous and its most often when accidents happen that may make it even more difficult to enjoy the next moment!
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There are times when revisiting the past can be fun, like a 1960’s themed Christmas party. Last weekend I was invited to my friend, Rachel Belle’s, holiday work party. The theme was Mad Men and we were encouraged to dress the part. Rachel and I love to dress up, and more than that, we love attention!  I accepted the invitation to do her hair and be her date, knowing that I had a closet full of faux furs and vintage hand gloves that would be perfect.  After about an hour of prepping Rachel’s coif with a flat iron and endless backcombing, I had transformed her wild curls into a polished beehive-esque up do. Ready to take on the night, we headed out to Lake Union where the free food and fun was awaiting us. As usual, we were a little livelier than the rest of the crowd, so we left after munching and took our do’s to a small bar where we received even more attention. The night was fun and we did look amazing, but the best part of the whole night was getting to spend time with my gal pal Rachel.
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Time is a precious gift and it’s the most important thing we have to share with others when we are living in the moment. A couple of weeks ago I had a cold reminder of just how precious time is; I lost a long term customer and friend, Jen, to breast cancer. A couple days before she passed away I had made plans to visit  Jen because I knew she was sick. I was all set to head out to her place, when my stupid car broke down! Stranded and annoyed, I canceled our get together and rescheduled it for a couple days later, thinking that a few days wouldn’t really matter, but it did. I was so sad that I had missed our “last visit” and I felt silly remembering all the things I had complained about earlier that day – things that didn’t matter at all.  When I talked to Jen’s brother to express my sympathies and heartache that I hadn’t been able to see her a few nights before, he thanked me and said, “I know, we all thought she had more time.” More time.
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It is so easy to lose sight of the most important things in life like family, friends, and time. The magic of the holiday season isn’t on sale at the mall, it’s happening right now in front of you! Take a look around and appreciate all the good things you already have in your life because the future is quickly turning into the past, and the present moment is the real gift. Reflecting on the past can be a great tool to help us navigate the potential future, as long as it doesn’t overwhelm our attention and make us forget to enjoy the moment. The future is only something that may happen, and no matter how much we plan for it, we have no control over what will come to be. The only thing we can do is enjoy the moment and make sure we share it with the people that bring us the most joy, so keep that in mind this season when you’re wondering what to get that special person on your list. The gift of time is something that doesn’t cost much and it can be shared with anyone and everyone. Happy Holidays!

It’s Time To Get Uncomfortable

Holy Moly! The last couple of weeks have been crazy for me, to say the least. I’ve celebrated 3 family birthdays, including my 6 year old daughter’s at Chuck E Cheese, and my mother’s at the  Indian casino. I had a “rock bottom” cold that left me feeling so low that I became hopeless and depressed as I lost my voice for more than a week.  Just as I was starting to feel better, I boarded an airplane with my toddler, headed to California for a scheduled visit with my best friends.  Despite my efforts to entertain her, my 15 month old angel screamed for the majority of the time and I wanted to just disappear into the seat. Due to all of these life hurdles, I was unable to muster up the energy or focus necessary to push out an inspiring post last week, and even now I am struggling to collect and organize my thoughts into something tangible. So instead of trying to “Wow” you, I’m just going to do my best to get my thoughts out, because for 3 weeks I’ve been ruminating on the concept of discomfort and its necessity for growth and change. I could call it a coincidence that I have been so physically and mentally uncomfortable in the last 15 days that I literally don’t feel like myself, but I know better. This is life’s way of testing me on the very principle I want to share with you….getting comfortable being uncomfortable, and its necessity in life for providing us with a path toward growth and change.

While I was in California, I got a chance to stay with one of my favorite people in the world, Jen, and her boyfriend Kris. They both have jobs where they deal with putting people in uncomfortable physical situations; Jen is a yoga instructor and Kris co-owns a gym and is a personal trainer. In order to help them train the minds and bodies of their clients, they are constantly pushing people to try harder, reach higher, and embrace discomfort as a tool for growth and change.  Jen told me that in Yin Yoga, a discipline she teaches, the goal is to contort your body into a very unnatural, uncomfortable position and to hold the position for a predetermined amount of time. She emphasized that the point isn’t to be comfortable, instead the point is to rest in the discomfort so that you can train your brain to recognize that it can handle difficult situations and survive. It’s actually a conditioning technique for the mind! Kris told me that at his gym he doesn’t like to stand behind people just counting reps for them, he likes to let them find their personal strength to overcome the challenges they face by acting as their educated guide and coach. He often tells people to “get comfortable being uncomfortable”, a slogan he learned from a fitness mentor he respects and follows. Kris knows firsthand the kind of mental strength it takes to reach your goals, because as a boy he weighed over 300 pounds. Now a strapping 200 lbs and in the best shape of his life, Kris is able to inspire people at his gym to want more for themselves and believe they can do it! He’s living proof that if you want to change you can, but its not going to be easy, and it’s definitely going to feel uncomfortable.

I will be the first to admit that I hate being uncomfortable. I dress up for work because I have to, not because I want to, and any chance I get, I am in my “comfies” looking like a frazzled mom instead of a professional hairstylist. Becoming a blogger has been, and still is, incredibly uncomfortable for me. Every time I think about putting myself out into the blogosphere with a new post, I hear a voice in my head say “Who do you think you are?” I push on because I know a secret about being uncomfortable – eventually it becomes comfortable. I’ve recently started wearing bright lipstick, but for years I never did because I have large lips (how stupid right?) and I felt self conscious about all that color on my face. I also love the way high heels look, but they don’t feel as good as flats, and at 5 foot 9 inches I’m already tall. When my desire to become a person who wore lipstick and heels overwhelmed my desire to blend into the background, I decided to push past my doubts and do it anyways, just like I’m doing now with my desire to be a life and beauty advice blogger. Being uncomfortable isn’t a good enough reason to stop following your dreams, it’s a conditioning tool to train you to make you stronger! The road ahead will be challenging, thats a guarantee, but the reward will be worth it!20131124-163335.jpg

I want to challenge you all to identify something in your life that you want to try but never have because it makes you uncomfortable. I also want to challenge you to share your experiences with me and the other readers by telling your story as a comment, or on my Dear Hairdresser Facebook page. Now that you all know about me, I want to know about you!


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Opinions Are Everywhere – Proceed With Caution

Would you leave the house in a new pair of pants that your friend said made you look fat? Could you still feel confident sporting a new hairstyle if your partner said they hated it?  Why is it so hard to trust our own opinions and more importantly, why are we constantly seeking approval from other people? When someone comes into the salon and requests a major style change, I know that no matter how cute they think it is when they leave the shop, they won’t really know if they love it until their family and friends approve it.  Making a decision to try a new style, wear a different fashion trend, or make a lifestyle change takes a lot of courage and we should be applauded for taking the risk.  Are you strong enough to trust your own opinion instead of someone else’s, and to focus on trying to please yourself?

I remember when I was a teenage girl, my mom would come home from the mall with a new outfit and ask me what I thought of it. If I liked it she was pleased, but if I didn’t like it her feelings would be hurt. Tired of feeling like a jerk, I asked her one day,  “Why do you keep asking me for my opinion if you don’t really want to hear it?”  She thought about it a bit and then replied, “I guess I was hoping you would say that you liked it too.” She wasn’t really searching for my opinion, instead she was looking for approval with a verbal “thumbs up”. I think we both learned a good lesson that day: Be careful what you say, and be careful what you ask!

I want to share one of my least favorite experiences as a hairstylist, but I don’t want you to judge the characters involved. It is a story that illustrates, very sharply, the power of words and opinions. It involves a beautiful young girl who came in for a haircut and made a bold decision to cut off her long, brown hair. After I had finished with the cut the young woman looked at herself in the mirror and smiled radiantly. She loved it! Soon after, her mother came in to pick her up and to pay for the cut. She took one look at her daughter and grew red with anger. “You cut your hair?!” She said bluntly. “Why would you do that? You look terrible!” My heart broke, and so did the beautiful young girls’. In an instant, the glowing confidence she had found was destroyed by a thoughtless comment from her own mother. In the years that followed I would see the girl around town and I noticed that she had grown her hair long again. Maybe she had chose to believe what her mother had told her that day, instead of what she had thought to be true when she first saw her reflection. I cannot condemn her mother because I have caught myself carelessly sharing my opinion plenty of times. I’m not proud of it, but I am human, and I have definitely hurt my loved ones’ feelings with my words.

I think it’s important for everyone to remember that if someone doesn’t like your new look, your new outfit, or the change you’ve initiated, that’s their problem and not yours! You never really know why people have strong feelings about one thing or another and sometimes, they don’t even mean what they said.  Maybe the friend that said you looked fat, felt insecure when she saw how hot you looked in those new pants.  Maybe your partner hates your new look because it makes them feel threatened, because now you look more modern and confident. Maybe the Mother who didn’t like her daughter’s short hair had been forced to cut her own hair short as a child and remembered how terrible she thought she looked. Who knows for sure? The point is, they are probably relating your inquiry to themselves first and may not be able to see past that enough to give you what you’re looking for.

I’m not suggesting that you should never ask people their opinions. I’m merely pointing out that you should carefully choose the people who’s words you allow to get in the way of you pleasing yourself. That old saying, “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me” is a lie! Words do hurt, so the next time you get an unwanted opinion consider the source and what they might be dealing with in their own minds. Then decide if you will place more importance on their thoughts about beauty, fashion, or lifestyle, than you do your own. Try to be a good example of this empowerment to others too.  You may have little ones, like I do, who are watching your every move. They will be learning how they should treat themselves, and whose opinions should be most important in their lives. Have the courage to trust yourself and your own opinion! After all,  you are really the only one who knows what is best for you and you are the one who has to live with it, not them!

Up Do’s and Life Don’ts

I used to think that having a plan wasn’t necessary for my personal success. I was convinced that planning was for people who were uptight and who didn’t know how to just, “go with the flow”. I’ve come to realize that I was completely wrong! Not only was I wrong, which is something I hate to admit, but I was also a fool. My plan to “not plan”, was getting me exactly what it promised, nothing!

I realized that I was incredibly unhappy with myself and my life, but I didn’t know why. I was always angry, I felt sorry for myself, and I was depleted of any extra energy to “do” things. I started to talk to a Life Coach, hoping that it would help me get myself on track. With the help of my coach, I noticed that I was only focusing on the things I didn’t want in my life. When I tried to think about the things I did want in my life, I couldn’t come up with anything! How could I have overlooked this subtle, yet important detail? I made a plan right then and there to change.

On New Year’s Eve of 2012, I made a resolution to dream. I allowed for no restrictions on the level of foolishness that my dreams reached, and I promised myself I wouldn’t focus on how they would come true. As the year moved on, I began to notice something magical. When I thought often about the possibilities in my life, I started to feel that they could be possible. I began to naturally focus on things that made me happy, and I was becoming someone who knew what they wanted. With this new energy and verve, I made some changes and I began my blogging project. This is only my third post, and I’ve already made improvements on my page that I’m proud of. My talented Sister, made me a custom graphic header, and I successfully was able to upload it! OK, so I still have a long way to go, but at least I’m on my way.

 Starting a new project in life can be similar to starting any new hair project, such as an up do. In order to get the results I want, I need to be confident in myself and stay focused. I begin by visualizing the final look, and formulating a plan. After I have a good sense of where I’m going, I gather my styling tools, take the time to build a strong foundation, and finally, I fine tune the details. Sometimes the task takes hours, and usually, right before it looks amazing, it looks ridiculous! I truly believe that if you want to be happy and successful, then you must make a plan to be that way! I recommend starting with a dream, it worked for me and it probably won’t hurt. Then, gather your tools, build your foundation, and stay focused! It may take a long time to get the results you’re looking for, but keep going! The funky mess things may appear to be while you’re working on your “life do”, will come together in the end, and it will be beautiful.

This weekend I had the opportunity to style my Friend’s hair for her Great Gatsby themed Birthday Party. I wanted the looks to turn out perfect, so not only did I make a plan, but I also practiced on my daughter Ginger. Using Ginger as my hair model helped me to appreciate all of my clients who can sit still for an hour! Ginger couldn’t stop moving, and after many “silly breaks”, a bag of popcorn, and a handful of jelly beans, we finished. Below are the pictures I took of her, as well as the pictures of the Gatsby Inspired Up Dos.

The Lovely Ginger

The Lovely Ginger

In closing I want to say “Thank You” to everyone who believes in me and is following my posts through their e-mail, Facebook, or Twitter accounts. I appreciate you all! I also want to thank my Coach, Hannah, and invite anyone who is intrigued by the thought of a Life Coach, to check out her website at MyMindset.com.

Gatsby Inspired Up Dos

Gatsby Inspired Up Dos

 

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A Newborn Blog, A Year Old Baby, and the Secret to Looking Great Forever

Hello world! I’m Natalie. Well, that’s what my friends call me, but my name doesn’t describe who I am. I am a mother, a hopeful dreamer, a major procrastinator, and a professional Hair Stylist.  I am known as a Master Stylist and Hair Color Expert in the salon where I’ve worked for the past 11 years. My goal with this blog is to bring practical advice and information to my readers about the mysterious world of hair.

I’ve seen a lot of things in the 15 years that I have been in the beauty industry. I’ve had many successes and many failures as a Stylist. I’ve discovered that it’s not “getting it right” that teaches me the most about my craft, but instead “getting it wrong”! I have also noticed that this is true in my own life, and after 34 years on the planet, I have made many good choices and many bad choices. I love to share who I am with my clients and in return they give me a piece of themselves. The reciprocal connection I feel with people drives me to work on my worst days, and now it pushes me through the maze of  WordPress  so that I can make new connections with new people.

I want to share some personal things with you all right now to break the ice. I am an expert on hair, but I am the polar opposite as a blogger.  I will ask all of you web experts, gifted writers, and blogging whizzes to cut me some slack as I grow into myself in this arena. I am also proud to announce that I have successfully kept another child alive for a whole year! My daughter Estela turned one last week. Because this is the second time I have achieved this, I now know that I am much more comfortable having older children. That’s why I’m going to refer to this blog as a newborn blog. I’m going to focus loving attention on it for the next year and do my best to keep it alive, help it grow, and thrive. Hopefully, I will get better and more interesting over time, so hang in there with me.

Before I end my first real post I would like to share with you all the one secret to looking fabulous  forever. Here it is in one word only, CONFIDENCE! I know for a fact that a bad haircut worn with confidence will appear to look better than the trendiest cut worn without it. Most people don’t really know what the top fashion houses are doing or why. The truth is by the time a trend reaches the general population, it has already left the scene of the people who started it. So, whatever look you choose for yourself, do it because it makes YOU feel great! Then think about how other people will see it because it’s hard enough to please yourself, so focus on that and become a master at it.