Tag Archives: hair

Repair Your Hair with MacVoil

Macadamia Argan Cypress Oil

If you’re looking an exotically aromatic oil that will leave your hair light, silky and frizz-free then look no further than MacVoil. Their Macadamia Argan Cypress Oil is actually a 3 in 1 deal, meaning that you get the benefits of three amazing oils in one delicious treatment. So what’s in this magic MacVoil oil you ask?

  1. Virgin Macadamia Oil – absorbs easily into your skin and scalp and assists in cell rejuvenation.
  2. Virgin Argan Oil – high in Omega 3 and Omega 9 unsaturated fatty acids that provides a boost of vitamin E when applied to the hair.
  3. Virgin Cypress Oil – good for dry and brittle hair. Cypress oil saturates your hair and scalp with healing moisturizing emollients.

According to MacVoil, they are “striving to bring you the best all natural botanical hair care products using the most advanced technologies available.” To learn more about the “advanced technologies,” check out their mission statement. MacVoil’s oils are also good for the environment, the bottles are recycled and the products are never tested on animals.

I am now addicted to the Macadamia Argan Cypress Oil. The scent is to die for, but I would do it no justice if I tried to describe it. It’s somewhere between vanilla and nutty … if that makes ANY sense. In addition to the delicious scent, the oil leaves my hair light, silky smooth and grease-free.

A 4 oz. bottle retails for $35 and you can purchase by emailing info@macvoil.com or calling (800) 622-1330.

Have any of you treated your hair to MacVoil before?

Can Hair Beat the Heat with Salon Grafix 450 Maximum Heat Protect Spray?

Whenever a hair care brand announces a product that claims to be the “first, most amazing hair product ever!” I’m always instantly skeptical. So when Salon Grafix released the “first 450 degree thermal protection spray in the industry,” I wasn’t 100 percent convinced it would be as groundbreaking as the company made it seem. (In fact, a quick search revealed a similar product by Bain de Terre.) But of course, I had to test it out for myself to really see how it works.

In theory, heat protecting hair care products seem to make a lot of sense. When I think of all the abuse I put my strands through on a daily basis — scorching blow-outs with my Babyliss Pro followed with my high-heat Hana Elite Flat Iron — then I wonder why my hair hasn’t already broken off into tiny frizzy stubs. But it also makes me wonder what exactly makes them work.

According to Salon Grafix, 450 Maximum Heat Protect Spray’s protection lies in a “secret ingredient” –VP/DMAPA Acrylates Copolymer, which “delivers excellent hold and conditioning effects to hair.” However, after some other quick research on this wonderful little gem of a search engine — Google — it appears that many types of oils and silicones found in all sorts of hair serums and sprays will help protect your hair from heat.

What can save your strands from daily blow-outs?

Okay, so how does Salon Grafix’s heat protector hold up?  After thoroughly spraying my strands with the ultra-fine mist (side note: it makes me sneeze uncontrollably for some reason), I was ready to fire away with my Babyliss Pro. I noticed a difference instantly, as my hair seemed to “behave” better as I began to blow it out. The subtle hold the product provides really helps keep hair in check while avoiding any sticky feeling that some standard hairsprays give.

The other difference? Well, my hair started smoking. Yes, smoking.  For a product that was designed to protect my hair from heat, it certainly wasn’t giving me a lot of confidence since the product itself seemed to literally be burning up during the blow-out! Of course, it was also showing me how hot the blow dryer would have been ON MY HAIR if the product hadn’t been there to coat it and protect. Eek!

While it’s physically impossible for me to know whether or not the spray caused my hair to break/split/damage less than if I hadn’t been using it, I can say it definitely didn’t hurt. That said, you won’t find me running out to buy it. But you tell me — do you swear by a special heat protector, or do you think these products are full of hot air?

Photos: Salon Grafix; Babyliss Pro

Hair Tutorial Video: Front French Braid

Hi folks! Just the other week, I told you that I have been channeling my inner Pocahontas by sporting a front french braid lately. I know that some people are visual learners, so I put together a video tutorial for you all. Drum roll please…

As I said in my last post and in the video,  this look is extremely easy. Even a baby could do it … well maybe that’s a stretch. In addition to be a speedy look, the front french braid is also great for second day hair when you don’t want to wear a headband or hat to hide the grease. It’s like your hair is it’s own headband!

I hope you all enjoy the tutorial and all the awkward comments I make during the video. I enjoyed making it, so let me know if you have any questions or tutorial requests.


The New Look by ARROJO Studio: It’s Not in Her Nature

IMG_1369The hazy nights of summer are on the horizon, and the staff at the renowned NYC hair salon ARROJO Studio are feeling a little retro. To celebrate the free spirit of the 70s, when individuality reigned, they have recaptured the sentiments of the time with the editorial photo shoot, And It’s Not In Her Nature.

Showcasing heavy textures and the intricate mixing of patterns in styling and coloring, the highlight of And It’s Not In Her Nature is the hair. With loose, free-flowing lines and “organic” shapes for a lived-in, sexy feel, the models’ hair features rustic tones of blonde, brunette and auburn, blending slice and weave highlights with single process color for unique color combinations.

The lead stylist for the shoot, ARROJO colorist Antonia Troiano, says she was inspired by today’s sociological climate, which mirrors the 70s in many ways.

“I feel like there’s a certain tone and spirit of today’s time which reflects the emotional energy of that era, particularly with the political and social movements of the 70s,” she explains. “Just as there was back then, current times seem to have a similar strong feeling of hope, change and uneasiness all in one.”

And It’s Not In Her Nature






Products Used (all ARROJO): Set and Style Spray, Holding Spray, Volume Foam, Styling Creme and Texture Paste (all ARROJO).

Hair: Antonia Troiano, Hillary Bilstad, Carmel Lawless

Styling: Antonia Troiano, Kelly Wright (using ARROJO product)

Wardrobe Styling: Antonia Troiano

Makeup: Liz Marz

Photography: Mario Valentino

Season Staple: Hair Accessories

head2Just because spring fashions are delicate and dainty doesn’t mean we have to be. With an abundance of hair accessories of the barrette, clip and band variety, this season we’re getting especially headstrong.

Barrettes are a hair piece that truly put the fun in functional. While they’ve got your locks on lock down they make the stylish statement of your choice. Go with a few miniature bows to show off your traditional tailored side or an oversized glittered piece for glam.

Clips can work in much the same sense as barrettes, but are way better when it comes to versatility. Many of the styles are designed to body double has a hair piece as well as a chic outfit ornament. At the office, affix your floral clip on the breast of your blazer, but at night, use it to maintain your mane.

hair clip

head3This season, headbands, once the international sign for all things preppy, are anything but. The plane Jane styles admired by 1950s teenagers and Charolette York have had a crash course in edgy embellishment. Prepare for bands thick and thin adorned with bold statement pieces (patches, plates, etc.) or unique textures (flower petals, feathers, etc.).

The best part about these trend worthy hair accessories? You can tackle your tresses in any which way and still utilize them all (separately, of course). Barrettes, clips and bands work with an updo for old fashioned sophistication or with your day-to-day free form luscious locks. And there’s no bigotry for those with bangs. Barrettes and clips suffice, but a band should be your go-to headgear.

Photos: All from Urban Outfitters

Score Strong, Healthy Strands with KERASTASE PARIS

Kerastase ShampooThose Parisians know a thing or two about chic, sophisticated style, and it seems to be that they also know a thing or two about hair care. KÉRASTASE PARIS offers a variety of hair care products that promise to leave your hair nourished, luscious and vibrant.

While there are numerous potential routines you could follow using the Kérastase products for your specific hair needs, the perfect trifecta for relatively “normal hair” consists of (with translations for our non-French speakers): BAIN OLÉO-RELAX — Smoothing Shampoo, LAIT VITAL — Incredibly Light Nourishing Care, and SÉRUM OLÉO-RELAX –Smoothing Controlling Care.

Each product leaves your hair feeling light and manageable; you won’t need to worry about any unnecessary product build up or that greasy feeling products can sometimes leave in your hair. And for those of you who worry about overly-scented products, no need to worry. There is no distinct scent to any of these products, and they will all leave your hair smelling freshly showered and clean.

Kerastase ConditionerKerastase Hair SerumAll products are available online at the KÉRASTASE PARIS website for under $40.

Photos: Kerastas

Disclaimer: Products were furnished complimentary for review.

Hair 101: Q&A with Sassoon Salon Experts

How often should you color your hair? How often is too often? What cuts and colors are hot right now? Find out the answers to these questions and more in our exclusive Q&A with the skilled Sassoon Salon specialists who gave us ‘do-overs.

sassoon salon richie riveraRichie Rivera

East Coast Regional Color Director for Sassoon Salon

BX: What is the first thing you look at when considering color for a client?

RR:  Skin tone, eye color and the condition of the hair, i.e., analyzing what color is currently on the hair, what type of color has been applied previously, how the hair feels, etc.  I also take into account lifestyle suitability, such as how the potential color will fit into my client’s professional life and how much the client wants to be in the salon for touch-ups.

BX: What do you think are the newest/hottest color looks?

RR:  For this season, rich browns, vibrant reds and biscuit blondes have been very popular. At Sassoon, we have been focusing on interior color and placing it so that it subtly peeks through the hair. This type of application creates a wonderful fluidity of movement with a warmth and burnished richness that brighten up the dullness that’s synonymous with the cooler weather.

BX:  How can someone spice up their color without making a drastic change?

RR:  By requesting  highlights or panels to add slight variation, but still complement their natural color. For example, for a client with blonde shades, I may suggest subtle highlighting to add lightness to the hair. Whereas if I’m working with a brunette, richer tones, such as those in the red palette, can be used to develop depth.

BX:  How often is TOO often to color your hair?

RR:  On average, a single process client should have their hair retouched every four weeks– anything sooner than that is too frequent.  For highlights, once every 12 weeks is ideal.

BX: How damaging is it really to highlight and then add color again several times throughout the year?

RR:  With the correct knowledge, hair color is completely safe, and it is up to the Colorist to make sure their clients know all the facts. For one, clients that color their hair several times a year must be educated on how often they should be in the salon for touch-ups (no more than once every 4-6 weeks for tints and once every 12 weeks for highlights). Second, all color clients need an appropriate  at-home regimen for their hair type that protects and prolongs their color. Once clients have this info, they can rest assured that their hair will stay healthy, shiny and soft, even with regular color application.

BX:  Is there a cutoff point as to how many times you can do this without severe damage like break-offs?

RR:  At Sassoon, we NEVER allow hair to get to this point. All colorists are taught in the Sassoon method of coloring, which stresses preserving the integrity of the hair. Essentially what that means, is that the colorist will always take into account the condition of the hair and not apply anything that will be potentially harmful or damaging. For example, if a client comes in with brown hair and wants to turn it platinum blonde, a Sassoon colorist will gladly do it; however, it will most likely be a gradual process (typically three appointments) to make sure the hair stays healthy.

BX: What is your favorite coloring technique (e.g., all-over color, highlights, “color from within,” etc.)

RR: My favorite technique is combining single process application with some foil work because you are able to create variation that can either result in a very natural look or a bold statement!

sassoon salon edwardEdward Tedeschi

Assistant Creative Director for Sassoon Salon Boston

BX:  How did you get started?

ET:  I started when one of my college roommates on a whim asked me to give him a cut one day. I kind of just jumped into it head first, and surprisingly, it came out ok! As a result, my other roommate wanted a cut, and then their friends and so on. I soon decided that cosmetology school would be a better fit, and the rest, as they say, is history.

BX:  How long have you been with Sassoon and how did you begin with Sassoon?

ET:  I’ve been with Sassoon for nearly four years now. A few months prior to finishing cosmetology school, I started going into the Costa Mesa, CA (Orange County) salon and asking questions about becoming an assistant. Knowing how tough it is to get a position with Sassoon, I was very persistent. I think they soon realized how much I wanted to be a part of the salon, so much to my excitement, they gave me the opportunity! I worked for about 2 years in that salon, and then transferred to Boston in 2007.

BX:  What is your favorite thing about your job?

ET:  Definitely being at the forefront of hair education. Every season, Sassoon releases a new collection, and it is my job to teach this knowledge and the new techniques to the trainees in my salon. I love growing in my craft every day, leaning more and expanding my repertoire.

BX:  What types of cuts do you enjoy doing the most?

ET:  I love cutting all types of hair, it keeps the job interesting and inspiring. Also, I love detailing! Whether it’s a short crop on a man or a woman’s graduated bob, it’s so gratifying to see a shape develop- sculpting and refining it to perfection. It is the attention to detail that makes a Sassoon cut unique, and that’s easily my favorite part of my job.

BX:  What are you noticing as hot trends for the upcoming seasons?

ET:  The great thing about hair right now is that there are so many styles that are popular. However, I’m definitely noticing a lot of shorter styles on women, such as Michelle Williams on the cover of the new Vogue. Also, the Sassoon team is playing with a lot more texture and working with concealed layering to soften shapes, which gives hair plenty of movement. Think a contemporary reinvention of the undercut.

BX:  Where do you find inspiration for your styles?

ET:  Living in the city, I find inspiration just walking around, observing Bostonians, and looking at the architecture and various storefronts. In addition, I’m always looking to Helmut Lang for ideas. The heavy layering with loose asymmetric collars and draping leather jackets are always inspiring. I’m also constantly taking in my surroundings when I’m working. I’m fortunate to work alongside so many talented people, and their work inspires me every day.

BX:  Are there any hair trends –past or present– that you think should never be brought back?

ET:  Hmm… sorry Jennifer Aniston, your hair in the “Friends” years is something I never want to see again.

BX:  Are there any styles that are always ‘in’?

ET:  There will always be some variation of the bob that is in style. Whether it’s the classic one length or heavily layered and textured, the bob will always be a contemporary classic.

BX:  What do you do if someone ends up crying/upset about his or her haircut?

ET:  Fortunately, I haven’t had any tears in my chair, but if I ever detect some unease, I always reassure the client that they look amazing and ask them to call me or come back in if they decide they want something changed. Though I have to say, usually my clients just need to hear opinions from their friends and loved ones. More times than not, I will receive calls the next day with these clients telling me that they love their new looks and that all their friends love it as well.

BX:  What do you do when your customer doesn’t see your vision? How do you handle situations when your customer has an extremely outdated haircut but can’t seem to part with it?

ET:  All you can do is show them the way…if they want to go down that road with you, awesome. If they don’t, you try to find something in the middle. And if they really can’t part with their dated style, I give them the best mullet/ comb over they will ever have!

Photo Credits: Sassoon Salon

Beautiful Boston: Sassoon Salon Gives us a ‘Do-over

While we’d like to think we’re fabulous all on our own, even beauty buffs like us need a professional revamp every once in a while.  So when the fine staff at Sassoon Salon Boston offered complimentary cuts and colors to showcase their talents, we jumped at the chance.  After all, what better way to illustrate that we could all use a little help from the pros in updating our styles.

Below, learn more about our experiences, and check out the results of the Sassoon Salon staff’s color and scissor wizardry. Stay tuned — we’ll  also feature a Q&A with the masterminds behind these creations — Sassoon Regional Color Director Richie Rivera and Sassoon Salon Boston Assistant Creative Director Edward Tedeschi.

Kristin’s Hair Do-over

I arrived at Sassoon sporting hair that hadn’t been cut in six months. It had lost basically all shape it ever had, and my split ends’ split ends had split ends, which also had split ends….so you get the picture. My hair hadn’t been touched with any high or low lights in a year, so my natural color showed through. While I like my god-given, golden locks, there is always room for improvement. Needless to say, I was overdue for a hair overhaul.

Kristin before

I expressed to both Edward and Richie my fear of short hair and of being anything other than blonde. I know…I am exceptionally exciting and adventuresome when it comes to my hair. After laying down the ground rules, I told them to take creative liberty. My hair could be as shaggy, layered and unique as Edward desired and have as many tones as Richie craved as long as I still had below-the-shoulder, “blonde-ish” locks.

After a cut by Edward Tedeschi

The results? An edgy cut complete with a million beautiful layers (I no longer have the appearance of a shrub on my head), an expertly cleaned up side-swept bang and a “natural” glowing blonde sheen. I couldn’t be happier with either the cut or the color, and I couldn’t be happier with the number of compliments I have received over the past two weeks.  My hair feels five pounds lighter, and the layers are so skillfully cut and placed that my hair works both blown out and straightened or air dried and curly when I am running late. My color is a lot brighter and full of life and lusciousness thanks to Richard and his masterful coloring. Needless to say, Edward and Richie gave me my favorite cut and color of all time.

Kristin after color by Richie Rivera

Anne’s Hair Do-over

From the moment I walked in the door, it was obvious how attentive the entire Sassoon staff is to all its customers. In fact, it’s evident that getting a Sassoon cut or color is more than just the process itself — it’s about the entire experience. Thirsty? They’ll bring you water. Tired? How about a complimentary cappuccino? Worried that your makeover will make you look awful? Relax; the stylists ask scads of questions to help discover which look will suit your personality and fit with your everyday life.When faced with the prospect of getting a makeover at Sassoon Salon in Boston, I was excited, but admittedly wary.  Not that I was afraid of change, per se, as I absolutely love switching up my ‘do — it was just that my hair was finally at a length that I’d been growing out for quite some time, and I had dyed my hair to get rid of my highlights fairly recently.  Perhaps my biggest fear was that I’d end up with an incredibly funky ‘do that looks amazing when styled by the pros, but would end up looking like I stuck my finger in a socket when I styled it myself.  However, after the masterminds at Sassoon Salon Boston worked their magic, I now know that glorious things can happen when I just let go and trust these pros who know exactly what they’re doing.

Anne before

In my case, that look was a rich-hued bob of sorts with an A-line cut (meaning it’s shorter in the back sloping to a longer look in the front).  Edward explained that while he thought my current cut looked nice, this sleek ‘do would have the added bonus of creating the illusion of an elongated neck — and it absolutely does.  Richie added depth to my ‘do by adding rich, caramel and warm, auburn highlights, which, as he explained, really brought out my green/hazel eyes. He also touched up my roots, which were just beginning to peek out.  The results are absolutely stunning, especially in sunlight (these pictures just don’t do them justice!).

Anne after Sassoon cut and color

Side view after Sassoon cut and color

While the color enhancements were much more subtle than the six-inches lopped off from the back, when combined, the look is a complete transformation.  Judge for yourself!

What is the biggest hair transformation you’ve ever undergone?

Photos: beautyXposé; Disclosure

BX Giveaway: Enter to Win Bumpits Hair Inserts!


Do you drool over the ‘dos on the AMC show “Mad Men?” Are you a huge fan of “The Vamp” ponytail?  If your personal style screams Va Va Voom (or you want it to), you’re in serious need of Bumpits.  These self-gripping hair inserts give your hair the boost it needs to look perfectly coiffed and voluminous.

On our Facebook page, tell us why you want Bumpits, and you’ll be automatically entered to win a set of three in the color of your choice (blonde or brunette)!  And stay tuned — when we announce the winner, we’ll post pictures of our Bumpits-created hairdos!

Is Eva Bumpin' It?

Is Eva Bumpin’ It?

How to Enter

1.  Become a fan of the BeautyXpose Facebook page.  Click the previous text (it’s a link) or the big “f” icon on the lower right hand side of the screen to get started.  If you’re already a fan, skip to #2.

2.  Leave a comment on the wall telling us why you want Bumpits.

3.  You’re automatically entered to win (one entry per person).

One winner will be chosen at random on Sunday, September 6, at 8:00 p.m. ET, and notified via e-mail.

Good luck!

Legalese, Schmegalese:

To be eligible, registrants must be U.S. residents at least 18 years old. The giveaway is open nationwide, and eligibility is at the discretion of BeautyXposé. One winner will be chosen at random on Sunday, September 6, at 8 p.m. ET. One entry per person. Contest sponsored by Bumpits. Dates, times, and other contest specifications are subject to change at any time. BeautyXposé reserves the right to cancel the contest for any reason at any time.

Life After TLC: Nick Arrojo Leaves ‘What Not to Wear’

Arrojo speaks at America's Beauty Show earlier this year.
Arrojo speaks at America's Beauty Show earlier this year.

After a seven-year run as the lead hairstylist on TLC’s hit show What Not to Wear, Nick Arrojo may be moving on from the show, but he’s far from hanging up his shears. The man behind some of the most stunning and heartwarming makeovers on TV is already well underway in his next endeavor – growing a hairstylist education program and expanding his branded line of personal care products.

Arrojo says this is a natural, positive step for him and his close-knit team of stylists at his flagship salon in New York City, ARROJO Studio.

“As a busy hairdresser, my goal is to give each client a top-notch haircut that suites their personal life and style, and helps them look great and feel fabulous,” Arrojo said.  “After seven terrific years as hairdressing host [on TLC’s What Not to Wear], I’m sad to be leaving the show, but I’m comfortable with the decision, and I can walk away proud of the job that I’ve done and the people that I’ve touched.”

Within the past year, Arrojo expanded his original studio into a 13,000-square-foot state-of-the-art facility that includes a retail store, space for a future product concept store, an educational center for aspiring stylists, and a café for all to enjoy.  The salon employs 70 staff members, helping approximately 850 clients each week achieve a new hairdo.

The studio also features the ARROJO product line (also available for purchase online), moderately-priced “luxury + performance” hair care products.  The line most recently incorporated three new body washes launched in May.

Arrojo’s educational center for aspiring hairstylists, called ARROJO Academy, teaches a select group of prospective stylists both basic and advanced styling techniques in an intimate setting.  Arrojo explains that the school is designed to offer students the strongest possible platform for a successful career.

“We want to exceed previous expectations of cosmetology schools in a concerted effort to raise standards of excellence and professionalism in the hairdressing craft.”

Despite Arrojo’s continued success, for many fans, Arrojo’s departure from What Not to Wear is the end of an era for the show.  However, they still have the opportunity to get their own makeover from Arrojo or one of his seasoned stylists at the salon in New York.

Arrojo said, “In the long run, I’ll continue to grow my business and educate others in the craft that I love.  Of course, as one door closes, another one opens, so I’m looking forward to new and exciting opportunities coming my way in the future.”

Photos courtesy of Baback