Dear readers, I’m afraid the time has finally come to bring this column to a close. Writing has always been, and forever will be, a passion of mine. Unfortunately, there is only so much one can write about when it comes to hairstyling. I’ve covered all there is to cover, and hopefully I’ve imparted some knowledge along the way. I am not saying by any means that I’ve learned all there is to learn within my profession; only that the well has run dry when it comes to ideas.
Hopefully, someone will be able to pick up where I left off and breathe some fresh air into a topic that has become stale. I appreciate all the positive comments I have received along the way, and am grateful that I had the chance to share my columns with you.
There are some final words of advice that I’d like to share; I guess you can say it’s a summary of everything I have learned in the hairstyling profession.
I’ve learned that beauty does not exist. It is only something that lives in our minds, and our idea of beauty will change as time goes by. One day, years from now, you will go through a photo album and see a picture of yourself and wonder, “What was I thinking when I had that hairstyle?”. Everyone’s ideal of beauty is different, and no matter how hard you try, no matter how much money you invest, you cannot live up to everyone’s expectations. There are some people who will look at a famous supermodel and not find them attractive. There are people who will look at an “ugly” person and think they are the most perfect person God has ever created.
Since there is no point wasting time trying to live up to an ideal of beauty that may or may not exist, you must learn to look in the mirror and see the beauty that exists within yourself. Never color your hair because your husband likes redheads. Never cut your hair because your wife prefers short hair. Don’t try to live up to someone else’s idea of beautiful; instead, be yourself. You are already beautiful.
Alot of people spend an obscene amount of time and money chasing after the elusive dream of perfection. I’ve seen women cry over bad haircuts. In some people’s minds, being beautiful is all that matters. That is a shame. There are so many more important things in life besides hair. Family. Friendships. Happiness. You cannot be happy if you look in the mirror all day judging yourself. It doesn’t matter. A hundred years from now, you will look no better than any of your contemporaries. Even if you spend a million dollars on improving your image, you will still find something about your appearance you’d like to change.
Every now and then, a person should toot his own horn, it’s good for the ego. I spend alot of time analyzing and forecasting trends, and its quite a thrill to see your forecast come true. I wonder if weather forecasters get the same satisfaction….In 2015, I had written in one of my columns that choppy, wispy, and uneven bangs were on the way out. I even went so far as to prophetize that by this year, the trend would lean towards a long solid bang. Many readers wrote back scoffing the heavy-bang prediction, saying that it would never come true. I was happy to see the return of the blunt bang on the cover of the American Salon magazine. Several articles in other May issues of fashion magazines raved about the appearance of the blunt bangs that had graced the Spring runway shows. While other stylists are satisfied following trends, I find my satisfaction in creating them.
This installment of Hairdressing Diary focuses on a photoshoot I conducted in 2015. I was preparing for that year’s NAHA (North American hairstyling Awards), and I had a few ideas I had been throwing around in my head that I wanted to try out. I decided to enter the Avant-Garde category, which consists of hairstyles that border on the eccentric and sometimes bizarre.
I had worked out my ideas on paper a few months prior to the shoot. I made a list of the supplies I would need, and then tried to construct a budget. My original idea involved elaborate underwater lighting and costumes that revolved around a mermaid theme. It soon became clear that there would be no way to finance such an undertaking. I was a “starving artist”, so to speak, so I had to come up with a new idea that would not put me in a financial mudhole. I found my inspiration in an old cemetery, of all places, in the form of a large statue of an angel. I knew I had to recreate that sculpture, but at the time I had no clue as to how I would go about it. Later that evening, I began constructing the wings that would later be used in the shoot. They had to look like stone, but at the same time be light enough for the model to wear for several hours of shooting. I stayed up the entire night making the wings out of papier-mache, which I painted gray using acrylic paint. I found that the paint looked authentic on the wings, so I tested it on my skin, and it looked very convincing. The only question was, could I use this paint to cover an entire body? I dismissed the idea of using theatrical make-up, because it always appeared moist on the skin. I needed something that looked like a statue, and acrylic paint was just what I was looking for. I bought six tubes of paint, estimating that it would take at least that much to cover a person.