Monday, 28 February 2011

Bleaching toning condition damage.

Welcome to BACK2MYROOTS B2MR regular postings of fresh new topic's

lifting agent bleach powder:

Hair Lighteners:  Powder Bleach, Oil or Gel.
Before Embarking On lightening hair one has to understand the chemistry of the product and how the process works.

Hair Lighteners  and Decolourizers come in many forms and are designed to remove Colour from the hair. Basically they are Alkalisers.
How do these work:
They are products that supply Sufficient Alkali to destabilise hydrogen peroxide, when the two products are mixed together the Hydrogen attacks the pigment in the hair and Lightens it.
Hydrogen Peroxide is Stabilised in a bottle with a low Ph around {3.00-3.5} adding the lightener be it {powder or liquid-gel} brings the mixture up to a Ph of around 9.0 triggering oxygen release.

Types of Lighteners:
Bleach powder Lighteners are for the most part Stronger and faster acting. Generally used for off scalp Lightening application. { always do skin and stand test} Lifting Ability depends on the strength of hydrogen peroxide.

Lotions Oil -Gel:             
These have a smoother consistency and are formulated to protect the skin/ scalp from the lightening process.
 {Be advised that adding heat/ dry or steam will change the way these products react: powder bleach can dry out under heat!

The chemical Structure of lighteners are Ammonia.Ammonia hydroxide,Magnesium silicate,and sodium. quite the mix all lighteners have to be mixed with hydrogen peroxide.
{ Be advised hair that has been coloured with any kind of metallic rinse, colour or stain, will create a heat reaction that can cause burning so do your home work!}

When to use:
A key tool for colour correction, but generally they are used when other products available cannot give the desired degree of Lightening.{ Remember High lift Tint will only give max 4levels of lift when mixed with 40vol Peroxide} 

Uses: High-lights, pastel blonde look when hair is strongly or pigmented darker shades.

Mixing:  Always follow Instructions on each given product! for lotions/gel /oil double amount of Hydrogen peroxide is often called for. lotions and lighteners/Booster powders must always be mixed in Sequence,{note: mixed out of sequence can result in uneven lift!}
Stages of Lightening:
When lifting /lightening hair it goes through what is known as the 7 stages of lift. It has no limits it can remove all pigment from the hair.
Remember the Colour wheel: {you can see shades in the outer} wheel      
The stages are as follows.
Red-Brown. Red. Red-orange. orange-yellow. yellow -orange.
yellow.pale yellow.
The first colour is always the stronger shade!
The deeper the base shade the more stages of lift required its a journey don't rush it.
*lightens hair.
*Can be used for colour Correction.
*Adds Texture.
*re-growth needs to be maintained.                               
*Can damage hair.
*Can cause Skin irritation.
* Hair should be protected form Uv -sun light.
Summing Up:
A very useful Tool for us to have but should be respected and understood, I advocate the best path is the one with the least chemistry possible.

Lets re touch on bleach bath/ Cocktail:
What is a bleach bath used for? It is a tool that we have at our disposal to gently lift unwanted pigment from the hair. It is classed as the first line of attack when doing Colour correction:
One would use this formula to lift pigment {note it does not remove pigment} prior to toning or adding your fun colour.
As i have stated before if you are going bright red you don"t need to remove all pigment yellow or orange is fine! if you want true blue you have to get rid of the yellow toning would do this!
Formula for Cocktail. 1/2 OZ Clarifying shampoo 1oz water. 1oz 20 vol peroxide or developer. 1oz/or scoop of bleach.
Wet hair wear Gloves apply and work into your hair for 10 to 15 mins. wash out really well if you don't get enough lift don't give up mix up second batch re apply. don't rinse out re-apply the water stops the action. Remember lift is all about timing;and observation.
It is a miss conception in thinking that 40vol is stronger than 20 vol not true its just long lasting in how long it lifts for {How long the hydrogen gas re acts the oxygen}.

What is toner
Toner is basically a tube or bottle of pigment no peroxide designed to neutralize the unwanted pigment you have exposed or created.  Deposit only no lift when using toner you need to watch what you are doing it keeps on working so you decide on the tone you want!

High lift Blonde series:
All these shades are toners:
B/green/orange base beige neut pale yellow.
G/ yellow/orange base gold
V/ red/ blue Violet neut yellow
A/blue /yellow Green Ash neut orange   

To the right a classic case for toning in my view way to yellow gold?
What would you do here?

To Beige this out lose the warm root hue Violet Toner is required
worked into the hair for a few minutes it will neutralize the warmth
their is no exact time for toning it's a visual hands on exercise.
do not apply and walk away thinking 20 minutes should be fine!
you may well get over deposit and sludge!
I found the above sight they have a product for doing skin allergy testing worth a look!
Here is some information on the above product with so many chemicals and trace elements in colours a topic to be covered very soon  one cannot be to careful.

Quote from sight:
Colourstart is a unique patch test used by hairdressers as a skin allergy test. These tests help the hairdresser to check if clients are likely to have a problem with hair dye. The alternative is often unpopular and impractical for clients. Colourstart is used on clients who do not have time to visit the salon 48 hours before every application. It is used on clients who do not want hair dye left open on their skin.
Colourstart is one of the most important advancements in professional hairdressing. It helps to improve client satisfaction and safety in the salon
Due to its benefits and ease of use, Colourstart is rapidly becoming an industry standard.

Mike B2MR

Friday, 25 February 2011

Hairdressing passion, vocation, challenge.

Regular postings of fresh new topic's

It is my goal to establish a platform to share the creativity, knowledge, and technical Skills:
I have had the good fortune to experience so many aspects of the hair industry with both fellow stylists and so many wonderful clients many who over the years have become good friends

Let me tell you a little about my professional background.

I began my training as a teenager doing my apprenticeship in London Mayfair working in a very busy, high profile salon while continuing to expand my training with other top London salons.

I moved to London's Chelsea - Kensington area to manage a salon, becoming a director and shareholder there before moving on to own and run my own salon in London Clapham district.
In the late 80's I made the move to Canada, starting off on in Ontario and ending up on the West Coast in Vancouver. After many years great years there we made decision to fly back across the pond to resettle here in the UK.
My introduction to the hairdressing world in Vancouver on the Canadian west coast was after a meeting with Mr Jon paul Holt owner of internationally acclaimed Avantgarde Artistic Center  in the down town area of Yaletown after this meeting i was fortunate to be offered a job this was the start of a very special life long friendship.
Whilst working the the salon i became more and more involved in  Avant garde hair salon on photo shoots and hair shows.
Whilst at Avantgarde we did hair shows such as the Alternative Hair Show at the Royal Albert Hall in London, Fashion Cares in Vancouver put on as a fund raiser for aids research by Mac Make up Salon International a main show event for the Canadian hair industry as well as participating in all the national trade shows throughout Canada.
I developed an interest in this area of the industry and got more and more  involved in competitive work. Within my first year I was a runner up in the L' Oreal colour competition for British Columbia.

A pivotal point thus far in my career came when I decided to focus
my career on education and stage work in addition to continuing my hairdressing business specializing in corrective colour work,
I became the West Coast Education Consultant and a Platform Artist for L’anza Canada,  based on Vancouver island working throughout Canada and on occasion in the USA on photo shoots and shows, putting together collections for upcoming seasons and training and working with a team of advanced talented stylists.

I continue to challenge myself and learn more I also became involved in the teaching side of hairstyling and have been teaching in salons and professional hairdressing colleges for the past few years.  

My passion for the industry remains strong and I have continued my work as a professional hairdresser to keep my skills up-to-date and learn about this ever changing craft. I began this venture to inspire clients as well as new and existing stylists with the view to sharing my knowledge and creativity with others and raising the standard of hairdressing and training and finding like minded stylists to work.

I am also very interested in hair colour how and why it works, as i research more and more i discover so much about the how the why but also the way that companies represent there products as being safe natural herbal it truly is quite remarkable, I think its key that we all strive to understand both the product how they work what they do trusting trusting the sales rep is not enough ask questions seek out informative education material strive to become an expert.
whilst Blogging and responding to articles and reviews it amazes me how many stylist recommend products make bold statements with out the slightest knowledge of the chemistry. trusting in what they have been told to this ends my real interest is in the science of all these natural product these herbal organic hair colours, i have yet to find one that does not have a chemical disguised in it's formula.
Some of the Major hair colour companies are very good at hiding facts or projecting the image they want us to project and sell to our clients.
Ammonia free all Natural, Organic, Herbal do you really know how they work ? would you like to know.
Henna and natural stains and colour how good are they really what are the down falls?

I write my Blog but hope it will open the door to some new exciting avenue of knowledge and sharing.
I can work with small groups /salons or individual stylist on any skills and ways to improve business and client retention you can contact me via my web site.
Mike  all hair done whilst on the Avantgarde artistic team thanks Jp

Friday, 18 February 2011

Natural Red heads wanting to go lighter. The issues

Regular postings of fresh new topic's

I don't quite remember when the penny really dropped about understanding hair colour. I don't just mean the application of it . I refer to understanding. Lift. Deposit. Pigment achieving that desired perfect colour and shade.
A challenge in it self but some natural colours are harder to cope with than others. Depending on what the desired shade is.
So lets take a look at our warm shades Reds, Coppers, Rich brunette.
Lets use a scenario of wanting to go lighter. By that  i suggest a Blonde shade. Most people who want blonde do not want to see. Orange or Yellow.
This create many issues for our natural reds and coppers heads, so lets take a look at what may arise and some option of how to address them.

In so many cases the main thing to consider are? How light  to go? What shade of blonde is achievable? The consultation process is key here before making any application of colour, bleach/decolouriser.
With Red pigment being the hardest to lift and control a realistic vision and a game plan are the key to success.
With a natural bright copper colour [sometimes know as ginger]. A bright copper natural base shade would normally be around a level 7 on any shade chart. So quite light and yet full of those pigment tones red and red orange, yellow. To get to any shade of Blonde we have to lift up to and beyond level 9 and infact 10 and beyond and be able to control pigment exposed.
The issue being. As you manage to lift the red and orange pigment out you then hit the yellow pigment bar. Because of the strong pigment in this hair the yellow pigment will be really intense so mistakes can be made when controlling it with a toner.
I have seen so many natural Bright copper heads with attempts at highlights that can look. Green, dull metallic, drab.
The main reason is choice of toner. In many cases we reach as stylists for a toner with an ash base, but lets think about this ash is blue base toner,  blue and yellow make? Green hence the dull drab tone
Consider using a violet base.Why? Well we have lifted the hair removing all the red pigment. There was hardly any blue to start with. So to find a balance of shade we have to replace the missing pigment red and blue, this equals Violet in some cases maybe a blue violet base could be required.
Its all about considering the pigment you have exposed and what your target is. Its also worth mentioning that one needs to consider skin tone and eye colour when taking a natural copper level into blonde shades will it look good!
The same consideration should be applied to rich brunettes although a little blue pigment on the surface you with be lifting from around a natural level 5 into reds then copper orange, my suggested goal here would be a caramel shade not to blonde it will look dull yellow slightly dirty!
Lift to a pale orange yellow shade. Then tone with a blue violet toner. This will re balance the pigment exposed leaving a really rich caramel highlight.
Again when lifting the hair consider skin tone eye colour. A natural brunette will normally have brown or hazel eye colour so to light will wash out the skin and the eyes will not pop!

The main considerations as stated are. Natural hair level, skin tone, eye colour. A realistic vision of lifted goal level. Will the desired look be flattering? It's not our goal to dictate but is is to advise,honestly in the consultation process.
Consider the pigment you will be encountering make sure you have thought through what you are doing and what look you want. It's all about pigment control. Understanding the colour wheel trusting the colour wheel. Yes trusting the laws of colour. Do this and you will not have unwanted tone.

Know your products that is the colours you use know how they work what you can expect from them.

If you are lifting hair that has been previously coloured I would suggest consultation strand test. I would suggest working from the ends into the roots when lifting?
Many more issues can arise from this topic but i hope this creates thoughts and raises some questions maybe even comments.

                                            Mike B2MR

Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Spring time to think Blonde

regular postings of fresh new topic's

It is my goal to create a platform that over time will become a place to share thoughts review hair colour and products.

Spring perfect time to think Blonde

Its almost Spring. The perfect time to consider going blonde, having that sun kissed look whilst wishing for those long hot summer days.That hot holiday hair colour we long for to match that fun summer tan.
If you feel the need have the desire to brighten up your hair style with a fun new blonde look?
It doesn’t matter how dark or light your natural hair color is or if you have dark or pale skin tone, there is always a shade of blonde hair to suit you.
Blonde is still the most popular hair color choice for most women! Of course if you have already coloured your hair then you will have to take this into consideration when thinking about a shade or discuss with your stylist whats possible.
Here are some fun ideas if you want to let that inner blonde out to play for a while.

If you have shoulder length hair in a brunette tone. Skip going for over-all blonde color. Instead apply some rich caramel highlights throughout your style, focusing on the crown and where the part lands. Your textured waves combined with the rich highlights will reflect the sunlight and create an eye-catching look. This will start you on the road to blonde with out over processing.
Long hair
If your long hair is damaged or dull, purchase a good color protecting shampoo and conditioner to use before, during and after you color your hair. Treating your damaged hair from roots to ends is an important factor in maintaining colored styles. For very long hair highlights are a better form of colour than an all over application and help prevent root-re growth issues,

Finding the right shade
Before you decide on a shade of blonde. Take into consideration your skin tone and eye color. Also consider your current hair color for it certainly plays a part in choices and possible out come of the new colour you are working towards
If you currently have bleached blonde hair, you may want to opt for a deeper, richer shade of blonde.This might require putting some pigment back into your hair if bleached very light. If your skin tone is very pale, you may want to keep your blonde shade a bit lighter.
Dark brunettes. A deep honey highlight throughout your style might be best, you are then working with your hairs natural pigment rather than fighting it, try to avoid bleaching as this just damages your hair.
Choose your colour carefully consider all your options. You may need to seek professional advise. Remember combining a fun new blonde hair color with a new cut can completely change the way you look and feel about yourself and the way others look and see you!
Layering colors
Applying a variety of blonde hair colors throughout your hair on various areas of layering creates a very striking and unique look. If you have a light brown base then highlights to lighten the top sections keeping your layers underneath dark this gives dimension and a great two tones look . This type of coloring looks particularly good on straight, medium-length hair with short or longer bangs.

A few Examples of Blonde looks:

These are just a few thoughts and ideas for those interested in creating a new blonde hair color try to do something different and new with your blonde hair this season.Blonde hair in small or large doses is a good way to update your appearance and help lift your mood!

In the fall, autumn with a demi application we can go darker with out any ill effects or possibility of damage. 
Mike B2MR


Monday, 14 February 2011

That salon experience

regular postings of fresh new topic's
                  Salon service. Client retention. Technical skills.

I have decided to share with you some of my thoughts on the hair industry for it has played such a huge part in my journey. I hope you find it interesting and that evokes both thought and questions.

It is my firm belief that in this day and age and in such competitive times the only way to increase and expand your client base is through referral and recommendation it is so important to retain both new and existing clients. This is achieved through excellence in service, communication and technical ability, Knowledge.
This can only be done through High standards of Service, communication and consultation skills. Education, team work and effective leadership by those who are training new stylists.

Service and Communication
So let’s take a look into a salon!

One of the main reason for client loss from a salon is dissatisfaction from either the service or the final result. It is a fact that 50% of clients visiting a salon for the first time do not return! Why? That's a huge loss of client's and repeat business 
Taking short cuts and compromising one’s standards and professional ethics leads to client dissatisfaction.

When a client leaves a salon unhappy! How much damage can they do to your reputation?

When a client leaves happy they will recommend you to others.They will get stopped in the street. Potentially a happy client will recommend you to 5 friends who in turn have 5 friends.
You are building your business on your communication skills. creativity. knowledge.The best way to build a loyal clientele is by being. Sympathetic to a clients needs, listening, professional consultation and by giving honest advise.

Guess what an unhappy client can and will do? You got it - 5 friends will leave with them.
We have to be on top of products new techniques. We cannot only trust in what the sales rep or Manufacturer tells us.
These days we have to know and understand more than ever. The chemistry of our products the effects that they can have, how they will interact with other products.
The client who wants to switch from home colour to professional. The Client. Who has put henna on her hair buts wants to switch to professional permanent colour! Could she? Should she? or He!

Having that edge offering that bit more! 

So after building up a strong client base with strong client retention. Do you ever wonder why? Every five to six weeks you have a somewhat quiet week with not a lot booked? You start to ask yourself the question? What am I doing wrong? Am I losing my touch? Well let’s see.

We have all had one of these. That crazy Saturday could be any day you fitted all those extra clients in. You were on a role and had a huge money day.

You call your boss and say. Guess what I did today. You leave work on cloud nine thinking that's it. Every day could be like this. I really feel I have made it.

Now let’s just think about this and break it down. Was it really a success?

You took short cuts. You compromised your clients who had services booked. You kept clients waiting. You rushed through things. Guess what - you lost clients.

Instead of running the show you created chaos and did not give your regular clients your full attention and service. They go else where – and yes. They go with their 5 friends.

So by having a crazy busy day it cost you. Short term gain meant long term loss. The key is service, attention to detail, and making that client feel special.
That 6 week Lull!
You will never get beyond having a 5 to 6 week lull until you look beyond the quick hit money-making day. Take care of the clients offering the highest standard of Service.
Your takings your wages will follow.

Sitting around does not look good for business nor does it inspire clients. If your not busy then get busy!

Consultation key time:

You need time for the consultation. This is your time to shine. The time that reassures your client that they are special That you are considerate and that you understand their needs and wants. Your client sees you are prepared to take that extra time to use your knowledge to make them feel comfortable and safe in a professional’s hands. It is this service that gets you talked about and recommended. It is this standard of exemplary service that leads to both client retention and recommendation . Those communication and consultation skills.
A great tool to help you improve those skills take an honest look at the way you treat your clients is this little Gem of a book soon to be available through both web site and blog site. Are you ready to take the challenge!

Good luck strive to be the best you can. Mike B2MR

Monday, 7 February 2011

Education. Consultatiion. Mentoring. Support.

Welcome to BACK2MYROOTS B2MR regular postings of fresh new topic's

Education. Mentoring. Support.
These tools are all available to us but in so many cases we don't access them. Why is this?Are we really that perfect or is it that we don't want to expose our weaknesses? 
Our worst enemy is our self. Admitting that help is needed. Raising a hand saying I don't know! How do we protect our selves from exposing our weaknesses. Ego and Fear are our worst enemy we must put them aside seek out help, skill training, Education.
So many program's and tools are available to us. Not free but not expensive it's investing in one's self it will give you the edge! Those tools and skills you need for success.
What form does this help assistance come in? Well hands on teaching, sharing, techniques and skills.

Support can come in the form of personal help from qualified skilled consultants and educators both key to spending time with listening to and learning from building up a relationship with.
Then there is the written Books, Education material. Be it new product information, maybe a new colour chart with an education section often not read and studied by stylists. They use the excuse! oh I'm hands on i like to use and feel the product! Back to those faithful friends fear and Ego.

A mentor someone with an open mind with many years of experience who can share vision with you listen to you guide and advise help you to reach your goals. This can and will only work with an open mind honesty and willingness to listen do the work!
Oh yes I forgot to mention none of this works unless you are committed to the tasking. Parting with some hard earned cash this show commitment. Being prepared to listen, take up the challenges. Do the work reap the rewards.
None of this is an instant fix. it a journey and an adventure built on honesty and trust the skill the experience that can be gained can be beyond your wildest dreams .
The doors that can open. The opportunities that can arise. The direction your career can take are immense.
The hairdressing Industry. Our chosen profession has so many career paths to choose from as a start sit down list how many different avenues could be open to you .
Such as:
Salon stylist.
Colour technician specialist in colour correction.
Educator for a colour company.
Stage work artistic team.
Photographic work.
Cruise liner work.
College lecturing levels of NVQ.
Salon sales,
Working for major hair colour company.
How much of a list can you write? Think about what your goals are?
Now consider this with all the different mediums available to us Phone, Skype, Video, Internet.
Help and advise it at your finger tips all you have to do is ask. Support is at hand weekly monthly updates, communication.
Over the coming weeks it is my hope to be able to offer access to these types of tools, support, consultation,and mentoring assistance.
All these are things that you can sign up for and get involved with. It has been my goal since I started this online work posting topic's writing blogs. To be able to offer support provide the tools to inspire and raise the professional bar standards and image of our industry and profession.
I would like feed back comments thoughts on this topic.
Mike B2MR
I can offer assistance and help with education technical skills information available via my web site
The two links below. Offer access to both written material and online mentoring coaching support program.                           

Thursday, 3 February 2011

Lets look at Hairdressing Sales and education


Regular postings of fresh new topic's.
Sales or sharing?

I hope to create a platform that over time will become a place to share thoughts review hair colour and products.

This topic is worthy of both discussion, thought, and comment, for it effects each and every one involved in the Hairdressing Industry. 

Having Spent a number of years involved in Sales and education or is it? Education and sales:
It's so hard to know for one supports the other. [ chicken and egg what comes first]
One side sales drives the education machine funding allowing technicians and educators into salons to share and demonstrate. On the other hand without the support of good education the sales go flat. Salons. Stylist lose interest, use products incorrectly getting bad results blaming the product!
It is my view. That if you really trust and have belief in a product it will sell it self. If your educated a product how and why it works. If you have a passion for it, it's easy to talk about it sells it self.
So why so much pressure on sales why fear education?
In salons many stylist hate education up dates. They look at educators as know it all's, they attempt to put then down show them up why?  FEAR!
Most salons change colour lines because of dissatisfaction with the product. If it does not perform well in reality the fault is with the stylist technician. But hey! It's always easier to blame a product than take an honest look in the mirror!
Tuff harsh words but true. I don't know how many salons I've visited that so need education support but the staff, the manager will not allow it.
I also think that many sales representatives have very little respect for what a good passionate educator can do.
Why because they fear letting any one see that they don't know everything! who does? The fact is Sales are Sales. Education is just educating. On how to correctly use and get the best out of the product that sharing knowledge giving support to the salon to the sales person to the staff this can only serve to improve. Standards. Skill. Knowledge. So why all the problems?

Ego, Insecurity, Fear? or just an un-daunting need for control!  All things that are rife in society but for some reason really run rampant in the Hair beauty industry.
We have salon managers and owners who fear educating there staff to much. We have staff who hate to admit they have an issues or don't understand. Will not admit that they want or need more education, skill and knowledge.
We have professional Colour companies who market them selves with being professional. But flood the market with home colour kits. With little or no care for the effect on the high street salon, the stylist trying to make a living build up a clientele not to mention the damage long term use can do from use of home colour.

Colour Companies that offer education to some to degree but maybe not fully transparent when it comes to formulation ! Maybe not totally honest about all the chemistry of any given product need to know bases! misleading.
We have schools Colleges, Academy's. All offering a level of training but! How qualified? How up to date are those trainers? How much do they really care? How skilled are they? How current are they?
We have young people coming into the industry with a false idea of how successful they can be. How much there is to learn. How long it takes to be a success.
We have Stylist who reach a level of qualification and then sit back knowing everything knowing nothing? why is this?
We have all these different governing bodies have you ever tried contacting them to ask for a meeting or some information? good luck with that one.
Am I out spoken? Well maybe but it's done it's said to create discussion, to open up debate, to see who really cares! Not to be politically correct.
I have over the years worked with  many like minded passionate industry professional and they are all of the mind that things could be better standards raised, knowledge shared. education improved so what can we do how can we make a difference?
How can we encourage an exchange of knowledge and information. disclosing of product information in an open transparent manner.  One with sales teams working with and supporting education. Stylist who constantly want to up-date. Teachers trainers. Who really care how to encourage the young stylist to have higher standards, skill, who pride themselves in levels of Service and consultation.
This is possible by net working sharing reaching out. We have so many mediums available to us  this is such a huge multifaceted Industry. It's exciting vibrant. It's constantly growing, changing evolving, whilst at the same time standing still .
I have set up the Linked in professional hairdressing net work in the hopes of attracting like minded people to join share and debate. Many thanks Mike B2MR
Professional  hairdressing knowledge net work.

My Blog and all links can be accessed via my web site.