Question - I'm thinking about getting a fringe, but don't know if the blunt style will suit me. Are there any rules about which fringes suit which face shape? Tara, Bristol
Answer - There are no real rules when it comes to fringes and it can often be a case of trial and error. However, there are some things to think about to get it right. For instance, a heavy fringe would look better on an oval face rather than a round face. If you go for the heavy, blunt fringe first, then your hairdresser can go from there to find the particular look that will work for you, texturising where and if necessary. A fringe can be a major change, so think about it carefully. Look through plenty of magazines for examples of what you do and don't like and ask your hairdresser for his/her professional opinion during your consultation. Adee
Question - l find my hair is really static after using straighteners. What products can I use to help solve the problem? Joanne, (e-mail)
Answer - Static is a very common problem for people with fine textured hair. I would suggest you use a styling product on wet hair, and then a heat . protection spray as you straighten. L'anza have a great product available from salons called Thermal defense, £8.50.This will help form a barrier from static charge. One more thing, if you are investing in a new pair of straighteners, then choose ones with ceramic coated plates. My professional Thermo-ceramic straighteners have this coating and are designed with eliminating static in mind. Mark
GOING FOR GOLD
Question - I am thinking about dyeing my hair red, which is a dramatic change from my natural dark brown hair. I have a pale complexion and I'm worried it won't suit me. Please help! Dee, London
Answer - The red you choose should depend on whether you have a warm or cool skin tone. As a guide if you're a jewellery wearer and usually wear gold jewellery, you most probably have a warm skin tone. If you're more of a silver, platinum or white gold person you probably have a cool skin tone. That decided; avoid copper or red reds if you're a cool skin tone and go for mahogany or plummy aubergine reds instead. And the reverse is true; if you're warm skin toned, go for those bright copper and redder than red tones and stay well away from the blue-hued reds like mahogany, plum and aubergine. Nathan
THE GOLDEN RULES
Colouring your hair is a great way to update your style and can turn a fairly ordinary cut into something quite spectacular. To make sure that you get it right every time, we asked Lisa Shepherd for her golden rules of colour.
1. I If you want a proper job, always consult an expert.
2. Once you have consulted them, take their advice -if they say something will look awful, then they mean it!
3. Always take in pictures to show what you like and what you don't like.
4. Never be afraid of seeking expert advice if you have had a colour disaster - colourists LOVE the challenge.
5. Have fun with your colour and remember that if done properly colour need not damage your hair at all.
TAKE A DIP
I'm looking to update my look with colour and have heard about dip-dyeing. Can you explain how I would get this look? Amanda, Manchester
The basic idea of dip-dyeing is to make the ends of the hair a different colour to the roots. It can create subtly lighter ends or you can
Next on the count down to major disaster is rain-induced frizz head. "Wet weather conditions can cause havoc with your hair, especially if you're prone to frizz," says Jamie Brooks of Brooks and Brooks. Other than hibernating in the house, there is not much you can do. Even when it stops raining, moisture in the air can exacerbate the condition. "Protect hair before leaving the house with a serum to maintain moisture," advises Jamie. "Or, a mist of light hold hairspray can create a barrier against moist weather conditions."
Question - I have very thick, fairly long black hair. I would like to have some long layers put in, but do you think they would work with my hair type?
Answer - Layers are a great way of reducing the thickness of your hair, without compromising the length. When you visit your hairdresser, ask them to cut your hair using texturising scissors. When you dry your hair, use a straightening product to help emphasise the texture and make your hair more manageable. I am sure you will enjoy your layers, they'll make your style much more versatile and easier to handle. Mark
Abuse hair by over processing, under-conditioning and brushing and you will be punished with those nasty little flyaways we call split ends. The only cure is to go under the knife (or rather scissors) but you can help by good conditioning, says Philip Kingsley, top UK trichologist. He recommends intensive conditioner like his Elasticizer £16.50, which is applied prior to shampooing, so doesn't weigh down the hair. Only use a comb on hair when wet, brush gently when dry, condition frequently and avoid over-processing your hair.
§ Casual waves are easy to achieve on naturally straight or very curly hair, if you're working with straight lengths, opt for curl-boosting sprays and creams, whereas you should choose straightening balms to take out the weight in very curly hair.
§ There are a whole new breed of waving tongs designed to give a looser feel than standard tongs.
§ If your hair has a natural wave, run some mousse through when damp and leave to air-dry to encourage a more casual shape and movement.
The ultimate hair disaster, hair loss among women is on the increase. Philip Kingsley says, "It can be actual loss or the hair diameter getting smaller," he explains. Its causes range from low iron level anaemia, thyroid problems, stress, hormone change, nutritional deficiencies, traction (incessant pulling) and illness. Philip advises regular scalp massage to stimulate blood flow, ideally with a stimulating cream such as his Intensive Scalp Treatment, £16. Volumising shampoos can also help pump up the hair shaft, but if it persists, consult your GP
Question - No matter which products I use, I can never get that glossy shine. My hair always looks dull. What products can you recommend? Vicky, Eastbourne
Answer - Shiny hair is healthy hair. Start by making sure your hair is in the best possible condition. Always shampoo and condition using products to suit your hair type. Never, ever forget the conditioner! Some people say their hair goes soft and floppy after using conditioner, but if this is the case, they are using the wrong ones - try switching to a spray conditioner, which is much lighter for the hair. When you dry your hair, always point the dryer down the hair, from roots to ends to keep the cuticles tightly packed. Mark
Curls are still rocking in 2004, but they must be groomed and under control. Transform straw into gold by conditioning properly every time, says celeb stylist Richard Ward. Check out the Kerastase Elasto-curl range, which is designed especially for this purpose. Never blow-dry or brush curls, both will make hair frizz. Instead let your locks dry naturally, then run your fingers through to dislodge tangles and spray with a little shine spritz, like Matrix Biolage Defining Elixir, £5.25.
All cut up
A terrible cut can reduce the most confident girl-about-town to tears in public, but it is essential not to lose hope... or your temper. " A bad cut usually only occurs when there is a lack of communication between the stylist and the client," says Donna Alien of Smiths. "Never undervalue the importance of a thorough consultation." If it goes wrong, keep communicating. Tell the stylist you are not happy and discuss your options. She may be able to salvage it, or her boss might. You may even decide to go home and let it settle for a couple of days then go back and get them to try something different. Just remember, hair does grow and the cut will, with time, just be a bad memory.
§ Eating lots of greasy foods will make hair greasy. Instead, eat lots of fresh fruit, veg and protein. Remember, alcohol dries your hair, so easy does it!
Sleeping on a satin pillow will make your hair easy to manage the next morning. Try sprinkling a few drops of lavender oil onto the pillow to both fragrance hair and help you sleep.
§ Remember that selecting, and knowing how to use, the right finishing and styling products along with shampoos and conditioners is really important to maintain any look, no matter the length or style.