Monday, June 19, 2006

Hair Styling Rookie

Ew. It’s way too hot out for me to do anything productive or fun. I’m more of a fall & winter bunny. The hot weather doesn’t sit well with me, nor does it do anything for this hair of mine. I took control and got myself to the salon for a well needed haircut. Friends and family know that I rarely cut my hair unless it’s absolutely necessary. This was a five alarm frizz alert—plus my hair was getting caught in the back of my jeans it was so long. Not good—especially not being in my early twenties. It’s hard being twenty-five. Shuddap.

Anyway, I went to a new salon to try out one of their ‘new girls’ fresh out of beauty school. Let me explain why I go to these rookies. First of all, they spend a good portion of the appointment trying to make everything perfect. There’s no margin for error. The ‘professional been there for ten or more years’ type of beautician is way too confident and usually thinks he/she knows what you want. They “ask” you what you want, and then they do anything they feel needs to be done. Cockiness and way too much confidence doesn’t sit well with me when someone is standing behind me with a pair of scissors ready to take away my pride and joy.

I walked into the salon and they knew immediately who I was. “Oh you’re one of the sisters!” All three of my older sisters go to this salon. They've been waiting to get their paws on my mane for quite some time now.

“Hi! My name is Jenny! I’m your hair stylist for today,” she says, as she shakes my hand, “Come with me, we’ll get you washed up.”

Now, Jenny wasn’t what I was expecting at this salon. You usually have your super model looking types running up to you ready to strangle you with a black vinyl smock. This girl was different. I doubt she’d be able to pass the detectors at an airport with all the facial piercing she had going on. I sort of studied her face because it looked as though she spent about two days applying her makeup. She had that raccoon ‘shadow the eyes intensely and make it look like you've been doing heroin for months’ look and black lipstick. Her hair and nails were black. Her hair was straight and cropped short up to her neck. I guess it’s the ‘goth look’. You can tell she was young—so it wasn’t some middle aged broad trying to be all hip or anything.

Let me categorize this by hours.

Hour #1: Hair wash was amazing. She practically gave me the longest most enjoyable hair wash ever! She massaged through my scalp for a good twenty minutes with the shampoo. We talked about her schooling and how she is fresh out of high school. Yes, she is eighteen years old. I tried to conjure up some ‘cool chat’, but it just didn’t go over so well. We knew a few people here and there, but that was it. Then she applied the conditioner on my hair which was another twenty minute massage. Wow, this was incredible.

“Do you mind if I give you a free conditioning treatment and put you under the dryer for twenty minutes? It’s totally complimentary since you’re a new client.”
“Sure…”
I said, thinking that maybe she thought my hair was a rat’s nest and needed some extra treatment.

Hour #2: “Come sit at my station and let’s talk about what you want to have done.” Jenny says, as she makes her way across the floor. I sat down on her swivel chair which was really cool, because it was like a chaise lounge. She threw the trendy little black vinyl smock on me and placed one of those heavy lead-like padding on my shoulders so the hair would fall evenly.

“I just want three to four inches taken off, with long layers.”
“Great, would you like me to put some angles to it?”
“Sure…Why not?”
I said, giving this girl the change to give me something a little new.

Let me tell you how precise she was. This girl practically cut each individual hair to perfection. She spent another hour just cutting and angling my hair. I couldn’t believe how articulate she was. She even brought a stool with wheels to sit with me as she glided around me working like Picasso on one of his masterpieces. There was hardly any talk, and when there was a little chat, it was her asking if I needed a drink or wanted some coffee. I tried making small chat, but I think she was concentrating way too hard on making my hair perfect---which by all means---knock yourself out! I’ll stay quiet! I already acknowledged she was a newbie on the force, so I was willing to shut my trap and let her work.

Hour #3: She knew I came in with curly hair, and now it was time to style it. My hair (as you can see in my photo) is very curly, but it takes a lot of chemicals to get it that way. Believe me, it’s not naturally curly, it’s naturally straight and wavy. Diffusers are great inventions. Anyway, she starts putting this oily weird crap in my hair and then takes two of her fingers and starts rolling a few strands to give my hair ringlets. Can I tell you how bad I look in dreadlocks? That’s exactly what I looked like getting out of her shop. I looked like some whacko from Jamaica who smoked one too many bones. I thought to myself, “Oh dear God I can’t wait to go home and redo my hair!” I was nervous and tense about how the cut came out. I had no clue because she didn’t even let me see.

Once I let the dreadlocks loose in the shower when I got home, and blow dried those puppies out—I have to say this was one of the best haircuts I have ever had. Okay, so the girl can’t style for crap, but I gotta say she definitely has talent. Her angles and cuts were so accurate and so even, that I have made her my new ‘hair cutter’---not stylist mind you.

I’m sending her a basket full of goodies today to say thank you. For the amount of years I have been getting my hair done by the same woman who has been cutting hair for eons at a different salon—this was quite a pleasant surprise. Who woulda’ thunk? An eighteen year old fresh out of beauty school did a terrific job!