From the diary of a hairstylist: by Crystal Casey

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Currently showing posts tagged haircut

  • A look back on 2014

    2014 was an amazing year for me! I met so many wonderful, new wedding vendors, gained some awesome new clients, & made a giant career move that is so exciting that I can't wait to share. But, for suspense sake, that will have to wait. Lets get this time machine started!!!

    JANUARY 2014

    I was booked for a wedding by one of my favorite & most missed clients Ashley Capers....ON A CRUISE!! This was my first ever cruise & first wedding on a cruise. The ceremony was beautiful & it was so much fun. Not to mention I got to miss the giant polar vortex of 2014 ;) My mom accompanied me on this journey & it was a great experience to have with her! We made some new friends & had a blast with the whole wedding party!! 

    FEBURARY 2014

    I started working at Mystique Salon & Day Spa. I got a chance to get to know all the new stylist there & become closer with the the ones I already knew. I had education oppurtunities that inspired me to learn & up my game. Met educators that took my creative hair game to another level. I also got the chance to fall in love with Paul Mitchell products all over again. For this oppurtunity I am grateful. Though, I no longer work there, I still call these girls my family. 

    MARCH 2014 

    March was a boring month. I had a breakup, guys suck. March is boring. Except HAVING A REAL WEDDING FEATURED IN THE KNOT!! WOO!!

    APRIL 2014

    April is a special month, it is hot & cold all the time. This past April for me was very special, I learned a lesson in bride/stylist realations, sometimes its not always ok to stand up for yourself. I got my hand tattooed & my wisdom teeth pulled. I got to be a mentor to someone I have always considered a mentor.  & I set up & styled a photo shoot all on my own. April is the month of beginings & changes. Shorter hair, lighter hair color & begining of wedding/prom season. 

    Photo by Schus Shoots I Makeup by Amy Brox I Gown & Acessories from Pure English Couture Bridal 

    MAY 2014

    May.....ohhhh May, how I love thee. May is ALWAYS such a loaded month for me. Weddings, photo shoots, proms, more hiights than i can handle. The days get longer & the sun get closer. Mothers day, my moms birthday, the end of the school year, little girls becoming young ladies before my eyes during the prom season. Celebrating thier last days together before they head off into a life of all their own, where the only person they have to depend on is themselves. My personal achivement of excellence for this past May, having a past brides real wedding featured on the Style me Pretty wedding blog & getting to do hair on Miss Teen Virginia: Olivia Fletcher.I helped the ladies at Mystique Salon & Day Spa set up thier very first styled, bridal shoot. All in all I'd say May was my busiest but, favorite month. 

    Photo by Torrence Saunders Photography I Makeup by Kristine Marie Makeup Artistry

    Photo by Beth Hamilton Photography I Makeup by Kim Porter

    Photo by Tara Liebeck Photography 

    Photo by Jason Jarvis Photography I Makeup by Amy Brox

    Photo by Jason Jarvis Photography

    JUNE 2014

    June is by far the busiest wedding month of spring/summer. June also ends prom season & begins SUMMER! This past June I fianlly got up the nerve to use my Lifeproof case under water & got some pretty awesome summer photos. I also had the honor to work on the #CAMPSHABBYCHIC photo shoot & meet some amazing new wedding vendors. (always a plus) 

    Phots by Mallorie Danielle Photography

    Photo by Mallorie Danielle Photography

    JULY 2014

    July....My birthday, 4th of July, time for family, friends & cookouts. Time for bridal shoots on the beach with more amazing wedding vendors, & having a real wedding featured in The Hampton Roads Wedding Planner Magazine! Fun & trendy hair color...because its summer & WHY NOT? 

    AUGUST 2014

    What a busy month! Teachers getting ready to go back to school, weddings, National Dog day, Wedding Wire vendor blendor (the picture says September but it was August I promise) & a mother/daughter vacation to be remembered! I got to dig through a lot of old pictures of my mom from her younger days and discovered, we looked exactly the same age. CRAZY! I got to do a Braid Bar at the Icing in Greenbrier Mall & Haley Paige herself shared & commented on the Moroccon Styled shoot from July in which we used her Paloma gown! yay!!!!

    SEPTEMBER 2014

    Back to school, darker hair color, VIBRANT hair color, new tattoos, & one of the coolest brides I have ever had. I made an investment & got probaly the coolest camera EVER! Navy Cheif ball, begining of football season ( GO SEAHAWKS) I got to really step up my haircolor game after some fun new hair color education & of course what is a month of being me without a photo shoot? This time I got to do hair for a photographer all the way from UTAH!!! Abby Khyl held her Evolving workshop right here in Norfolk & I got to meet tons of talented new photographers & work with my makeup bestie Beauty & Baubles: Jenn Brosh! annnnnnnndddd I got to spend some quality time with one of my best friends who just moved back from California, Sarah!!! <3

    Photo by Chelsea Anderson Photography I Makeup by Beauty & Baubles: Jenn Brosh

    OCTOBER 2014

    What more can you say about October other than HALLOWEEN!!!!!! Pretty much the month of October sumed up to costumes & Weddings. I even put together a halloween bridal shoot that I can't yet share with you! Amazing weddings with amazing Vendors & phenomnal darker hair color! A brest cancer awareness event & of course another style bridal shoot that will be featured TOMORROW! What a great way to end the New Year! I got the oppurtunity to get to know one of Hampton Roads best wedding Planners Crystal Beng of Cherry Blossom Weddings. & to end October with a bang my elsa braid bride got her wedding featured on Vows & Valor!

    Photo by Chelsea Anderson Photography

    Photo by Luke & Ashley Photography I Makeup by Rachel Reid Makeup Artistry

    NOVEMBER 2014

    Novemeber was a very depressing month. Aside from Thanksgiving because well....turkey. I was sick most of the month...scratch that...ALL of the month. But I was still able to squeeze in some 2 weddings & a styled photo shoot for Sarah Street of Sarah Street Photography! I also made some new friends in Richmond at a Pin up Photoshoot!

    Photo by Beth Hamilton Photography

    Photo by Beth Hamilton Photography I Makeup by Kim Porter

    Photo by Tara Liebeck Photography 

    Photo by Sharon Elizabeth Photography I Makeup by Kristine Marie Makeup Artistry

    Photo by Tara Liebeck Photography 

    Photo by Sharon Elizabeth Photography I Makeup by Kristine Marie Makeup Artistry

    Photo by Sharon Elizabeth Photography I Makeup by Kristine Marie Makeup Artistry

    Photo by Tara Liebeck Photography

    DECEMBER 2014

    Another holiday month.....CHRISTMAS!!! Also the month for hair color refreshers, haircuts & publications. 2 styled shoots & a wedding were both published this month on Vows & ValorLove Inc. Magazine & Artfully Wed!

    Photo by Luke & Ashley Photography Published on Vows & Valor

    Photo by Debbie Laughin Photography

    Photo by Elizabeth Henson Photos 

    Thank you to all my wonderful clients, brides & amazingly supportive Vendors! I love you all & wish you an amazing 2015!

  • MYSTIQUE DAY SPA & CRYSTAL CASEY: THE BREAKUP

    Ok, so I feel like this is the beginning of a Taylor Swift song. Like at any moment I'm gonna break out into some guitar strumming, ballad about my broken heart & how I have the best revenge by being happy......"we are never, ever, ever, getting back toetherrrrrrr....."

    But, in all reality...that's not the case at all. 

    But, let me first start by saying...I am no longer an employee at Mystique Salon & Day Spa. I am now strictly working for myself. High Voltage Hair by Crystal Casey! Its exciting & scary all at the same time.

    I worked at Mystique Salon & Day Spa 5 years ago (2 years out of hair school) I thought I knew it alllll. I quickly learned I did not. HAHA! Amy (the owner) took a huge chance on me when she hired me. My ego & know it all attitude quickly sent me on my way (by choice). Amanda (her sister & Master Stylist) was my mentor for over a year while I worked there & still remains to this day to be one of my biggest cheerleaders, supporters & mentor. (& isnt she so pretty???!?!)

    Last December, Amanda spoke to Amy on my behalf about bringing me back into the salon. I was ready to be back in a salon environment, be a team player, have continuing education with the backing of all the Mystique girls, work on events & brainstorm fabulous ideas together as a TEAM! & we did just that, we ROCKED some movie nights (& had a great time doing it) we executed a phonemail bridal shoot, & shared & enjoyed some great Paul Mitchell education. 

    Amy was very understanding about my current wedding business & allowed me to continue booking weddings. We agreed that my schedule would be very few days to begin with as I tried to transition my clients from a home based business to the structure of a salon & build from any walk-ins that would come my way. The wedding season that would happen for me in 2014 completely blindsided both of us. 

    I think I spent a total of 5 Saturdays in the salon from Jan-Sept. & lets face it, Saturday is a busy day in the salon. I also had some unforeseen health issues this year that kept me out on the 1-2 days that I was scheduled to be there outside of the weekend. 

    Ultimately, Amy felt it was best for her business & mine to terminate my contract. 

    Its not that I was a bad employee/stylist or that she was a heartless boss, because that most certainly is not that case at all. Honestly, she just couldn't keep me booked. I had many NO CALL/NO SHOWS & cancellations while I was there, leaving my days empty. But, for the clients that I did have in my chair, that I did build that bond with, that I did get that chance to make them feel beautiful & special....I will miss them but, I know they are in good hands with the girls there! 

    She also stated that she recognized all the hard work I had put into building my business & that I was better suited to be a business owner, than an employee. She has since helped me with any problems I have faced or questions I have had on the business side of things. Amy is a business guru & a great mentor. 

    I still have a wonderful relationship with all the girls there, specifically Amy. She gave me a very personal letter stating how sad she was that she had to make this decision, we even shared a very heartfelt moment & some tears were shed by both of us. 

    In my time at Mystique I helped launch, what I know to be, a wonderful Bridal division. We shot an AMAZING bridal shoot & I got to know & love the girls there all over again. I built personal & professional relationships that I hope will continue to grow. 

    Amy & I still work together as stylist & makeup artist on styled shoots & weddings together & will continue to do so as our businesses grow. 

    (Thats supposed to say August 25th 2014!)

    I will miss seeing all these girls every week!

  • Blonde instant gratification

    Ok, so tonights blog is kind of two topics rolled into one. 

    First lets start with instant gratification. When did our generation become so impatient? We'd rather have instant gratification rather than quality. If it's quality you want...why not wait for it?? If someone is booked weeks even months in advance, wether it be a a tattoo artist,make up artist, hairstylist or nail tech. That means they are GOOD & they are booked up for a reason & you obviously wanted to book with them for that same reason. So don't be impatient & box color your hair or go to someone else with less talent & end up with a horrible tattoo, a nail fungus or make up 3 shades darker than your face to quench your instant gratification. Just wait.

    With that being said-Lets talk about being blonde

    If you have box colored your hair & then decide you want be blonde (or have a super blonde ombre) Then I would hope that you decide to take the professional route and see a stylist for this, for the sake of your hairs integrity. Even if you get your hair professional done but have been dark for an extended period of time, going from dark to blonde is defintely something that should be done by a master colorist or a stylist who specailizes in color & blonding. DO.YOUR.RESEARCH. If your natural color is dark, then yes there will be some upkeep. Every 4-6 weeks your roots will need to be touched up & after extensive lightening to your hair, you may have to lose some legenth. So a haircut during each step of your lightening journey is reccommended to keep from having to cut of inches upon inches once its all done.

    OMBRE is defintely a skilled color technique. Again, DO.YOUR.RESEARCH. Look online, talk to friends, read reviews & check out portfolios. Once you find someone you like, if you have questions....ASK! If they arent available within a week of your final decision on wanting blonde ombre, just wait. Ask to be put on their waiting list in case someone cancels an appointment & let them know your schedule. I've had too many clients come to me with a bad ombre job just bc they wanted it when they wanted it. 

    The above also applies to Balayage. Balayage is the french word for "hand painting". Balayage hilights are also a specality technique & all of the above mentioned applies to this skill. 

    Last but not least- YOU WILL NOT BE BLONDE FROM DARK OVER NIGHT. It is not realistic to expect to have platinum blonde hair in your first appointment after having black box color on your hair. Or any box color on your hair for that matter. Becoming blonde is a process, your hair must go through many stages of lift before you can get to your desired color. Also, though it is our job to get your there, it is also our job to keep the health of your hair in tact & any good stylist will tell you during consultation that there are no promises made & that it will be a process. If they dont, then they are completely unrealistic as you or inexperienced & you should RUN. Ombre is no exception to this rule, actually when it comes to ombre, I as a stylist, am more concerned with the health of the hair since most of the lightening will be taking place on the ends of the hair. The most processed & oldest parts of your hair. In most cases these ends are already damaged by heat & previous color. 

    So please keep all of this in mind when making decisons on blonding your hair. Be realistic & be patient. For yourself, for your stylist, for your wallet & most of all for your hair. 

    This is Erin, I have been doing her hair for a year and a half. Erin sets up her appointments like clock work & uses professional, salon quality products on her hair. This is the perfect example of what Balayage Ombre can look like when done properly on top of professional color. 

    This is Nicole. When she came to me she told me she wanted to be "Gwen Stefani" blonde. She said she understood that she would have to cut most of her hair of because there was previous box color on her ends. We cut her into a bob, and this is her hair after he second process of lightening. 

    This is Mary & this has been our journey so far. When her stylist moved away mary came to me we took her from red to dark, dark brown. Then from dark brown to blonde. This is before, 1st appointment & 2nd appointment. By the end of her next appointment she should be fully blonde. 

    Can you believe these are the same person?? Yep ombre over box black hair color and by the second process we had her to a beautiful honey blonde. 

  • Hairstylist & Wedding Hair Artist…here's the difference.

    Hairstylist & Wedding Hair Artist…here's the difference.

    Searching for a stylist on your wedding day can be stressful.

    A lot of women have a regular hairstylist that they visit to take care all of their cut & color needs. But when it comes to your wedding day, can they do what you want? Will they be available to leave the salon to come to your location to do your hair? How much experience do they have with making a timeline for a wedding party of 7+ girls? Can they do braids? How fast can they do an updo? Are they familiar with what styles that will look good from all angles and on camera?

    These are all major questions to be considered. While (in my opinion) hairstylist should be well rounded in ALL THINGS HAIR....most are not. Now a days it seems every hairstylist has ONE thing that they specialize in. Which can make it frustrating for you, the client, to have to find another stylist who specializes in what you're looking for.

    What do I specialize in?

    Blondes

    Red Heads

    Color Correction

    Hilights

    Hair cuts

    Extensions

    Updo's

    etc..

    Not to brag on myself but, excuse me while I tell you how awesome I am...

    I am, by all means, a hairstylist who is well rounded and highly educated in everything hair. I can take a brunette to platinum blonde, I can fix a wretched ombre, I can do a CORRECT OMBRE. Blonde to dimensional brunette? No problem. My red heads? ON POINT. Need an angled bob...I got this. I spend a lot of time educating myself & perfecting my skills. But, I am also a wedding hair artist. This means I specialize in wedding hair AND the day of preparation.

    Finding a wedding hair artist can be a bit frustrating. There are a lot of hairstylist out there that say they can do what you want but, when it comes down to it, its not at all what you were looking for. 

    So here are the top questions to ask a hairstylist you are looking at booking for your wedding day!

    1-Will you be available to come to my location on my wedding day? Will there be an extra charge for this?

    2-What is the average time you can do updo in? (If you want to use this person for your entire wedding party and its more than 5 girls make sure their time is under 50 mins or they bring an assistant)

    3-How long have you been doing weddings?

    4-Where can I go to see reviews from other brides?

    5-Do you offer bridal trials? When can I set mine up?

    6-Bring a picture and ask if they can do what you are showing them.

    7-Can you do different types of braids?

    8-Look around their website or Facebook page for recommendations(tags, photos etc) from other wedding professionals. If you don't see any, ask. 

    9-Will there be a travel fee for my location?

    10-What forms of payment do you accept?

    11-What is the booking policy? Minimum policy?

    Questions your hairstylist should be asking YOU:

    1-What is the location and time of your ceremony?

    2-How many people will be receiving hair services? How many of them are in the bridal party?

    3-Where is the prep location? What time will you be arriving there?

    4-Who is your photographer/ makeup artist? (I ask this because if I am familiar with these vendors I usually know how they work & can contact them to set up timelines. Especially the makeup artist, we usually work hand in hand)

    5-When would you like to come in for your bridal trial?

    6-Will you have any hair pieces/veil?

    7-Did you have a specific look in mind for your bridesmaids or are they choosing their own styles? (Generally I don't want anyones hair to resemble the bride)

    8-What time do you need to leave your prep location?

    9-When will your photographer/makeup artist be arriving?

    10-Will you be doing first look/wedding party photos before or after the ceremony?

    Most brides find out late in the game that they have to offer all of this info to their hired day of hairstylist, which causes an entire timeline change. Thus, showing the difference between a wedding hair artist & an in salon hairstylist. While there are some wedding hair artist who work in salons, they are very few and far between. 

    Also check out this blog by Makeup by Kim Porter: 10 reasons for hiring a Makeup Artist for your wedding day makeup.

    Photo Credit: Will King Photography

  • Brunette Bombshell Jennifer!

    Jennifer may not be an old client of mine but she is an old friend. I have known Jennifer since...oh, I was 17.

    As she sat in my chair today she told me about a horrible experience she had with another stylist. See, Jen was pretty much pummeled to the ground outside a neighborhood bar causing her a trip to the ER and a cancelled hair appointment for the next day. Leaving her with a gnarly scar on her head and no stylist. Booooo!! 

    Life happens and every business owner/employee should understand that. It does not matter if your client is your friend or not. You are NEVER rude to your clients for canceling their appointments, especially if they tell you they have been in the ER all night! Just sayin...

    Anyways, this is what brought Jennifer to me. She said she had been searching for a new stylist and since we are friends on Facebook, she had seen all the pictures of my work I posted. She informed me that her hair had been through A TON of processing in the last few months and she was worried about keeping her legenth if she kept going with the lightener and she was right. Her ends (along with the rest of her hair) needed a complete make over....an up lift if you will. 

    When she originally made her appointment she let me know that she had wanted to go more ombre with her honey blonde hair and of course to have her regrowth touched up. She later told me she wanted to transform her look altogether. I was SO EXCITED! This is JUST what she (and her hair) needed!

    This is the inspiration picture that she sent me....

    Of course I loved it! It was a bold change for her, its a rich vibrant color and was just what her lifeless hair needed! 

    Of course none of you know what Jennifer looks like so let me paint a picture for you, She is tall and lean. Big brown eyes and olive skin...if I had to compare her to anyone it would be a mix of Jennifer Lopez & Kim Kardishan (she has her eyes). So of course darker hair looks absolutely AH-MAZING on her. 

    Since Jen's hair was so light I had to fill her hair first and boy was her hair thirsty. I used a new line of color by Beth Minardi. She is a state of the art stylist and educator for Joico. Now we all know I am a full on Paul Mitchell stylist, but lately I have been trying to educate myself on new brands and lines that are on the market. Some color lines do reds better, some do demi-permanant color better, and some do products better. I want to be able to offer the best of the best to my clients. 

    Any who, back to Jen....so I used Beth Minardi's semi permanent color in a level 7 (color called sunflower). After rinsing that out I used one of Wella's new Illumina Color in 5/7 (level 5 warm brown tone) for her all over color. Hilighting over color I used Paul Mitchell's Syncro Lift lightner for her hilights after rinsing I toned Jens hilights with her filler color. 

    Now onward to her haircut! Jen did not want to lose a lot of legenth since all of the previous processing had caused her to lose more than she cared to. I sprayed her damp hair with Joico's K-Pak liquid reconstructor then added some of Paul Mitchell's Full Circle Leave-in Conditioner & Super Skinny Relaxing Balm. Then I did a little snip snip off the legenth and full on reshaped her layers. I styled with the Paul Mitchell curl wand and WA-LA! She looked like a 40s glam star! 

    Heres what Jennifer came to me with....

    and HERE is what she left with!!

    Beautiful natural looking hilights and rich, lustrous color! 

    Whats Jen have to say about it...??

    I think she likes it! haha

  • Meet Ashleigh, my platinum blonde princess.

    Ok so, when Ashleigh fist came to me she found me working in a salon literally 3 seconds from where she lives. She had chin legenth hair that was a dark buttery blonde with hilights and a dark brown under section. 

    She was a month away from getting married & her ultimate goal was that platinum white blonde (still keeping the under section dark) but, she wanted to keep her hair healthy and let it GROW! So in order to avoid over processing her hair with lightener I tried a hi-lift formula & popped a few hilights over top of it.

    For those of you who don't know what hi-lift color is...it is color (instead of lightener) that will lift your natural hair up to 4 levels.

    It still left her hair too brassy but she was willing to give me another shot because, she's cool like that. She came back to me a month later to get her hair done for her wedding and she looked beautiful! While doing her hair we got to talking and turns out her fiancé was a guy I had known since I was 17! (I even dated his brother back in the day...small world)

    (look at those shoes!!!)

    I sent Ashleigh on her way looking beautiful as ever (as you can see above).  A few weeks later she found me on Facebook, friended me & asked me if I had any open appointments in the coming week. So we booked her a reservation and started working on getting her to that platinum blonde she wanted.

    We tried a variety of hi-lift formulas but each still left her hair too yellow. I tried using a toner after each new formula but, I still wasn't getting the results we were looking for. (Toners kick out unwanted colors such as yellow & orange) She stuck with me for a few months and finally, we decided to go ahead and go with lightner, it was the only option left. So with a little lightener and a toner we got the results we were looking for!! 

    Ashleigh was very adamant about keeping her hair healthy and letting it grow. So we got her on a good product prescription. Being blonde is not easy, the upkeep is very high matience & you have to give back what you take away from your hair. 

    Platinum is not an actual color it is hair that is void of all pigment & when you remove pigment you are also removing all the natural, good things your hair produces for itself. So keeping to a good, strong product prescription is very important.

    Ashleigh listened to everything I told her and did what she needed to do. Her hair is right where it needs to be and after a year of growing, it ended up at her shoulder blades....until today.

    Ashleigh made her appointment 2 weeks ago and told me then that she wanted to cut all of her hair off and go ALL BLONDE! As a stylist of course I was excited about this. We live for change. But, we also know that clients make rash decisions so I made sure this was exactly what she wanted to do....and it was...she does have a very coupious amount of hair so I can understand the matience of THICK, long hair. 

    She sent me a picture of a very dramatic, stacked bob. I of course LOVED it. So thats exactly what we did. 

    Now, our newest challenge is getting that under section to match the top. I did it before, so this should be super easy now that I have the perfect formula!

    Ashleigh has easily become one of my favorite clients and friends! We went through her husbands first deployment together and her going to realtor school. Their first outing after him returning home was a friends wedding. She came to me and said..."I want that retro pin-up style." Of course I was thrilled...."No problem" I said...and so it was done. :) 

    A stylist can only dream of all their clients being as laid back, mellow and AWESOME as Ashleigh. <3