Hair Care

By Stef Schwalb

It’s that time of year again, the time to give thanks for all you’ve got. So we here at BN thought it would be a beautiful idea to reveal some of the strand sensations that stole the show in 2006. These items range from new strand spots to terrific trends and some products that can help you translate them to your tresses. It’s just short list to take note of, but we hope it will inspire you to take your hair to new heights, or at the very least, maybe you’ll indulge your locks with a bit more love instead of overdoing it at Thanksgiving dinner with a big bowl of stuffing.

What are we most grateful for when it comes to salon news in New York City? The 411 on the latest and greatest locks locations to hit the strand scene. Our pick for the season of giving? The Hiro Haraguchi Salon (www.hiroharaguchi.com) nestled in the G Spa at the Hotel Gansvoort. This is Hiro’s second outpost in Manhattan. You may remember we gave rave reviews to his first salon in midtown a few months back. This master stylist combines Far East training and philosophy with Western strands styles that have made him renowned for his unique blend of “international chic” when it comes to tress creations.

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Good things always come in threes. So let’s also take look at a triad of product trends from 2006: anti-aging hair care, color-enhancing items and the use of texture to expand your strand style. Anti-aging hair care became the rage for those looking to maintain locks proportioned to (or younger than) their age. Several companies came out with targeted ingredients aimed at turning back time-worn tresses. One of our faves? Frederic Fekkai‘s Advanced Haircare Ageless (www.fredericfekkai.com). The three-step regimen was created to combat the troubling trio of elements that signify aging strands: biological, environment and mechanical. The Rejuvenating Shampoo, Conditioner and Damage-Defense Capsules work together as a strand system that corrects the initial signs of aging: dryness, damage, dullness and uneven texture.

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Speaking of strand consistency, let’s talk about trend two: texture. We saw it all over the catwalk coiffures in Fashion Week and in other celeb sightings. Straight strands seem to slide out of the spotlight in 2006, and waves, body, and bounce became the new darlings of the dream ‘do. In addition, hair products with natural ingredients also became a big hit with the “in” crowd. What women want is healthy hair that lasts, so putting too many artificial ingredients no longer seems overly appetizing. One product that works both these angles is Back to Basics Texturizing Spray. Made with sunflower, calendula, chamomile and vitamins A, C and E, it’s an intelligent styling tress tool formulated as a natural blend to deliver bold body and super shine. It offers medium hold to styles while helping you maintain a mane that’s touchable yet illuminated with texture.

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And playing off a pull toward “enlightening” the state of our strands, there’s trend three that’s a bit bolder for balancing your hair’s beauty: color-enhancing products. Once you get a great color from the salon, not letting that hue go to waste is tantamount to your tress success. Products like Pantene’s Pro-V Expressions (for blondes, brunettes, reds and silver) help to keep your color richer and truer for a longer time to come. The extract-infused collections were created exclusively to aid your color in retaining greater intensity, shine and vibrancy.

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The more the merrier. That saying can be applied to any holiday party environment as well as lock looks for 2006. If you aren’t blessed with the tresses that make for big texture, one route many people experimented with (to liven up their locks up with ease) was adding in an assortment of extensions. With the option of in-salon applications or clip-ins (see our August issue for a lesson on the ins and outs), the styling choices seem endless.

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Last but not least, the biggest hair prayer answered in 2006 has been the industry movement towards treating your strands more like your skin. Caring and nurturing them, using restorative products that help and enhance them and even the emergence of “hair spas” is something we’re totally psyched about. At the new Phyto Universe (www.phytouniverse.com) in midtown, a tress treatment and training center, undoing ‘do damage starts with complimentary diagnostics via a “hair scope” that analyze strands and scalp, followed by the option of indulging in a variety of luxurious treatments made from pure plant extracts, essential oils and aromatic botanicals. All we can say is amen to that, and we can’t wait to see what’s in store for all strands in 2007.

Originally published November 2006
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