Crazy Color

Crazy Color for the wonderful @spencerscissors and @misterhaircare

In 1973 when I was a junior at Ricci Burns, King’s Road, Chelsea, my model was a stripper from the Trafalgar, a pub across the road, her hair was long and jet black, but with a Crazy Color full fringe, in red, maybe vermilion – such was the fashion in those days!

Saturday 20th July 1974 Not busy, only two clients! Got a new young Canadian client with long, thin, dishwater blonde hair. She asked for a David Bowie-esque, Diamond Dogs-like hairdo! Actually, at the time, I think she meant more like Angie Bowie’s, who was one of Ricci’s clients.

“What’s your favourite colour?” I asked.
“I doon’t have one.”
“Okay then, what’s your favourite football team?”
“Chelsea of course!”
“Blue then! Because we’re going to have to bleach the bejesus out of your hair and turn it to straw, if we’re going to get it to stand on end. So, you can have any colour you like. Blue?”
“Blue’d be great.”

And off she went to the tinter. Bearing in mind that we worked five and a half days a week, half day Saturday, and her appointment was 10am, I knew that I was in for a longy!

I was cutting my second client, when the tinter tapped me on the shoulder, “we’ve run out of blue Crazy Color, there’s just a smidgen left, not enough!”
“It’s got to be blue,” I said.
“I could make a little Koleston pure Blue into a semi-permanent and mix it with the Crazy Color? It’s risky!”
“Yeah, do it.”

The end result was deep cobalt blue roots that faded to beautiful bluish silver tips. It looked: iridescent. metallic. divine.

She and I walked down towards Sloane Square together, it was about 5-ish. We stopped opposite the Markham Arms to say our goodbyes, she was going to cross the road, and a guy driving a red Corvette Stingray shouted out, “Love your hair doll!” That made my day.

Thinking Of Going Blonde This Summer?


What I love about Marilyn is that she has been so many different shades of blonde – Golden, Ash, Champagne, Honey, Bleached, Strawberry, Platinum and White Blonde – you’ve got to love that in a person. This image: Marilyn Monroe by Bert Stern (the last sitting, June 1962) is a White Blond (Bleach + 6% / 20 vol peroxide + toner).

Thinking of going blonde this Summer? Thought I’d point out the different versions for you :) There are three main categories: warm (red spectrum), cool(blue/green spectrum) and neutral!

Varieties of Blonde:

Flaxen Blonde: the original neutral, natural blonde. Very light but not white blonde.

Yellow Blonde: obviously a blonde with a yellow hue – slightly gold maybe, hopefully! At its very best a Champagne Blonde.

Platinum Blonde, White Blonde: often extremely light, a whitish looking blonde; almost all natural platinum blondes (tow-headed) are children. Technically, a platinum blonde is blueish and therefore a cold blonde. It is sometimes called a Silver Blonde.

Sandy Blonde: a beige blonde, a greyish-hazel or cream-coloured blonde – naturally warm. Makes beautiful, natural looking highlights.

Golden Blonde: includes pinks and yellows to create a slightly darker, rich, warm, golden-yellow blonde.

Strawberry Blonde, Venetian Blonde or Honey Blonde: think of red then add it to what you think of as blonde! It’s a reddish blonde.

Dirty Blonde, Dishwater Blonde, Grey Blonde, Mouse: a natural dark blonde that is the perfect background for highlights. Naturally includes flecks of golden blonde and brown, but is often flat and dull, and quite frankly, mousey.

Ash-Blonde: technically ash means green! However, green counteracts and neutralizes red. A cold and very natural looking blonde. It can come out as a smoky steel blonde.

Bleached Blonde, Peroxide Blonde: an artificial, yellowish blonde that is trying to be a platinum blonde, but it’s not. The base blonde of a ‘bleach and toner.’

Dark blonde: when natural, it looks a shade of light brown in the Winter and lightens in the Summer. If your natural colour was brown, but is now grey; go dark blonde. Yet another classic blonde for highlights.

Chemotherapy Hair Advice 101

Model: Anik, Photographer: Chris Roberts 1981, Hair: Ian Robson. London - Willie Christie's Studio

If you search Google for “Chemotherapy Hair Advice” you will find loads of excellent articles (esp. NHS .pdf documents) detailing the procedure and hair issues. However, I would like to share some of my thoughts and give you a bit of hairdressers chemotherapy hair advice!

Like most of us, I’ve known a number of people who have had chemotherapy, quite a lot actually; but as a hairdresser, I’ve taken a very keen interest in their hair and the advice that’s been given to them by their supporting team.

Chemotherapy Hair Advice

  • The normal daily average hair loss for everyone (you & me) is about 100 hairs. I say that because: When using the cold cap it is my understanding that chemotherapy slows hair growth. Therefore: if you are undergoing chemotherapy over a period of, say, twelve weeks, by the end of the treatment, and beyond, your hair WILL get thinner – that would be absolutely normal, even if you didn’t get extra hair falling out due to the chemotherapy. And just like postnatal hair loss, your hair will grow back.
  • Handle with care – To prevent your hair from being Pulled out, don’t pull it! Sounds like stupid advice, but ‘hair dynamics’ could mean that even long dirty hair, or hair wrapped around super soft sponge rollers, is being put under too much force / stress and may be pulled out. Think about what pulls your hair, and don’t do it.
  • Pony-tails must be kept very loose, and always use non-metal hair elastics like 4mm Blax Snag Free Hair Elastics or a ribbon.
  • Obviously, don’t get all your hair cut off! Play style and length by ear, but I would recommend getting your hair cut in a style so you can allow it to dry naturally. And that usually means: medium short. It’ll make life much easier for a whole load of reasons.
  • How to wash your hair during chemotherapy: Wash it twice a week as a maximum. Use lukewarm, tepid water. Apply a very small amount of shampoo to the scalp/hair roots and very gently massage – don’t worry too much about the ends. Only give one wash, rinse very thoroughly. Pat hair dry, don’t rub with towel.
  • Don’t wash your hair under a power shower.
  • Always use a very small amount of conditioner (for normal hair) (whether you need it or not) and comb your hair Very Gently under the running water.
  • Personally, I would recommend that you don’t use leave-in conditioners, or any product that is normally left in your hair like: hairspray, setting lotion, gel, mousse and wax, dry shampoo, volumising and shine shampoo, etc., because they may cause product build-up.
  • One of my clients said, the current advice is to not wash your hair 2 days before or 2 days after chemotherapy.
  • Use a pure, mild, acid balanced shampoo and conditioner (PH about 5.00 – 7.00). I like Timotei Pure Shampoo contains no silicones, parabens or colourants. Does contain Sodium Laureth Sulfate. On the other hand, I recommend Urtekram Children’s Shampoo and conditioner, get it from
  • Please be aware that the name baby or children’s shampoo, doesn’t necessarily mean mild and acid balanced – some of them are alkaline (above PH 7)!
  • Parabens are preservatives and are used to restrict the growth of yeasts, molds and bacteria.
  • Sodium Lauryl Sulphate (SLS, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, SLES) – an oil dispersant, detergent and surfactant, it is used in soaps, shampoos, toothpaste, and hundreds of cosmetic and beauty products. Personally, I wouldn’t worry about it too much.
  • Don’t leave any shampoo or conditioner on your scalp or in your hair, always rinse thoroughly.
  • Most hairdressing products are designed to be rinsed out.
  • If your hair gets very knotty, comb your hair from the ends first and work your way towards the roots. Never, ever, tug.
  • If you really need to dry and style your hair with a hair-dryer: use the lowest heat setting, gentlest speed and for God’s sake take off the nozzle.
  • All my hairstyles can be dried/styled by just using your fingers, hands; you don’t need to use brushes, they tend to catch and pull.
  • Feed You Hair, Eat A Rainbow: Diet doesn’t only effect your health, but also your hair – feed it! Eat: peppers, sweet potatoes, carrots, spinach, mango, papaya, apricots, blueberries, sardines, salmon, pumpkin & ground flax seeds, walnuts and wheat germ – I’m talking, lots of multi-coloured fruit and vegetables, oily fish, nuts, seeds and grains.
  • I advise you to:
    • Leave longer for your hair appointment, so I can take my time to be gentle with your hair.
    • Try having your hair cut dry, without washing. It makes no difference to me or the outcome of your style, but it may help your hair a little? Wash it after the cut and allow it to dry naturally.
    • Still have your hair cut every four to five weeks, it’s important to keep your hair at the optimum length, plus I can keep an eye on the condition of your hair.
    • Obviously you must avoid all permanent tinting, permanent waving (all chemical processes) until at least three months after your chemotherapy treatment finishes. However, there is such a thing as a water rinse (they’re like the old fashioned coloured setting lotion): Roux Fanci-Full Temporary Rinse. They’re great for toning down and blending gray hair and roots. And just like a setting lotion they wash out.
    • Have a gander in Waitrose for your hair care products, they’ve got a very good selection. Don’t confuse Waitrose Pure Shampoo for Timotei Pure Shampoo.

That’s it! If you would like to talk with me personally, please get in contact x

Things Your Hairdresser Really Wants You To Know

Things Your Hairdresser Really Wants You To Know

The bohemian M. Pring returning to normality. Eton 1980

The big problem for me with articles like Cosmopolitan’s 10 things your hairdresser REALLY wants you to know, is that they are usually stuffed full of hackneyed truisms like, ‘Number 3. You get what you pay for;’ and unfortunately, they don’t really come up with the goods. What does your hairdresser really want you to know?

Have a quick gander at 10 things…

First, hairdressing isn’t just about cutting and styling hair, it’s principally about communication – And The key hairdressing skill is the ability to listen; if your hairdresser is doing all the talking during the opening consultation, something is very, very wrong.

Second, hairdressing is both a personal service and a craft, I know that’s obvious, but it’s how your hairdresser combines those two that distinguishes them. For instance, you don’t want all personal service and no ability do you? Or maybe you do?

Third, your hairdresser has no favourites – I love you all equally. And that maybe is too much flannel!

Okay, now I’ll go through Cosmo’s 10 things:

1. Can you do my hair like this picture? Most hairdressers love pictures of hairstyles, they’re great conversation starters. You want a hairdresser honest enough to speak frankly and with the ability to create something suitable for you and your hair. All photographs need interpreting and put into context: who’s the person. why was the photograph taken. what are they selling. is it their normal, everyday hair. has the image been digitally remastered…? You don’t want a hairdresser who just says, “Yes” then proceeds to fuck it up!

2. I want to grow my hair: I used to say, “If you want to grow your hair it’s important to get it cut regularly to prevent it splitting.” But actually, that’s mostly bollocks – as with all things hairdressing, it very much depends on your hair. If you want to grow your hair, Don’t Get It Cut – it’ll grow faster! Do keep it in good condition though, and see your hairdresser very occasionally (4 months-ish), for style correction and a quick check through.

3. The truism, “You get what you pay for:” A salon is only as good as its worst hairdresser – one of my banalities! Looking for a new hairdresser? Recommendation is key, so chat with friends, and if you see someone with a great hairstyle, ask them where they get it cut – you’ll soon find a hairdresser or salon coming to the fore. Before making an appointment go in and have a look-see, get a free consultation with the stylist and pick up a price list – and let’s face it, if the stylist is good you’ll normally have to wait for an appointment.

4. The untruism “Salon (professional) products are better than High Street (retail) products:” Oh that that were true; it’s certainly what hairdressers desire and have been gunning for. I know it’s a cliché to say ‘economy of scale,’ but it’s the reality; big supermarkets (inc. Boots UK) have a much bigger buying power than your local independent hairdresser. There are hundreds of hair products on the market, your hairdresser, the expert, can talk you through them and recommend the right products for you. “Full of hidden chemicals,” is scaremongering. Talk with your stylist.

5. What is your hairstory? Make sure you talk with your hairdresser before you get your hair washed; this is called an opening consultation and is Very important. It doesn’t matter how well your stylist knows you, you should always receive and opening consultation. Having said that, a good hairdresser will know your recent hair history just by looking at it, and will confirm that by talking you through it. If your stylist is not listening during the opening consultation, run away quickly!

6. & 7. Condescending Hairdressers: I found numbers six and seven of ’10 things…’ (‘colouring and lightening are opposites’ and ‘you can’t lift colour with colour’), slightly patronising. Inferior hairdressers often use smoke, mirrors and bollocks to explain technical matters! Salons who use specialist colourists don’t usually have this as a problem.

My #7. Describing colour: Don’t try to describe your hair colour over the phone, it is virtually impossible. The colourist will want to see you, it’s also a good idea bring in a photograph if you want to discuss a colour.

8. Unhappy with your hair? Most hair issues are resolved at the opening consultation, but if you are not happy with your hair at any time, Tell Your Hairdresser As Soon As Possible; you Will get it sorted out – usually for free. A good hairdresser wants & likes to be informed of issues so they can improve themselves.

9. Client etiquette: Of course etiquette works both ways. So yeah, don’t be late, equally, tell your stylist if you’re on a schedule. Also, holding a mobile phone to your ear is distracting and awkward. But remember this: You are always right!

10. Love me, recommend me: Yes, the hairdressing industry does rely heavily on word of mouth recommendations. And Yes, you will normally receive a discount off your next appointment for referrals.

10 things your hairdresser REALLY wants you to know was written by Annie Davies for Cosmopolitan magazine on 3 June, 2015 @ 10:44 AM

Abandoned Suitcase Reveals A Love Affair

A love affair in a suitcase! Margret:  Chronicle of an Affair May 1969 to December 1970A love affair in a suitcase! Book cover, Margret: Chronik einer Affare Mais 1969 bis Dezember 1970 – Chronicle of an Affair May 1969 to December 1970. Compiled and Published by Nicole Delmes and Susanne Zander; text by Veit Loers and Susanne Pfeffer, at Verlag der Buchhandlung Walther Koenig, 2012. ISBN: 9783863352547. Out of print.

White Columns Gallery, in collaboration with Galerie Susanne Zander | Delmes & Zander, presents this unusual and remarkable collection of photographs and ephemera that relate to a love affair which took place between the Cologne businessman Günter K., 39, and his secretary Margret S., 24, in the late 1960s and early 1970s – Is this revenge porn turned arty-farty? The exhibition runs at the White Columns until April 18th 2015 – Also very interesting Galerie Zander Blog.

margret at the mirrorGünther K. “Margret” 7th December 1970; Original Vintage Print 13cm x 9cm.

To be a hairdresser you’ve got to be interested in people, not just fashion; because as a hairdresser you can’t really avoid getting caught up in the revelations and the machinations of other people’s lives. In a way, hairdressers are voyeuristic; we float around our clients like a camera, intently watching and actively listening while we primp and preen and snip and style, and maybe that’s why I found the discovery of ‘Margret: Chronicle of an Affair – May 1969 to December 1970,’ so fucking compelling.

photographs of margrets hairstyle(great hair) Margret S. by Günther K. 9th January 1970 – pages 22-23.

I originally found ‘Margret’ in the Telegraph and I was instantly mesmerised by her Dusty Springfield-esque bouffant hairstyle and the atmospheric photographs that seemed strangely, beautifully familiar.

margrets hair sampleDated, Friday 4th September 1970, has this hair sample been used by Margret’s hairdresser to either test a L’oreal hair colour (Récital was a very popular home hair colour that would fit the code?): 50% .12 + 50% .14 (a reddy-caramel-ish tint) + 6% H2O2 (20 volume peroxide) or was it to be passed on to her normal hairdresser? Just to say, all my colour formulae are my intellectual copyright – apart from Frances’s, which is, Wella Koleston Perfect: 50% 8/0 + 50% 9/0 + 20 Vol!

The photograph of the hair sample, with it’s simple formula, seems so everyday to me – I love it because of the background context it provides to the narrative! I don’t know what it says in the book (which I would LOVE to own) about Margret’s hair; but Museperk says or maybe quotes, “We also observe Günther’s apparent transformation of his secretary from a shy, simple, mousy-haired girl to a modern, sophisticated woman with a fiery red high-maintenance beehive hairdo.”

Galerie Zander says, “Somehow, the ultimate symbol of the man’s control is the absurd bouffant hairdo that the woman wears in almost all of the photos, regardless of how little else she has on. It feels to me like a giant handicap that her culture has foisted on her – a notably stylish ball-and-chain.”

A “high-maintenance ball-and-chain hairdo” was pretty much the norm in the 1960s; it wasn’t until the mid to late 1970s that time consuming sets and comb-outs started to fall out of fashion and the ubiquitous blow-dry came to the fore – Don’t pull time out of joint OUTRAGEOUS blog.

All of these wonderful photographs are courtesy of Galerie Susanne Zander | Delmes & Zander Visit Their Website, and you might want to follow White Columns Gallery on Twitter?

Rita Tushingham with Peter Finch in Girl With Green Eyes (1964)Rita Tushingham with Peter Finch in “Girl With Green Eyes” (1964)

The photographs of Margret and the love affair, remind me so much of Hazel who looked like Rita Tushingham in ‘Girl With Green Eyes,’ a film of the book (published 1962) written by the Irish novelist Edna O’Brien – who’s hair I used to do in the mid 1970s.

Edna O'Brien 1974. Photograph by & courtesy of Fay GodwinEdna O’Brien 1974. Photograph by & courtesy of Fay Godwin.

Hazel lived with her boyfriend in an arty flat overlooking Wandsworth Common. I stayed the night and  went for a beer with her boyfriend and we talked about the art market – he was an interesting and good bloke. In the morning I talked to Hazel about her hair colour while I watched her put her face on in the bathroom mirror; he dropped us off outside the Chelsea fire station on the King’s Road. And she confided in me, “I’m going to ditch him,” which shocked me. And I felt as though in one boozy night, I’d experienced the beginning, middle and end of their love affair! And thus the love affair between Margret and Günther seems almost like a real memory to me.

Fashion Trends & Hair Styles Predictions For 2015

Emma Stone’s shortish bob by Mara Roszak, @mararoszak – V.Nice

Before I start and as per usual, I just want to say, there’ll always be a wide range of key colour palettes, looks and hair styles in any season! I only highlight the fashion trends that have caught my imagination, that I feel will progress forward & blossom and will be of interest to my clients! I particularly feel that Emma Stone’s simple bob and Miley Cyrus’s short hair will inspire my clients!

Key Colour: ‘Finely’ highlighted with natural glossy highlights and lowlights. Blonde.
Key Length: Short – bob, shoulder to long – which is good … basically not much has changed!
Key Looks: Slightly 1980s / ’90s coupe sauvage-esque / dishevelled – with a geometric precision that’s out of place in today’s world. Very happy with this prediction as it suits my style of hairdressing: a flowing precisionist hair-cutting technique. Precision cut short fringes.

PANTONE 19-4052 Classic Blue – Love this in 2015!

PANTONE 18-1438 TCX Marsala – a reddish-brown – Big in 2015!

The reason I’m late with my ‘Fashion Trends & Hair Styles Predictions For 2015’ is because of my busy run up to Christmas …I’d usually post my latest trends and fashion predictions for 2015 early in December 2014! But it’s not just the work, I’ve been fascinated by what’s going on in Turkey and the Middle East …and we’re talking my obsession with Twitter here!

Anyway, I was walking through Zara’s (Windsor, Berks, UK) just before Christmas and saw a green-khaki flying suit – 1975 style. And I thought, ‘fuck me, it’s all come back! …I wonder about the 70s hairstyles, have they come back too?’ No.

Miley Cyrus (Photo : Getty Images: Alberto E. Rodriguez) 2015

All is Forgiven (Tout est Pardonné) – Stop taking your cloths off for publicity Miley, it’s bollocks. But then again, fashion is always a reflection of our society!

High fashion, haute couture, may seem to pronounce itself and be forward thinking, but there are elements of illusion, fantasy and myth in it! I was intrigued to see (last year, 2014, which is when I started these fashion predictions) that ‘Vivienne Westwood is Julian Assange!’ WTF?

Muhammad is a cartoon in Charlie Hebdo (je suis Charlie – yeah, we’re all fucking Charlie), but Vivienne Westwood (enemy of the state [sic] haha) is Julian Assange (who the fuck would want to be him?) – that is almost more shocking.

Vivienne Westwood is Julian Assange

This (Westwood/Assange) is all about egoism and nepotism (that’s the Fashion world for you!). The Massive ego of Julian Assange (WikiLeaks [online non-profit organisation] founder) fancying himself as a modern Che Guevara – a counter-cultural symbol, but stuck in the Ecuadorian Embassy, London because he doesn’t want to be extradited to Sweden, where he is wanted on sexual assault charges – so he needs a few extra bucks and an image boost! And the Vivster’s support for her fashion designer son Ben Westwood, who was involved with Assange earlier on. A Westwood inspired / supported T-shirt should add a few hundred bucks to the product! A non-profit organisation, my arse.

I was really disappointed in Vivienne Westwood when she actively promoted independence for Scotland (in 2014). For me, it was like a cheap promotional gimmick to get everyone talking about her fashion show. And it bloody-well worked, which was: So, Fucking, Annoying! Splitting up the United Kingdom would have been a total Disaster. However, ‘she’ couldn’t give a damn – just to say: Westwood was quite happy to accept her damehood – prostitution=money. However, I do support her right to free speech and I do love her fashion designs.

Vivienne Westwood – Paris SS15

As I’ve said before, Vivienne Westwood is a woman who wants to push a stick into the spokes of the system, the establishment, England, and watch the rider go arse over tit. Why? Because anarchy has made her a shed load of cash. Talking of which…

I watched a lovely little ‘Guardian’ video of John Lydon talking with the brilliant Polly Toynbee, where she says, “Russell Brand’s a bum-hole.” Massive GRIN. And Lydon says, “Russell Brand will make you all homeless,” and that “he’s preaching all this from the mansion.” …And that’s my point; people like Westwood and Brand, who are part of the establishment, preach their ‘resistance’ shit to the feckless from their mansions. Politics and Fashion are so intertwined – don’t think they are not connected.

…which is why I think the Look for 2015 will be an amalgamation of Les Misérables-esque, 1980s-ish New Romanticism and emotional hardcore.

And then there’s Sienna Miller – nuff said!

Written by Ian Robson
SlashHair the sex, politics, religion and philosophy of the fashion industry, from the perspective of session hairdresser & stylist Ian Robson. “When you look good, I look good.” Find Ian on Twitter. © SlashHair’s work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License, which means: quote me and steal my images, but give me credit by Linking Back.

Woman suffers permanent sight damage after allergic reaction to hair dye

Woman’s suffers permanent sight damage after allergic reaction to hair dye via Daily Mail Online. This is why it’s so important to have a professional hair-colourist colour your hair!

Home hair colouring is not really a good idea, if anything starts to go wrong immediate action is required.

Also, have a gander at: Hair Colour and Cancer – Part 2 yet another hair colouring issue!

I firmly back the Cosmetic, Toiletry and Perfumery Association’s (CTPA) and the National Hairdressers’ Federation’s “Colour With Confidence Campaign.” If you’re thinking about getting your hair tinted, whether it’s the first time or the hundredth, make sure you get an Allergy Alert Test 48 hours in advance – Please Get In Contact For More Details.

Get better soon Jo Thomson xXx

Fashion Trends & Hair Styles Predictions For 2014

Before I start and as per usual, I just want to say, there’ll always be a wide range of key colour palettes, looks and hair styles in any season! I only highlight the fashion trends that have caught my imagination, that I feel will progress forward & blossom and will be of interest to my clients!

Key Colour: Heavily highlighted blond. Natural brunette with warm and glossy high/lowlights.
Key Length: Shoulder to long. …maybe with ‘grade 1’ shaved sides (Alice Dellal-esque) – Haha?
Key Looks: Slightly dishevelled and unruly (Abbey Clancy-esque) – used be called “Au Naturel”. Long to medium-long. Geometric vintage perfection, Dita Von Teese-esque.

Blond has always been a prominent hair colour in my “fashion trends and hair style predictions” and it still is. However, I have a strong feeling that in 2014 we will see trends move to a more natural look, both in hair colour and in hair style. The impact of au naturel means, less brash and maybe a little more warmth.


Get ready with your pink tinted sunglasses, the official colour for 2014 is Radiant Orchid. It’s apparently set to become a fashion, beauty, art and design pandemic. The main properties of the colour are the fuchsia, purple and pink undertones. The colour aims to “inspire confidence and emanate joy, love and health.” But, I’ve a strong feeling that radiant orchid itself will be more of a fleck, hint or tinge – It all depends on whether your skin colouring has warm or cool undertones! Lips and nails me thinks! Pantone? …more two-tone!

2014 is going to be about the reinvention of a specific time period in the 1970’s, Autumn 1974 – Spring 1975. And the outlandish trinity of: Henry Holland’s architectural, 1970’s inspired fabric prints (very Heel’s, Guildford). Vivienne Westwood-esque punk chic (faux mohawk) that challenges the status quo. Dita Von Teese-esque and Agent Provocateur-esque vintage forties, which is geometric, but with a soft ‘modern’ 2014 edge/ maybe twist.

In 2013 I said that I hoped short hair would make a strong return; I’m not sure that it did. In 2014 I hope and feel that the ‘bob’ will make a strong resurgence.

Written by Ian Robson
SlashHair the sex, politics, religion and philosophy of the fashion industry, from the perspective of session hairdresser & stylist Ian Robson. “When you look good, I look good.” Find Ian on Facebook and Twitter. © SlashHair’s work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License, which means: quote me and steal my images, but give me credit by Linking Back.

Hair Colour and Cancer – Part 2

Model: Kate Doweson. Photographer: Chris Roberts 1982. Hair: Ian Robson. Deauville, France

Hair Colour and Cancer again! Have you read in the Daily Mail, Hair dyes used by millions of women are linked to chemicals that can cause cancer? Well, you can call me an old sceptic, but I’m always extremely suspicious when a company, in this case Green Chemicals – who are about to launch a new ‘ultra-safe’ range of permanent hair tints, uses sound scientific evidence to gain a competitive advantage. Still, fair play to them, it’s a difficult world!

Being a sceptic doesn’t mean that I am not concerned about hair colourants and cancer, on the contrary, I’m very interested, which is why I wrote Hair Colour and Cancer ~ an important message for all my clients who colour their hair – ages ago (it reads a little out of date now!)

Obviously I am very interested in offering my clients the very best products, and to that end I’ll be keeping my eye on Green Chemicals and wishing them well with much success. Looking at Green Chemicals’ list of benefits, see Permanent Hair Dyes, I’m interested to find out about lifting the hair colour – and BTW, what’s all this about ‘Hair Dyes’; for as long as I’ve been in hairdressing we’ve called them ‘Tints’, semantics? Yeah, there’s more to this than meets the eye me thinks!

I firmly back the Cosmetic, Toiletry and Perfumery Association’s (CTPA) and the National Hairdressers’ Federation’s "Colour With Confidence Campaign." If you’re thinking about getting your hair tinted, whether it’s the first time or the hundredth, make sure you get an Allergy Alert Test 48 hours in advance – Please Get In Contact For More Details.

Especially for Rachel: the CTPA’s consumer website,, holds a wealth of information about the science behind products, explaining about safety assessments, ingredient issues and the strict rules governing the safety of such products as toothpaste, hair colourants, sun protection, make-up etc.

What do I do when my hair colour came out too dark?

© Model: Persephone, Photographer: Chris Roberts 1981, Hair: Ian Robson

I’ve been contacted by someone from Westminster, California, who’s had a problem with her hair colour after going to a cheap hairdresser in Little Saigon! “How do I lighten hair that has been died too dark?”

Firstly, I’ve got to say, I don’t even talk to my own clients over the phone about hair colour because, colour is almost impossible to talk about behind its back, it needs to be there in the room with you, face to face. Colour changes its personality according to the person who’s looking at it, so when colour’s involved it’s ménage à trois and loads of conversation!

I’ll start off with the quick and slightly unrealistic fix:

Wash your hair and scalp thoroughly with a clarifying shampoo (like: Pantene. maybe: Head and Shoulders) twice, don’t apply conditioner. Comb it through very carefully because it will probably be knotty – take your time, no tugging. Blow-dry your hair really, really smooth and straight (don’t use too much heat. don’t use straighteners). O.K. now you’re going to repeat that, wash your hair and scalp thoroughly with a clarifying shampoo twice but, this time use a good quality moisturising conditioner (comb the conditioner through, leave it on for a couple of minutes). Apply a minuscule amount (1 ml) of oil to the scalp (via fingertips). Blow-dry as normal!

What you will then have done is remove any excess tint stain that’s sticking to the scalp and hair shaft. It will make it slightly lighter, but it will not change the hue – you wanted a light cinnamon/ auburn and got a dark brown/ purple, they are two different types of red, one’s a yellow red, the other is a blue red!

Don’t be tempted to go down the Sun-In or bleach road, and lemon juice will only lighten it fractionally and uncontrollably.

All permanent hair colours lighten with time and sun; a tint normally lifts up a shade after about two weeks (BTW Semi-permanent hair colours are almost gone after about two weeks). You can repeat the hair-washing regime for a week – max.

Just thought I’d better mention a product, One ‘N Only’s Color Fix. It’s a gentle way to remove permanent hair colour! However, I’ve no idea what it’d do to your hair colour?

I would recommend that you go back to the hairdresser in Little Saigon and complain A.S.A.P. Then wait for two weeks for your hair colour to lighten and for your hair and scalp to return to its normal state. Then go to a reputable hairdresser – it’s the proper way to get your problem sorted out – don’t try to do it yourself!

I hope that helps a little Eddie, please feel free to ask if you need more help :) xxx