When I was born, my hair was a bright orange that turned light blonde. As a child, it was strawberry blonde, with coppery strands that glinted like fire in the sun. It was so unusual that my mother sometimes asked me if I “did something” to it to make it that color. I didn’t. My hair might be frizzy, curly and sometimes, uncooperative, but it always was a beautiful color.
Nothing lasts forever. When a few strands of silver started to clash with the copper, I freaked! I ran to a swanky (and expensive) salon, thinking I’d whisk away the greys with a few highlights. Alas, the colorist and I were apparently speaking different languages, and when I left, I had dark red hair! I had to admit it was a change (and change is good), but not that good–I hated it! Worse, I quickly learned that you get a “skunk line” down the middle of your head the minute the color starts to fade and your hair starts to grow. I couldn’t afford the time, money and effort to keep touching it up and I longed for my own, nautural color back.
A friend (whose blonde hair I always thought was completely natural) came to the rescue with another salon that was the direct opposite of swanky (you change in the bathroom and put your things on a hook along with the stylist’s lunch and shopping), but the colorist was personable, and she listened to what my needs were instead of imposing her vision. Best of all, the neighborhood was fun to visit–almost like being in another city entirely. She managed to get my hair somewhat back to “normal” between blonde, and red.
But nothing lasts forever. Too much hair dye over too long a period of time made my hair dry and brassy. Worse, it was splotchy. I waited as long as I could stand it, and when it was not only brassy, but faded, I’d had enough….and that’s how I ended up at the Warren Tricomi salon on 57th Street in Manhattan.
I admit I was nervous. The salon is pricey and in the high-rent district off 5th avenye, a far cry from the low-key operation I’d been visiting. But my hair was really a mess, and Fashion Week is coming. I figured I wouldn’t look any worse, and with luck, I’d look a lot better.
I felt a bit better being greeted at the door by an outgoing, stylish man named Paul who called me by name (nice touch). He directed to change (not in a bathroom but in a dressing room with beautiful, silk, maroon drapes) and to take a seat. I wasn’t seated more than just a couple of minutes when colorist Simone’s Assistant greeted me and brought me a glass of ice water (there is a complete “bar” at Warren Tricomi which is a nice touch if you are going to be there a while). Simone introduced herself and was very businesslike. I know that the salon is frequented by socialites, celebrities, and high-profile regulars. The thought was a bit intimidating, so I let it drop that we were both in the “beauty biz” but in different part of it. “Well, then I’d better do a good job,” Simone gently joked.
I won’t bore you with all the conversation, but Simone (very gently) informed me of something I already knew but didn’t want to face: that as you age your hair color and perhaps, even the tone of your skin, changes. Some people go grey, some get darker. In my case, I didn’t have much grey, but my strawberry blonde hair was not the same color anymore (is there anything really good about aging?). In any case, Simone suggested that I make my hair lighter without any red.
Red has always been my trademark….I wondered whether I should trust this virtual stranger. But Warren Tricomi is known for amazing makeovers (I’ve seen them do their magic on tv shows) and of course, they work their magic on models for designers at Fashion Week. The salon uses Redken and Wella products, and also has it’s own line of signature products as well (I will be reviewing some of them in the next couple of What Works Beauty, Cosmetics & Fashion review columns). Looking around the large salon with it’s slightly “Moroccan” and very chic vibe, and assessing the other patrons (who were not at all strange-looking), mostly expensively dressed and attractive, I decided to go with Simone’s professional opinion. After, all, I am someone who writes abuot beauty and fashion, who is a certified image consultant, and who is known for giving advice about life and career to others–but when it comes to myself…well, let’s just say I can be as myopic as the next person.
In a flash, Simone foiled, mixed, brushed on, and applied color to fix the blotches and turn my straw back into gold. A treatment that I think is one of the new, Warren Tricomi product lines made it soft and shiny. My hair was transformed into a beautiful shade of something that might have been closer to the way it was when I was a child…not blonde, not red…unique..and I got the few, subtle highlights I longed for when I first started this hair-color journey! Before I knew it I also had an amazing cut by Emiliano (adorable to look at and talented as well) that made my hair straight, swingy and stylish.
I walked down the street with attitude…and the salespeople at Bergdorf’s were very attentive (they usually totally ignore me). Even the check-out lady at the market seemed a bit friendlier! They say money can’t buy happiness…but it CAN buy great hair!
It has been a while since I’ve looked in the mirror and loved what I see. Now, I do.