An Interview with Celeb Hair Stylist Patrick Melville about hair care sins
Patrick Melville, of Patrick Melville Salon and Spa in New York City, is one of the most prestigious hairstylists in the fashion industry. His work has been seen in the pages of Vogue, W, Elle and Harper’s Bazaar and his celebrity clients have included, Demi Moore, Heidi Klum, Halle Berry, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Brooke Shields, Sting, Mark Wahlberg, Harry Connick Jr. Tom Cruise and more.
I recently had the pleasure of speaking with Patrick, about what sins women are most often likely to be guilty of when it comes to their hair care. I understand why his appointment book is full . . . he cares about his clients, about making them look and feel good, that’s what makes a truly great stylist!
Here’s what Patrick shared with me
1. A RELUCTANCE TO CHANGE
When a woman gets stuck in a hair rut it’s usually fear that’s standing in the way. But fear is always an illusion, a false thought.
A change to your hairstyle or color doesn’t need to be dramatic or major in order to give you a whole new look. Small changes like adding a touch of dimensional color, some face framing layers or a fringe, are great ways to freshen up your style and coincidentally, your spirit.
Skin tone alters slightly with seasonal changes so even the slightest adjustment to your hair color will pull your look together. Spring is the time for adding some brightening hues to the hair and in fall adding some warmth to the hair warms up skin tones that start to pale.
Patrick’s advice: Shorten hair in the winter and let it grow longer for summer months. Shorter hair compliments winter clothes with higher collars and scarves worn up around the neck. And, longer hairstyles flatter the lower necklines and softer, sexier clothing of spring and summer. Trimming off summer damage is always a good idea and shortening the hair creates more volume in the winter when hair tends to lay flatter to the head.
Spring to summer and winter to fall, your hair changes with the seasonal changes and a little change can always do a woman good, fear is never a good thing!
2. DIY At-Home Hair Color Sins
The mistake we see most often with at-home hair coloring is pulling the color through all of the hair. The result is dark ends and roots that are too light. The ends of the hair are typically more porous so they grab more color than the rest of the hair. Coloring over previously colored ends will also compromise the integrity of the hair.
Doing a single process hair color at-home may work for some but always stay within 2 levels of your own hair color. Trying to do an at-home dimensional color or highlights is a big mistake. If you’re going to color at home, Patrick suggests using a clear glaze afterwards to lock in your color and give the hair more shine.
For those times you can’t get into the salon and your roots won’t wait, here’s a great fix!
Patrick’s advice: A customized color kit made with your exact color formula. A Personal Color Extender Kit is the buffer you need when you can’t get in for your regular color appointment. It is enough color to touch up your hairline, your part and the area around your face to hold you over till you can get into the salon.
3. OVER CLEANSING HAIR AND SCALP
Most people don’t need to shampoo daily. Over cleansing the hair by shampooing too often or with a wrong product, can dry the hair and strip it of its natural oils. Sulfate and paraben free products are best for saving the integrity of the hair and it leaving moisturized. Even if you have extremely oily hair or you work out daily try these alternatives; Aveeno Pure Renewal Collection and Dry Shampoo. Aveeno Pure Renewal is both a sulfate and paraben free product you can buy over the counter. The Dry shampoo is great to hold you over in-between regular shampoos and an added bonus is it adds texture to the hair.
Patrick’s advice: Instead of always using a shampoo, wet your hair in the shower with warm water, add a bit of conditioner, comb it though and rinse it out. This will clean and moisturize your hair and shampooing less often will help retain your color longer too.
4. AVOIDING TRIMS WHEN GROWING HAIR
The sin here is that by NOT trimming your ends, you end up defeating the purpose you have set out to do! The thought that waiting longer in-between trims will get you to your goal of longer hair more quickly . . . is just plain wrong.
Patrick’s advice: Dusting the ends ¼ inch every 8 to 10 weeks. This way your hair will look better and it will actually have a ‘redefined style’ to work with as it is in the process of growing. By dusting the ends every 8 to 10 weeks, it’s less painful; we don’t need to cut as much off. And, your hair will be more manageable and will look healthier too!
5. THE FEAR OF USING CONDITIONER
Everyone’s hair needs moisture and conditioning. Just as your skin needs a moisturizer to look and feel better, your hair needs moisturizing too! The fear that using a conditioner only flattens or dulls your hair is just plain wrong. Even those with fine hair need moisture.
Patrick’s advice: A mistake many make is to apply too much conditioner or apply it in the wrong place. Conditioner should be applied from mid-shaft to the ends of the hair. The ends are the oldest and the driest part of the hair and therefore need the most attention.
6. PRODUCT MISUSE
Product misuse is not a little sin, using too much, using it in the wrong place, not knowing how to use it, afraid it will make your hair dirty so you don’t use it.
All products are formulated for specific uses and hair types. When a stylists gives you the breakdown on what products they are using and how to use them, be sure to listen and ask any questions you might have. Think of it this way; if the stylist needs the products to get your hair to look great, you are going to need them too!
If you’re convinced products just make your hair dirty, you may be using the wrong product or more product than you need. Gels, mousses and other products when used right, will actually act as a barrier to help protect the hair from irons and other heating tools.
Patrick’s advice: When you’re in the chair don’t be afraid to ask questions. Don’t get discouraged, if you don’t get a new styling technique down right away, give yourself time to learn something new and let us help you correct any problem you may be having.
7. Over Use of Heat
It’s always a good practice to use less rather than more heat when it comes to hair. And with tools that get as hot as 450 degrees or more, damaged hair happens. It’s a good idea to give it a break when you can and do something else with your hair rather than the same old, same old, smoothing, flattening or curling.
Patrick’s advice: Great alternatives to styling with hot tools are braids, buns and updos. Try putting damp hair into a bun overnight for soft, natural looking waves or braiding damp hair for a totally different effect.
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