The Ethical Hedonist Guide to Beautiful Hair By Alison Jane Reid
Welcome to The Exciting First Chapter of The Ethical Hedonist Guide To Beautiful Hair.
Some girls like manicures. Others are enthral to the sin qua non of a perfect maquillage or a sublime new shade of red lipstick. Not me. Now if you were to mention a maestro of hair or tell me that Karl Lagerfeld sent haughty beauties down the runway for winter 2012 with loose, undone buns; then my heart would begin to sigh and flutter with interest. I’m sure you all want to know that ponytails, wil ‘o’ wisp Victoriana chignons and sleek hair are all high on the style firmament for late summer into winter!
I’ve always been mad about my hair, ever since my mother used to spend school nights washing my hair and patiently winding strips of old cotton sheets into rag ribbons to produce glorious, shining, Little Women ringlets the next morning. I was lost in the wonder of such thrifty transformation.
For late summer and winter allure – hair is all about soft, period chignons and delicate ornamentation. This is nothing new. In ancient Greece women scraped their long hair back into a chignon and sprinkled it with gold powder, often adorning their hair with fresh flowers.
This is my love letter to a lifetime of messing around with my hair, all the great hairdressers I’ve met along the way, and all the lotions, gels and aromatic styling potions waiting to be discovered, and what they can do for you. I’m going to open my little green book and share my verdant green and organic hair secrets with you.
So what’s so special about a great stylist or having your hair coloured? – Why, if you need to ask, you haven’t found him or her yet. Let me spell it out for you – a great hairstylist offers the possibility of new, shinier more confident version of you – and a great way to loose a decade. If you don’t have the money for a swish salon visit, you can achieve great results at home too.
Take a look at my features on Daniel Galvin Junior – The King of Colour and Arash at Karine Jackson; both are extraordinary hair artists who spend their days making ordinary women look extraordinary.
What I found fascinating and inspiring when I was writing this guide, is that hairdressing is becoming greener and kinder to people and the fragile, rather over crowded planet we live on. After decades of using a plethora of seriously unpleasant and irritating chemicals from ammonia to SLES, perming solutions and parabens, hairdressers are throwing out the old model over concern for their own health and that of their customers.
In doing so, they are discovering that it is possible to achieve brilliant, if not more beautiful, exciting, long lasting results with gentle organic colour and styling serums, gels and sprays that are made with nature’s most fecund plant extracts and dynamic oils to nourish, restore and replenish the hair.
In the Renaissance aristocratic women of fashion didn’t just pluck their eyebrows, they plucked their entire hairline to create a fashionable high forehead – ouch!
It is also worth pointing out that the big hair companies spend most of their money on advertising, hype and celebrity endorsement and not so much on the ingredients that go into their products. The organic and natural model works on a very different principle. With the authentic natural and organic hair companies the mantra is people and the environment first. That means: quality, ingredients, ethics and formulations that nurture the body and the mind, and don’t cause irritation or strip the skin of its protective mantle. Small green companies don’t have the budgets for advertising and rely on happy customers and people power.
Do your homework, and choose ethical hair companies that are transparent and have certification for their organic ingredients and are entirely honest and transparent about their ethos and products. Companies like: Herb UK, Weleda, Faith in Nature, John Masters, Daniel Galvin Junior, Willow and Louise Galvin. You will be rewarded with colour, shampoos and styling gels of good quality, with a plethora of amazing, synergistic herbs, flowers and plants, all working in harmony to help you or your hairdresser to create sublime, tumbling, healthy locks that would delight Rapunzel!
Then bask in the difference and the gorgeous aromas, and above all enjoy the transformation!
Copyright Alison Jane Reid – July 2012