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Colour Dysmorphia and the Celebrity Generation

We all love a celebrity or two, we have our favourite ones and our hated ones... the ones we swoon over, the ones we LOVE to hate, and the ones that we love to emulate!


But this whole I want to be Angelina, I want Kim Kardashian hair, make me look like Gisele is getting seriously out of hand!


We all know that those glossy magazines sell you pictures that have been heavily edited.... think Kate Winslet looking like an Amazonian Goddess! - even she was apauled!



so what I do not understand is: If we know that these models and celebrities are stretched, slimmed, glossed and what not via photoshop...what makes us think that the same is not being done for the hair?


Well the answer is simple - yes it is! - sometimes to ridiculous proportions too - and we are not talking just about fashion magazines here,



the biggest culprit in heavily edited hair are hair adverts - all those D-I-Y colour boxes and incredible shampoos are selling you a lie....no wonder it never looks like the girl on the box!




Sometimes you get a client coming in and the first thing they will tell you is: 'Sorry I hope you don't mind but I got a picture!'.


It is no great secret that some hair stylists hate it when a client comes in with a photo- maybe its an ego thing, but I never understood it.


Well, I can only speak for myself here - I do not mind! - in fact I love it! - if you do not have pictures I am likely to use some to show you! - because lets face it if we do not have that visual communication both you and I have to rely on our imagination and we both do not know how limited that could be or how far it could go!


Pictures are not a problem..... not being realistic is!


I totally blame this on Jennifer Anniston... it all started with the Rachel.... nothing compares to Jen-An's monopoly of hair copy-cats.




The problem is with her greek roots Ms. Anniston is blessed with gorgeous thick hair, so as much as one would love to... flimsy fly away hair is never going to look like that!, one needs to be realistic in the hunt of celebrity hair Nirvana, remember that most celebrities have extensions, so unless you are going down that route at least find a celebrity that has similar hair texture to yours - but as we all know we always want what we have not got, so the likely hood of this happening is as slim as that Victoria's Secret model.


Colour is the real big issue with this generation though, and the more time passes I realise that COLOUR DYSMORPHIA is seriously rife!


First of all....WHO DECIDED ORANGE IS A PALE YELLOW? - people there is a fruit called - ORANGE, and that is what orange looks like.....


this is not orange....







Though a lot of you out there seem to think so!


But let's get back to edited images.... if you come in with an (admittedly stunning) beautiful shade of a very ashy toned hair - but the models skin is so discoloured she looks like she has been dead for a few weeks that means that the pictures is heavily edited... hence that hair colour is not real!






This of course happens the other way with ridiculously golden tones too!






I am not blaming the consumer here.. the fault is totally the media's - but people need to get clued up on what is real hair and what is in fact computer generated!






Another issue is of course lighting. Yes while you are in a salon you have artificial light... and daylight is different.... but unless you live and work on a farm let's face it you are going to be in artificial light most of the time,...and surely you understand that hair can not change according to the light you are in, so yes you need to be happy with the hue - and it is your hairstylist's job to make sure that this is achieved - but saying it looks different in the sun is pretty much stating the obvious


Another problem with light is that we see a lot of images of celebrities which are caught by Paparazzi, which of course means the hair is showered by the flash-lights. We all know what a difference a flash makes to hair...we have all seen it in our selfies! ;)





Going into a salon saying 'I want hair exactly like this celbrity' is unrealistic because you are comparing to a moment captured in time. Flash gives you brighter high-lights, but also shadows, so that darker bit at the bottom and that lighter streak at the front may only be as a result of light caught at that moment in time! - You are not a 2-dimensional picture - you are a living moving object and so is your hair!


It will react to different lighting, so once again that celebrity picture of this incredibly bright shiny hair is once again artificial!


here are some images we took in-salon giving you a perfect example of what simple light and basic post-editing can do :






The first image is just natural light, second is with a normal flash, while the third has contrast added via photoshop.





Our model wanted a subtle sun-kissed look - first image is regular flash, second is flash and editing, and the third is basic Instagram editing.





Here you can see the massive difference between the 3 images - the first one is natural light, second is with flash, while the 3rd is Natural light with some contrast via photoshop.


Both models DO NOT HAVE extensions.



As you can see lighting plays a big part in hair colour, so do expect it to look different in different lights, such as naturl light, sunlight, artificital light with a cool undertone, yellow light etc...


When choosing a colourist make sure you are speaking to someone who gets it - do not be afraid to take pictures as this will give you and your stylist a better idea of the desired result.

If your stylist rambles on and you are not understanding the lingo, do not be afraid to stop them to start again with simpler terms! - communication is key!


Just remember..... celebrities have stylists, pictures are edited, and Orange is a fruit!





HCS x

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