Archive: How To

Q&A with Ted Gibson’s Master Colorist


If ever there was something that provided for confusion, mistakes and crying in the bathroom, it is haircolor. But it doesn’t have to be this way! Jason Backe, celebrity colorist for Ted Gibson who highlights and treats the tresses of Anne Hathaway and Renee Zellweger (amongst many other a-listers!), answers our haircolor questions and offers some valuable insight into the laws of haircolor. Eureka – it is possible to create pretty results, even in the comfort of your own home!! Read on to see how, straight from the master himself…

Is it easier going light to dark, or dark to light?

Both have their own set of complications and issues. As long as you are going three or less levels darker or one to two levels lighter you should get great at home results. Anything more in either direction requires multiple steps and should be handled by a pro.

Which color is harder to maintain?

Both colors require the same kind of maintenance. A retouch on the new hair growth every three to four weeks will keep your color looking fresh and fantastic. If you are coloring your hair lighter this is the golden rule. The scalp generates heat which makes the color process more effectively.

What are the steps to going from dark to light? Should it take more than one process? (i.e. dark, to light brown, to dark blonde, to light blonde…)

Remember you are going to get the best results going light at home by staying within the one to two level lighter rule. When you are going lighter remember your scalp produces heat which acts as a catalyst and process the color more quickly. If you apply the color from your scalp to ends you will end up with color that is lighter at the scalp and darker on the ends- and as far as I’m concerned there is nothing WORSE in the world than hair color that goes from light to dark! When applying the color start one finger width from the scalp and go through the ends. After you finish, go back and apply to the scalp and process for the full manufacturers’ recommended processing time.

Is it possible to get salon results out of a box?

It’s difficult to get salon perfect color from a box! Hair coloring is as much a science as it is an art. There are things a well trained colorist knows about NRP (natural remaining pigment), color theory and formulation–just to name a few. That being said if you follow the rules of not more than three levels darker, not more than two levels lighter and the one finger rule when going lighter, you can have FANTASTIC results- and I will admit I have had several people come into the salon with very impressive at home color jobs!

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Brow Know-How


Want to know how to acheive the perfect brows?  Try these 3 simple steps!! (I’ve got it all down except the not plucking above the brow…I always have a few I’ve gotta pluck!) 

  • Trace: Use a white eye pencil to outline your ideal brow shape, then plucking hairs outside the line.
  • Pluck: Only tweeze beneath and between the brows. (Most pros prefer slant-tip tweezers) Removing hairs above can result in a lower arch.
  • Perfect: Use a pencil the shade of your brows to fill in gaps, blen with brow powder two shades lighter and set with.

Pictured: Gossip Girl’s Leighton Meester.  How cute is she!?  And what a great lipstick!!

PS: This is my favorite brow liner:


“For sexy eyes, there is nothing better than this drugstore black liner.”

Covergirl Perfect Blend Eyeliner in Basic Black, $4;

Summer Nail Tips!


Get those nails ready for summer with these 4 easy nail tips!

  1. Keep them short! The season’s bright polishes look best on short nails in a ”squoval” – square with rounded edges – shape.
  2. Change it up! For a new look in no time, brush a sheer or pearly shade on top of your existing polish.
  3. Go the distance! To make a mani last, apply polish to clean, dry nails and reapply top coat every few days.
  4. Stay smooth!  File nails in one direction to avoid splitting!

Weird & Wacky Hair Tips!


Here are some weird hair tips – People Magazine swears actually works!

  1. Texturize with Ivory soap: Lather and run your fingers through the ends for instant pieceiness, says Babaii.
  2. Shampoo with Palmolive: “It will soften red or brunette hair color that has gone too bright or dark,” says O’Connor.
  3. Blot away grease: “Pat blotting papers on roots to soak up the oil,” says Babaii.
  4. Tame with Chapstick: “I put a little in my palm and smooth it over baby hairs,” says McMillan.
  5. Spray deodorant to create volume: “You get a massive amount of lift” if you spritz natural deodorant on the roots, says Babaii. 

That picture has nothing to do with anything…but I typed “frizzy hair” in Google, and this lovely family popped up.  I think it’s great! :)

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