Why your hair goes yellow

“Why does my hair always go yellow?” Seldom does a day go by in our salon with out this question being asked. So here are the answers:

We all have some yellow in us

Red, orange and yellow form the foundation of our hair color from black through to blonde. That’s why when we lift from dark to light it is easy to get different shades of orange and yellow. Even the lightest blondes will have a little it of yellow or warmth in them. Which you will cover up with a toner or a glaze.

Avoid fading,

As above to achieve your perfect blonde your hairdresser will often use a toner, glaze or possibly a coloured shampoo. This means avoiding the sun, sea, swimming pools or anything that can have a bleaching effect on your hair. As lightening the colours, your hairdresser uses to hide the warmth, will allow it to creep back.

Avoid smokers and smoky places.

Remember nicotine stains on heavy smokers. Well spend too much time around cigarette smoke and the same could happen to your hair. This also applies to areas with a high atmospheric pollution.

Avoid heat

As the clip below shows too much heat, apart from damaging it, can also turn your hair yellow. Simply put your hair is held together by hydrogen and disulfide (sulphur) bonds. Heat breaks these bonds. It can then bond the hydrogen and sulphur together to form hydrogen sulphide. Which in turn reacts with other bits of your hair, which yes you guessed it, turn yellow. The same also goes for blow drying to often or using curling tongs or hot rollers.

<iframe width=”560″ height=”315″ src=”https://www.youtube.com/embed/uclCmHKIVzg” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>

So to summarise unfortunately blonde hair turning yellow is an unavoidable fact of life. But you can minimise it by using a good shampoo and conditioner and trying to avoid things that will bleach your hair unneseccarily.

To book your appointment visit www.simonclarkhairdressing.co.za

How to take your Hairdresser the right photographs

Why it is important to take your hairdresser lots of photographs when you want a change.

Cellphones now make it easier than ever to take your hairdresser photographs of what you want. And contrary, to what seems to be popular belief ,we actually really appreciate it when our clients bring us lots of photographs. Here’s why:

Everyone and every Hairdresser has different perceptions
How to take your Hairdresser the right photographs

How a Hairdresser sees colour in photographs

As the picture next door perfectly illustrates violet  can mean very different things to different people. Several different photographs of more or less similar colours or cuts, help make sure you and your hairdresser are on the same page.

3 is better than 1

It is also important to make sure you have at least 2 preferbly 3 pictures. I you have just one it is almost certain you will be disapointed. The reason for this is every ones perception is slightly different. So you can be certain that if you show your hairdresser one photograph they will interperate it differently to you. However if you show them several then the chances you will both agree is much better.

The back might not be the same

Picture the scene, you show your haidresser 3 photographs, all from the front, showing a beautyful jaw length bob. Yet walk out of the salon with the front perfect, but the back’s shaved to the occipital bone. This really just comes down to communication. After years in the salonI have come to realose how bad people usually are at it. Having a few different pictures, from all angles, not just the front, would solve this.

When it comes to the cut, colour does not matter

Some times we get so fixated on perfection, we cant see the bob for the pixie. When you are trying to explain how you want your haircut, the colour in the photos does not matter at all. Black and white also works perfectly. Like wise when it comes to colour the cut does not matter. (Black and white won’t work here though!)

So in closing if you want perfect results first get a pile of photos showing variations on the cut from all angles, and another pile showing variations of the colour. Chances are, by giving your hairdresser lots of photos you will help them hit the bulls eye with your hair.

You can click on the photo to book your appointment at Simon Clark Hairdressing or phone 041 373 0787

Fashion Colours Simon Clark Hairdressing

Everything you need to know about Fashion Colours

Fashion colours are great and all the rage but here is what you need to know before you ask for one.

Its going to take time
Simon Clark Hairdressing presents rainbow fashion colours

Rainbow hair Fashion Colours by Simon Clark Hairdressing

Those wonderful pictures you see on Facebook don’t happen at the drop of a hat.

First off, before we can deliver your fashion colours of unicorn, mermaid or oil slick colour we need to get your hair light enough for it. On a rough scale, highlighted hair is easiest. Light virgin hair is next, followed by dark virgin hair. If you have EVER coloured your hair darker then we are looking at real time in the salon to get it light enough.

So how long will it take? Well first we need to bleach, yes if you want light hair, this needs to happen, multiple times. In during and in between which you will need multiple treatments to keep your hair looking good. So expect to spend a long time in the salon

For this reason it will not be cheap

Fashion colours are very product and labour intensive. As a general rule we will use a minimum of 4 processes to achieve 1 colour result. As a simple guesstimate take what your usual colour costs you and times by 4 to give you a price. It is always best to discuss what you want, with your hairdresser in advance, to make sure you don’t get a shock at the till

Lightened hair = damaged hairSimon Clark Hairdressing Grey Fashion Colours Balayage

As we said before, your hair needs to be very light before you can colour it with fashion colours. Very light hair usually means fragile hair. So be prepared to buy extra products and come for regular treatment to maintain your hairs condition. If you are going to invest in having  fashion colours, then you need to invest in maintaining your hairs condition too.

Fashion colours have very short life spans.
Fashion Colours Simon Clark Hairdressing

Simon Clark Hairdressing Purple and Pink Fashion Colours

Almost all of them are direct dyes which are temporary colours. Even in a best case scenario, they will only last 4-8 weeks. Pastel colours tend to have an even shorter life span of 1-2 weeks because they are sheer and light. So you need to be prepared to touch them up regularly. On the plus side a they fade quickly, you can have a new colour every few weeks.

You can click on any of the pictures to book your appointment online.

Picture showing the dangers of Formaldehyde in a Brazilian Blow Dry

Read this, before you have another Brazilian Blow Dry

So you are thinking of having Brazilian Blow Dry but are worried about the risk. Everyone blabs

Picture showing the dangers of Formaldehyde in a Brazilian Blow Dry

What’s in a Brazilian Blow Dry

on about formaldehyde but what is it really? Simply, it’s naturally occurring organic gas, with formula CH2O or H-CHO. Also known by the names: Methanal, Methyl aldehyde, Methylene glycol, Methylene oxide, Formol, Carbonyl hydride and Formalin when dissolved in water. Hair companies like using different names to hide the fact they use it. More on this later. It is widely used in industry principally in the production of resins and as a disinfectant. You will probably know it as the liquid your biology teacher used to preserve dead bodies.

So what’s the fuss? Well apart from it being pretty toxic, it is carcinogenic. Studies show it causes nasopharyngeal, that’s nose and the top of your throat in normal language, cancer in rats. There are human studies positively linking exposure to Leukemia. Interestingly the studies link exposure rather than cumulative exposure. So if you are a regular Brazilian blowwave client or go to a salon that does a lot of Brazilians you may be at just as much risk as your hairdresser. A study on hair salons found during and after a Brazilian, toxic levels of formaldehyde could be found all over the salon.

So just how poisonous is the Brazilian Blow Dry

Now any doctor will tell you that toxicity is in the dose. For example, very small doses of Arsenic can be used to treat certain cancers, but take to much and it will kill you. The same goes for pretty much everything, even too much water or oxygen will kill you. The LDLo (the lowest dose that can kill) in humans for formaldehyde is 70mg/kg or 4.2g (teaspoon is 5ml), to kill a 60kg woman. Now Brazilian Blow Dry’s typically claim to contain 0.2% formaldehyde, however a recent study showed that they contain on average 5.7% formaldehyde. This equates to about 2.85g, just over half a fatal dose or enough to kill a 40kg child in a normal application. If you have longer or thicker hair then you will get a higher dose!

Doses of 8.6ppm (parts per million) or 0.0086% formaldehyde have been shown to cause cancer in rats. In humans it can illicit a toxic response in concentrations of as little as 0.05-2 ppm or 0.0005-0.002%. That’s probably why your eyes get irritated when you have a Brazilian. If you have symptoms that are worse than this, then you could be being exposed to a much higher concentration. Now you know the risks involved. Remember the average concentration of formaldehyde in a Brazilian is 5700ppm or 600 times a proven cancer causing dose.

If it is so dangerous why do salons still do the Brazilian Blow Dry

By now it should be a no brainer as to why we, at Simon Clark Hairdressing, don’t do Brazilians , but if you are wondering why other salons do, then here’s the simple answers:

  1. The beauty industry, it is sad to say, are almost completely unregulated. So hair and other beauty companies can pretty well do and use what they like.

  2. Very few hairdressers have more than very basic school chemistry. Meaning they just don’t have the knowledge to question or research what is out there. A survey, of a class of hairdressers at a local hairdressing college, found not 1 had completed high school chemistry.

  3. Some members of the beauty industry cheat! You will have noticed above I mentioned the various different names that formaldehyde can go under. Recently, a reputable hair company informed us of a new Brazilian that was completely formaldehyde free. We checked the ingredients and sure enough could not find any of formaldehyde’s usual cover names. One did catch our eye, DMDM Hydantion. Which when you heat it will release 2 molecules of formaldehyde for every molecule of Hydantion. Hence, they could claim it was completely formaldehyde free, on the bottle. And you wondered why your eyes still itched with the formaldehyde free versions?

Which brings me to the bottom line, if formaldehyde was so safe why are all the Brazilian manufactures falling over them selves to hide its presence in their formulations? In the mean time there are plenty of other genuinely formaldehyde free straighteners out there. We suggest you speak to a hairdresser who has the chemical knowledge and understanding to guide you through them.

Simon Clark Hairdressing shows how to get Robin Wrights Haircut

Robin Wright’s new lob, and how to get the look.

Here at Simon Clark Hairdressing we love Robin Wright and her character Claire Underwood in House of Cards. That is her hair and glamorous outfits, her back stabbing, adultery and general wickedness, we  love to hate.  So it came as quite a surprise to us that she has grown out her, or rather Claire’s power pixie.

Getting Robin Wright’s cut

Simon Clark Hairdressing shows how to get Robin Wright's Haircut

Robin Wright as Claire Underwood looking amazing at 04.00

While Robin Wright’s current style is lob, her style on set is a short lob.  Like most classic looks, the foundation is simple.  Ask your hairdresser for a mid length bob, with a slight graduation and a few layers.  Next add expert baby lights and daily professional styling. I mean, no one wakes up at 04.00, looking this good!

The Colour

For the colour, ask your hairdresser for a full head of babylights. These super fine blended highlights will add extra texture to your cut.   If your hairdresser is nervous about trying babylights, they are a pain the ass to do! A normal full head of highlights should  do the trick too. Just make sure you ask for more than one colour. They could use a reverse babylights technique for the contrasting colour. This would involve just applying the darker colour to the roots and some times the mid-lengths.


For styling unless, like Ms Underwood, you have stylist on call 24/7, you better start learning to curl. Whether you use a wand or a hair straightener the principle is the same, practice! Claire’s curls are all styled away from her face. This should make it slightly easier to do yourself. Top tip practice doing the left side with your right hand. Then your right side with your left hand. It is easier than it sounds and a little practice should yield great results. If you still struggle you are more than welcome to book a blow dry with me. Bring your equipment and I will show you how to use it. Visit http://www.simonclarkhairdressing.co.za or phone 041 373 0787 to book your appointment.



Why Salma Hayek’s ombre Lob might not be such a good idea

Salma Hayek choose Cannes Film Festival to debut her new ombre lob. Now don’t get me wrong here at Simon Clark Hairdressing we love the current trend of ombres and lobs we are just not so sure the 2 go together.

Simon Clark Hairdressing ombre lob

Simon Clark Hairdressing reveals Salma Hayek’s ombre lob

As you will see from the attached pic, there is a fine line between a great ombre and a bad regrowth.  We think Miss Hayek is tending to the latter.


Why lobs and ombre don’t work

Ombres work by transitioning from the natural darker roots to light ends. This is very difficut to do with a Lob because the hair is much shorter.  Meaning there is much less hair to work with. With long hair it is easy to engineer the smooth transition but in shorter hair, like a lob, it is much trickier to do.

The other reason is lobs like Ms Hayek’s have a very strong shape. Blended hair colours can break this shape and dilute the effect of the cut.

For this reason we would advise our clients who want to go for a balayage effect on shorter hair to rather use baby lights.

Balayage vs Babylights

This could be a blog in its own right, but simply put balayage works with big chunks of hair. Baby lights use fine weaves in foils. Babylights  thus can provide a far more subtle blending of colour. To prevent your ombre from looking like a regrowth.

Because baby lights provide more seamless blending they can also be used to enhance the shape of a lob. So if you have longer hair we would definitely recommend and ombre. It’s also less work than babylights to do. If you have blunt lob then babylights are definitely the way to go.

If you want to see more pics of Salma’s Cannes hair you can find them here: http://www.wireimage.com/search/#events?q=salma%20hayek/[700053794]&ep=1/60/1&s=3

Though it would seem we were not the only ones who did not think it was her best look. A later search reveals she has already replaced it with long dark extensions.

Katy Perry’s new pixie

If you have not seen Katy Perry’s new pixie yet then here you go….

Katy Perry great short hair

Katy Perry’s new pixie

The real news though, was that the pixie was not entirely by choice. I am sure many of you know the story of when good bleach goes bad. When bleach shows her dark side and fries your hair. Well this is what happened to Katy Perry.

To us at Simon Clark Hairdressing though the real news is instead of hanging on to a lost cause she decided to chop it. And cut her losses, if you will pardon the pun.

While we are great at rescue jobs sometimes it is better to chop it like Katy and start again. Short hair is becoming much more fashion forward and from my recent trip to Italy most short ladies cuts involved a set of clippers.

Rules for Short Hair.

For those brave enough to go for the crop, you need to remember;  Super short pixies can be very masculine so make up and earrings are a must. Also it may be a good idea to avoid masculine looking outfits, if you are worried.

Bleach for beginners

If however you want to bleach your hair the its best to try and take it slow. It is also a good idea to remember that the celeb makeover you are busy trying to copy was probably done over at least a day, had an unlimited budget and used mountains of a bond rebuilder. We think Bond Fusion is best.

Get the cut

For those of you who want the cut, make sure you take a few pics of the cut you want. To make sure you and your hairdresser are on exactly the same page as to how short you want it.  As a last tip it is best to avoid highlighting very short hair on the back and sides as this can appear spotty.

Why Bond Fusion is a better than the rest

Bond Fusion, Olaplex and all the other “plex” bond builders have become big news.  However not all of them are created equal. After much research we settled Bond Fusion as the best of the bunch.

Simon Clark Hairdressing

Bond Fusion: Bond Builder, Bond Enhance and Bond Recharger

The Basic Chemistry

To make a choice you need to know how they work. To do this we need a bit of basic chemistry. Your hair is made of a protein called keratin. Keratin is special because it contains an amino acid called Cystine. Cystine in turn contains a free sulphur. These free sulphurs can bond to each other forming disulfide bonds. These disulpde bonds then link long chains of proteins. Rather like a stair case where the cysteine molecules are the rails and the disulphide bonds are the stairs.

Simon Clark Hairdressing

Hair showing normal disulphide bonds

The disulphide bonds  are responsible for giving hair is strength and its shape. When we straighten or perm our hair we break and reform them. Perms, straighteners and relaxers are not the only things that break them. Heat from styling, the sun and chemical processes like bleaching and colouring can also do it. Hence using your straightener to much is not such a good idea!

Simon Clark Hairdressing

Hair showing broken disulphide bonds

Normally once broken they take a while to reform which is why you can’t wash your hair  washing your hair straight after a perm.  Interestingly hydrogen peroxide which is used to reform them in a perm can also prevent them from reforming by capping the loose sulphur to form a sulphate that can’t bond with anything.

Bond builders basics

This is where the bond builders come in. These claim to be able to repair the disulphide bonds (stairs) broken in colouring, faster than the peroxide can cap them as sulphates. Most, like Olaplex  claim to be longer version of the disulphide bond stair that we spoke about earlier.  This creates a problem as longer stair is by virtue of its increased length weaker than a shorter one.

Simon Clark Hairdressing

Hair showing bonds formed when ordinary bond builder is used

Which causes a further problem as once the stair is broken it can not be repaired again as the 2 ends of the stair are still very firmly attached to the rails. While the broken end will not bond with anything. This may be why they seem to loose its effectiveness after a while.

Simon Clark hairdressing

broken bonds from continuous bond builder use

Why Bond Fusion is Better

Bond Fusion is different in that it has split the “stair” used in bond builders down into 2 separate parts. First you have a mounting molecule, Bond Builder  that seeks out and bonds to the broken stair ends.

Simon Clark Hairdressing Kuene Bond Fusion

Hair showing Kuene Bond Fusion Bond Builder

Then you have the stair molecule, Bond Enhancer, that joins the joining the bond builder molecules together.

Simon Clark Hairdressing - Kuene Bond Fusion

Hair showing Bond Fusion Bond Enhancer bridging the gap


Now with other bond builders the home use treatment is just more of the replacement stairs. So while you are able to keep repairing new broken bonds you can’t re-repair broken repaired ones, for reasons explained. But with Bond Fusion when the stair molecule breaks using your Phase 3, you can recharge and replace any of the broken stairs. Keeping your hair in constant good condition

first time client voucher (400 x 288)

Get R100.00 off your first Bond Fusion Appointment

simon Clark hairdressing book online tab (400 x 288)

Pinky Ponky, the Breast Cancer Donkey

Simon Clark Hairdressing Pinky Ponky the Breast Cancer Donkey

Pinky Ponky the Breast Cancer Donkey

Please meet, Pinky Ponk, the Breast Cancer Donkey at Simon Clark Hairdressing. October is breast cancer month, so we  thought we would do something completely different.  As  hairdressers and try to  contribute outside of our field of expertise, so here goes.

Pinky Ponky’s Mission

Is to educate our clients, ladies of the need for regular checks to catch Breast Cancer early and  improve the chances of beating it. To this end we recommend that you visit http://www.cansa.org.za/womens-health/ for a guide on what to check and look for. There is also now a free app, Keep a Breast that gives you a step by step guide on how to do a self exam. It also gives a monthly reminder to do it, http://keep-a-breast.org/keep-abreast-and-check-your-self-breast-cancer-mob .

How you can help bet breast cancer

To help us achieve our goal Pinky Ponky will be sending out 9 Breast Cancer messages over the course of the month. Each will be related to the self checks you can do at home. To help make sure we get the message out there we have an amazing prize which will be drawn from those that share the messages on Facebook, a R1000.00 Wella Oil Reflections hamper, containing a shampoo, conditioner, mask and oil. All you need to do is share the messages, each share is one entry in the draw.

Just for fun

We will also holding a “pin the bra” on Pinky Ponky in the salon. To enter all you need to do is pop into the salon and try. Entry is free and we have a bottle of Wella Oil Reflections Oil as prize for the person who gets closest to the breast and a big bottle of the oil as lucky draw prize for everyone who shares there attempts on Facebook. we hope you will all join us in supporting this wonderful cause.

Prada Bob Haircut the latest hair trend?

bobs cut for prada new summer trend

Models left and right show Prada bob haircuts cut for the Prada Milan show

So Prada bob  has got the worlds fashion press buzzing. By having celebrity stylist Guido Palua, cut it on seven models, back stage before their Milan show. Am I surprised? No! Was this a sudden spontenious event? Almost certainly not! Do I think the trend will catch on? Maybe!

The Prada bob cut
Andrognous feiminity, prada bob

Side view of the Prada bob styled with a bit of mouse

First off lets look at the cut. It is a standard lip length bob that due to its straight line is closer to a page boy. It is in theory could be cut to suit almost anyone. Though as Palua points out, it does have an androgenous feel to it. So it is probably best avoided if you are not buildt like a Prada model or don’t like wearing make up and earings. It is probably the most difficult style to cut well. It requires precision and there is no where to hide if you make a mistake. That said it is also easy to style, easy to wear and easy to grow out.

Was it planned?

Lets however spare a though for the models. I can just see it, “here’s your chance to be part of the Prada line up but you need to have your haircut short.” Well now lets see, thats a really hard choice…. Also I can not see any model no matter how desperate, agreeing to have her hair chopped at no notice with out throwing a temper tantrum. So this was definitely planned in advance. Still, as has also been pointed out it also gave them a chance to do something different in an industry that is obcessed with long hair.

Will it catch on?
Prada Bob

Model on Prada ramp in Milan with the trade mark bob haircut

With Vogue, Elle and Alure all jumping on the band wagon and pitching the cut, it might. We have been in Lob country for while now and fashion depends on change…. It is the perfect style for matrics who have just finished writing and want a change and will be nice and cool for summer. So while  one swallow does not make a summer will 7 bobs  make a summer trend?

Lets wait and see. if you are feeling dareing you can book you appointment at