People who love summer must truly be optimists. Or masochistic. I find the summer heat unbearable, especially this summer's; temperatures seem abnormally high. The heat strikes out anything that might make summer a worthwhile season, especially in Oklahoma with all the humidity. Being outside for just a few minutes, doing nothing more than standing, and suddenly you're likely to have perspiration stains under your arms and maybe on your back; beads of sweat gathering on your forehead and eventually masking your face and exposed skin in a sticky, salty layer.
Hair clings to your neck in wet clumps, while the flyaways on top frizz out. More than just uncomfortable and disgusting, it's just plain unsightly. For those who have stick straight hair, worst case scenario, the humidity might bring out a little bit of frizz. But for those with curls, Tulsa's summer humidity can wreak havoc.
This unfortunate summer ordeal can now be fixed permanently--for this summer and every season to come. Now, you can make your hair not only humidity-resistant, but stick-straight now and forever. One local hair stylist is now certified in a process called Japanese hair straightening, which promises all this and more.
Vickie Malone is a freelance hair stylist working from Cheveux Salon, 6670 S. Lewis, but her career began more than 18 years ago in Los Angeles. Trained under a stylist who was named cosmetologist of the year, Malone was participating in beauty shows and doing hair for advertising before she had even graduated beauty school. She eventually joined the Allen Edwards Salon (Edwards had been assistant to industry's well-known Vidal Sassoon) and began a freelance career that lead to doing hair and makeup on photo shoots, red carpet looks (twice for the Academy Awards) and even has film credits as the hair and makeup artist on a B-list movie that went to Sundance.
While the career in L.A. brought her close to stars, she needed to be close to family. As Malone said, with cosmetology you can go anywhere to work (all you have to do is apply for that state's cosmetology license). So when she decided to find a location close to her family in Coffeyville, KS, she wanted a fairly big city with warm weather. She chose Tulsa.
Having worked as a freelance stylist in Tulsa for a few years now, Malone added to her menu of services Japanese hair straightening. She had heard of the process and didn't think that anyone in Tulsa offered it, so she began to do her research online. She called salons in Miami, New York and Los Angeles so that she could find out more. With research complete, she enrolled in Milbon USA Studios in New York City (such a popular program that she was wait-listed) and became certified in the process earlier this year.
To hear Malone discuss the differences between Japanese hair straightening (named from where the process originated) and other alternatives, it's clear she's done her research.
The process, which works similar to a perm but with the opposite outcome, breaks down the S-patterns in the hair that gives it curl. Once broken down, the hair is rebuilt with straightening modules. The bio-glycolic base is ideal for hair from any ethnic background and healthier than other straightening processes. Malone said that relaxers, which contain lye and sulfur, can eventually cause hairline recession. Another alternative had been Brazilian hair straightening which used formaldehyde, which is the chemical used to preserve dead things. That process is now illegal in the country that founded it because, in addition to being harmful to the scalp and hair, it could cause damage to the lungs.
Additionally, these processes only promise straight hair, while the Japanese hair straightening process actually changes the texture of the hair by making it finer, glossier and smoother. And Malone said that, unlike using a flat iron day after day which can burn hair, the Japanese hair straightening process is much gentler.
Malone praises the benefits of the Japanese hair straightening but admits that it's not the ideal choice for everyone. First, depending on how much hair a person has, how long it is and how curly, the process can take anywhere from four to six hours; hair goes through multiple processes and can only be done a quarter at a time. The cost certainly makes it a more exclusive salon treatment, too.
Beyond the time and cost, Malone said that Japanese hair straightening is a commitment, much like getting extensions. The treatment is mainly for those whose hair is curly, wavy or frizzy and who spend significant amounts of time working on taming that texture of hair.
As such, Malone suggested coming in for a consultation to determine if the process is the right course of action for your hair. Again, the process works on any type of hair from any background and can include color-treated hair (however, hair that's gone through severe treatments like bleaching may be too processed for Japanese hair straightening). Like any treatment, virgin hair (hair that hasn't been colored or put through any other treatment before) is always ideal. Malone notes that Japanese hair straightening is not the choice for girls who are addicted to their flat iron, a popular addiction in the day and age of stick straight hair trends.
Keep a Clean Record
Never fear, though. Malone can determine if Japanese hair straightening is the appropriate course of action for your hair, but if it's not, the Keratin Complex Smoothing Therapy treatment, of which Malone is also certified to do, is option B. Though its effects are not as long lasting (roughly three to five months depending on your hair type), it does still provide the same outcome as Japanese hair straightening: smooth, sleek, straight hair that is humidity-proof.
For Japanese hair straightening, the end certainly justifies the means. Though costly, the process is permanent. Malone said clients need to only visit every six to eight months to treat re-growth (as opposed to when hair is colored and requires maintenance sometimes as soon as six weeks). Malone has found that some people enjoy keeping the new growth as is because it provides a little bit of volume at the scalp. Not only does the Japanese hair straightening process not require constant salon upkeep, but also managing the look at home is basic too. Malone said that while she does provide shampoos and conditioners created to work with hair that has been processed through Japanese hair straightening, it's just as effective to use a good shampoo, good conditioner and continue with regular trims. The only thing to be mindful of are the first 72 hours, when Malone said you can't do anything to your hair, including getting it wet, washing it, or wearing any kind of hair accessory, hat or glasses (anything that might crease the hair).
Malone said the response for Japanese hair straightening hasn't been as strong as in other cities; stylists from salons in New York and Miami that she spoke with while doing research were boasting of booking four to five clients a day. Those clients who've experienced the process in Tulsa love the outcome. One boasts that the Japanese hair straightening "changed my life. Now I don't have to plan an extra hour around my shower."
Contact Vickie Malone at 520-7624 to get a consultation and see if Japanese hair treatment is the best course of action for your hair. You can also find out more about her history and the process and outcome of Japanese hair straightening on her Web site www.vickiemalone.webs.com. It's the first step in getting manageable, silky smooth hair--and in the middle of the summer. If we could just do something about that heat...
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