Sunday, 17 July 2011

Richard Ward - Couture Hair

My hair is the bane of my life – thin, dull, frizzy and weak. I fell out of the bad hair tree and hit every branch on the way down, then was dragged through the hedge backwards for good measure. So when QVC invited me to attend an evening at Richard Ward’s Chelsea hair salon to check out his new hair care range and learn how to master the perfect blow dry, I was there like a shot.

Arriving just in time, I found that calling the salon just a hair salon was an understatement. It seems to have it all including a fully licensed bar, retail shop, spa treatments and a host of concierge services.

First stop the bar then down to business as Richard went through his new range ‘Couture Hair’ which was launched in Dec 2010.

This range is aimed to make hair product selection easier. Rather than having to use a cocktail of products on your hair: one for volume, one for anti frizz, one for shine etc; Richard wanted to create a smaller range with all the products multi tasking. So all his products include:

Aquarich – a moisturising compound to counteract frizz and increase shine
Anti-fade colour lock technology as most of us colour our hair
Humidity defence technology (styling products only)
Heat and UV protection (styling products only)

Before you use any of his products he says the first step is to know your hair type. And by this he means your hair texture i.e. the thickness of each individual hair strand and not the actual density i.e. how much hair you have. So take a few strands of hair and slide your fingers through. Does it feel like silk thread or cotton thread?

If it feels like silk thread then your hair is normal to fine and you should go for Richard’s VoluMoist range including the Clay Mineral Masque.

If it feels like cotton thread you hair is normal to coarse and you should go for Richard’s HydraSlim range including the Silk Protein Masque.

Richard then demonstrated how to achieve the perfect blow dry, and his 12 steps are as follows:
1. Work on hair that is 70% wet, so just towel dry your hair but don’t rough dry it.
2. Use a high wattage professional dryer with a nozzle to control air and heat direction
3. Comb through with a medium toothed comb made of carbon or hard rubber with rounded teeth.
4. Always comb from ends towards roots not the other way round.
5. Use a radial brush with real bristles when blow drying and after the initial comb through.
6. Holding your dryer underneath the hair section creates movement whilst positioning it above the section will create sleekness.
7. Point the nozzle downwards to flatten the cuticle and encourage shine.
8. Position the nozzle at least 15cm away from your hair, too close will result in heat damage.
9. When moving the dryer sown the hair shaft for a sleek look, position the nozzle behind the brush (but still at least 15cm away)
10. Section properly. Split hair in to 4 areas. Always start at the bottom of each section working up towards the front.
11. Use a cool shot on your dryer function to fix each section before removing brush or leave brush in to cool off before removing.
12. Never brush wet hair, always use a wide toothed comb after washing.

Armed with this new information, we partnered up to attempt the perfect blow dry on each other’s hair. Thankfully, we were under very close supervision and left with very swishy hair.

The next day I was in a conundrum - should I wash my hair or leave it? My hair was still swishy but needed washing-  would I get the same results?

I decided to wash it. As soon as I used the VoluMoist shampoo, my hair felt silky so Big Plus there. The conditioner also felt smooth and silky as a conditioner ought. Now on to the perfect blow dry! As in the 12 steps I sectioned my hair and then spritzed the Volume Root Booster on to my roots and mid hair sections. It felt light and wasn’t at all sticky.

Now the tricky part, using a Richard Ward radial brush I attempted to blow dry my hair.

Result?  OK practice makes perfect so I still have a long way to go but it was definitely an improvement.

Richard Ward’s Couture Hair is available on

By Karen Grace
Personal Shopper & Image Consultant for Frumpy to Funky

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