Don’t judge a slap by it’s cover!

Multiple things can be true at the same time.

Is physical violence wrong? Yes
Is mocking a health condition wrong? Yes
Is disrespecting a woman of colour’s hair, in a society where women of colour’s hair has been politicized, fetishized, ridiculed and controlled for hundreds of years wrong? Yes

Now I will be completely honest with you, if Will Smith had not slapped Chris Rock at the Oscars, I would not have known it was Oscars time! But my ignorance does not change the fact that the Oscars is the most prestigious and coveted awards ceremony in the film industry and thus attracts all the top celebs. As a result: many many many of us are watching. So a distasteful joke like Chris Rock’s, and Will Smith’s emotional reaction, do not go unnoticed.
I wanted to write something about the event almost instantly after I learnt about it but felt like I should wait just a little bit.

After the event, I googled, instagramed, found memes, and what I briefly thought was funny, quickly was not. Because multiple things can be true and those same multiple things can also be not acceptable.
I was surprised how a lot of the online discourse about what happened focused solely on Will Smith’s slap and how it was magnified out of proportion. Some publication calling it a punch, and certain celeb interviews claiming it could have “killed Chris Rock”…(anyone who saw the clip knows that is utter rubbish)… But this exaggeration plays into the stereotype of “the dangerous black man” and the violence “he” always brings. And if this the the *only* thing you remember from the event, that is problematic.

The world was politely laughing at a woman who has lost her hair through illness… ridiculing someone on a world stage for something that is nothing to be ridiculed. We hear so much about the importance of representation on TV, in films etc.. How was it considered OK for even a second to mock someone who could have been even the slightest bit inspirational for anyone with alopecia, cancer, an auto immune disease, or any other cause of hair loss… Alopecia UK stated “In a world where it’s unacceptable to make jokes about someone’s race, sexuality or disability, we believe the same should apply to jokes about visible difference. Such remarks or jokes should be called out as unacceptable or inappropriate.”

Time again, Afro hair and it’s heritage hairstyles have been white washed in pop culture. Only acceptable on the main stage when sported by Caucasian individuals and called unprofessional when worn by individuals who actually have Afro hair… hair discrimination to the point of fetishization. As a result afro hair has been politicized, fetishized, ridiculed and appropriated too many times for a joke of the likes of Chris Rock to be harmless.

So if all you were talking about after the slap, was the slap… the was the wrong conversation to be having.

xxxDFG
www.dirtyfrenchgirl.com

2022 Grammy Awards-Best Coiffed

Now to be honest, cinema/music awards ceremonies are not really my thing. I do love googling everyone’s outfits and hairdos afterwards though!So here are my favorites from this year’s Grammys!

I really loved Chloe Bailey’s simple braided up do, the attention to detail when styling those baby hairs just makes the look for me! Simple and stylish, it perfected her sequin dress look.
Paris Hilton was channeling her inner queen Barbie with her High and Thick pony tail! Paired with her simple makeup and glossy lip, she was slaying the Grammys!

And of course Lady Gaga! The queen of all queens! Givng us retro 20s vibes, whilst still keeping it modern and relevant, I never get tired of seeing how she presents herself anywhere, anytime! With the classic cat eye makeup and her uniquely stylish dress, she was probably my favourite look of the whole event!

H.E.R was keeping it simple: with long luscious locks of serious Va Va Voom Volume! With her banging little round glasses, she was giving us 70s vibes, that was getting me all kinds of ready for summer!

Not actually hair, but Halsey was stunning with her art Deco hat! No Need to worry about your hair falling out of place when you have something as stylish as that adorning your noggin.

And finally Japanese Breakfast’s Michelle Zauner was the most playful of the decadent looks of the evening, with her yellow Everything and her adorable space buns! don’t you just love it when celebs don’t take it too seriously and have a bit of fun wit their fashion? I know it inspires me to be a bit crazy too!

How about you guys? Did you have any faves?

Have a great day

xxxDFG
www.dirtyfrenchgirl.com

PS: see pictures HERE

New Hair – New YOU

We have all heard the expression “new hair new you/me”. But is it just an expression? Is there a grain of truth to the idea that a drastically new look can allow us to become someone new, or more likely, a different facet of who we are? A part of our personality we were not shining a light on before, that we have decided we want to bring forward?
Whether we are starting a new job and want to look like the biz, moved town and wish to re-invent ourselves, dealing with a break-up and re-discovering what it means to be single, or simply wanting a change: “new hair new you” has some interesting psychology behind it I wanted to explore a little.

Hair is super important to our general sense of attractiveness, and as much as we know our beauty comes from within, we also need to like what we see on the outside for ourselves to feel good and confident. That is very hard to do if one of the main features, the first things you see in the mirror in the morning, doesn’t reflect what you want it to about yourself. It is a great way to express oneself and communicate our identity to the world, as a result the hair we decide to rock will help us build our professional and personal lives.

A lot of the situations I mentioned above (and many others in which we would imagine a total hair make over) involve slightly unknown, new circumstances. Changing your hair, is a way to regain control over this emotionally wobbly situation. Emotionally wobbly is not a negative thing necessarily, for example starting a new job is usually a positive, but it feels nice and safe to feel like you are in control, that you control how your new co-workers are going to see you from day one.
It is empowering to make changes especially when you feel like other aspects of your life may be out of control (hence why many of us choose to change our hair after a break up!)

So, to keep it short and sweet, I think the expression “new hair, new you” is very accurate. I know I have always drastically changed my hair whenever anything big has happened, either as a celebration or to get over something, but as I evolve I like my hair to evolve with me!
So if you are feeling the need for a change, don’t hesitate to pop into the salon and say Hi!

Have a great day
xxxDFG

www.dirtyfrenchgirl.com

Anne Veck’s 2022 hair trend forecast!

Anne Veck Hair Salon Oxford

We all know there are some timeless classics, like the short Parisian bob, and beach waves highlighted hair…. but for some other styles, it is more cyclical, and they may not go out of fashion, but need an update every once and a while.
So, here are some of Anne’s best predictions for 2022.

-The Modern Mullet. Every 10 to 15 years this cut resurfaces but is always met with resistance. However, this season, it seems this is not so. This cycle, the mullet is combined with the modern shag, creating a much more versatile cut. Channeling hippie vibes, in a sexy textured look, it is a great hair cut for those of you that like low maintenance hair, and strive for that effortless bed head look.

-The Rachel… who has not had the Rachel cut (from Friends) at least once? Well it is back (again…lol) but it is just a little bit longer this time around. Maybe it is the unintended after effect of lockdown and not having access to your hair stylist, but we have noticed an increase in clients requesting the iconic style, but keeping it longer, sort of like a mix between Brigitte Bardot and Rachel.

-Curl Ready Cuts. There has been a big trend over the past 15 or so years for those of us with curly hair to always try and straighten, smooth and hide those luscious locks of voluminous curly hair. Well 2022 is THE year the curl ready cuts really hit their stride. Were giving 2022 the 70s treatment, a rock n roll finish embracing those natural curls, and giving you the hair cuts to go with 🙂

Hop you enjoyed Anne’s little 2022 forecast.
Have a great day!

xxxDFG
www.dirtyfrenchgirl.com

Benefits of having Hair Extensions!

Hair Extensions Oxford

Hello Gals and Guys!
Today we talk hair extensions and all the fab things that can be done with them! Anne Veck Oxford is one of the only salons in Oxfordshire to offer high quality and ethical hair extensions–> we are the regions exclusive supplier of Gold Class hair extensions and we also offer Balmain and Lox Box! We do gentle heat fused bonds, tape extensions, clips in…. But enough of this (not so) humble brag, let me tell you why extensions really are somewhat magical!

1.Instant Hair Change! With no damage! Want that extra length and vavavoom thickness? Clip in some of our awesome Lox Box extensions and feel transformed… Until you want something else, and then change to that too! You can also indulge your inner child and get some crazy colour extensions, but not worry about damaging your own hair with bleach and colour!

2.Splits ends no more! Well, sort of… this isn’t technically true because split ends do not just disappear when adding hair extensions. However, I did say hair extensions were somewhat magical: so what extensions do help with is hiding those nasty split ends. Abracadabra, suddenly your hair looks and feels so much healthier when you hide those split ends under gorgeous, soft hair extensions. Even more so when using our Gold Class, ethically sourced and hand picked, hair extensions! Win-win!

3.Extensions are not just used for length! They can also be used for thickness. So if you have always craved this hair but sadly have not got that Disney princess swish, fret not, because air extensions are a great way to get that vavavoom volume you so crave. And the great thing about taped extensions, is the hair can be reused and if taken care of well, the tape re-adjusted after a month of growth… gorgeous and sustainable…!

Have I convinced you yet? If not, feel free to ask your in salon stylist any other questions you might have, and you will see, hair extensions are fab! Or ofcourse call us on 01865 727077 to book a consultation – £25 but reimburesed if you go ahead with any service.

xxxDFG
www.dirtyfrenchgirl.com

Black Hair Matters! And what is “Blackfishing”?

DFG asked Anne about her approach to working with all types of hair and about “Blackfishing”.

“I generally use the term Afro hair but also very curly and textured when it seems appropriate. There are 3 distinct hair categories based on people’s heritage: Caucasian, Asian and African. The term textured hair is generic. I can put texture in my hair while I’m cutting or styling it, it doesn’t mean I have extremely curly hair.

Of course there is the Afro hair style and Afro hair meaning a hair type. Most people who can grow an Afro have African heritage and Afro type hair! Hair is primarily composed of keratin, a protein, which grows from the follicle. Keratins, and other proteins, are formulated in the cells of the hair follicle. All of the proteins become a part of the hair shaft and contain sulphur atoms. When two sulphur atoms pair up and bond, they form a disulfide bond. If the two sulphur atoms in the same protein are at a distance, and join to form the disulfide bond, the protein will bend. This is how curls are created.

Everybody is born with specific hair textures and it may change over your lifetime. The amount of curl, wave, or straightness is dependent on the number of disulfide bonds between hair proteins found in the hair shaft; the greater the number of links, the curlier the hair, and the fewer the number of links, the straighter the hair.

Getting even more technical, we have hair types 1,2,3 &4. Each contains subdivisions A,B,C. Types 4 B & C include very curly hair, including Afro but people of different ethnic heritage can have these hair types. This is very simplified explanation.

Of course, it’s all a bit more complex than this, the chances are you will find more than 1 type of curl pattern on one head of hair. We should all try to just focus on the most predominant pattern. Maybe we should try not to focus too much on ambiguous terms and call it all hair! I’ll continue to use the term Afro most of the time because it makes sense to most people and is accepted and used by my clients. In her book ‘Good Hair’, Charlotte Mensah uses the term Afro hair throughout. If it is good enough for her, it is good enough for me!”

So what do you think about “Blackfishing”?
“Cultural appropriation is when a tradition, such as clothing or a hairstyle, is taken from a culture and used in a different way. It can offend people when people do this without making it clear where the traditions come from, or when they don’t acknowledge how important they are to certain cultures. This can make some people feel as if their culture is not being respected.

“Blackfishing” is an example of this, for example when white people use artificial tanning, make-up or hair styles in order to appear to have African, Arab or Hispanic ancestry or to appear mixed race. Recently quite a few celebs have been accused of it.

Afro hairstyles can be created on wigs or hair extensions pieces that are not really textured or Afro. This means there is still a HUGE gap in the hair industry’s professionals’ knowledge on how to work with textured hair. Even in Hollywood (interesting example here, ‘Euphoria’ star says it ‘feels dehumanizing’ when stylists on set ‘don’t understand Black hair’), so I strongly believe that more needs to be done.
Because Black Lives Matter and so Black Hair Matters, here at Anne Veck Oxford we strongly believe textured hair is not an “exotic” speciality and all our stylist are trained or currently in training to know how to style, cut, colours and treat textured, Afro hair. We welcome clients with all hair types!”

xxxDFG
www.dirtyfrenchgirl.com

What happened when I shaved my head!

I have had almost every hair style and colour under the sun!
Long Shakira waves, perm, Amelie Poulin bob, pixie cut, V shaped fringe, blue, red, Leeloo orange, crimped, mohawk… the list goes on! But one style I had always craved but never dared give a go was shaving my head (I don’t mean shaved smooth like a baby’s bottom, but leave about 1cm of hair all over…). I was scared… what if it did not suit me, what if I felt exposed, what if my skull is shaped weird, what if (and this was my biggest and maybe dumbest fear) I don’t look feminine anymore.

But, come November 2021, with all this covid rubbish, I thought life is too short for what if’s, it will grow back, and if I really hate it I have many many (many!) hats and I can get some fun wigs!

This is what happened:
I loved it and all of my fears were wrong!

My neck now appears longer, and my head slimmer (everyone keeps on asking if I lost weight… I really did not see this one coming). Not going to lie, it makes me feel super elegant! And I LOVE wearing big earrings, and knowing that everyone can actually always see my fabulous bling (sort of like extra boojie hair).

I can play with colours and there is very little risk! Every month/month and a half I go back for a shave and a bleach and a pink toner. In month time, my pink will fade, so I can re apply a pink, or try a yellow, or a green… or whatever I want! If I don’t like it it fades, or I am back in the salon and they sort it for me! It is a lot of fun with basically no risk!!!

I am spending a lot less on shampoo and conditioner, so I can splurge on more expensive products in the salon!!! I mean this one is pretty obvious! A lot less hair, so I use a lot less to wash it. Just means I can now always get the fab Davines products I had my eyes on but could not always consistently afford!

I do a lot of exercise… and it is just so practical. If you love to work out or be active in anyway, its really revolutionary not to have to think about your hair anymore !

And my biggest fear… was my biggest surprise. I was worried I would not be feminine or like what I saw in the mirror. I have never felt more elegant and feminine in my whole life! Like the song “I am woman” by Emmy Meli, being a woman is really whatever you make of it, and whatever you want, which I guess I had sort of lost sight of!

So, any of you think you might give it a go? One word of advice, maybe wait until spring, I shaved my head in November and did not anticipate how cold my ears would be !!!

Have a great day. Oh and schedule that appointment at Anne Veck Oxford now!

xxxDFG
www.dirtyfrenchgirl.com

Winter and how to save your hair from it!

Brrr… the cold… it does not do wonders for our lovely locks!
With the lowering temperatures comes less humidity, hair damage caused by scarves and coat static and heating which harms our hair by sucking the moisture out and can cause it to break!

So what can we do to avoid looking like a dried out hay stack for New Year- other than tying our hair into contained pony tails and buns for the entire season (which works wonders, but leaves or ears exposed to the cold and it is nice to be able to treat ourselves to more than one hair style per couple of months!)

With less humidity in the air, our scalp produces less oil! But do not worry Anne Veck and Davines have this sorted! Davines has a range of awesome hair masks to choose from, to keep your hair moisturized and shiny throughout the winter months. You can have a look at our online shop HERE, or email us at oxford@anneveckhair.com with any questions, but also do not hesitate to stop in salon to ask us questions in person.

Another thing to bear in mind, which I think we ALL forget, is that if we are producing less oil, we do not need to wash our hair as often! But many of us (me included) wash our hair out of habit rather than need, so on top of the dryness caused by the cold, we are drying out our hair and scalp by washing it too often! Anne recommends maybe waiting an extra day before shampooing your hair in winter, and using the Davines MOMO Shampoo, specifically designed to give our hair that extra moisture.

I hope this helps you keep your hair safe!

xxxDFG
www.dirtyfrenchgirl.com

Christmas Crops of 2021!

Christmas is upon us and so are the festivities that come with!
SO what hair are you going to wear this year round?
Here at Anne Veck Oxford, we have a few ideas as to what might look as banging as your Christmas crackers!!! So what ideas do the hair salon stockings have for us this year?

1. Vintage hair! It is not only the classic retro vintage Christmas songs that we love this time of year, vintage hair styles… well they simply never go out of style! 20s bobs, short fringes, and finger waves styles are always a winner this time of year!

2.Easy waves! If your more of a low key, comfy knitted clothes and hot chocolate kind Christmas gal or guy, this is the look for you! Gorgeous, easy to do in salon (or at home afterwards, we will tell you how 😉 wavey curls will make you look like you are straight out of a Disney Christmas special!

3. The French twist! Christmas is for sharing, so lets get our hand on some of that effortless French style! Great if you’re hosting, look fabulous, and keep your har out of the way! What more could you want!?

4.Hair accessories!!!! Hair ribbons, hair chains, hair anything! Anything that gives your lock that extra sparkle and bling is obviously going to look perfect for the festive season! So do not be afraid to pimp your hair out with whatever you think looks cool and make you feel fantastic!

So, which look do you think you’ll go for? we can’t wait to find out!

Bizous xxx

Chloe Mellen
www.dirtyfrenchgirl.com

COP 26: hair and beauty takes action to save the planet!

COP26: what are hair salons doing to cut CO2 emissions, reduce waste and save nature?

The Glasgow Climate Pact was finally signed on Saturday evening 13th November. COP26 President Alok Sharma described the closing of the summit as a “fragile win” and he was reduced to tears after a last-minute intervention from India and China weakened the effort to end the use of coal power. Fossil fuel really was a big sticking point. It is generally agreed that the pledges on emission cuts fell short on what is required to limited global heating to 1.5 degrees, although this target is still possible. Climate finance was left with much unresolved and developing countries left the summit without the funds they will need to manage the effects of climate change or to move to cleaner energy. The day 1 agreement on stopping deforestation looked good until some countries rowed back on their commitments as early as day 2!

On a positive note, most commentators agree that ,despite shortcomings, COP26 is a major step forward.

What is also very clear is that saving the planet can not be left to governments alone. Both the public and business will need to play a massive part in the programme of change that is required to prevent the climate and nature crisis we all face.

So how can hair salons play their part? Can our industry make a significant contribution? UK hair salons and barber shops emit more CO2 than many small countries and that is not counting the CO2 emissions from our salons’ supply chain – in other words the large and small manufacturers who sell us products. And all the other businesses who depend on salons. So we most definitely can make a difference.

Each and every salon can play its part. The no brainer action is switch to green energy and do it now. Other obvious actions include reduce chemical waste, reduce use of paper and card in stationery and packaging and reduce single use plastic in the salon to zero. Use the train for business travel, don’t take internal UK flights! Examine the sustainable credentials of your product supplier ( and others too, from loo paper to coffee to towels) and change them if necessary! If a brand is part of the problem then don’t do business with them. So many brands in our industry are making real changes to be sustainable and ethical. They deserve our business.

What is the British Beauty Council doing?

The British Beauty Council Sustainable Beauty Coalition have published two ground breaking reports on beauty and sustainability and greenwashing respectively. “The Courage to Change” and “The Planet Positive Beauty Guide”. These are must reads and you can find links to them here

Salons and nature!

It is sometimes overlooked that reducing the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere sufficiently to restrict climate heating to 1.5 degrees more than pre-industrial levels, will be impossible without nature. The oceans, forests, peat bogs and other habitats are what absorb and retain all the CO2 we emit! Whilst salons don’t often have gardens and roofs that can be looked after with nature in mind (wildlife gardening, green roofs, etc), we can make a positive impact. The best plan is to simply be more sustainable- reduce energy and CO2 , reduce packaging both plastic and paper/card, reduce chemical waste, buy products from sustainable suppliers, etc – and help save forests, oceans and the nature that lives there. Living forests and seas full of wildlife absorb more CO2 than “dead” seas (eg Pacific gyre) and “dead” plantations of the wrong trees in the wrong place.
And of course, support your local wildlife trust with donations and sponsorship and by organising team building days with your team. The Conservation Volunteers can also help with this.

Salon Re:Source get it here! Simple, step by step actions all salon owners can take, starting today. It’s easy! Well some of it is!

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