Paul Labrecque has written a special article on holiday party hairstyles for our readers. He is considered one of the most creative stylists and colorists in New York City. Year after year, New York Magazine and Time Out NY have named Paul Labrecque Salon & Spa in their widely read “Best of Beauty” issues. Read on for his expertise on current hairstyle trends that will take you glamorously through the party season.
It’s time to party ladies, that’s why I love the holidays. It’s a time for me to break out my irons, prepare my pin box, brush out the falls and hairpieces, and build up a girls glamour. If I’m lucky I will be invited to a party or two myself. Here are the party hairstyles I typically do for my clients during the holidays.
My new best friend is my Wave iron by GHD. It doesn’t open or close, hair just wraps around it. I can do tighter waves or looser 1940s-style waves, making my girls look extra special. The wave iron makes it easy to do at home and guess what is really cool? They give you a glove for heat protection so you don’t burn your hand! I use a soft hairspray on dry hair before wrapping the hair around the iron.
Girls flock to me on the holidays when the party is the height of sophistication. By using large pin-curls and duck nose clips, I can magically transform hair from straight to elegant in minutes. You can do this too if your hair is shoulder length or longer. Using your wrap iron, start in the front and wrap small sections around, slip off the iron and adhere the pin curl at the root, spray with soft hold spray and continue. On the sides, wrap forward and hair will push back, wrap backward and hair will push forward, the opposite direction forces the root to push the opposite way. Finger brush using duck clips to hold the hair waves in place. Spray and remove clips, The look is magical.
This is a really fun thing to do for holiday party hairstyles. Let’s say you start the day with a really pretty blow out. At the end of the day, use a small pony band and group just the tips of the hair. Then, take a piece of fishing string that is clear and loop it into the band, flipping your hair under. I tie it on top of the hair like a headband, snipping off the bow. Voila! It looks like a soft up-do or shorter bob ready for the party floor!
I do a lot of braids for the holidays, specifically your common French braids. I make them different by loosening the braid with my fingers, working from the bottom to the top so the hair blouses into height. Try using a strong hold spray at the top of the roots and your braid will have a romantic period look. This is always a winner for a party.
This second braid is popular on long hair. By holding hair away from the head and doing a 3-strand braid, the braid will cascade loosely, creating a veil like silhouette that will last all night long.
All a braid needs are 3 strands passing the left and then the right to the center, alternating side-to-side with each section. The secret is with every new section add more hair, and hold your hands in the air not close to the head. The result is easy, doable and fashion forward.
Sometimes I just like to give a girl a simple twist and they reek of elegance.
I find a lot of clients request party hairstyles that are a half up half down look. To do this, I sweep the top in a loose pony and then turn the pony inside out. It hides the band and gives the illusion that I did something uber complicated, but really its not at all.
If your face is beautiful but slightly rounder, make a top knot, it is a holiday masterpiece. To accomplish this look, sweep a pony to the top of the head, secure with a band and tie it into a knot securing the base with bobby pins. Here is my trick – never open a bobby pin – they don’t hide well when you do. Instead, go in straight with the long side of the pin when you touch scalp twist it to the side and push in. This allows for plenty of pins to push in and a security that will last all night long for holiday party hair that is model chic.
You can do this too. Make a nape pony tight to your head as low as you can put it. Then, with a much smaller band, secure the ends of the hair. We make a chignon by flipping the bottom band under and adhering it to the top band with bobby pins.
When you do invite me to the ball, get me early before I sip one too many glasses of bubbly and perhaps I can help get your hair in place. This looks complicated, but I make the back by cris-crossing hair over a hair pad. I make the hair pad myself by razoring synthetic hair into a hairnet. The color match needs to be close, but not perfect. Then, I cross the hair over the pad and adhere with a few fancy pins, then this girl has her party hair ready for the holiday.
I hope your Christmas and New Year is amazing, and if it’s another holiday you celebrate, that’s swell too. To me, it’s the beauty of the season – people are friendlier, moods are cheerier, and cares…well, hopefully they get put on hold just for a little while.
From all of us proud contributors at Prime Women, we thank you for reading and wish to all of you the beauty of the season.