Holiday parties are upon as and this is the time of year to celebrate! Many of us are looking for the latest trends in hairstyles to help us freshen our looks and get into the spirit of the season. Salons across the country have become Meccas for fashionable women (and men) who want their crowning glories to compliment their Chanel suits and LV accessories. Trends in hair design come and go, but the stylists that are sought after by celebrities, socialites and royalty across the globe are setting the trends, not following them.
Enter Mark Garrison. Testament to the magic he creates with scissors and brush, the 24-year veteran of the hair business who opened his own salon on Madison Avenue 4 years ago has caught the attention of some very famous clients. The hair-designer recently finished cutting and styling for the cast of Animal Husbandry a fall 2001 release starring Ashley Judd, Hugh Jackman, Greg Kinnear, and Marissa Tomei. After reading the script and getting acquainted with the film’s characters, Garrison then collaborates with the actors and creates the look that millions of off-screen fans will later emulate.
Garrison gave Ashley Judd a short, more tailored and layered look, fringed around the bottom edges with longer wispy bangs flowing down the cheekbones. “She was ready for a change – a mega change!” says Mark, and Ashley loved the results. “Ashley has amazing hair and a beautiful face – put the two together and you’ve got a gem,” he says.
Hugh Jackman, hot off the set of the summer 2000 hit, X-men, had long, bulky hair when he sat for his cut. Mark shed some weight and added more angles, giving the star a sexier, more carefree style. Greg Kinnear was given an angled and layered cut to better complement his face and a color wash to balance him out, while Marissa Tomei’s ‘do’ only called for a rebalancing of her existing layers.
This isn’t, of course, Mark’s first rendezvous with the celebrity set. He’s been flown to the Middle East and to Paris to work on Queen Ranier and King Adbullah of Jordan, and just the other day, Tim Allen sauntered into the salon. Mark still has a celebrity wish list, however. He’d love to work with Chloe Sevigny and Sarah Jessica Parker. “That’s my favorite kind of hair,” he says of the Sex and the City star’s gorgeous mane of natural curls. “I wish more women took advantage of their natural curly hair.”
The key for Garrison isn’t who’s in his chair, but how to make the hair work for the individual client, whether she’s an onscreen siren of a Wall Street wizard. According to Garrison, “You can take and recognize trends but as a hairdresser, you have to personalize everything toward the individual’s needs as well as be able to know what works for them.” Mark says he’s been getting calls about the ‘bob’ that made a comeback this year, but he doesn’t take the hype too seriously. He’s more interested in giving his clients something unique and easy to manage.
So how did the sought after stylist get his start in the hair cutting biz? He began as a child in North Carolina where he made a small business out of cutting the hair of neighborhood poodles. Mark grew up surrounded by pets and animals of all kinds and he’s still an “animal person” today. His three cats, Mac, Jack and Zack are happy homebodies in his New York apartment, but Tito, his three-year-old Chihuahua/Miniature Pinscher mix, makes his way to the salon on occasion. Mark doesn’t do doggie do’s anymore, but he does admit to cutting his pets’ nails all the time.
Clients who can wait for months to get near Mark’s scissors may be disturbed to learn that Tito and his feline friends are getting premier service from their favorite hair stylist on demand. But Mark would never put his pets last. “They help take my mind off to work and give me a purpose other than being self-absorbed,” Mark says of his furry friends. Clients who can make the same claim might get in to see Mark earlier as well.
The How’s Joe of Holiday Hair
– Holiday hair is full of waves made from pincurls set to give a style that’s sleek, close to the head, sexy and sophisticated. Catch a wave by the cheekbone, then swoop it up and secure with a gold clip. This style works great with a side part. Clip the heavier side for dramatic results. To avoid fly always and frizzies, work a bit of Philip B. Cream of the Crop Hair Finishing Cream through the hair.
– Try and updo by first setting hair on hot rollers or Velcro rollers for smoothness and body. With hair in rollers, apply Phyto Pro #10 hair spray to the roots for added volume. Remove rollers, brush from scalp to ends with a Mason Pearson nylon and natural bristle brush. Take 2 inch square sections and tease at the base to create volume where desired. Pull into on big section at crown, secure with an elastic. Split tail into 4 sections, backcomb a little, mold into a curl and pi at base. Repeat this step for the remaining 3 sections and create a curl cluster that’s cool. For softness pull out a piece or two for a not so fixed ‘do’.
– Face frame angling is a brilliant way to give lift and definition to the face that is being dragged down by the hair. Strategically sculpted layers that accentuate the cheekbones, play up the eyes, and flatter the neck are an awesome way to look hot. Layers on top give height to a round or square face. Bangs with a slight angle and that are a bit wispy work best on round or square face shapes. A style that moves back off the face tends to give the most lift to the features.
– A great cut will suit the face shape and the natural texture of the hair all at once. That means out of the water, air dried, and it looks great. (For dry and processed hair Philip B. Rejuvenating oil should be applied first to condition hair that would otherwise look like cotton candy.)
– Bobs should have some built-in softness to the bottom edge. Avoid blunt and bulky lines that can only look heavy. A degree of layering will put some sex appeal into any bob. Remember – the cut should be personalized to you, as in custom made. Otherwise it’s wearing you instead of you wearing it.
By Samantha Kaye Brown