Sam Villa Lets the â€œBuzzâ€ Drown Out the â€œLittle Voiceâ€
Iâ€™m frequently asked, â€œWhatâ€™s the buzz?â€ For me, hair follows fashion. All year Iâ€™ve been talking about the collision of fabrics and silhouettes that sees, for example, a billowy chiffon skirt topped with a black cropped leather jacket. Metallics are the latest to enter into the mix, so a sexy, skintight bustier dress might be paired with a prim and proper cardigan sweater.
This trend is reflected in hair through multitextured finishingâ€”a sleek ponytail that goes into an explosion of frizz, or an â€œundoneâ€ look created by crimping underneath and curling over it. Volume has been moving all over the head! It was on top at the diagonal, the way Amy Winehouse wears it, and then low to the nape. Now weâ€™re seeing volume move back up to the crown.
Another trend is toward blunt, solid lines. Hairdressers ask, â€œWhatâ€™s the strongest angle youâ€™re cutting right now?â€ The best way to explain it is â€œshort to long.â€ When I layer the hair and let go, the hair goes from short to long but produces gentle edges, while disconnectionâ€”the strongest element in design todayâ€”creates this seasonâ€™s looseness. Fringes this summer are wide, blunt and heavyâ€”or they can look chewed.
Weâ€™re seeing braids in various lengths and degrees of thickness made popular by TV shows like The Hills. You can braid just one side of the head, or you can take a braid from ear to ear so it has a headband effect. If thereâ€™s one shape thatâ€™s most popular, Iâ€™d say itâ€™s the rounded braid.
So thatâ€™s the buzz, and lately Iâ€™ve been thinking how difficult it can be to hear it over what my favorite coach and motivator, Blair Singer, calls your â€œlittle voice.â€ I notice that other guests on this blog are talking about this, too: Eva Scrivo talks about facing your fears and Wendy Watkins encourages you to redirect negative thoughts. Fear, negativity and questioning yourself are all little voices that keep you from reaching the next level as a professional.
In the beginning of my career behind the chair, my little voice was saying, â€œWill she like the cut? Does she like me?â€ I wish I could have managed my little voice better. Thatâ€™s why I warn young hairdressers about their own little voice. I try to get them to turn it around and discover the hero within themselves. I donâ€™t want the stylists who take my classes to be unable to learn because in their heads theyâ€™re hearing, â€œIt looks so easy until I try it,â€ or, â€œThatâ€™s not the way I like to do things.â€
You canâ€™t eliminate the voice, so donâ€™t every try. Itâ€™s not always a bad thing; sometimes it serves you well. But you do have to learn to manage it. Recognize that it exists and listen objectively. Often youâ€™ll realize that thereâ€™s a battle going on inside your head. It can be your confidence fighting your insecurity or your ego justifying poor behavior. If necessary, detach yourself and tell that little voice to shut up! Assess where the voice comes from and what triggers any damaging conversation. Your voice is the combination of the experiences youâ€™ve had in your life, and once you identify those experiences, you can begin to reprogram the message.
Clients can be intimidating enough at times. You donâ€™t need your little voice making it worse! Besides, you want to be able to hear the creative voice that often canâ€™t get a word in edgewise!
Sam Villa has more than 25 years experience as a platform artist and educator for major salon professional companies. Part of the Redken family for the past 11 years, Sam is Redkenâ€™s Education Artistic Director and Design & Training Consultant and appears on redken.com as a spokesperson for consumer consultations. He is in constant demand at international and domestic trade shows and in-salon programs, where his progressive teaching approach enables stylists to absorb new techniques quickly and for practical use in the salon. In 2008, Sam launched his website, www.samvilla.com, along with his own brand of digital media education and styling tools for salon professionals.