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All words: Avalon Swindell Jones

All photos: Franz Mahr

Bumble and bumble. has made dreams come true in terms of fabulous and free styled-hair. It has created a new salon education program called Bumble and bumble. University Model Project. It’s purpose is to give stylists an opportunity to work with an actual person’s hair instead of a dummy’s. Dummies are a thing of the past according to the company, so ordinary people are given the chance to be the models for the stylists. Therefore, you pay nothing to feel like Kim K every single day of her life, especially if you get to hold a dog named Prada like I did.

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Three cities are launching the program, and Bethesda’s The Shop Salon was chosen to host the first wave of classes. I was lucky enough to participate. There are different classes you can sign up for, including coloring, styling, and cutting. Your hair has to be approved,  though. I was a little nervous that my hair wouldn’t qualify for the blowout because it needs to be cut desperately. Hair requirements included past shoulders but above mid-back, layers, and fine to medium texture.

Before the models arrived, the stylists learned the blow-dry, round-brush style from a Bumble and bumble. hair-god named James. His passion and knowledge for hair was unbelievable. The stylists loved him as much as he loved the words they used to describe all things hair. When they finished the lesson, the “live-models” were seated and assigned to a stylist, who assessed our hair. My hair assessment included that it’s deceiving because it’s softer and lighter than expected when just looking at it. This changed what products needed to be used.

FRM_Bumble and Bumble-12Throughout the session, my wonderful stylist Annette, who works at Alexandria’s Glynn Jones, and James gave me some amazing hair tips:

  • A new part can work wonders. A blowout consists of bounce and movement, and volume. My hair doesn’t lack volume, but I’m in a constant search for more of it. I told Annette this, and she immediately decided to part my hair on the opposite side. I was a little weary because even though I like the way it looks that way, it stays there for about a second, struggling to make its way back. The first thing Annette did was blow-dry my part up and over. This gave my hair a whole new type of volume. If you try this and don’t like it, you can easily return your hair to its natural part with still more volume than ever. I also loved the new part because I always want a hair change but love my length. This is a simple fix.

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  • Your fingers are your best styling tools. While Annette was working with my part, she only used her hands to push, pull, and smooth. People often rely too much on brushes, giving them less control. Annette’s magic hands would instantly mold my hair to her touch. For best results, use should use some product, like Bb. Styling Lotion.
  • The brush is behind it all. A wooden brush was used for the style, but Annette discussed how it’s much easier for her to work with a metal brush. It depends on your preference, but a metal brush grabs the hair more easily. You should also keep in mind that the thicker the hair, the bigger the brush.

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  • A good style comes down to how you use the right product for your hair. Besides an anti-frizz serum, I’ve never used much product in my hair. I throw my money at makeup, instead. Now I’ll have to start a hair product budget because they’re totally underrated. Annette started with Bb. Prep, which is pretty much just like a primer for your hair/dry shampoo. You can spray it on before your style or just after a long day to reactivate the products that are already in your hair. She also used the Bb. Thickening Spray on my ends since they are thinning out because of my serious need of a haircut. At the end, Annette sprayed Bb. Cityswept Finish; James told her to spray it in from below for more hold, movement, and volume.

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  • Work in sections. I’m guessing when you straighten or curl your hair, you separate your hair in two sections at most. That is NOT enough! If you want to master a fabulous style, you must devote some time to sectioning your hair. James’ tip was to use the width of a round-brush to measure out each section. You might also want to invest in some clips to hold your hair in place, so you can work with the other sections without being bothered. Hair claws will also help if you’re doing a style like I had because you can curl it up with your hands, clip it, and then let it cool, which is very important.

When I walked out of the salon and into an Herbal Essences commercial, I felt like everyone was staring at my beautiful hair, wondering how I got it so big and why it was parted on the opposite side. Meanwhile, I contemplated purchasing all Bumble and bumble. hair products and never washing my hair again. If Bb. University Model Project comes to a salon near you, I highly suggest attending, even if you have to get a bob to qualify.

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