Editor's Note: Dreaming in Color

By Alison Alhamed | 04/03/2014 2:35:00 PM


click image to zoomAlison AlhamedThis season, it's all about balayage and hand-painted lightener. Thanks to colorist Drew Noreen of Arizona's Pucci Salon for creating my lighter, brighter pieces. I’ll never forget the first color client I had while I was in beauty school. She wanted a full foil and I was terrified I would spend so long foiling the back that my processing time would be unbalanced by the time I reached the top—it took me nearly four hours to complete!

Over the years, traveling to industry events and participating in advanced education, I’ve learned of the creative versatility that lightener offers: all-over lighter, brighter finishes are achieved through balayage and color gradiation instead of a full head of foils.

There is something so empowering and creative about transforming a client’s hair color; with the stroke of a brush (okay, it’s harder than that), you can convert the way a client looks and feels, giving her the confidence she needs to stand tall.

That said, it can be all too easy to get stuck in a day-to-day routine: arriving at the salon, formulating the regular color retouch your client has requested for years, refreshing the same highlights—it has potential to get a little monotonous.

Though most clients think about hair color in terms of shades and simple patterns, your job is to consider the entire design and weigh color options against the existing cut and texture.

MODERN recently polled the industry’s top artists and leading color brands to hear about the colors and techniques they recognize as emerging trends. Here’s what we gathered: Balayage rules the day, while ombre evolves with subtle gradiations or more specifically placed splashes.

Monochromatic is the new power color, but adding natural-looking balayage highlights to lift the base for shine boosts the outcome, thanks to imperfect placement and service speed. And could splashlights be the next big thing? This edgy twist on the popular ombré hair color isn’t for every client—but it’s ultra-modern and, depending on color selection, a bit avant garde.


There’s an old saying, “I’m a beautician, not a magician.” Well, there have certainly been times I’ve seen a color brush turn into a magic wand.

Each day in your salon, you have the opportunity to transform the way a client looks and feels. And MODERN wants to see and share your talent. Although we can’t physically be in each of your salons, trust that we are watching the transformational before-and-afters you share with us on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook through our hashtag, #hairdressermagic.

As always, follow MODERN on social to get inspired and see what’s trending in the world of professional beauty.

Alison Shipley Alhamed

Editor in Chief






ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Alison Alhamed

Alison Alhamed, Editor in Chief of Modern Salon Magazine | Editor of First Chair

Since July 2008, Alison has worked across all brands under the MODERN SALON Media umbrella, including MODERN SALON, SALON TODAY, FIRST CHAIR and MODERN SALON TV. Alison’s passion for the beauty industry grew even deeper after she enrolled in beauty school, working as an editor by day and a student by night. Alison earned her cosmetology degree from Pivot Point International in Bloomingdale, Illinois, in May 2011.

You can find Alison on Google+ or e-mail her at aalhamed@vancepublishing.com.


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