In the final installment of Laurel’s wedding updo competition, we took a trip to downtown Chicago’s Prink, where co-owner Rachel Glenn showed us her big, bold, beautiful updo that took our breath away.
Rachel had quite the vision for Laurel’s updo, and even did a trial updo on a mannequin head the night before to prepare herself for what she envisioned.
To begin, she made three synthetic hair pieces, one large, one medium and one small. “I took crazy synthetic hair to use as a filler and stuffed it inside hair nets. I’ll eventually take three hair wefts and smooth it over these pieces, and then cover it with Laurel’s natural hair.”
Many stylists ask clients to enter the salon on the day of their updo with second-day hair—but not Rachel. She askes clients to come in with clean, dry hair. “Second-day hair has a lot of product or natural oils in it, which makes hair repel the hairspray,” she says. “Nowadays, there’s amazing products available that give you so much more control over clean hair.” Rachel uses L’oreal Professional’s Infinium 2 Regular Hold Working Spray because it is similar to traditional hairspray, but without a lot of hold; it makes the hair workable.
To make Laurel’s hair ready for the magic Rachel was going to work required a lot of prep work.
Prepare hair with styling foam. “Logics’ Body Frame Shaping Mousse doesn’t leave hair stiff, but it adds shine and is going to help me polish her hair and prep it for the updo.” Next, separate hair into sections and blow out smooth. “I don’t want to make it stick-straight because then the hair will be lazy. But smoothing it will make it shiny and workable.” Polish hair all over with hairspray. Beginning at the top of head, use a curling wand to set hair in large curls to make it more pliable, secure with a pin. Continue until all hair is in curls. Spray head with Infinum 2, let it set, and then remove all the pins. “It seems like an awful lot of work to just remove all the curls and take it down and mess it up, but the texture you’re left with it totally worth it,” Rachel says.
1. Beginning at the top, section hair into three sections, one at the top, two at the rear of the head, ending with a V-shaped section in the back. Leave out the hair at the hairline.
2. Return to front section—diagonally split the section in half. Take the back subsection and put it into a ponytail, securing with bobby pins. “Leave the subsection closest to forehead out of a ponytail for detailing at the hairline later.”
3. Return to sections at the back of the head. Split each section diagonally, as with step #1, take the top section and secure it into a ponytail. Leave out the bottom half of section at the hairline for detailing later in the steps. Repeat this process on the last section.
4. Take the first hair piece, the largest of the three, and place at the crown. Secure with pins.
5. Take medium-sized hair piece and secure around one of the ponytails in the back in a crescent-moon shape. Next, take the smaller-sized hair piece and secure it around the last ponytail in a crescent-moon shape.
6. Sew hair weft onto the hair piece. “Sometimes, using too make bobby pins can get so bulky that when you’re shoving in one pin after another, it starts taking up space. Sewing the wefts into place on top of the hair pieces gives you the same hold without taking up space." Repeat sewing the wefts over each net.
7. Smooth hair at the nape, and bring up hairs from the hairline. Secure between back hair pieces.
8. Smooth the natural hair from side ponytail and bring it over the front weft. Secure with pins.
9. Braid a piece of hair from the front section with a two-strand twist braid—it will end up looking like a chord/rope.
10. Take sides, pull up and secure to the weft.
11. Take remaining hair ends from ponytails, create detailing in the back with a swirl shape.
12. Take the braid, wrap it through for detailing, spray to secure. Take synthetic braids, wrap it through the updo for detailing, spray to secure. Take braided hair wefts and weave around, adding detail to the updo.
13. For the bangs, tease at the hairline and smooth, then use finishing spray and the back of a comb to smooth flyaways.
Finished Looks below:
Rachel Glenn and Laurel.
Wedding Updo #1, Ruby Room
Wedding Updo #2, Salon Coccole
Wedding Updo #3, Salon 1800
Wedding Updo #4, Avalon Salon
Wedding Updo #5, Michael Anthony Salons
Wedding Updo #6, Prink Salon