Expert Advice

My Favorite Blonde

Web Editor | July 10, 2011 | 6:23 PM

My Favorite Blonde

Jerry and Karen Gordon of J. Gordon Designs in Chicago love double-processed blonde, which allows incredible texture. It takes a theatrical attitude to pair it with super-short hair, says Jerry, but the girls at his nearby high school love it. Here, the duo dishes on using old-school tools for an of-the-moment muse—their receptionist/model.

Q: How did you take your natural Level-6 model to pure platinum safely?

Karen: I used Wella Blondor lightening powder and 30-volume developer for half an hour, lightening to pale yellow. Avoiding 40-volume maintains the hair’s integrity. It’s toned with Shades EQ, three-quarters of an ounce of 9NB and one-quarter ounce 9V with dedicated developer.

Q: What’s the secret to the textured cut?

Jerry: I learned years ago from Gene Shacove, the guy the movie Shampoo was based on, how to cut by feel. Hair that’s this short has to be cut dry or it gets too chunky. Double-processing makes the hair very pliable. Since the cut was already short, I dried it into position first. Working with the head shape, I cut from the bottom up with an old-school 44/20 thinning shear. That’s what creates all the texture. I just kept working it with my fingers, cropping the back close to the head and leaving the top longer. It’s about an inch-and-a-half long on top with the longest part—two inches—right in front.

Q: Any tips for getting the Poindexter style?

Jerry: Use a vent brush and wide-toothed comb. If you want to photograph your work, you have to do most the styling before you add product. Otherwise, if something goes wrong, you’re done for. Then, I add a little hair gel and finish with a little pomade.

Q: What was your inspiration?

Karen: I’ve loved short, very blonde hair for a long time; it’s very glamorous. Now, it’s the biggest hit worldwide because of Agyness Deyn.


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