The Guy Grooming Gift Guide

Whether you know a guy who would never wash his hair if he didn’t have to (or yikes! maybe he doesn’t!), a guy who wouldn’t know the difference between using hand soap and the most luxurious shampoo that has gold flecks in it, or a guy who uses that luxurious shampoo with gold flecks…he could use a little something for his own beauty routine. We’ve got all the things you’ll need to put together the perfect box of grooming goodies for the men in your life.

HAIR

Using high quality products is the best move to make if you want great hair…and who doesn’t love a great head of hair on a man? Of course, we’re all about Framesi here at AFH. It’s a family-owned business that uses excellent ingredients and doesn’t run too feminine nor too masculine. The Framesi BY line’s scent is designed by Tom Ford – meaning it will smell awesome without making you smell like a mountain or a flower.

We don’t offer a 3-in-1 product that covers shampoo, conditioner, and body wash, but we do recommend picking up shampoo and conditioner for that guy. We have a range of options for which will work best with his hair. A gel is also a must have for a lot of men. I, for on,e can contend to the fact that my father consistently had an extra huge size bottle of weird, goopy hair gel while I was growing up and he still probably does. The gels we have are light, not goopy, and have great hold without making your hair feel like it’s made of plastic.

And finally, for guys with shorter hair that needs some texture and pieceyness, the best idea would be to grab a wax. A favorite among most of the men here at AFH is the BY Volcanic Wax. It’s a dryer wax that doesn’t make your hair look or feel wet or greasy. It’s easy to work with and still leaves your hair touchable.

BEARD + FACE

jackblack2The beard is big among men right now. Whether it’s already reached critical level or it’s just surpassing stubble, it’s still hair and it shouldn’t neglected. And the thing is: there are options. Try a small set of something to see how he likes it! To start with, we have GOT BEARD? set from Jack Black has that beard covered. Start with the Pure Clean Daily Facial Cleanser. It’s a 2-in-1 cleanser and toner that cleans and hydrates. Then grab the Beard Lube Conditioning Shave. Work it into the beard with your fingers and you can either rinse it out or leave a small layer behind to give that beard a soft and moisturized touch. Finally, finish it off with the MP 10 Nourishing Oil. Get a dime-size amount and massage it into the hair and to the face. It’ll help tame flyaways, moisturize, and help the skin stay flake-free (important in the winter!)

Most women understand the importance of keeping that skin hydrated but a lot of guys overlook that and leave their skin to the elements (which works for some people, but others…not so much!) Kiehl’s is an often sworn-by brand for women and getting their moisturization on and they’ve got the goods for guys, too! Pick up Kiehl’s Facial Fuel No-Shine Hydrator to combat the appearance of oil while keeping that skin smooth and hydrated.

SCENT
sephora2

Scent can be a tricky one. If you already know what he likes, you’re in luck. If you’re not sure, you can always try to play it cool next time you’re both by the fragrance counter. Check some out for yourself and then wander into the men’s area and see what he likes. Go back later and buy it! Easy as that. Or, if you want him to have a little more fun with it and take his time, try picking up a cologne set. Sephora has a lot of great options – you can stick to one brand (just in case you’re a Calvin Klein loyalist or you’d really like a Burberry man) or you can grab a whole sampler set of the top men’s fragrances. And then, once he finds the one he likes and runs out, you’re all set for next year, birthdays, Father’s Day, just because days, etc.

SHAVING

Much like scent, this is also a tricky one. It all depends on how the man in question likes to shave – with a Gillette Triple Blade? With an old-school razor? With his grandfather’s old hunting knife without the use of a mirror? (Wow, if so!) The options are many and in this case, you might need to have some information. Why get a beard trimmer for a guy who never has a beard, right? So do some research and from there, work by the best brands. Both of these razors by Merkur get rave reviews for straight razors. If you want to get him a razor with a few blades, the Gillette Mach 3 is actually a lot of men’s favorite! And if you’re looking for a beard trimmer, have a look at Wahl trimmers. They have a variety of trimmer options and they’re a reliable brand, what more could you want?

And if you want to get him the products to go with the razors, have a look at The Art of Shaving (with a name like that, it seems like an obvious choice!) Try a starter kit by TAoS (unscented, sandalwood, lemon, and lavender) which includes pre-shave oil, shaving cream, after shave balm, and a shaving brush. And if he’s keeping some of that beard or moustasche, pick up some of this wax to keep that hair tamed!

STILL AT A LOSS?

Fear not, there are some options for helping your man stay (or start getting) groomed. Give him a gift that keeps on giving (for just about as long as you want) by ordering a subscription box for him!

birchboxBirchbox, price varies – he’ll get things like face wash, colognes, beard oil, flasks, shave cream, exfoliating bars, and maybe even some socks or a tie clip!

Dollar Shave Club, price varies - kind of like a gift card. He can opt for getting himself a subscription to any of the plans or he can go crazy and buy lots and lots of products!

Scent Trunk, $15/month – each month he’ll get three custom-selected scents to try out. Maybe he’ll want to keep switching it up or maybe he’ll find just the right one!

Wet Shave Club$29/month (for one month) all the way down to $19/month (for a one year subscription) – he can try different razors, different brushes, and an array of soaps and aftershave oils. It’s all about the wet shave and getting a super smooth face!

LAST BUT NOT LEAST…

Is your guy a reader? Or does he maybe enjoy pictures of things? We can handle that. Maybe all of this is a bit daunting. A good direction to go might be a book about men’s grooming – it lets you give him a little nudge but also gives him the chance to explore what kind of grooming he might be into! TAoS offers a book by the same name as well as The Moustasche Grower’s Guide and Beyond a Shadow of a Doubt: Living the Beard-Free Life.

– Kaitie, THE Salon Coordinator

Let’s Talk Extensions!

Pixies and bobs have been in lately, but we still love long, loose waves; think Blake Lively, Kerry Washington, Sofia Vergara, the Kardashians or any of the Victoria’s Secret angels. And you don’t have to be genetically blessed to get them. Many of the most sought-after heads of hair get help from extensions. Here at AFH, we recommend several methods and here are a few thoughts for someone interested in trying them out for the first time or trying them again.

When natural hair extensions are properly applied, they can be dyed, washed, straightened and curled – just like your normal hair. If you take good care of them, they can last several months. Top reasons why people get extensions…obviously to gain length, but some choose them to add volume and others simply utilize them to add a bold fashion color without permanently affecting their own hair.

While artificial hair can be a low cost option it is very limiting and not natural in feel. At AFH we recommend natural hair. In our opinion one of the best types of natural hair extensions would be Remy hair. This is the best and most beautiful hair from Northern Europe and India. It has durability, is strong yet is very soft. The most critical reason we use Remy hair is the cuticle runs in the same directions. This will diminish the extension from becoming a dreadlock and keep it soft and beautiful.

THE RUNDOWN

Finding the right extension method will depend on budget, preference, and hair type. While fusion and tape-in extensions can be used on just about any hair texture, weaves are best suited for curly, kinky hair. Weaving extensions are best for excessively curly hair, which has enough strength and texture to hold the cornrow braid. Fusion extensions tend to be the most expensive ($500 to $3,000) and have the most time-consuming application process; they also last the longest (four months). The tape-in application process is much faster (about an hour) and more affordable ($500-$1000), but requires more frequent maintenance (every six to eight weeks)

HUMAN VERSUS SYNTHETIC HAIR

When it comes to purchasing hair, you get what you pay for. Price will vary greatly based on quality of the hair, as well as the desired quantity (for thickness) and length. Virgin (never-before-processed) Remy human hair is the highest quality and runs upwards of several hundred dollars per bunch (and some heads may require several bundles). The hair cuticle is preserved, instead of stripped, and all the hairs run in the same direction, maintaining that natural soft, silky texture. Synthetic hair is much cheaper ($50 to $100) but won’t blend or style the way human hair does. It can’t always withstand heat styling and tangles easily. It can be a great way to try out extra length or bangs without a big commitment, though.

HOW TO CUT AND STYLE

blakeGood extensions should be entirely undetectable—blending your natural hair with the extension is critical. The best way to do this? A great cut. After the extensions are in, your hair should be cut dry, with layers that blend the two hair types. You can color extensions darker (no bleaching!), but it’s best to choose a shade close to your natural color to avoid over-processing. Or you can mix and match various shades for a more natural-looking blend. As for at-home styling, extensions should allow you to wash and wear.

TLC

Extension hair should be cared for just like your natural hair: gently. Hair should always be fully dried (never wash and go). You can use all of your favorite hair products, but keep oils away from the roots in order to prevent the bond, tape, or weave from slipping. At bedtime, put your hair in a loose braid so it doesn’t get matted or tangled while you sleep. Its also a great idea to use a silk pillow case, this will allow the hair to keep its shine and luster and reduce matting.

THE DAMAGE

The weight of extensions can put additional stress on the roots, so it’s important to match hair density to avoid unnecessary tension on natural hair. In other words, if you have fine hair, your extensions should be a lighter density; those who have thicker, more coarse strands should look for hair with medium density. Placement is also essential. Extensions should be placed where hair is strongest. Avoid areas along the hairline or the back of the neck, where hair is the most fragile. If proper care is taken damage is minimal.

What surprises most is how many different types of hair extension application methods there are available. At AFH here in Madison Valley we offer the following:

CLIP-IN HAIR EXTENSIONS

Clip in hair extensions are a great, temporary way to enjoy hair extensions. Clip-in hair extensions are usually composed of a moderate to large amount of hair attached to a clip that

can be placed in the hair to add volume, highlights or length. These types of extensions aren’t very versatile in regards to updos etc, but can be removed and replaced multiple times a day if desired without damaging the natural hair.

TAPE WEFT HAIR EXTENSIONS

These come in long, wide sections and are bonded to the uppermost part of the natural hair using a special type of tape or glue. These wefts lay flat against the natural hair and if matched carefully, they can be very hard to tell apart from the natural hair. Skin weft hair extensions are relatively easy and quick to apply allowing for a more affordable option. They need to be reapplied every 6-8 weeks

FUSION HAIR EXTENSIONS

In fusion application, the extensions are applied using a special type of adhesive, typically a keratin or wax bond. At AFH we use a clear organic protein bond that uses a kinder heat source with no damage to the cuticle of the hair. These offer a seamless transition and can be worn up to 6 months in the hair if proper care is used.

MICRO-BEAD HAIR EXTENSIONS

Micro-bead hair extension application involves the use of a small metal bead with an inner silicone lining. The natural hair is threaded through the bead, the bonded end of the hair extension is place inside of the bead alongside the natural hair and a pair of pliers is used to clamp the bead. These extensions are incredibly versatile and when the extensions come out, they can be reused depending on the condition of the hair. At AFH we recommend these be readjusted every 10-12 weeks.

Hopefully this covered any questions you might have about extensions. If you want more information or are considering one of these extension options, please contact us to schedule a consultation and you’ll be on your way to longer, fuller hair in no time!

Jeremy Abraham
AFH Salon Stylist

Have an Up-DO not an Up-DON’T!

My name is Danaelle Bell and I’m a stylist at AFH Salon in Madison Valley. As a hair stylist, I’m fairly well educated about all things hair. I’ve spent quite a bit of time (1600 hours of cosmetology school and about 1000 hours (so far) for advanced training, if you want to get specific). I’m deeply committed to my craft and passionate about constantly challenging myself to be a better stylist every day. I view every client that sits in my chair as an opportunity to push myself to grow; every situation is unique and presents a way for me to further my skill.

hairs3My very favorite thing to do, behind the chair, for photo-shoots, and runway are up-dos. They are 3D sculpting. They are hard. They can be beautiful. They can be simple. They can be elaborate. They make me incredibly happy. It really is a form of art for me.

The other component of styling, and the professional reason as to why I’m hooked, is the when and why someone might get a special occasion style. Being a part of an event, whether it’s prom, a wedding, or a super fancy big deal event is an honor and a privilege. In my experience, having a trusted stylist that understands me and can really take care of me and my hair is so valuable – especially on an important day. Not having to stress about one more detail, and know that my hair will look awesome is a relief.

Now to get down to the nitty gritty. Here is my comprehensive do and don’t list for a professional style. (I have mad love for my DIYers, I’ll get to you in the next section!)

DOshaIrs1
1. Get pictures, be prepared. Pictures are a great tool and helps the communication. They can be of styles you like or don’t like. If you have a ballpark idea of what you want and an open mind, you will be much happier with the end result.

2. Get a consultation. This is a free 15-minute block to go over your event with your stylist. Time to cover the when/how/why/where and talk about what you want, what you can actually do and if your normal stylist can perform this service, or if you need to see someone special. Make sure to communicate important info (what you’re wearing, if it needs to look awesome for 12+ hours, if you’ll be dancing, etc.) and be clear about everything. It’s important you vibe with the stylist you’re inviting in to share in your big day!

3. If it’s a big event like your wedding, ask for a bid. Don’t forget about bridesmaids, MOBs and flower girls! This is a great way to plan your budget and make sure you get the wedding day experience you want. Avoid price gouging and arguments with your trusted salon professional!

haIrs24. Get a trial on the books. This is worth every penny and you will be so glad you did this often missed and vital step! The time to re-do, re-affirm, and be confident is in the trial appointment. This allows you to sit back and relax on your big day and know this is handled.

5. Getting prepared for the service – from head to toe!
A) Clothing (a button up or zip up shirt with the undergarments you will wear at the event or a camisole)
B) Wash and dry your hair the night before, perfect updo hair is moderately clean, free of product, detangled and dry.

6. Enjoy your service and take a second to shut out the world. Relax! Let us take care of you! The text messages, emails, calls and craziness will all be there after your appointment.

DON’Ts

1. Have unrealistic expectations of your hair. We are trained professionals and we will make your hair amazing, but we are not magicians. Have an open mind, and trust us to make you the best YOU!

2. Get your hair done too far in advance. It may seem logical to get your hair done in the morning, then go run a bunch of errands, then get dressed and go to your gala, but your hair will not thank you.

3. Put too much pressure on your hair. You are awesome, your hair is awesome, and your event is gonna be awesome. Just relax and enjoy your awesome life!

I hope that makes navigating the salon easy and that you have an amazing experience getting your hair done.hairs4

Hey girl, I hear you’re a Pinterest expert level 5, you whip your hair back and forth, and wield your curling irons like a pro! Don’t worry, I have some wisdom for you, too! I love doing my own hair for more casual events, and here are some of my tips and tricks, if you’re looking to become crafty(ier) with your locks:

1. Research. Check out the trends for tresses. Use lots of sources. Be able to identify your hair type and texture.

2. Practice. Don’t expect to be able to do anything perfectly the first time. If you’ve got a hot date, or an interview, go with a tried and true style just like you would for your outfit.

3. Get creative. Don’t be afraid of trying that new crazy tool or tutorial that you saw on AFH’s Facebook page!

Now…go forth and have a great hair day!

Xoxo
Danaelle Bell

WELCOME

AFH Salon, a salon for generations, invites you to follow us on our journey “thoughts from a stylist/perspective from behind the chair”.

Over the course of many years I dreamt and planned on how AFH Salon would come together. The vision always started with a team that treated each other like family.  An environment of positivity and encouragement where creativity could flourish. As my plan continued to grow, it was important to me for people to have a safe place where our guests could be vulnerable with their personal beauty goals. AFH would meet people where they are in any season of their life. AFH would be the place to have your wedding style created, your baby’s first haircut or transition through an illness. Lastly on the journey to opening, I realized the importance of being part of the local community. Madison Valley is a beautiful, urban suburb, with great parking and walkability. I chose this neighborhood based on the need for a salon of our caliber and the number of small businesses we are surrounded by. These mostly women owned businesses, have welcomed AFH into the community by collaborating on charity events, client appreciation events and referring to each other.  I knew our salon and exclusive Italian products would be well received and appreciated in the valley.

Here’s what you can expect from “thoughts from behind the chair.” AFH’s stylists and even the salon coordinators will have an opportunity to sound off on trends, tricks and their individual perspectives.

AFH is a salon where creativity and passion drives us!

As AFH continues to grow and cultivate this culture, I thank you for being part of our ongoing success.

Annie Fisher
Owner/Stylist

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