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Lipstick on the Rim: Highlights, Balayage, Face Framing, and More – Tracey Cunningham (Hollywood’s Hottest Hair Colorist) Reveals Her Secrets to A-List Hair, Maintaining Hair Health, and Why Hair is So Emotional


She’s one of, if not, THE most, sought-after hair colorist’s in the world. If the walls at Beverly Hill’s Meche Salon could talk, we’d only begin to imagine some of the iconic conversations that have ensued. Cue the likes of JLo, Margot Robbie, Dakota Johnson, Drew Barrymore, Charlize Theron, Jennifer Garner, our very own Molly Sims, and more, who have graced Tracey Cunningham with (their hair) and presence. We dive into how to get the perfect blonde, why brunette is the hardest color to get right, how to properly touch-up greys, why a face frame is sometimes all you need, and how to maintain color-treated hair. Tracey is so busy, in fact, she recorded this episode from the back of the salon. Perhaps give this one a listen before you embark on your next dye job.

[Tracey] On Detoxing Your Hair

“Olaplex created a Broad Spectrum Chelating Treatment that you can do before your appointment, it’s awesome. But you can also use a clarifying shampoo. I like the Olaplex Clarifying Shampoo because it’s made specifically to remove the metals in your hair, not to strip it like a traditional clarifying shampoo. Do whatever you can to remove those metals from your hair because they are the worst. I’ve had clients come to me, and I’ll put their foils in their hair, and the foils start feeling hot, and they puff up, and it’s because when you’re using bleach, ammonia, whatever is in your products, and you apply it on top of metals, it causes a chemical reaction.”

[Tracey] On How to Get A-list Hair

If you only use one product, it’s Olaplex #3. It’s the #1 beauty product. It has several patents, over 100. You just put it in dry hair. It does one thing: it strengthens your bonds, it strengthens your hair, and it just makes hair stronger, that’s it. After, shampoo and condition with your favorite shampoo and conditioner. Olaplex No. 3 is not a conditioner, it’s a pre-treatment. If you do that once a week your hair will grow and grow and grow because it keeps it from breaking.” 

[Tracey] On How to Find the Right Blonde

“One thing I want to say about blondes is I feel like hairdressers overtone. You should not overtone your hair. You should dry it and look at it first. Glossing the root instead of toning is amazing because it makes the blonde highlight stripes a little more forgiving. But don’t let colorists gloss over all of your hair because it usually looks beautiful when you only gloss the root. Most people only need a face frame and maybe a full head of highlights once a year. A face frame is just absolutely perfect. If you look at kids’ hair, it’s never overdone. I don’t know why we’re doing full head weaves every eight weeks, and half a head is fine, but you really can get away with a face frame. It’s beautiful. You’re just doing around the face, the hairline, and your part. If you have a few parts, ask to do a little more. It’s genius, and you’re saving your hair. Along with a face frame, I like to balayage the ends and the hairline; it’s everyone’s favorite. Less is more.” 

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