Bridal Hair Stylist Goes Above and Beyond the Call of Duty

Written By Wilfredo Allen on Tuesday, April 29, 2014 | 1:00 PM


You are locked in your seat on the most famous roller coaster in the world, the Cyclone in Brooklyn, New York. Your fiancé is right next to you, both of you dressed in wedding attire. As you go up the steep climb the preacher, who is seated behind you, begins reading your vows. At the pinnacle of the climb, you are pronounced Mr. and Mrs., only to let out a loud scream as you plummet almost 60 miles per hour at a 60 degree incline. On the second time around, your hair stylist, who is seated next to the preacher, reaches over and fixes a few hairs that have fallen out of place in your fancy bridal updo...

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Okay, so the hair stylist didn't actually sit behind you next to the preacher, but other than a few other minor details this is a true story for Gretchen Maurer, an on-location wedding day hair and make-up specialist. She has been taken to many places throughout New England from Connecticut to Pennsylvania, Newport, Rhode Island, Manhattan and New York State with her bridal clients, including many different venues such as the Cyclone roller coaster, Bed & Breakfast Inns, small homes, even elaborate country clubs.

There are many important qualities that a top wedding hair stylist must have in order to have a thriving bridal beauty business which includes satisfied bridal clients. These include being flexible, being able to determine face shape and designing a hair style to suit, knowing the latest trends and fashions, continuous training and education in formal hair styling, being on-time and also having the ability to assess a women's overall image

Maurer began doing bridal hair right in hairdressing school in the early 80's. "I loved the sculpturing, balance and texture that bridal hair design challenges me with," she says. "The key to being successful in the bridal business," says Maurer "is the ability to read a woman's style and face shape so that I can design a balanced look for the total image and balance the bride from head to toe." Maurer first looks at pictures of the bride's dress, considers the time of day of the wedding, then she moves on to face shape, ethnic heritage, personal image, hair type and length, headpiece and puts it all together in a fabulous bridal hair style designed specifically for each individual bride.

Face shape knowledge is very important for a hair stylist. Maurer says, "I have a new bride coming up who has a heart shape face. This means a broad forehead and temple area with a small chin. Plus she is very petite. So a low chignon in the back is a perfect balance for her." Maurer adds, "Height will come from her tiara and veil." Face shape is used in the hair style selection process since one style may look great on someone who has an oval face, but simply awful on someone with a square face. This is also an important factor for brides who bring in hair style photos they like from magazines. Some stylists will simply create the hair style for you, disregarding the fact that the photo, for example, may show a model with a heart face shape, and you may have a round face shape.

Maurer recommends that her clients bring in sample photos of hair styles that they like, along with any other photos such as photos of brides dresses, headpieces, tiaras, etc. so that she can get an overall sense of the brides likes and dislikes. From there she can design a hair style that suits the bride's overall image. Staying in tune with fashion trends and styles that her clients like is very important in the overall bridal look.

The age of the bride is also very important in the design of the bridal style. A bridal hair style will be very different for women in their 30's or 40's compared to women in their 20's. Maurer says, "I have a freelance team of hair stylists that I work with and I always try to give the younger bridesmaids to the younger hair stylists."

Maurer has expanded her bridal business beyond the salon in her website, http://www.weddinghair.com by offering a broad spectrum of wedding hairstyles designs and hair lengths and textures that the bride can pick out and order a hair kit. The hair kit is simply the hairstyle photographed step by step with directions and many after shots. Some brides will try to do the hairstyle themselves, some will have a friend or family member do it and some will take the hair kit to the salon and have a professional stylist do the wedding hair style. Maurer says, "Brides, for the most part have never been a bride. They need help choosing a look and http://www.weddinghair.com is designed to do just that. The hairstyles represent a broad spectrum of designs and hair lengths and textures. My articles also provide useful information. It is a one of its kind website."

In short, selecting your wedding hair stylist is an important part of creating your overall wedding look. Gretchen Maurer, and her website http://www.weddinghair.com , gives us insight into what a successful wedding hair stylist goes through for each bridal client and what you should look for in selecting your stylist.

Gretchen Maurer is the author of The Business of Bridal Beauty, published by Milady Publishing. She is creator and owner of http://www.weddinghair.com Maurer's articles and hairstyles have been published in numerous publications and web sites including The Knot, http://www.NewYorkMetroWeddings.com , Modern Bride, Modern Salon, Passion, American Salon, WeddingBells, Bridal Star Hairstyles and Teen Star Hairstyles. Brides Magazine has awarded http://www.weddinghair.com as the "Best Beauty Web Site"

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