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The Undercut Is Back

    The undercut has been a popular haircutting technique since the Punk era where if your hair didn’t have some form of an undercut you weren’t so cool. And through the past few decades and certain styles hairdressers have used variations to achieve certain looks or simply just to remove bulk in areas of the head. It can be a soft approach or taken to the extreme, but a sure thing is that a disconnect (undercut) whether it is done at the fringe (bangs), sides or back of the head still offers unique way’s of slimming down certain face shapes and adding a bit of stylish edge to a haircut. Being a colorist I have always loved the undercut because it presents me opportunity’s to create fun and easy hair color placement ideas, and with the likes of Rihanna and her disconnected haircuts and a few others today the undercut is finding a little spotlight in 2010.

GLAM OR SHAM?: Rihanna at the Grammys

    Now THIS is how you wear a white dress.

    Rihanna rescued the white dress trend with an ethereal crepe gown by Elie Saab.

    The songstress glows in a high-neck dress that boasts chiffon, stone and feather detailing in the front. The high-neck elongates her statuesque figure and the draping adds a sexy, feminine touch. Finally, the back is open ensuring a lingering second look.

    The stunning dress looks elegant and magical on Rihanna, who wears light silver shadow and a pair of Neil Lane earrings and a bracelet to complement the look.

    I won't say she looks angelic (if you've heard my favorite song of the moment, Rude Boy, you know she's a bad girl on the inside) but she is a radiant, stunning beauty. And might I add, what a way to come back on top from the ordeal she faced at last year's Grammy's. What do you think, Glamazons? Does she pull this off? Is it the right look for the Grammy's?

    Give your verdict: Glam or a Sham?

    UPDATE: Glams, we have the secrets to Rihanna's posh, polished hair courtesy of her amazing hairstylist, Ursula Stephens. Here are the steps (and inexpensive products) Ursula used to create Rihanna's winning look:

    • Start by relaxing the hair with Motions Silkening Shine Relaxer. 
    • Mold and wrap the hair with Motions Foam Wrap lotion and sit under a hooded dryer. 
    • Trim and shape the hair, buzzing the sides and back with a clipper. 
    • To get amazing shine and lock each strand in place, add some Motions oil moisturizer along with Suddzz hair spray. 
    • Flat iron small sections of the hair in an upward and inward motion.
    • Finally, rub Lanza serum and Motions pomade through the hair and finger comb it for a finished look.

    What do you think about the hair? Do you like Rihanna's curly look better? What's your verdict? Glam or a Sham?

GLAM OR SHAM?: J.Lo at The Grammys

    We think J. Lo looks amazing; but sadly only from the neck up. This Versace dress does nothing to flatter her gorge figure and we just can't figure out why it's shorter on the sides. We're all for a netted dress and halter top neckline, but this one is just too much of a hot mess for us to swallow.
    What do we think Glamazons? Glam or a sham?

GLAM OR SHAM?: Lady Gaga at the Grammys

    Lady Gaga's dress from Armani Prive looks like it hurts. Between the plastic web design and spiky star, somebody could get lost, strangled and cut by this gown. 

    In true Lady Gaga fashion, she paired it with crystal embroidered tights and shoes, blonde and daffodil yellowish hair and bubblegum pink lips. 

    What do we think, Glamazons? Glam or a Sham?

    UPDATE: I spoke too soon. Just when I thought Lady Gaga gave us all the jaw-dropping Gaga-ness she could muster, the camera panned the audience and I saw this.

    Another Armani Prive creation specifically made for the star, that truly belonged in an alien movie. A silver headpiece and jacket that looked like what the Statue of Liberty would wear to a drag ball competition. Gaga paired them with her favorite crystal embroidered tights and heelless shoes. Her makeup in all its pale and bold pink glory is oddly fitting. 

    Lady Gaga and Fashion God, Giorgio Armani, had this to say about the memorable collaboration:

    Giorgio Armani says, "We hear Lady Gaga’s music everywhere we go. It is like a soundtrack of our times. In addition to her formidable songwriting skills, she is a modern fashion phenomenon. I am delighted to be creating these outfits on such an important night for her, the Grammys, and I wish her the best of luck."
    Sharing Mr. Armani’s enthusiasm, Lady Gaga adds,
    "I am honored to be wearing Armani this evening. The series of pieces Mr. Armani created for me are truly iconic; they represent not only beautiful fashion, but my spirit and essence as an artist. Mr. Armani is a fashion legend, and tonight would not have been the same without his touch, and his wonderful team."  

    Lady Gaga is a superhero in my comic book and her performance, which opened the show, proves it. Alongside the legendary Sir Elton John, Lady Gaga sang "Speechless" and John's "Your Song." It was a stirring, epic performance that set the bar high for the rest of the show (did anyone else live up to it? I wasn't blown away by any other artist).

    At 62 and decked out in a Giorgio Armani black tuxedo and a pair of Giorgio Armani custom-made, Swarovski-encrusted sunglasses, Sir Elton John was right at home in Gaga's glittery, filthy spectacle. Their chemistry made for a magical show. Check the video below:

    So we know we can always expect a futuristic, over-the-top costume from Lady Gaga, but do these Armani looks measure up? What's the verdict, Glam or a Sham?

GLAM OR SHAM?: Pre-Grammy Looks from Rihanna, Jay-Z, Katy Perry and more

    The Grammy Awards are upon us which means for the last few weeks, stylists, make-up artists, eyelash artists, PR girls and designers have been scrambling to outfit stars in the latest and greatest fashions.

    Judging from the latest pics from Pre-Grammy events, some celebs will push the envelope in avant garde looks (a la Rihanna) stay safe and trend-friendly in sequins or silk (like Mary J. Blige and Katy Perry) or show up in a tacky cringe-worthy ensemble that anyone can pick up at your neighborhood Rainbow store (sigh...Ashanti).

    Check out the looks from Clive Davis' and Neyo's parties below and give your verdict: Who was Grammy Glam and who was a Sham?

    Rihanna's multicolor pastel look was delightfully avant garde but the shape and hue was a lot to take in at once. I will say her light green make-up and polished hair was uberfabulous.

    Ciara, is this a joke? The cheap-looking shaggy fur top paired with shorts and knee boots (darling, pick a season) was proportionally and aesthetically all wrong. The loud fashion faux paux is sure to turn heads---just not for the right reasons.

    Fergie...the part lingerie/part electrical tape dress would make sense on a Vegas party girl, not a pop star. It is cheap and tacky and looks like it smells like plastic. Sham.

    Though Mary J. Blige, Katy Perry and Taylor Swift's dresses were sequined and safe (aka you could see a thousand of them at any New Year's shindig or gala), atleast they looked glamorous and presentable. I live for the multicolor sequins on Katy's dress.

    It seems leather was a staple on the red carpet (see Ashanti's disaster below) but Jennifer Hudson's trendy purple color, shoulder detail and blunt bangs make the look undeniably chic.

    The fellas stole the night. In all black everything, Jay-Z redefined cool in a New York City rockstar vibe with a motorcycle leather jacket, a chain necklace and black separates. Jamie Foxx brought his signature suave style in a one-button blazer with a shirt and tie.

    Neyo's signature fedora, shirt and vest captured his "perfect gentleman" motif to a tee, but I hate the sneakers. English gentleman meets street culture? I'm not buying it. And raise your hand if you're tired of seeing a fedora on this man at every event...I understand hats are your thing but they make different styles.

    Precious star, Gabourey Sidibe wore a black banded sheath dress and...flats? I LOVE Gabourey and what she represents as a full-figured woman in Hollywood who readily embraces her out-of-the-norm body size. But this dress is just not flattering. It makes her look ill-proportioned and does nothing for her shape. 

    Ashanti is on my list. The gray leather zippered mini is cute, yes. But why did you borrow your sister's dangly earrings from prom and clip on a blonde, curly weave from the beauty supply store? (Did anybody tell her that her hair doesn't match in the front?!) No matter how chic she starts off, she always gets it wrong. Sham.

    What do you think, Glamazons? Glam or a Sham?

GLAM OR SHAM?: Beyonce 'Heats' Up the TV Screen for Fragrance Commercial

    We read what Ferocia thought about Beyonce's first fragrance, 'Heat' licensed by Coty. But with this commercial, does it even matter what it smells like? After the men finishing drooling and the ladies finish practicing the moves in the mirror in their favorite silk red dress, they will undoubtedly run to Macy's to purchase the fragrance.

    What's more? To kick off the launch of 'Heat,' Beyonce will illuminate Union Square on February 2nd with a fiery red light and smoky fog, giving the city an aura that matches her sensual appeal. The lighting will serve as a backdrop to her super exclusive launch party for all her friends in media and entertainment.

    On February 3rd, it's all about the fans. Beyonce will make a personal appearance at Macy's Herald Square, where the first customers to purchase the Beyonce Heat 3-piece fragrance set will get the chance to meet and pose with the pop icon. I can see the line of uncontrollable stans forming in my head, clamoring to touch the hem of her House of Dereon garment. 

    Both events will be chaotic enough to usher in the launch of the 'Heat' fragrance in true Sasha Fierce fashion. 

    What do we think of the commercial, Glamazons? It's superhot, that kind of play after 11pm with a parental advisory disclaimer hot. Is it too seductive for her super-clean image (cue her 20/20 interview airing in full today before the Grammy's)? [My boo said he forgot what she was selling: fragrance or...something else.] Or is it irresistibly sexy in a way only Beyonce can get away with?

    What's the verdict? Glam or a sham?

WIN IT!: Tyra Show Plus-Size Model Competition

    Before curves became en vogue, Tyra Banks was an advocate for plus-size models in the fashion industry. Besides recruiting fly, full-figured models for America's Next Top Model like the beautiful Toccara and Whitney Cunningham (who I met at the party celebrating ANTM's Oxygen move...what a sweetheart!), Banks has faced vicious criticism for her own weight gain as well.

    It's not easy for a plus-size model in Fashion and I've always appreciated Tyra's willingness to speak out about it. Finally, she's putting her money where her mouth is.

    Banks is launching a plus-size competition on the Tyra show called "The Fiercely Real Model Search." Plus-size models between the ages of 13-19 can enter to win a one-year Wilhemina modeling contract, a cover and fashion spread in Tyra's online magazine and a spread in a major fashion magazine. Click here for details.

    Here's what the model-turned-mogul had to say about the competition:

    "I've always felt it was my mission to expand the narrow perceptions of beauty; through 'America's Next Top Model,' 'True Beauty' and 'The Tyra Show' I challenge industry and universal standards by featuring and celebrating non-traditional beauty, and stressing that true beauty is both inside and out," Banks said. "Adolescence is such an impressionable time in a young woman's life, and I hope this contest helps teen girls discover their own beauty from the inside out."

    Truly commendable. All beautiful plus-size girls get ready to half-turn, pose and strut for the modeling chance of a lifetime! Tyra will announce the winner on her talk show on March 3rd. 

    Good luck from The Glamazons!



Hot Chocolate Hair Color

    A rich velvety appearance with a raven depth and attitude, Chocolate Brown hair is one of the most requested shades besides Blonde, and possibley one of the most mis-communicated hair colors between consumers and hairdressers. It’s one of those tone’s that everyone see’s in their own way, chocolate brown isn’t as simple as blonde, red, brown, black hair colors. I found that people want their own version of a hot chocolate brown hair color, and 90% of the time it always is completely unlike my own idea of what is a chocolate brown. So what is the real chocolate brown; well it’s on the darker side and in hairdresser terms level’s 3 & 4 with warmth and coolness together, so if you see chocolate being either warmer(redder) or cooler (plumy) your version is correct.

    Because chocolate brown has both undertones it truly is important that we (Stylist/Client) have visuals to communicate with, bringing cut out pictures from magazines to your hairdresser is perfect so they can see what you see, a warm chocolate or a cool chocolate. And for me one of the best possible references is with realistic words with common stuff that instantly draw us too them, for example, FOOD, ‘do you like the color of the Hersey dark chocolate kiss, or the color of Pepsi Cola etc. To me a Hersey Kiss has a slight more plumy tone and a Pepsi has a bit more of a red undertone, get the idea? So no matter how we see chocolate brown it remains a classic beautiful hair color that is Oh So Hot and it's making head waves yet again.

Ode to Michelle Obama's Shiny Hair

    Hey Glamazons! I was watching the State of The Union address last night and, although I am absolutely smitten by President Obama, I just couldn't take my eyes off of Michelle Obama's perfectly coiffed bob; and that atothemazing shine! I kept it some type of oil sheen? Some type of leave in hair serum? I know her hairstylist (the amazing Johnny Wright) but, alas, he's not allowed to comment or speculate on what he does to her hair. (Something about a breach of national security...crazy, right?!) He does have a contract with the haircare brand SoftSheen Carson, so maybe it's something from their line?
    Whatever it may be, I just wanted to confess my undying love for both Michelle Obama, her shiny hair and that classy dress she's wearing by Isaac Mizrahi. What did you guys think of her look?

FIRST LOOK! Rachel Roy and Estelle's Jewelry Line

    Hey Glamazons,

    Estelle's first foray into Fashion, alongside celebrated designer, Rachel Roy, has come with much fanfare. Since we announced the collaboration in August, breathless anticipation for the debut of their jewelry line has only mounted---and with good reason.

    Rachel Roy is a bright star in the Fashion industry with an eponymous line loved by Michelle Obama and a wildly popular diffusion line for Macy's.

    Estelle is a stylish songstress whose fun, futuristic fashion choices won her a collaboration with shoe/handbag designer, Johnathan Kelsey and a spot designing a H&M t-shirt for AIDS prevention.

    With Estelle's fearless fashion sense and Roy's exquisite eye for detail, we all expect great things to come from their collaboration. Their debut piece (below) doesn't disappoint. Showing traces of both Estelle and Roy's style, it's bold, beautiful and delightfully feminine.

    Ever the social media maven, Rachel Roy has a special treat for her Facebook fans. They'll get the chance to shop the collection before it hits the general public through a pop-up Facebook store. The petal ring (above) will be sold exclusively through the Facebook store, which will run for three days starting February 9th.

    The full collection will include a wide range of conversation pieces from stunning necklaces to gorgeous rings, ranging from $34-50.

    Tell me what you think of the ring, Glamazons. Are you excited about this collaboration? Will you shop the collection on Facebook?



Still Bill: Bill Withers = Greatest Human Being Ever

    Still Bill Trailer from B-Side Entertainment on Vimeo.

    I saw Still Bill last night at IFC. I was blown away by both the film and the Q&A session with Mr. Withers afterwards. He may be the most engaging combination of hilarious charm and sincere intellectual self reflexion I have ever encounters. It's pretty impossible that anyone there left without wishing that Bill Withers was their best friend.

    One of the most touching parts of the film is when Withers visits the Our Time Theater Company an artistic program for kids who stutter. The film delves into the insecurities and stuttering that plagued him until his late 20s and when the children from the program introduce themselves to him with stilted speech you see tears in his eyes.

    Muhammad Ali, Bill Withers, and Don King. Photo taken by Jeffrey Levy-Hinte ©, From Soul Power Courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics

    Oh and guess what else he said! He loves"No Diggity!"No Diggity by Blackstreet (with a sample from Grandma's Hands)

Barbie Wins Best-Dressed in CFDA Designer Duds

    Truth: Though I died for Chloe Sevigny's ravishing ruffled Valentino dress at the Golden Globes and was reborn in Diane Kruger's marigold Jason Wu gown at the SAG Awards, my Best Dressed award goes to...Barbie.

    Not only has she been around longer than any Hollywood celeb (51 and still looks fab), but she's a fashion favorite, having been styled my very favorite shoe designer in the world, Christian Louboutin.

    Now, 12 of the CFDA's best designers are following suit, lending their superb talent to create fashion-forward Barbie dolls: Betsey Johnson, Rachel Roy, Isaac Mizrahi, Alexis Bittar, Justin Giunta, Tory Burch, Lorraine Schwartz, Philip Crangi, Devi Kroell, Kate Spade's Deborah Lyood, Monica Botkier and Albertus Swanepoel.

    As part of the CFDA's partnership with Mattel, each designer was asked to add their signature touch to a Barbie doll in a Little Black Dress. (See my favorite above by the legendary Tory Burch).

    With layered statement necklaces and sheer, dramatic skirts, the designers did that and much more. Check out some of the designs below. Barbie has never looked more fabulous.

    Betsey Johnson - glamour meets goth in a sheer lace skirt and Minnie Mouse bunny ears!

    Rachel Roy - polished and ever so chic, Barbie's ensemble inspired a top from Rachel Roy's Fall 2010 collection. Roy also noted the look mirrors the pieces First Lady, Michelle Obama, wears from the Rachel Roy line via Stylelist. Tres chic!

    Justin Giunta - It's no secret that my favorite jewelry designer is Justin Giuta of Subversive Jewelry who is now design director of jewelry for Tory Burch. He makes wearing jewels a stunning, ornate experience as evidenced by Barbie's statement necklace here.

    Isaac Mizrahi - Isaac Mizrahi is always classically chic with a studded minidress in black, a perennial fashion favorite. A light pompadour and slingback pumps are elegant, understated touches.

    Monica Botkier - The Botkier woman is a diva in an embellished v-neck dress with a pink tie belt, a lavishly-wrapped scarf and that famous IT bag. Just fabulous!

    Lorraine Schwartz - Beyonce's go-to brand for the red carpet, Lorraine Schwartz serves up bling unlike any other jewelry designer. Her Barbie lets the Accessories take center stage with sparkly earrings, bracelets and details (that 'B' for Barbie charm would make Kimora proud) that scream Hollywood glamour.

    Deborah Lloyd of Kate Spade - Designed by Deborah Lloyd of Kate Spade, Barbie's pearls, pumps and pink polka dot tote radiate Upper East Side sophistication.

    Alexis Bittar - Alexis Bittar's entire lucite collection is strikingly beautiful. It dazzles as an accent to Barbie's glittering one-shoulder embellished dress and poufy red hair.

    Devi Kroell - Leave it to Devi Kroell to dress Barbie in three statement-making, awe-inducing pieces: a studded fuschia bag with chain handle, a gorgeous, embellished cuff and those amazing metallic show-stopping shoes. Gorg!

    These one-of-a-kind Barbies will be auctioned off on Ebay from January 28th at 10pm until February 7th, with a starting bid of $100. Proceeds will benefit the CFDA's scholarship programs and educational initiatives.

    Glams, pick your favorite!



    Images Courtesy of Mattel.

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