Sophia Roe is a celebrated chef, TV host/producer and food justice advocate, well-known for her stunning, long curly hair. After a lifetime without a professional hair cut, Sophia was ready for a major hair transformation and our very own Global Artistic Director of Texture, Renée Gadar, gave her the big cut. Renée gave us a behind-the-scenes look at the entire process between herself and Sophia, from the inspiration stages to the cut and reveal. Renée also shared tips for how you can work with your own stylist for a dream hair transformation.
The right stylist for a big change
Renée said when she learned Sophia had never had her hair professionally cut or styled before, she was initially surprised. But then Renée explained further. “It wasn’t that Sophia hadn’t tried to get her hair professionally cut or styled. She just walked out of many places because she didn’t feel confident that she was in good hands,” Renée told us.
When you’re looking for the right stylist for any kind of hair cut, Renée says it’s important to feel like you’re heard. How does Renée do this with new clients, such as Sophia? “I take the time to listen and make sure I reiterate the things they’ve told me, as we talk about what they’re looking for,” she said.
THE INSPIRATION PROCESS
Once you find a stylist you feel comfortable with and you’re ready to kick off your transformation, Renée has a few tips to make sure your hair dreams come to life:
1. Bring inspirational photos
“Clients should show up with inspirational images of hair textures that are very similar to their own. Also be sure to bring photos that you do not like,” Renée said. “This is so helpful for the stylist to really determine what you want. Bringing a total of five or so images can take out a lot of the guesswork.”
Sophia had given Renée images of inspirational pixie cuts. Renée also offered what she imagined as well. When Sophia came in for her consultation, they chatted about Sophia’s likes and dislikes with the images, for Renée to better understand Sophia’s vision.
2. Ask your stylist for their opinion
Renée told us that while your stylist of course wants to create the cut you want, they also can offer professional advice for what would look best for your face shape and your hair, given its texture and density.
Since Sophia had baby bangs and keeping them was her number one priority, Renée wasn’t sure how a pixie cut would work. The photos Sophia had shared did not represent her kind of hair texture either. A week before the cut Sophia sent new photos of bob cuts and Renée immediately knew this would be her pivot.
3. Be open to collaborate with your stylist
After you ask your stylist for their opinion, now’s the time for both of you to work together to create your ultimate look. Your stylist will be able to take your vision and with the right tweaks, make it work for your individual needs.
Renée said that after she received the bob cut photos, she spent some time thinking about the style and Sophia’s 3C hair texture. Sophia also wanted to keep the funkiness of her short bangs intact. To do this, the two discussed changing from a pixie cut to a box-shaped bob cut.
To prep your hair for a big change, it’s best to repair any hair damage. Our botanical repair™ collection repairs and strengthens hair, from the inside out. 100% vegan, this line uses plant-powered technology to build bonds and help protect from future hair damage.
Before your hair transformation, Renée recommends using the botanical repair™ strengthening shampoo and conditioner first. Then apply the botanical repair™ strengthening leave-in treatment for deeper repair.
For the cut, Renée gave her one length and minimal layers as Sophia wanted to avoid any additional height on top. “I also gave her an undercut so the hair would sit in more, but left long pieces in the front to tie in the bangs and keep the cut a bit funky. We cut off about two feet of Sophia’s hair.”
Before the cut, Renée used botanical repair™ strengthening shampoo, botanical repair™ strengthening conditioner, and botanical repair™ intensive strengthening masque: light. To style Sophia’s new short bob, Renée used botanical repair™ strengthening leave-in treatment while Sophia’s hair was still damp. Renée shared that this works great for curls as a styling product. Next, she applied phomollient™ styling foam to hair one section at a time to help saturate the hair—an important technique for curly textures, she said. Lastly, Renée layered brilliant™ retexturing gel. “I pulled Sophia’s hair down with my fingers so everything would stay as flat as possible on top,” she said. “I dried Sophia’s hair under the hood dryer, but when she styles at home, I recommend air drying, combing it down flat, and using a diffuser on her bangs.”
“Sophia felt anxious about this change leading up to the cut, but woke up that morning and knew she was ready for a change,” Renée told us. “This was such a momentous occasion in Sophia’s life, I felt honored to be a part of it.” If you’re looking for a major hair transformation, Renée recommends to know when you’re ready! Use our salon finder here to find an Aveda Artist near you to begin your own transformation.