Celebrity hair stylist Shasha Lee certainly has her hands full crafting amazing styles for some serious A-listers. Her client list includes Lil Kim, Nicole Richie, and Janet Jackson, and her work has been presented in countless publications all over the world. Here, we chat with Lee about her favorite hair trends, tips for extension experimentation, and even some crazy client stories.
Cliché: What are some key hair trends we can expect this summer?
Shasha Lee: Shoulder-length bobs and loose waves, and sexy, short styles with deep parts are in style. Gorgeous, glamorous hair is making a comeback, and creamy caramel bonds and buttery highlights placed strategically throughout the hair are in. Large wand curls are perfect and versatile.
Which summer hair styles are your favorite to recreate for customers?
Khloe Kardashian-esque, banana colored hair. Classic, sleek bobs.
Tell us about your new LA weave bar. What type of experience can clients expect there?
Gorgeous by Shasha Lee is a total beauty experience. Walk in and get the Triple L Package: luxury looks for less. Our expert technique allows us to provide extraordinary extensions in a few short hours, allowing you to minimize time spent in the salon and walk out gorgeous, ready to maximize your day!
What piece of advice would you give to someone experimenting with extensions for the first time?
Research and find an experienced stylist. Anyone can post on Craigslist and social media offering budget extensions. You want an experienced professional who not only creates natural looking styles, but protects your real hair. Also, invest in high quality hair. It may seem pricey initially, but with proper care, it can save you money in the long run because you can reuse it. I’ve had my same Gorgeous by SL extensions for a year!
What are some upkeep hair care tips for those who have hair extensions?
Keep your scalp clean. I love tea tree shampoos because it stimulates the scalp so that it cleanses the hair, but also encourages growth. Don’t weigh your hair down. Make sure you thoroughly rinse conditioner so that your hair can have ultimate bounce and flow. I like to keep product use to a minimum, but one of my secrets is that I like to spray perfume in my hair.
Do you feel like location (LA and NYC) affects your clients’ style preferences at all?
ABSOLUTELY. California girls like bone straight hair while New York girls prefer lots of body and love unique styles with a lot of oomph.
Do you have any hair horror stories that have happened to you over the years?
When I first started doing hair, I did a color on Lil Kim. She asked for a T-Boz look and because of all the prior chemicals in her hair, it came out five different colors! That was the day I learned how to master a weave.
When I first became a salon owner at Shasha Lee Exclusive in NYC, I hired ambitious young stylists that came highly referred and quickly realized that not everyone reflected the top notch quality I wanted represented by my brand. Now, I require all stylists to audition first and give them multiple tests to ensure that everyone is capable of delivering an elite experience.
What can you attribute to your success? What advice do you have for others looking to get to where you are now?
I attribute to my success that I am my biggest fan. I never bet against myself and always have faith in my gifts and my path. The advice I would give others is to be patient with yourself. Stay FOCUSED. NO is ON in reverse. Dream your dreams to life and stay gorgeous.
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Staying Gorgeous with Shasha Lee: Photographed by SIGHT BEYOND SIGHT – CREATIVE STUDIOS