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March 22, 2009

Spring Styling Tips from Rocco


Ciao, Bellas!

Friday was officially the first day of Spring!  Regardless of whether Mother Nature is following along in your neck of the woods, it's a good time to start things FRESH!

I will leave the specific fashion tips to the pros, but I can tell you that softer, happier colors look good on just about everyone this time of year.  Winter skin can be dry and pale - but don't over do it with the make up - it just creates more contrast.  And need I say it aloud? NO TANNING BEDS.  If you need that glow, find a salon that does good spray tanning (in case you didn't know it, most booth/auto spray tans have a smell that is, shall we say, ewwww) or experiment on self-tanners until you find one that looks natural. The Fake'n'Bake is just wrong in so many ways, my sweets, that we all know better by now.

Blog Rocco Ped Let's talk hands and feet!  A good pedicure is a must at least several times a year, and if you can't afford a salon, do it yourself - but do not use the razor shavers at home.  Just take a few moments each time you shower to exfoliate your feet, and over time it will make a huge difference.  Manis and Pedis, by the way, are not just about the polish.  Dead skin is bad skin. Too much of it not only looks ugly, but is bad for all that good new skin suffocating underneath. And unlike hair color, with nails, the carpet need not match the drapes.  Stick with a good, non-chip brand like Chi or OPI, but remember that every body's chemistry is different, so a color that may work for you may not work for someone else. Lots of beauty supply stores have little sampler sets so you can try the colors without investing in a big bottle.  (Many of my lovelies carry the little ones for touch-ups).

Now for the crowning glory: hair.  So, so many things to tell you, but let's start with the absolute must-dos:

You must choose a style that you can maintain.  It's no good if you stop traffic on your way out of the salon if you look like a car wreck the rest of the time.  Talk to your stylist - and go LIGHT on the product - that's the #1 mistake.  Unlike some other things, a little goes a long way, darling.

The photos from the magazines - can be very helpful to your stylist - BUT - and hear me clear, dear, unless your stylist is either a surgeon or a wizard, you are NOT going to look the person in the photo.  Don't mock - you'd be surprised how often this results in tears.

Bangs - easy, now big boys, I'm talking about the hair that grows above the forehead.  Please please please do not cut your own hair.  I know it's just so tempting when you're having a bad hair day, but breathe deep, center yourself, and wait until you can get to your salon.  Most good stylists will do bang trims for free (although a small tip is always nice) because it makes your next trim so much nicer for everyone.  Oh - and don't lie to us, my angels.  We know.

Color!  Things are much more natural and subtle these days - the days of excess are over everywhere, bunny, including spring locks.  Blended highlights rather than stark, and my stars and moons - unless you are performing nightly on stage, the dark roots have been over for so long I shouldn't even need to discuss it.    One more thing - if you try your own color at home, and your hair looks frightful, be honest with us.  We know anyway, and we can't really help you if we don't know what chemicals we're dealing with.  I mean, we're not just pretty faces behind the chairs, you know.  We're educated in these things, both in school and on our feet.

Well!  I already have too many words, according to the blog police, even though I have so much more to share!  Thanks to the Tarts for asking me to guest here, and if you like what you hear, I'll be back!

Remember - a smile makes everyone more beautiful, bellas!


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Rocco, you rock. Thanks for the professional tips. I've never colored my hair, and my stylist keeps saying not to touch it, despite a few threads of silver amongst the dark brown. I'm inclined to leave it that way, calling it my silver highlights. She does give me a killer cut that seems to hold its shape a long time, and requires nothing more than a blow dry and a few swipes with a straightening iron. Since you and I don't live close, I feel fortunate to have her!

Rats, I hit the button too quickly! Any tips for spring makeup? What are the common mistakes of women of, er, a certain age?

Thanks in advance, darling.

Listen to Rocco, ladies and gents, because that stuff about knowing everything--it is true. And not just about trimming your bangs and coloring at home. And OMG, don't even try to hide it if you need an emergency bikini wax and you are out of town at a conference (or maybe you're really in Vegas) and go to a new place. These stylists, they're like the frigging FBI for noticing details. Rocco and Steve once had a noticing details contest. Guess who won. So if you stray, just 'fess up and beg for mercy, especially if your stylist is nosy, or a relative. Lucky me, I got both.

Oh, Rocco, you're a genius. I learned (the hard way) about NOT trimming my own bangs. (Huh, what Me Margie could do with that sentence.) Anyway, that's why I grew them out. Forever.

I second the make-up tips request.

Rocco, darling, how lovely to hear from you! I long ago decided to eschew hair coloring because of the cost of upkeep and am perfectly content with the threads of silver. And I never, ever, cut my own hair!

My husband, daughter and I all use the same wonderful stylist who has seen us all through long hair and short and every stage in between. She's practically family, and has been for 14 years now. Deanna, here's a shout-out to you!

Rocco, I'm in the throes of a truly bad haircut by my stylist. I love his color jobs, fabulous, but this is the 2nd time in less than a year I've gotten a surprise haircut. First time after I got over the shock of expecting a trim and leaving with short, and I mean short, hair, I found it was very easy to care for. Think wash and go practically. But this last time my trim left me with an blackboard eraser shaped head. Awful, awful, awful. Can't do anything with it. Sticks up on the top, flat on the sides, bottom heavy in the back. What to do until it grows some? Tips? Ideas? or should I just gripe and complain everytime I catch sight of myself. Stylist is aware I am unhappy. What about one colorist, him, and another for styling? Does that offend???? HELP!!!!!!

The hardest part about moving to a new state, for me, was finding someone to cut my hair. I could deal with getting a new job, and finding stores and doctors. Hair stylist? Total angst.

Luckily I found a great guy and have been his client for 12 years. I color my own hair based on the "recipe" given to me by the stylist I had before I moved, and bought from a beauty supply place and mixed myself, not a drugstore box. My current guy thinks I do a great job, so he doesn't try to talk me into paying him $75 to do it for me. I do allow him to do highlights for me once a year for summer, because I wouldn't trust that to myself. He also understands that my haircut needs to be one that works with blowing dry with my head upside down, and shaking a bit, and done. Longer than 5-10 minutes to create the style is not for me.

I confess to only having pedicures in the summer, but I do try not to let the feet get TOO bad over the winter. I'm looking forward to my first one, and showing off brightly-painted toes again.

As far as tans go, I am so fair, the fake ones always look orange, no matter what. I just let myself be the paleface among the Indians all summer, especially since I had skin cancer removed a few years ago - I'm a sunscreen queen now. I do like the Neutrogena spray stuff for my legs, when I'm dressing up and don't want my legs to blind someone.

Ciao Bellas!

Thank you such a warm welcome.

Jodi - YES! A hundred times YES! There is no reason to suffer with bad haircuts. Explain to your Color Person that while you love the color, you've had two bad cuts and are compelled to go elsewhere. Then ask all your friends with good haircuts where they go. If your current stylist gives you any lip, tell him you are only staying there for color out of loyalty, because it would be much easier for you to get everything done at one salon.

Make-up tips: Unless you are dressing up - and I mean tux, heels, night time, less is key.

The Cosmos are going to be pushing the bright eye colors again. Sigh. There will always be a market for the sparkly blue stuff (and I don't just mean for Queens) but for regular gals (or guys, I judge not) stick with the subtle shades that make your eyes pop.

Light on the eyeliner too, my dearests - one is not Cleopatra when one is on the other side of 25.

Beware of the browns and reds in lip color. Not everyone can wear them. Like with the spring colors, soft corals and pinks flatter just about everyone. And remember the rule: all cosmetics should enhance the face, not distract. No matter how nice that salesperson may be, neon red lipstick is not going to make you look good - it will, however, attract clown cars, even at night. And you do not even want to know what goes on with all those people in there. Take my word.

Oopsy doopsy - Hello there, Rita my love!

And where are you, um, docking these days? Shall we expect you at Aunt Vi's for dinner tonight?

Thank you for the kind words and advice, sweets. And I hate to remind you, but I DID ask that you take care of that bit of business before you left town. I can only hope you didn't decide to get creative. Those resort stylists just love to see the tourists coming.

Rocco, can you please just come to my house and help me? Like, how to hold a curling iron? How to hide my zits? Which T-shirt goes better with which jeans?

Sigh. I am such a dunce about these things. I get a manicure and pedicure once a year, when I go to RWA National. Makeup ... um ... maybe once a month. Hair ... oh lordy, this is where I truly fail. I had 6 years of BAD alopecia - the kind that left me looking like Sinead O'Connor's fat cousin. Now, praise be, there is hair again, but it doesn't have a lot of life. (The color, however, is wonderful./ And not a hint of gray yet!) Luckily, the folks at my regular haunts (nursery school, elementary school, grocery store) don't seem to care. But now I think I need to ... well ... do something.


Hi Rocco!

Thanks for all the styling tips!! I never color my own hair, my stylist does it best and she happens to be a friend, I wouldn't want to offend. I have been known to whack at my bangs a little, but Tami always gives me hell, and it's just not worth the firm talking to that I get, so staying away from the scissors.

I think I going to love the spring colors, I always wear light colors anyway because like Laura, I'm preternaturally pale. (My daughter would kill me for using the fakebake cancer in a box places.)

Would you happen to have any ideas about length of shorts and such...of someone over the age of 25?

Hi Rocco,

Dry skin, oh boy is it dry. Worse thing is I can't stand lotions or creams that feel heavy or greasy on my skin. Any ideas?

My stylist is great I just got a new cut for my difficult to style, very curly, hair and it is wonderful. It is a short style that enhances the curl and took a few years off me.

I'm no good at make up everything makes me look like a clown face since I have have pale skin so I don't wear it. I know, shame on me!

Ehi, Rocco! Amico mio! Che fai? You lose our phone number or something? Mary Lynn thinks you don't love her no more . . . and what's with you and Sidney?

Reason I'm posting this out where everyone can see it - weren't you supposed to tell us this time about how you did Siegfried and Roy??

Oh. Their hair and color, I mean. Yeah. Hair and color.

That, and what it was like to comb out the tigers.

I stick with the au natural when it comes to make-up. When I do where it for dress up I have a tendancy to forget I have it on and smear it about . . .
I have a wonderful hair stylist named Jeph, he is very good with my very fine hair. A lot of it fell out a few years ago when I was sick and he does a good job with what is left . . . I don't dye it at all, I like the grey and the chemicals in dye make my head blister and bleed.
I have learned to watch out for skin creams with alcohol in them, makes dry skin worse!

Peg H---I have dry and extremely sensitive skin. I highly recommend anything Aveeno. I use the Daily Moisturizing lotion (green cap); it has SPF 15 which you need to wear every day of the year. Its also not greasy. On my face I love the aloe after tan stuff; usually the Banana Boat brand. Its light and does not cause any ill effects. DO NOT use the drug store brand that "compares with Aveeno". I broke out in hives all over my legs. UGH---just glad I didn't try it on my face. For makeup I am a great advocate of the minerals......I use Bare Escentuals brand. Very little goes on, it lasts all day and looks natural. A dash of mascara and some lip gloss...easy routine! I am always complimented on my skin; part of it is good genetics, part is good skin care. I am not a sun worshiper although I am very active outdoors. I just make sure I am well protected and keep myself hydrated.

The hair is taken care of by professionals and I find it worth every last dime that I spend. I use shampoo for color treated hair which keeps it looking shiny and healthy. I am lucky because when the grey needs touch up it blends well with the blonde.

Somedays don't you envy the shower, shit and shave routines the guys have??????

Thanks Lynn. Heck, I take less time to get ready to go anywhere than DH does.

My stylist does such a wonderful job on my hair that it's wash and wear for me.

Hey Rocco! Thanks for the great suggestions. :)

My first pedi of the year is actually already scheduled for this Thursday, so I will be able to flash my tootsies at the Gala I will be attending on Friday. I get the mani every two weeks already, as that is my ME time.

I have an awesome hairstylist, who trusts me to color my own hair. He does all the cutting, trimming and perming. For my crazy 30th birthday, I let him get creative, and almost passed out from the highlights. Now that I do the color myself, I have nobody to blame but me for a bad shade.

As for colors, since I don't need to worry about tanning, I like the bolder colors. :)

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