Ombré is out and the bob is in. We asked a few top hair stylists and colorists in Beverly Hills about the latest trends in hairstyles, rockin’ bangs, color extensions and highlights. Find out how to freshen up your style and which products the pros recommend for your lovely locks.
Meet our stylists: Toshi Aoki, Kristoff Ball and Kazumi Morton. In his own private hair studio, Toshi performs his expertise in cutting, coloring, Japanese straight perms and repair conditioning. Kristoff is a master blow-dryer and stylist, as well as an expert with cuts and color, known for creating Gwen Stefani’s platinum blonde locks. Kazumi can be found at Jonathan & George Salon in Beverly Hills, where she is known for her color expertise and Thermal Straightening, a technique she has introduced to several top salons in Los Angeles. All three hair professionals have decades of experience between them and have worked with a long list of celebrities and an A-list clientele.
What are the latest trends you’ve been seeing this year in hairstyles?
TOSHI: Bob layers with movement, long layers, heavy bangs or side bangs.
KRISTOFF: Getting away from ombré, small pieces of bright colors (but nothing overwhelming) and dramatic short bangs. People are going more blunt, showing the health of their hair. Eventually, when people get tired of their bangs, they will grow them out and go into a more feathered look.
KAZUMI: Short or medium messy, wavy bob! Also, a simple knot tie ponytail or a Hollywood glam look with a deep side part and side swept bangs.
What about the bangs trend we see on everyone from Taylor Swift to Michelle Obama?
TOSHI: Long, heavy bangs are still popular. Sometimes I do a shorter bang, which is more modern.
KRISTOFF: Bangs are good, but going too short could be devastating. It takes a long time to grow out bangs.
KAZUMI: Yes, more bangs, please.
Is the ombré trend on its way out?
KAZUMI: Out! The current trend is much softer and natural looking, like children’s natural hair color. We are either making the hair darker on bottoms or adding subtle highlights on top to get rid of the line. I like to create a gradual dark-to-light look by adding highlights to the tips of the hair and blending. Sometimes I add highlights around the face as well.
Which celebrities’ hairstyles do people want to copy?
TOSHI: Mostly Princess Kate.
KRISTOFF: Gwen Stefani — she’s the reason clients come to me — Anne Hathaway, Jesse Jo Stark and Lanna Lion. Make sure your face matches the celeb’s face, otherwise the look will not be the same on your face shape. Square face shapes and long faces don’t carry the same looks well.
KAZUMI: Victoria Secret models with messy undone hair and sun-kissed highlights.
What’s the most versatile haircut for different looks?
TOSHI: Long layers. You can make it wavy, straight, put it up or half-up – so many options.
KRISTOFF: Long layers. Also, medium-length bangs, so when you pull your hair up you have pieces to work with that still frame your face.
KAZUMI: Medium-length bob is very versatile, you can wear it straight for a sleek look, add curl to create a romantic style or make it messy for a more edgy look (aka “The Karlie,” which was recently named “Hairstyle of the Year” by the NY Times).
What are your favorite hair products?
TOSHI: I like Kenra Platinum Straightening Gelee (for blow drying) and Hoyu Pro Master Professional Outbath Shiny Treatment (good for all hair types and even if you’re not blow drying). Two of my favorite brushes are Mason Pearson boar hairbrush and Ceramic and Ion rounded thermal brush.
KRISTOFF: Sulfate free & vegan products by Seven. Voce Haircare is great too. Both lines are very light. Voce has an amazing spray-in conditioner and Seven has awesome beach spray and relaxing serum.
KAZUMI: Dry shampoo from Oribe to add texture and Elujuda oil from Milbon, a leave-in treatment that adds shine and hydration. My favorite shampoo and conditioner is Inphenom from Milbon. It really helps to restore the cuticle, adds moisture and locks in hair color!
Kristoff, you have a history of working with musicians and cool people. Tell us about the evolution of one of your clients.
KRISTOFF: This trendy hipster started with long black hair, had a blonde ombré, then died the tips hot pink. Those tips faded out to softer colors and then she decided to get bangs, which I agreed was a good look for her. You don’t have to be a rock star to look like one.
Any other tips?
TOSHI: My clients ask me how to take care of their hair. I tell them that it’s better to wash it at night (good for the scalp) and dry it at least 70% before they go to sleep. In the morning, wet and condition it again, if you have time. My job is to create hairstyles that are easy for my clients to take care of on a daily basis, nothing too crazy.
Toshi Hair Studio
110 N Doheny Dr
Beverly Hills, CA 90211
Kristoff Ball Salon
8621 Wilshire Blvd, Suite J
Beverly Hills, CA 90211
Jonathan & George Salon
9320 Civic Center Drive
Beverly Hills CA 90210
Liz Laing is a writer, web designer and photographer who lives in Los Angeles. Her latest projects may be followed on Liz Laing.