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How to Get the Perfect Balayage – Every Time!

If you understand a few key points, you can make sure you’ll always have flawless hair color.

First, get a great picture!  If you’re looking on Google and you see the perfect shade you want, take a screen shot and get ready to make your appointments!




Next, look closely at the picture.  Notice that the hidden secret to the Balayage highlight is the perfect cut.  The cut is the foundation for the perfect Balayage.  Often, when my clients show me their Pinterest picture, they’re just looking at the color – but when I ask them to look deeper, they see how the cut and style compliment the hair color.  The two work side by side.

When I moved to a new salon, I had to find a stylist who could build the perfect foundation for color – and that stylist is Guillaume Massol.  I accent his cut, while he monitors the length of the hair and creates layers that give the hair movement.  






When you add Balayage to the wave, you have a truly beautiful, flowing effect. When you style it straight, you have no line of demarcation.  When we cut for Balayage, we never take out too much weight or make the ends too thin.  If the ends are cut too much, the highlights will not show.  If your hair is all one length across, the hair will not move and the color will just lay flat.  

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If you have colored hair, but you’re a first-time Balayage client, you’ll need to make at least a three visit commitment.  That way you and your Balayage expert can see how your hair changes tone and shape, and how your hair cut grows out naturally as it gets longer.  This is especially true if you have more than one color. 






If you have virgin hair, that’s a whole ‘nuther story!   Your first experience with Balayage and a beautiful style is always the best salon experience you’ve ever had.   So, my best tip for you is to come and see me – and Guillaume – at Prive by Laurent D . We’re also in Miami at Creato Hair Design.  Pay attention to a few key details, and you’ll always enjoy the beauty of Balayage.

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Good color doesn’t end when you leave the salon!

As a colorist for many years on Park Avenue in New York, I’ve worked with all sorts of women from celebrities to low-key beauties.  I’ve learned some valuable tips and tricks that I’d like to share with you so you get exactly what you want from your hair color.  Today, I want to let you in on the best approach for getting the perfect Balayage highlight.


Before Photo

The first thing you want to do is find an inspiration picture to show your colorist.  When clients bring pictures to me, we take a good look at the picture as a whole.  When you do this, you’ll see that the foundation for every look is the haircut.  Pay attention!  The truth is that unbalanced hair gives you unbalanced highlights.

Hair Cut

Hair Cut


When the hair is cut for Balayage, the ends should not be overly texturized.  Highlights need a foundation for better color and pop.  If your hair is layered too much, you’ll have holes between the layers and you won’t be able to create the extra brightness on your ends .




What’s more, if the hair is texturized too much the ends may tend to be dry. You can’t always blame the highlight or color for dryness!




Remember, If your hair is color-treated  you may not be able to achieve your inspiration all in one day.  I suggest starting with the cut to get a good shape.  The next step is to add your highlights in moderation until you achieve your ideal color.

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Good color doesn’t end when you leave the salon! Your home care helps you maintain inspirational color.  My favorite home care products are Prive Shampoo and Conditioners for shiny beauty and moisture.  To maintain tone, I recommend Christophe Robin Color Conditioners and his Cleansing Purifying Scrub with Sea Salt.  I hope you can learn from my years of experience as we head towards Summer.  You’re going to want to shine.

Book your hair Appointment with Michele Fury Today!   BOOK NOW

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Color Trends for Spring 2016

The celebrities are going shorter this spring with a fun, lived-in bob.  What better way to accent that new cut than with some baby-lights, a sun-kissed look – or even up a notch with Parisian Balayage?  Find a colorist with know-how and you can create an amazing look like Sophia Bush.  She’s on the money with a splash of color in the front and her ends have a pop which gives the illusion that she’s lighter while keeping depth at her re-growth.  Maintenance is low, and you can enjoy color that looks like you spent the summer by the sea.  If you’re a natural girl or just not ready for a big change, take a tip from Miranda Kerr.  She accents her bob with a baby-light Balayage, painted in small pieces so it gives the illusion she’s been getting plenty of sunshine.  Her new spring cut has movement and a fresh, outdoorsy feel.  If you really feel like crossing over to the blonde side, take the plunge like Lucy Hale.  She’s going cool blonde and can really carry the color.  I say go for it!  With Balyage you can paint heavy and blonde and the re-growth is still less noticeable then the traditional foil highlights.

When going from brunette to blonde remember it may takes 2-3 visits to achieve the wow blonde that you’re looking for.  If you have patience and time any color is achievable.  Whatever tone you like will fit right in for spring 2016.  Remember to keep your color fresh with good home care.  It’s important!  My favorite products are Prive Shining Weightless Amplifier Shampoo and Conditioner.  I also recommend Christophe Robin Baby Blonde.

It’s a color mask that helps control unwanted tones and keeps you looking great until your next visit.

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Tips and Tricks to Stop Hair Color from Fading

The first time I meet my brunette clients, they always want to know how to cover those pesky white hairs.  But the very next thing they ask is how to keep their hair from fading and turning a weird red color.  I tell them to think of hair like fabric.  If you take a brand new pair of jeans and wash them every day in generic laundry detergent, they’ll fade fast!  If you used Woollite, or something softer, chances are you’d have less fading. 


The way your jeans fade will also depend on the brand and the type of dye used by the manufacturer.  It’s the same thing with hair.  If you use a drugstore color or a brand that’s high in ammonia you’re in for trouble.  Ask your colorist what brand they use.  It makes all the difference.   My favorite is Chromatics  by Redkin.  It uses rich oils to deposit color rather than the stinky ammonia.  It takes three visits for the color to take ownership, but then you’ll see less fading.  


For color that is fading, I recommend Olaplex.  Olaplex repairs hair that has been damaged and seals it so that your color is strong and vibrant.  Make sure you follow-up with the take-home treatment.  Use a Powerdose by L’Oreal on the day of your color appointment – especially if you live where your water is hard or chlorinated.  If I have clients with heavy chemical build-up, I detox the hair with Malibu.  Malibu takes out chlorine, product build-up, medication and minerals.  


Finally, treat your hair with a nurturing cleanser.  The Prive shampoo line is great for treating colored hair and for hair that has keratin treatment. That way you don’t have to invest in two separate shampoo products. 

Great hair color may have a price tag, but it’s like buying a great designer shirt.  It lasts and wears well.  Think about it –you wear your hair every day!  My single process starts at $155 and then we chose the products that will be perfect for you.  (The Olaplex Treatment is only $25, and Powerdose by L’Oreal is $45.)


  • Find a good colorist who knows about consistent application and sectioning
  • Ask about the product line
  • Use salon shampoos and conditioners
  • If you live where there is hard water and chlorine, invest in a filter and use Malibu


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How to keep blond from turning yellow

Protecting and Preventing Your Blonde Hair Color from Turning Yellow and Brassy 

Before commenting on color corrections and hair color maintenance steps, I want to emphasize minimizing unintended color corrections by taking the time to choose an experienced colorist, one you’re comfortable with and who knows color correction. As well, staying with that colorist to ensure consistency with the hair color you’re happy with.

Color Corrections

If you’re in need of correction to a lighter, blonde tone after dying your hair a dark or red color, a good colorist will know how to correct and tone your color so that in two weeks time you have a beautiful shade that’s neither brassy nor yellow. (Of course, if you’ve never had your hair colored, brassiness will not be an issue.) It can take up to three visits to lift your color to exactly the tone you want.  If after three visits you haven’t achieved your goal, then it’s time to move on.

Maintenance and Preventing Your Blonde Tone from Turning Brassy or Yellow

Once you’ve achieved your goal, it’s important to maintain your blonde color and prevent it from tinting yellow. Things like everyday pollutants (especially in the city), certain hair products, keratins, and even hard water may cause blondes to easily turn yellow and slightly brassy. When this occurs, I recommend using a Malibu hair treatment, which successfully lifts, removes, and cleanses residues, hard water, and chlorine that can strip your hair color. I advise adding a pack of Malibu hair treatment to your color-care shampoo to help maintain your blonde tone.

When using a color-care shampoo, always use a reputable name brand. My clients love the Prive weightless shampoo, it’s color safe and not heavy.  It’s also important to avoid using oils with an orange tone, as blonde hair will seize the orange and incline the tone toward yellow and brassy. Always use color treatment shampoos or oils that have no yellow tones. We use the Prive vanishing oil, as it’s clear and very light and thus prevents blonde hair color from attracting any orange tones.

If you follow the tips and advice I’ve offered here, your blonde tone will be exactly as you wish and you’ll have a reliable colorist to answer your questions and fine-tune your hair whenever necessary.   It’s important to avoid using oils with an orange tone, as blonde hair will seize the orange and incline the tone toward yellow and brassy. Always use color treatment shampoos or oils that have no yellow tones. We use the Prive vanishing oil, as it’s clear and very light and thus prevents blonde hair color from attracting any orange tones.

If you follow the tips and advice I’ve offered here, your blonde tone will be exactly as you wish and you’ll have a reliable colorist to answer your questions and fine-tune your hair whenever necessary.

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There is a difference Between Balayage and Hair Painting.

Let me tell you why!

I loved studying Balayage in Paris and bringing my training back to my clients in New York, but it wasn’t until I was talking to my enlightened employer -Laurent D at Prive Salon – that I realized the full history.   He said that Balayage was introduced in Paris in 1965, but it didn’t make its way to the states until 1980 where the technique was being done in a just a few salons.

In 2009, Drew Barrymore had ombre highlights  and everyone wanted  to re- create the look. It was hard to do it with a standard foil treatment, so “hair painting” emerged.  Hair painting and Balayage are two very different techniques.

Balayage uses a surface highlight process which creates a sun-kissed effect and a contrast between your natural color and the highlighted areas.   It creates a beautiful illusion, as though your hair had been piled into a pony tail and released so that the contrasts are soft at the root and heavy on the bottom.  The colorist can create this by using a 1 point, 2 point or 3 point technique.


Hair painting is similar to using foils – you’re saturating the hair exactly the way you would do in a foil . Clay lighteners make hair painting more interesting because you can paint with them without bleeding through the hair creating spots.   It’s very creative and I’ve seen some awesome work on the internet.

So, if you want a more natural look like you were on the beach, ask for a Balayage.  If you’re looking for heavier technique, hair painting is for you.

Do they both grow out the same?  Balayage is soft at the root and brighter towards the end for girls who want the six month highlight.  Hair painting will give you a more uniform look, similar to a soft foil.

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Sigourney Weaver’s Hair Color Strategy

I enjoy doing Sigourney Weavers‘ hair color when we meet for our monthly touch-up.  I use an oil base color by Redken to give it a natural, shiny, healthy color.


I’m a brunette too, and, like many of my clients, I hate it when my hairline is dark.  So, after we process the color, my assistant Amy washes the hair and we towel dry.  Then we comb the hair as we would wear it and I come over and paint soft highlights, giving it a tortoise shell color.


It’s about an extra 1/2 hour added on to your color time – and the results are beautiful! I also use my secret recipe to soften the hairline so you don’t have that dark band.


Balayage also softens the line from any gray that’s coming in, so you can stretch your monthly visits.


I suggest doing your face-frame every other visit.  Some of my clients are able to stretch the face-frame, Balayage highlights to every 6 months.


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Your home care is Prive Weightless shampoo and conditioner which are all Keratin safe.  When you maintain your color at home you reduce fading, and your color lasts longer between visits.  It also stays soft and beautiful

Balayage Hair


Balayage highlights are not just for long hair!  You can have them at any age.  Young people love them, and you can even have Balayage highlights when you’re covering those pesky grays.


I love being at Prive, and I can’t wait to see you.



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