Today’s woman tends to be a no-fuss, get-up-and-go kind of gal. Time is of the essence, so keeping it simple is key. “You want looks that are versatile, that you can dress up or dress down,” says Bob Press, owner of Changing Heads Couture Salon in Tappan. “This summer, bold, bright styles and colors are in, so you won’t need many accessories to make a statement.”
This concept sure works for us; even leading fashionistas are looking to save a buck these days, and making the most from less is all the rage. At Changing Heads, Press — a Vidal Sassoon Academy alum whose work has been featured in Vogue and Elle — is committed to raising the bar. “It’s really a five-star experience,” he says. ”You won’t get the typical ‘scrub scrub, water-in-my-eye, soap-in-my-ear’ wash and cut. Our team is listening, coaching, communicating. We want to know what design will work best for your lifestyle.”
Press describes the salon — a quaint, 600-square-foot space that he opened in December 2008 in a historic artisan building — as an intimate, welcoming home. “Once you walk though the double doors, we offer you everything from soup to nuts” — and he means that literally. The salon provides complimentary coffee, tea, wine, and hors d’oeuvres provided by neighboring businesses. At the sink, your shampoo session involves a deep, therapeutic scalp massage, snuggly robe, makeup-friendly eye pads soaked in seaweed and tea extracts, and a discussion focused solely on your hair’s specific needs.
Press rubs elbows with the likes of Nick Arrojo (from TLC’s What Not To Wear) and avant-garde stylists in order to experiment with the newest trends. “Your hair is a significant part of your wardrobe,” he says, “so why not change it as often as you change your clothes?” The following looks capture some of the easy, breezy styles that sashayed down the runway for summer 2009: All are simple to create, with a “wow” factor that’s sure to warrant a double-take. Read on to view our collection.
A standout look doesn’t have to be complicated. With the right dress — like this vibrant zip-up — your outfit can say it all. “Bandage dresses are a must for warmer weather,” says Press. “Plus, they’re breathable and super-comfortable.” To complete the look, keep accessories simple and finish with neutral-colored metallic pumps.
Incorporate some texture into your ’do to achieve a multidimensional look. “The ’80s are making a comeback,” says Press. “We gave Kristina a strong front fringe to contrast against the softer curls. She’s an edgy girl — she wants to make a statement.” To balance an oval-shaped face, amp up your hair’s volume and add depth by highlighting it with three variations of your natural color — copper and bronze are used here. To retain curls, apply a curling cream to roots while hair is damp and dry with a diffuser. Be careful not to scrunch the curls — “you don’t want to overwork them,” says Press — and blow out the front for super strong bangs. Use a round brush to soften the crown area for extra volume, and hold with working spray.
Time it takes: Fifteen minutes.
Make me over
Make baby blues pop by sweeping natural shades, like taupe and brown, over lids; lightly line eyes with a dark brown cream liner and finish with one coat of black mascara. Use a soft neutral pink blush for cheeks, and plump up thinner lips with a rosy lip rouge.
Details: Hervé Léger indigo zip-up bandage dress; Making Faces Cosmetics Spring/Summer Collection, including “Crystal Rose” lip rouge and black Volume X mascara.
“This particular look is very red-carpet,” says Press, “but you don’t have to let it overpower you. It’s all about the complete package: the hair, the face, the dress.” The stonework detail on this Mandalay gown does the talking, so you can leave the accessories at home. Crystal-encrusted or gold-colored heels will bring out the detailing, while the rose print lace overlay adds warmth to the look.
To achieve a sexy, side-swept ’40s feel for medium, wavy hair, blow dry with a large round brush and work a matte-finish pomade onto the ends. Soften curls with an iron on high heat, and hold with working spray.
Time it takes: Forty minutes.
Make me over
“Jennifer has an olive skin tone, so we could be a little more dramatic here,” says Press. For smoky eyes, stroke a mid-tone golden-peach shadow onto lids. With a defining brush, apply taupe shadow in creases and outer corners using a windshield-wiper motion and blend outward. Line lids with carbon-black gel liner and get glam lashes with three coats of black volumizing mascara. For cheeks, sweep with a deep pink powder blush. Accentuate lips with plum or wine-colored lipstick and top with a warm, shimmery pink gloss. “The makeup is bold, but you can wear this look anywhere,” adds Press. “Throw on a pair of Rock & Republic jeans with a great casual top for a rock concert in the city — it’s that wearable.”
Details: Mandalay jewel-encrusted gown in Smoke Grey; MAC Cosmetics, including “Plum Royale” Cremestick liner and “Star Nova” Lustreglass gloss.
Make the most of classic pieces; by adding a shrug or small jacket, you’ll extend your look into the evening and through the seasons. “The possibilities are endless,” says Press of this fuschia Léger. “Wear this to the office, to a wedding, or on a date. That’s the cool thing with this dress: it works with everything.” Keep accessories to a minimum to maintain the fresh and simple look; pair black patent pumps with a matching clutch purse instead.
For low-maintenance — but still elegant — tresses, work a curling cream into hair and blow dry using a diffuser. Set curls with curling tongs and fix pins for a partial updo, letting loose strands frame the face for a sweet, romantic look. Hold with working spray.
Time it takes: Fifteen minutes.
Make me over
“We wanted to make Kayla’s look a little more dramatic, yet still keep it fresh,” says Press. For warmer and medium skin tones — and to really play up chestnut eyes — mix rustic gold and lamé-colored cream shadows onto lids. Sweep coral-toned blush at a soft, upward diagonal from the “apples” of cheeks to draw out cheekbones. Knock ’em dead with a sensual lip color in a deep red for the perfect finishing pout. “Keep it simple,” says Press. “The everyday woman is not going to devote 45 minutes on her makeup — you want to spend just enough time to bring out your natural beauty. Remember, less is more.”
Details: Hervé Léger fuschia bandage dress; Making Faces Cosmetics Spring/Summer Collection, including “Temptress” lip color and “Coral Sun” blush.
• Photographs by Dyana Van Campen
• Photographer’s assistant: Ezra Margono
• Art director: Bob Press/Changing Heads Couture Salon
• Art team: Brian Grieve, Peggy Sassani, Tracey Smith, Colleen Vilbig
• Clothes stylist: Sara Beth/CoCo Parì Boutique
• Makeup artists: Lynn Margiotta/Making Faces, Francheska Cibelli/MAC
• Models: Kristina Vazquez, Jennifer Rylick, Kayla Press