Capitol Hill's Premier Haircuts & Color

Emerson Salon is the best hair salon on Capitol Hill, Seattle. Our experienced hair stylists and colorists have been fusing the latest trends with top hair techniques for years. Whether you’re looking to transform your look in Seattle with a new haircut and color or just maintain your already hip style, we are here and ready to help.

Schedule your appointment today!

909 E Pike St, Seattle, WA 98122
T: 206-323-7437
@: emersonsalon@gmail.com

Articles from ‘Curly Hair’

Tuesday, December 16th, 2014

The Path to Perfect Curls

In the salon, we hear so many times from clients who say,

“I have no idea how to style my hair for special occasions!”

  It is not always possible to get into a stylist for a perfect hair do for a holiday party or family gathering this time of year. Here, we give you some definitive assistance on how to curl your medium to long length hair. 

  Preferably, use any heat tool that can heat ceramic or tourmaline plates up to 400 degrees fahrenheit with either an adjustable dial or digital LCD display.  If you have finer hair 300 degrees is sufficient but if you have thicker, coarser hair a higher heat may be chosen.

Below we review some tips on how to curl  your hair. It’s very important to know what technique and tool creates which type of curl.


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  As a foundation, we recommend having clean, blow dried hair with Anti-Gravity volumizer lotion to help finer hair types hold the curl (this product is heat activated and helps the heat tool to leave a longer-lasting impression on finer hair.)

On thicker, frizzier hair types product may be used in a “cocktail” before blow-drying for heat protection and moisture. We recommend mixing Moroccan Oil and Anti Gravity together before applying to damp hair before you blowdry. You can always make sure to spray the hair after curling with a flexible hairspray as it cools. We love Working Spray by Kevin Murphy.

-A 1″ barrel iron (see above) if held vertically can create a consistent spiral curl if begun at the top and moved through to the ends (see brunette above.) These can be finger separated for curl volume or twisted together for “mermaid tendrils” once the curls have curled.

-If soft retro waves is what you are looking to achieve (like seen on Reese Witherspoon above), hold the curling iron horizontally in big sections. Curl from  the middle of the section  (3-4″ down from the partline) moving the iron through to wrap the ends. Sections underneath may be curled closer to the root. Once curled and released, use your hands to smooth the wave out a bit and spray with flexible hairspray.    

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If you are looking for a softer look (see Mila Kunis right above), try using a cone shaped clipless curling iron(seen left above). It takes some practice to use but if you use a thermal protective glove you can avoid burning your fingers until you feel more comfortable using it.

-Taking 2-3″ vertical sections, wrap each section of hair with the wide portion of the iron towards the roots. Make sure to wrap the section  away from your face without twisting it .

-Once you have curled the entire head and allowed the hair to cool, use your fingers to softly separate the wave/curl and spray.

-For a tighter beach wave look, twist the hair before wrapping it.

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Sometimes you might want a consistent beach wave all over the head (see Fergie above) and that is when we recommend using a triple barrel wave iron (see above).

-Start in 2′ sections and slowly work down the section to the ends starting 3-4′ from the root.

-Once waved and cooled, finger separate and apply a lightweight beach texturizer like Hair Resort spray from Kevin Murphy.

-Then lightly spray with Session Spray from Kevin Murphy (firm hold.)

If you aren’t comfortable trying these techniques on yourself- its ok! It takes time and patience to build up skills with your hair. Need a hairstyle now? You can either book a shampoo blowout with one of our stylists for a tutorial style or book a complete formal style!

Our independent hair designers are so excited to work with you- book with one today!

Wednesday, December 3rd, 2014

A Winter of Dry Hair Issues!

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 Its that wintery time of year! Being trapped in indoor heat all day and then, braving the cold winds of winter can really do a number on the condition of your hair. If you feel like your hair is starved for moisture and TLC, use some of these tips to rehab it back to health!

  1. Remember, you do NOT have to shampoo every day. You can rinse your hair with warm to hot water to move the oils down the hair shaft. This will allow your hair to coat your hair naturally and to eliminate that greasy feeling at the scalp. Using a dry shampoo also can assist you to eliminate oils between shampoos.
  2. Use appropriate shampoos and conditioners for your hair type. Avoid sulfates and remember thicketr/coarser hair needs extra moisture where finer hair needs lightweight conditioning that won’t weight it down. We are loving Kevin Murphy’s Hydrate.Me series that uses a kakadu plum that add moisture for all textures!
  3.  Apply leave-in conditioner or dry argan oil to the mid-shaft to ends on a daily basis. If you heat style you could make sure to do it twice a day- once before heat styling and once before bed. We recommend Moroccan Oil- it is also great for holding color and cutting down on blow dry time those early mornings before work.
  4. Use a satin pillowcase to stop hair frizz from being created while you toss and turn while sleeping. Cotton pillowcases will draw moisture away from your hair and dry it out more.
  5. Avoid high heat tools and blow dryers. A medium setting will take longer but your hair’s condition will not suffer from the shock of being forced to dry/style so quickly. Also, high heat can cause frizz by burning your hairs’ outside cuticle layer which will create a peeling effect. The less frizz you make- the less you have to work to manage it.
  6. Try an at home hair mask of avocado or coconut oil to boost your hairs’ moisture content. If not, we love the Weightless Hydrating Masque from Moroccan Oil. It improves elasticity, shine and manageability and only takes 7 minutes with no heat.

Hopefully these tips will have you feeling better about your hair during the winter freeze!

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Tuesday, September 30th, 2014

Feel Empowered with Curls!

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One of the most challenging types  for the client to maintain every day is any hair with wave, frizz or curl. It is the driest type by nature, and is the most sensitive to humidity changes (which here in Seattle is a good deal of the time so this type is difficult to get a handle on.)

Here we will go over some helpful points to remember when taking care of your wavy or curly tresses-  male or female!

  • It is not necessary to shampoo every day or every other day: Some of the best maintained curly hair is only washed once or twice a week. Why? Because your hair’s natural oils that secrete at the scalp or the best designed leave-in conditioner for your hair. If you wash too often, you are removing the oils and they do not get a chance to nourish through to the midshaft or ends. Instead, rinse your hair with very warm to hot water if you need to feel a little less “greasy.” This will help move the hair oils down the hair shaft where it can help to moisturize the dry ends. We highly recommend using a dry shampoo with a blowdryer if you feel extra greasy- we love Alterna Caviar’s Dry Shampoo that will help balance the oils at the scalp post workout or upon waking up in the morning.

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  • Use shampoos and conditioners without sulfates, excessive waxes or non-water soluble silicones. The sulfates in cheaper shampoos are a salt that not only can fade your haircolor service but can exacerbate frizz and dryness.  Specifically, avoid sodium lauryl sulfate as it is the cheapest detergent to put into a shampoo to create lather. Lather does not equate to clean and we recommend shampooing 2x in a row if you are only washing once a week.

Waxes  and synthetic non water soluble silicones coat and build up on the hair. Although they can temporarily assist with frizz, it is not a long term solution.  If you use these products it is necessary to detox or clarify the hair of buildup regularly as the hair will become weighed down, and difficult to style or color. If you have been using products with these ingredients- use Kevin Murphy’s Maxi Shampoo 3-4 times  in a row to exfoliate the hair’s cuticle of buildup.

Specifically avoid any hair styling product with these in the first 4 ingredients: Trimethylsilylamodimethicone, Dimethicone, Phenyl Trimethicone, Cetearyl Methicone, Dimethiconol, Amodimethicone,  or Stearyl Dimethicone

  • Heat Style your Natural Style with Smarts:  If you aren’t air drying, once out of the shower use a wide tooth comb to detangle. Avoid brushing the hair at every stage- wet or dry it creates a general look of mass frizz. Then, blot the hair with a towel and do not rub the hair. Apply your favorite leave-in product. We recommend Moroccan Oil Treatment Oil  or Motion Lotion by Kevin Murphy (for Fine to Medium density hair) or Moroccan Oil  and/or Curl Defining Cream (for Medium to Thick density hair.)  Men specifically love Kevin Murphy’s Easy Rider because it uses shea butter to control curl with minimal hold and they apply it once the hair is 50% towel blotted.

You can “cocktail” products which means to mix them together in your hands and then apply to hair. Its like a special prescription of hair product! Sometimes a stylist will combine Moroccan Oil with the Defining Cream it just depends on the amount of control needed for the texture.   This will displace your curl less and avoid any potential frizz.

Use a diffuser extension on your blowdryer on a medium to high heat setting but on a slower, less aggressive speed. The longer it takes your hair to dry the more control you have over how the curl/wave that is springing up. This will assist to minimize frizz as well as to showcase your texture! One great tip is to making small corkscrews with the hair all over the head and diffuse. Always let the hair sit inside the diffuser cup with minimal touching before turning it on.  Once 85% dry wait 10-15 seconds for the section to cool and “set.” Then, finger separate or flip your head upside down briefly.  Avoid trying to dry the hair completely as the frizz will inevitably manifest and ruin your style. Feel free to use a little more Oil or Cream near the root once dry to create control where you need it.

  • Once you’ve mastered these tips, make sure to ROCK IT! Accept and love your hair!

Your hair is special and although it is challenging- people around you covet your uniqueness. Bask in your hair’s glory!

Monday, January 9th, 2012

Check out Perfection SmoothOut

“Sleek, smooth, manageable hair is now possible without risk. Achieve perfect hair effortlessly with the Perfection SmoothOut. Perfection SmoothOut is a new patent-pending innovation that instantly and safely transforms coarse, frizzy, hair to smooth and superbly shiny with results lasting 8-12 weeks. Perfection SmoothOut employs a proprietary nano-amino acid complex that virtually alters the internal textural memory of the hair fiber to transform it to a smoother, frizz-free state. Why stop at great, when you can have Perfection?” (Source)

We just started carrying this new smoothing product. It’s comparable to the “Brazilian Blowout”, but, safe without the formaldehyde! I’m excited to have this safer version. This works great for people with frizzy or uneven textures. The cost is $180 for medium to long hair, but, for the next month I’ll do it for half off. That’s just $90!!

Post by John