The Lingo

Do you need highlights or lowlights? Would you like an ombré look? How about a lob instead of a bob? As we all know, it can be very difficult to communicate with someone if you do not speak their language. The world of hair is no different. There is a lingo used among stylists that many people don't understand. Being able to communicate effectively with your stylist will help you get the best possible experience every time. 

Highlights: Lightened strands of hair. The eye is drawn toward lighter pieces, use highlights to accent your best features. 

Babylights: Very fine, subtle highlights. 

Lowlights: Pieces of hair that are darkened with hair color. Lowlights can provide dimension and make highlights appear brighter. Here, at MDS, we often refer to lowlights as "ribbons"

Base: Color that is applied to the root of the hair. Often done to cover gray as the hair grows out from the scalp. 

Foils: A highlighting or lowlighting technique done with foils to separate the lightened or darkened strands.

Balayage: A technique used to strategically lighten hair by hand, without the use of foils (although hair may be separated by sheets of plastic). The end result? Natural looking highlights that are low maintenance. 

Ombré: This look gradually blends one color into another, often from darker roots to lighter ends and can be achieved with a variety of techniques or a combination of techniques.

Bob: A short haircut with the length being between jawline and shoulders often with the ends being blunt. The bob was popularized in the 1960s by Vidal Sassoon and continues to be a great choice for women wanting a sleek style.

Lob or "long  bob": A longer version of the traditional bob, often from shoulder-grazing lengths to below the collarbone. This trendy look is often angled and may have texturized ends. 

Blunt: A cut having no layers or varying lengths. Think all one length, straight across with a nice, sharp edge.

Texturize: To add wispiness and movement by de-bulking or removing thickness. Individual hair texture is often the deciding factor when a stylist considers whether or not to texturize. This can be done through a variety of techniques including: razoring, slide cutting, point-cutting or with texturizing shears. 

Face-framing layers: Hair around the face is cut at angle so as to frame the face. Face-framing can start at the chin or layers can be focused toward the bottom of the hair. 

Layered cut: This cut provides the look of both volume and length. Hair is arranged into layers with the top layers being cut shorter than the hair underneath. The shortest layers are found at the crown and it is these short layers that provide the look of volume. This cut is easy to style and can be done on a variety of hair types and textures. The photo below shows beautiful layers on very long hair. 


"A picture is worth ten thousand words." If you ever doubt the effectiveness of your communication, share a picture with your stylist to ensure that the two of you are speaking the same language.