So, the bridal cars are booked for 1pm. When should I get to the salon for ‘operation bridal hair’?
“You’d need to come in about 9am. That will allow plenty of time for nerve-calming coffee and pastries before the styling gets underway. Ideally, you’ll have washed your hair the night before, otherwise shampooing on the morning may leave it too soft to hold a style. If the whole wedding party is booked in there’s usually an upbeat party atmosphere with champagne in the salon. However, sometimes a bride will come in with just one person for support and prefers a calmer environment. It’s your day and our job to make you feel happy, comfortable and, by the time you leave us, your most beautiful. Wear something you can step out of – nothing that needs to go over your head! And in case of style-wrecking winds, we always call for a car 15 minutes before the styling’s finished to take you home.”
What should I bring with me?
“Definitely any accessory you want to wear. If it’s a comb or tiara we’ll fix it in place before you leave. If you’re going for fresh flowers, it’s a good idea to bring them along on wire so we can show you, or better still a friend, where and how to fix them. We wouldn’t advise flowers are put into your hair until the last possible minute otherwise they may wilt before the ceremony or photographs. The same goes for a veil. We’ll show your maid of honour or whoever has come with you how to attach it and take it off after the ceremony without ruining the style. If, during your trial, we decided on a look which requires a doughnut or hairpiece, you should bring that along too. It’s no problem for us to organise colour-matched hairpieces in advance and should you forget the doughnut, it’s not the end of the world – we’ve got spares in the salon. Where things like kirby grips are concerned, we’ve got hundreds in all differing shades so there’s no need for you to buy them in advance.”
What if I’ve just come into the area for the sake of the venue and not had a trial?
“As long as we’ve got three to four hours, there’s enough time to try a few looks until you find one you like. Bring along tear sheets from red-carpet events showing looks you like and ones you definitely don’t. That way, we won’t waste time showing you a look, say a chignon, if you know you won’t like it. A picture of the dress is good too – if the neckline is very detailed, I’ll aim for a simpler-looking hairstyle. The same goes for jewellery. If you’re wearing a statement necklace or a pair of earrings, I’d tone the hair down so it’s not competing for attention.”
How about if you’re booked to style my hair on site. What do you need?
“We’ve styled bridal hair in all sorts of locations and as long as there’s a mirror and a chair we’re good to go. Natural daylight is always preferable and plug sockets are essential but apart from that, we have everything we could possibly need in our kit, including equipment for last-minute requests from grooms for a tidy-up of their own hair.”
What about an emergency hair kit for when you’re not there?
“That’s why it’s so good when a bride brings along her mum or maid of honour. We can show you how, with just a small tweak, you can save a style that’s maybe been windswept, overly touched by your new husband or had an OTT spin on the dancefloor! As far as SOS products go, a mini can of hairspray, some spare kirby grips and a bottle of dry shampoo will revive any style back to picture-perfect.”
Finally, what would you say are your most requested bridal looks at the moment?
“Definitely Robbie Williams’ wife Ayda Field’s wedding hair – it has been for a while now. She went for a gorgeous up/down do – long cascading waves caught at the back by fresh flowers. I’ve also been doing a lot of 1950s looks which flatter all the vintage-style gowns that are popular at the moment – styles like finger waving and pin curls. This is when a trial is a good idea, though – a few brides have found that while they love the idea of pin curls for their wedding, they can sometimes look a little stiff.”
Phoebe DiChiara is Bridal Specialist at Toni&Guy, 9-11 Market Street, Hertford SG14 1BD. Phone 01992 535303 for appointments.