Tuesday, March 31, 2009


about fifteen years ago I had an incredible experience. While working in a small salon in Devonport, Auckland I was witness to the transformative power of a great hairdo. A woman came to the salon to have a haircut. New to the salon and painfully shy, she literally skulked into the salon hugging the walls and trying to make herself as small and invisible as possible. She had a relatively sparse crop of hair which had a wave that was a law unto it's own. She was a little overweight and also had quite a large and prominent port wine stain birthmark covering a large part of her cheek and jaw. While I was cutting her hair, I noticed that she avoided her own reflection in the mirror at all costs and she sat twiddling her thumbs, completely disengaged from any conversation.
What she did have going for her were her eyes. Large and bright blue, they were by far and away her strongest feature. I cut her hair into a sharp bon to help create a sense of strength around her jawline and gave her a heavy fringe to accent her eyes. I softened the front of her hair to help cover the birthmark.
Once I had finished cutting, I did what I always did which was to get out a can of mousse and my Denman brush (it was 1992 after all) and blowdried her hair sleek and smooth and shiny. For me it was only natural to care about my work enough to finish properly and to make it look as good as I was able. However, for my client, i think it was somewhat of a surprise. I'm guessing, that because of her lack of involvement in the consultation and therefore what appeared to be lack of concern for her appearance, her previous hairdressers probably didn't care too much either.
Once I finished blowdrying and dusted the loose hair off her neck, I whipped off the cape and held a mirror up for her to have a look at the back of her hair. 
She glanced up quickly (I assume just to make sure I hadn't completely butchered her hair) and when she caught a glimpse of herself in the mirror burst into a wide smile. 
That grin spread throughout her entire body and while she sat, smiling into the mirror, her spine straightened and her shoulders dropped and drew back. She almost skipped over to the desk and with that big grin still fixed on her dial, she happily paid her bill, flung open the door, and strode down the street with her head held high and a real kick in her stride.
I have had the privilege over the years to work on some amazing jobs with incredible clients, celebrities, super models etc, but that instant was singularly the most memorable and impactful of my entire career.
It was because of that moment that I created my own line of hairstyling tools, because I wanted as many women as possible to have that kind of experience, that kind of confidence and sense of self worth every day.
I am so excited to be able to present my all new KAVANAGH, GENERATION V STYLING IRON. Hairdressers around the world agree that this is the best iron they've ever used.
Tourmaline infused ceramic plates glide effortlessly through the hair creating incredible shine whether it be for straightening, curling or flicking.
Microprocessor controlled heating provides fast heat up to a temperature regulated 210 degrees celsius and maintains even pulsing heat throughout.
Designed for use backstage at fashion shows and on the sets of fashion editorial and advertising shoots the 3.5m long cord is a godsend for women at home who can finally style their hair in front of the mirror without the hindrance of a too short cord.
And the auto shut off function means you never have to worry about whether or not you remembered to turn it off thismorning!!!
Available now at clever salons for only NZD$247.00
Coming soon to South Africa and Australia.

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