Insider Tips, Deals, and Ideas to Get Great Hair

Best tools, hottest products, great freebies, and more

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SECRET OF A LAZY WOMAN WITH GREAT WAVES
Texture Hair (Un)Dressing Creme from Bumble and Bumble ($26, at sephora.com). Rub into wet hair at night, braid or twist several strands, crash. By morning, sexy slept-in waves.

DEAL ALERT
Mention Chicago magazine and receive a 15 percent discount at sister-owned Strange Beauty Show Salon (1118 N. Ashland Ave.; 773-252-9522). New customers at Michele Lynn Hairstyling (1315 S. Michigan Ave.; 312-786-1200) receive a $25 gift card toward their next cut or color. This incentive has converted many, including an editor or two on our staff.

A GOOD SOURCE FOR FREE SERVICES THAT DON’T SUCK
salonapprentice.com. Trainees at Chicago’s higher-end salons (Art + Science, Robert Jeffrey, Red 7, others) post here to find guinea pigs for bobs, layered cuts, color, and more.

A CHECKLIST FOR THOSE CONSIDERING FEATHER EXTENSIONS
Prepare to trigger metal detectors (with the clasp holding plumes in place); avoid brushing (although washing, drying, and curling are fine); prepare for the onslaught of bird nicknames. Available at Blueberry Moon in Lincoln Park (from $15). 2108 N. Halsted St.; 773-529-3333

TOP BARBERS
Bells and whistles be damned, some men just want an old-fashion barber they can trust. (1) “It’s just me and my skills,” says Aaron Williams, whose methodical scissor cuts ($15) give Esquire Barbershop in Andersonville an old-timey edge. (2) For 40 years, Sam Gullo has been filling his chair at the Civic Opera Barber Shop in the Loop with corporate types ($25). (3) Out in Highwood, Gino Savino’s classic shop gives off a casual Italian vibe. “Everyone who comes in is my friend,” Savino says. “They confide in me like a priest.” Confessions come with espresso and a slow hot- towel shave ($21). (4) Pete Faraci at Father & Son in Edgewater delivers quality clipper work ($18). (5) See Greg Slade at Gabby’s Barbershop in Lake View for a $5 beard trim and a foam neck shave (with any $14 haircut). (6) Zariff, Barack Obama’s long-time barber at Hyde Park Hair Salon, creates something, well, presidential ($21).

TOP STYLIST TOOL
The Rusk Speed Freak, a 2000-watt ceramic and tourmaline dryer ($120, at ulta.com). “It’s the best,” gushes Venita Hobson of Van Cleef Hair Studio, who uses the Speed Freak on all hair types.

911 FOR A LAST-MINUTE MANE TAME
Solo Salon offers a $35 “express style” service that can be booked the same day. In 30 minutes or less, a stylist will add product and will tousle, scrunch, and style your do. Warning: Blowouts and updos cost extra. 1065 W. Madison St.; 312-491-9771

YES, THERE IS A BETTER WAY TO ASK FOR LAYERS
According to Laura Boton, owner of Sine Qua Non, “Tell your stylist that you want your hair layered so there is movement and volume but that you don’t want to see layers on top. Layers are important—but we’re getting away from the obvious and seeing more one-length long hair.” sinequanonsalon.com

LATEST BUZZ
Formaldehyde-free keratin treatments. (Keratin is a protein that gets locks superstraight, but keratin products have an iffy reputation for their chemical content.) Offered at Charles Ifergan and Marianne Strokirk salons. charlesifergan.com; mariannestrokirk.com

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