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Hairsticks: Functional Or Festive Hair Accessories?

Introduction

Hairsticks cycle in and out as hot fashion hair accessories. Harper's Bazarre Magazine in even featured one white-gold and diamond Mizuki hair stick (pictured to left) that cost $2,500 back in 2000 - 2001. That's right, for that price you only got one hairstick. To buy two hairsticks it would have cost a mere $5,000. Harper's recognizef that hairsticks were very hot hair accessories and stated in the same issue that the "hair stick replaces the pencil as the updo accessory of choice."

What was amazing was that the Mizuki hairstick was only one stick. It did not even include a set of two sticks. (Although the stick is no longer available, for more information call 212-941-0332.

Hairstick Misconceptions

There are a lot of misconceptions about hairsticks and who can wear them, how they should be worn and what they are designed for.

I recently was stopped at a grocery store by a checker with medium length hair. She wanted to see my hairsticks that I was wearing. I popped one of the sticks out of my hair twist and showed it to her. She oohed and aahed about the authentic and rare Swarovski golden rare Comet OR beads and then sighed. She told me that she just loved hair sticks but her hair was way to short to wear them.

I told her that hairsticks can be worn as pure decoration and don't have to be used to hold or secure hair. When I told her this little secret her face beamed with excitement.

I explained to the checker that sticks can be used purely for adornment. They don't have to be functional by any stretch. Slide them into thick braids to accent the beautiful plaits, twist them into a French Twist to show off the seam or even pop them into two fat hair twists to show off the twists.

I also explained that hairsticks can come in different lengths and sizes. Hair sticks come as short as 2 2-1/2 inches (not counting any jeweled toppers) or as long as 12 - 1/2 inch sticks for longer or thicker hair.

Hairsticks - What Are They

Hairsticks are not new to the world of hair fashion. Although there are questions about when hairsticks officially made the hair scene, most historians believe that hairsticks first appeared many centuries ago in the Orient.

It is also unclear whether the hairsticks were used as functional hair tools to hold the hair in place or as elaborate decorative jewels (like the photo above), hairsticks were often used by both women and men in their hair. Hairsticks can be made out of just about any type of materials from bone and wood to metal.

Hairsticks In Modern Times

Although women and men with long hair still use hairsticks as hair tools to secure their long locks, the hair and fashion world has discovered the advantages of hairsticks as pure adornment and decoration.

Whether you wear hairsticks to hold your hair into a popular French Twist or bun or choose to use sticks to decorate a braid or edgy hair twist, hairsticks are here to stay.

Hairsticks can be used to develop unique hair looks that range from very romantic to hot and sassy. They can also be worn in business and professional settings. Both men and women can utilize hairsticks for their hair.

Many plain hairstyles can be instantly jazzed up with the addition of gorgeous jeweled hairsticks as accent pieces. Also, brides are finding that jeweled hairsticks under a see-through veil is a stunning and rare wedding look that creates a unique look and can add a special romantic touch.

Recently a prospective groom wrote to me to help him pick out a pair of wedding hairsticks for his bride-to-be as his special gift to her. He told me that he loved the fact that our sticks were "one of a kind" and that this would make it a special gift from him.

(Note: All photos for this article are copyrighted protected by HairBoutique.com, all rights reserved)

Basic Knot

One of the most basic styles that can take either functional or decorative advantage of hairsticks is the basic hair knot. The hair knot can be worn in a variety of ways including on either side of the head right above the ear. The knot style (shown to the side and below) is a great style for most hairstick beginners. Knots are fairly easy to do on hair that is shoulder length or longer.

Tiny knots can also be created by people with shorter hair and hairsticks can be used to decorate the small knots.

A series of knots can be used by people with super long hair if their hair is too thick for just one or two knots.

Hair knots work best if the starting hair is dry and straight. Knots can be created on curly and wavy hair but the process requires more time. Jill, the HairBoutique.com model in these photos, has naturally wavy hair. Her hair was blow dried straight using Mine's Smoothing Lotion to remove the waves and give it tons of shine. Once her wavy hair was straightened it was easier to create the various knots and styles.

This style offers many variations. The free flowing hair can be braided, curled or put into a second knot.

The number of hairsticks that are used can range from one to many depending on your imagination and the number of hairsticks that are available to be utilized.

Basic Knot Instructions

Knots are some of the easiest styles to learn to do with hairsticks. To create a basic hair knot the first step is to determine where the knot will be located on the head.

The knot shown above and to the side is located at the center of the crown.

1. To create this center knot the hair was brushed smoothly and then separated into one strand from the hairline, over the ears and gathered at the back of the head. 2. Once the hair was carefully brushed smooth and gathered into one big strand, the strand was twisted into a clockwise direction. 3. Once the strand was twisted tightly the coiled strand was carefully sculpted into a big circle hat was positioned so that it lay flat against the base of the scalp. The remaining hair was carefully pinned into a coil with the largest part of the coil or knot at the base and the smallest part of the coil at the center.

Depending on your hair texture and length you can use one two or more hairsticks to secure the knot. Secure the knot by using the sticks to carefully weave them into the knot so that the sticks lays flat against the "tail" of the coil securing it against the head and holding the coil or knot in place.

Double Knot

Creating a double knot is very similar to creating a single knot. Double knots can be configured with one knot at the top of the crown and one knot at the nape of the neck (shown in picture to the left).

Double knots can also be created closer together or one knot can be larger with a smaller knot nestled underneath. Two knots can also be created side by side at the nape of the neck. Knots are very versatile and be worn a variety of ways.

Knotted styles are perfect for hairsticks. You use the sticks as anchors to hold down the sticks or you can use the hairsticks are adornment. Either way, they look stunning.

Two Knots On Each Side Of The Head

Instead of having two knots placed at the back of your head as shown here, simply create two knots instead of the one used in the side rolls with knot. It is great for waist length, heavy hair. It does require four sticks instead of the normal two.

French Twist

This style never goes out of fashion. It can be worn the traditional way or jazzed up and worn messy, half up and half down and with all sorts of different modifications. The French Twist style can work for any type of hair that is medium to long. Even thin hair can wear a modified French Twist.

The Twist is not difficult to learn. It is a good style that can be securely pinned into place. This style is the basis for many more advanced styles, and it adapts nicely to 2 partial styles for very long hair. For instructions read the HairBoutique.com article on creating French Twists.

Partial French Twist Instructions

This style is based on one of the French Twist variations. It is best used with medium to long hair.

It can be done in a variety of ways including doing it over one ear with shoulder length hair. It is not as secure as a French twist, but it is quick enough to re-do if it comes undone.

This style is really pretty simple. You will need to play with it a little bit to get it the way you want.

1. Wash your hair and use a good styling gel that gives body and style. Let your hair "age" overnight. This allows the oils to build up a little and allows the style to hold better.

2. Create a French Twist and pin it securely using either hairpins in the same color as your hair or use hair sticks.

3. Once you have the French Twist the way you like it, take the end of a rattail or similar tool and carefully remove a few pieces of hair from the top of the twist being careful not to disturb the updo.

4. Pull the liberated strands of hair over the French Twist so that they appear to "splay" out of the updo. Use hairspray to give the splayed ends some holding power.

5. Add as many hairsticks as you would like for accent pieces. You also have the option to use hairsticks to anchor the original twist before you pull out the individual strands.

French Braid

This style shown to the right is based on the classic French Braid pattern. It is best used with medium to long hair. Braid the hair to the very end and then take the "tail" and carefully tuck it up and under the rest of the hair at the nape of the neck. This gives the appearance of a soft braided chignon.

Securely pin the tail so that it is hidden under the rest of the braid. You can dress it up further with many jeweled hairsticks that are carefully tucked into sections of the braid with the jeweled ends accenting the plaits. You can also use tiny flowers, beads or other hair accessories.

Conclusion

Hairsticks are probably one of the most versatile types of hair jewelry that you can own.

Contrary to popular opinion, hairsticks can be worn for their functional advantages or purely for their beauty and adornment advantages. Hairsticks can be made out of a wide range of materials ranging from bone and metal to steel and plastic. Another misconception is that only people with long hair can wear hairsticks. In reality, hairsticks can be worn by people with just about any length or texture of hair.

If you want to talk more about this or other hair care articles on HairBoutique.com or anywhere else, please post a message on HairBoutique.com's Hair Talk Forums.

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