Sara Rue is definitely not Less Than Perfect when it comes to her gorgeous cinnamon infused red locks. Sara, who stars as Claude Casey, on ABC's comedy has some of the most gorgeous hair on the small screen.
If you don't believe me ask Sharon Osbourne who raved over Sara's stunning locks on The Sharon Osbourne Show when Sara popped by.
Luckily I was able to get the hot scoop on Sara's hair from her hairdresser, Robert Hallowell. Not only is Robert the onset hairstylist for the Less Than Perfect show, he is Sara's personal celebrity stylist. It also happens to be true that Robert is a favorite of HairBoutique.com.
I caught up with Robert a few days ago at his Hollywood home while he was bunny sitting for a friend while dealing with his two cats (Sweetpea & Handsome) and dog.
He was also getting ready to do some hair rescue on a famous model who "needed some hair help". Luckily the bunny, who has a tendency to munch on Robert's walls, was in a good mood and playing with Sweetpea the cat, while Robert gave me the blow by blow on his work with the Less Than Perfect gang and Sara.
Robert confirmed that Sara has "gorgeous deep cinnamon-y, ruby reddish hair". I prodded Robert, who never curls and tells, what Sara is really like in person. "She is a doll" Robert confided and "she has amazing hair that Sharon Osbourne just loved".
In fact Sharon asked Sara who did her hair". I asked "so Robert, if Sharon loves Sara's hair and you do Sara's hair, why don't you go on Sharon's show and whip up some custom hair recipes for Ms. Osbourne?"
Robert laughed "if only it was that easy I would be on the show in a heartbeat". So Sharon Osbourne, wherever you are, Robert is your man.
Secrets To Sara's Gorgeous Hue
Robert reported that Sara has "an abundance - as in lots and lots - of finely textured medium straight hair".
Not only does he "style her hair for the 10-12 hour days on the Less Than Perfect TV set", Robert colors Sara's hair as well.
Robert confided that to get the deep cinnamon and berry stained effect "he first uses professional powder bleach on Sara's hair (approximately 10 volume) to get a good color lift".
After he rinses out the bleach he "applies semi-permanent Clairol Natural Instincts color in alternating hues depending on Sara's mood". He loves the Natural Instincts product "because it has a high pigment and stains wonderfully".
Robert explained that he "applies the bleach first" because by itself the "Clairol Natural Instincts doesn't provide any color lifting".
He told me "applying the Natural Instincts on top of the newly bleached strands works perfectly to create that deeply stained color and shine effect".
I pumped Robert for the exact Clairol shades he selects for Sara. He confessed "he usually selects the #22 - Cinnaberry along with #16 Spiced Tea depending on the color he is trying to create". Robert confirmed "Cinnaberry definitely gives Sara's hue that deep cinnamon shade while the Spiced Tea is a little lighter in auburn tones".
I asked Robert how often he has to touch up the reds due to fading, since the Clairol Natural Instincts is a semi-permanent color - meaning it will wash out over time. Robert explained "because he bleaches Sara's hair first" the highly pigmented red hues "barely fade at all with shampoo".
Robert elaborated that the "pre-bleach treatment opens the cuticle" and the color "stains" the cortex and "acts just like a permanent color, even though it is billed as semi-permanent".
The good news? If you want the same color effect as Sara and are willing to pre-highlight or bleach you will have a permanent color effect when using the Natural Instincts. If you want the color to wash out over time, don't apply the color to pre-bleached or highlighted hair because it will act like permanent hair color and will not wash out.
Special Hair Events
Besides creating Sara's spectacular cinnamon and spice hues, Robert also crafts special styles for red carpet events. Robert reported that he created Sara's hairstyle for the recent Elton John Oscar party.
Depending on how Sara wants her hair to look on the set, Robert will use different styling techniques and products. Currently, Robert uses his own signature hair care and styling line on the heads of the cast of Less Than Perfect.
Sara shampoos her fine strands with Robert's Shine Booster Shampoo. After towel blotting her hair, Robert applies a lot of Raw Hold Gel and "blow dries her damp hair with a round brush". Since they shoot on the set for 10 to 12 hours a day, Robert reported "he applies a lot of the Gel to Sara's head to help maintain the set".
Sara likes to change up her looks for the show and sometimes she likes her hair to be straight except for a little bend on the ends.
Robert will also blow dry her hair straight but then to create the slight bend on the ends, will roll Sara's hair in big self-adhesive rollers that are approximately 3" in diameter.
When he wraps Sara's hair in the Velcro rollers he doesn't wrap the hair completely around the curler and will let the ends hang free while they dry to accentuate the bend.
Regardless of the style that he is creating, Robert likes to add root lift for Sara's fine strands. To get root lift he uses his Super Volumizing Tonic spritzed onto the root area for great fullness.
Robert also reported that he uses his Rawhold Hairspray on Sara regardless of the style because it provides such great hold. He sometimes will add a drop or two of his Love That Shine Drops to give ultra shimmer and shine.
With the help of Robert Hallowell, Sara Rue has spectacular color and style. Sharon, are you listening?