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John Sahag Hair Makeovers: Martina - Short Layered Shag


Martina Before

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Many people feel the need for a little help creating the perfect hair and makeup. With good cause.

A professional hairdresser or colorist will have absolutely no sentimental or emotional reasons to encourage an attachment to an outdated hair style, faded brassy color or raggedy ends.

Master makeover experts provide objective opinions through a pair of fresh eyes. An analysis of your face shape, skin and eye tones along with your hair texture, condition and type instantly determines how to make your best features dazzle.

Spectacular results occur when an entire makeover team of seasoned hairdressers, colorists and make-up mavens collaborate for a unified and customized final look.

When a hair color and makeup is harmonized with a new hair cut and style that is designed to enhance your natural beauty while addressing your lifestyle, budget and personal desires you can achieve the appearance of your dreams .

For many people the concept of a hair makeover conjures up images of major color or cuts. This is usually not the case.

The very best makeovers utilize a skilled professional team crafting a dramatic difference by simply working with the existing hues and styles while bumping them up a little.

By studying face shape, skin tone and other features, a skilled hair master can make a few tweaks that result in maximum benefits with minimal change.


Martina During

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The team of John Sahag professional hair, color and makeup experts partnered with Multi Media Magazine (MMI) to transform lucky winners of a recent MMI Model Makeover Contest.

Model Martina (shown above & throughout this piece) visited the world renowned John Sahag Workshop, NYC (212-750-7772) as one of the finalists in the Makeover Contest.

Note: Visit John Sahag on the web at:

The professional makeover provided by The John Sahag Workshop Team was designed to enhance, rather than dramatically alter, her existing look.

The Makeover

The Cut

Master stylist Thomas Clancy started the make over process by first studying Martina's face shape for inspiration.

Thomas determined that Martina had a pear face shape. Martina's natural hair was fine and thick.

Model Martina & Frank Reina Colorist During - Hair color

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Thomas was determined to work within the boundaries of Martina's goals for her ultimate makeover look. As he noted "what my client wants, my client gets".

After studying Martina's hair and interviewing her to determine her makeover goals, life and lifestyle challenges, Thomas set about creating a disconnected cut with lots of lush chunky layers around Martina's face. His goal was an ultimate "look" that harmonized with his client's hair style needs.

The focus on the new cut was to create a finely layered shape with movement and natural balance. Utilizing the world famous Sahag dry cut methodology, Thomas sectioned, cut and carved a series of shapes into Martina's hair, moving in and out between the strands carefully creating natural soft movement and flow with an artistic ease.

Thomas also created gorgeous face framing side-swept bangs netting spectacular eye-popping results. He carefully chiseled very subtle angled bang layers that cascaded over Martina's forehead along one side to open up her eyes and balance her forehead.

The finished style was a unique work of hair art custom crafted just for Martina. The new hair cut added instant softness to her overall face shape providing a more balanced form.

The Color

Martina During - Foil Highlights & Lowlights

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Martina's pre-makeover hue was a mahogany brown hue.

The general color was deemed too harsh for her beautiful skin and eye tone. It was also determined that it was slightly darker on the perimeter than at the top and had the appearance of brassy red tones.

John Sahag master colorist Frank Reina's makeover plan was to take Martina's hue to a richer dark brown that was more balanced and softer against Martina's skin.

Frank's ultimate goal was to balance and soften Martina's base from mahogany to a soft chocolate hue.

He also decided to weave subtle light and dark contrasting tones throughout the newly created base to add dimension and shimmer.

After creating Martina's base to the desired chocolate hue, Frank carefully hand painted alternating ribbons of highlights and medium owlights designed to work in harmony with her newly sculpted haircut.

The Styling

After precision processing time Martina's foils were removed and her hair was shampooed. The results were spectacular. The final base color was luscious infused with a subtle rainbow of burnt sugar tones.

Martina During

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Carefully placed dark chocolate hued lowlights radiated from the perimeter of the style while soft chocolate cherry inspired highlights fanned out as subtle splashes of light around the hairline and at the crown.

To protect the delicate new hues, John Sahag Clean For Chemically Altered Hair - a color maintenance shampoo - was used on Martina's hair followed by use of the John Sahag Clean Conditioning rinse for her naturally coarse tresses.

Martina's hair was towel dried. Thomas applied John Sahag No Frizz Spray Gel to Martina's hair along the roots and then worked into the strands down to the ends to help create a frizz free straight blow out. John Sahag Air Life Spray was sprayed directly on the roots to build in lots of volume and life.

Martina During

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Once all the styling and shaping products were distributed throughout Martina's hair Thomas separated her hair into smaller sections.

Using a round boar's bristle style brush and a blow dryer with a concentrator, he blow dried Martina's hair, starting at the back of the head while directing the air flow down the shaft from the roots to the ends building in lots of major fullness and movement at the roots with sleek straightness along the middle and ends of the strands.

The Finishing Touches

Once Martina's hair was completely dry Thomas applied a tiny bit of John Sahag Revitalizing Drops to the palms of his hands and distributed the product through Martina's tresses to add a dab of shine and renew the texture of the newly styled strands.

He used a brush to slightly backcomb the crown area to add extra fullness.

Creating a low side part he directed soft sweeping sections of hair over to one side of the crown. Thomas also directed a section of hair down and over the top of one side of Martina's forehead.

The side swept strands brushed across the top of her eyebrow directing focus to Martina's eyes.

Thomas used a hot iron to spot smooth the fringe. He pulled individual pieces along the nape and sides and finger picked the style until it was a cap of sleek and shimmering strands.

Martina After

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The Make-Up

Makeup artist Flora Kay evaluated Martina's skin and eye tone along with her face shape and stunning new hair hue to craft a major makeup design.

She created an instant face dazzling transformation with an eyebrow shaping that eliminated heavy brows. Flora also lightened the brows slightly to show case Martina's gorgeous big brown eyes.


The results were stellar with a hint of hip rock and roll edgy glamour.

The chunky face framing layers blended with the newly created longer chocolate hued layers resulted in a smooth, shiny and sassy style.

Whether worn sleek or wilder with an edge, this style rocks.


To Schedule Your Own Makeovers

If you love Martina's makeover and would love to experience your own personal transformation, call the John Sahag Workshop in New York City for an appointment (212-750-7772). The John Sahag Workshop is located at 425 Madison Avenue #2, New York, NY. 10017

More About John Sahag Workshop

Martina After

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The late John Sahag (2005) was an Internationally known and beloved hair artist for more than 30 years starting his career at the tender age of 16. John was renowned for his "dry cut" which today is used by many hairdressers around the world.

In 1985 John opened The John Sahag Workshop in New York City with the purpose of "creating an oasis away from the frenetic pace of New York life". His goal was to erase the "edginess" of urban living and to revive the energy of every man and woman entering into his Workshop space.

The ultimate goal of The John Sahag Workshop which still exists in the present time is to make sure that every person who leaves the salon is enhanced, refreshed and invigorated. Although the great hairdresser has passed on, his vision and work are still practiced today by those great hairdressers that are still involved with the John Sahag Workshop.

Stylist Thomas Clancy The John Sahag Workshop

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Sahag took pride in his work and all those that worked for him. Affectionately calling his colleagues "his kids" he created a masterful team of experts including resident stylist Gabriel Saba, Karmela Lozina, Jutta Honda, Rafael Garcia, Daniel Garza and Thomas Clancy as well as colorists Frank Reina and Santino N. Acquista. They continue John's legacy every day.

Each client is treated individually and as unique as a fingerprint.

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