This past Saturday, I had the great pleasure to visit with Patrick Wellington at his Chelsea salon. At Wellington Hair Spa (119 West 23rd st. b/t between 6th and 7th Avenue), the emphasis is on healthy natural hair with limited use of unnecessary chemicals. Patrick has an illustrious career with 20 years of experience styling celebrities, executives, and a whole host of other fabulous gals. He has appeared in the pages of Essence and was featured on the TLC reality show “10 Years Younger.”
TGATP: How did you get your start in hair?
PW: I went to school then I went to work for John Atkinson, where I got invaluable extended training.
TGATP : Did anyone else in your family do hair?
PW: My cousin, who raised me, was a dressmaker so I was always around fashion and cutting. That’s what got me fascinated with about cutting, except I chose to cut hair instead of fabric.
TGATP: What is the worse faux pas that women make with their hair?
PW: A lot of women try to put their own chemical in their hair and then they come to the hairdresser to fix the damage.
TGATP: What are you top tips to grow healthy hair?
PW: 1. Stop doing your own chemicals. 2. Your relaxer does not have to be totally straight. 3. Use only really good salon quality shampoos and conditioners. 4. Always use heat protecting serums when applying any kind of heat, such as blow dryers and flat irons.
TGATP: What is the emerging hair trend for Spring/Summer 2011?
PW: This spring is all about short or medium length hair, long is out.
TGATP: Which celebrities do you feel always get hair right?
PW: Halle Berry and Jennifer Hudson are always on hair point.
TGATP: Which celebrities would you like to see get a hair redo?
PW: Britney Spears has been in the spotlight again lately and could definitely do something different.
TGATP: What are the hair products no well-coiffed women should be without?
PW: My favorite relaxer is Mizani and I like some of their other products. Briliant Emollient Finishing Gloss by Aveda, because it protects the hair and gives a nice sheen. The KeraCare products from Avlon, the Hydrating Shampoo, which moisturizes and detangles. The best conditioner is the KeraCare Humetco. From Jane Carter Solutions, I use the Nourish and Shine and the Wrap and Roll regularly.
TGATP: What are some misconceptions that women, particularly Black Women, have about their hair?
PW: Black women do not realize how fragile their hair is. Black hair is very fragile and has to be trimmed regularly. No matter how long or short you have to keep it clipped at the ends. It will grow healthy at the root but the ends are what matter most.
TGATP: What vitamins should women take to help their hair?
PW: Vitamin E definitely. It won’t make hair grow faster but it will make hair grow healthier.
TGATP: Most women have a nightly facial ritual but forget their hair at night. What should women be doing nightly to their hair in preparation for bed?
PW: Tie it up, wrap it, or pin it because it makes it easier to style in the morning. Satin pillows are a must to protect the hair, if you cannot tie it up.