The Hair Whisperer – in search of hair magic

(not to be confused with The Hair Wisperer). Perhaps it was inevitable that there are now a number of stylists (mostly stateside) calling themselves The Hair Whisperer. However looking at their websites, I can’t really see a reason for any claim to magical powers other than two of them have very good reviews as hair stylists and one endorses a policy of using only 100% ‘natural products’ – hardly a USP in a market where many salons make the same claim. There is even a Curl Whisperer who promises to tame your tresses. However there is no Hair Whisperer promising to coax your hair into regrowth sadly.

A friend (blessed with still-lustrous locks) had a theory that going to see a practitioner to open one’s crown chakra would do the trick and that if you were losing your hair it was a clear sign the energy channel at the top of your head was blocked. I googled for some therapists in my area who claimed to manipulate chakras and bodily electro-magnetic fields generally. They did not inspire confidence to part with a £40-£50 consultation fee, being without exception male and follically-challenged (presuming they hadn’t shaved their heads for the buddhist effect.)

I thought back to the time where Jerry Hall was all over the media a few years ago extolling the benefits of ‘feng shui’ for hair, but did this really entail putting one’s fringe in the ‘happiness corner’? Craze-starter Billy Yamaguchi, owner of five California hair salons attempted to explain with his book ‘Feng Shui Beauty’ but caused more confusion than he cleared in the elaboration of how feng shui is supposed to help a woman alter her physical appearance for the better using an ancient tradition more akin to guiding people in placing objects in the home in such a configuration that energy (chi) flows and creates a positive environment. Yamaguchi maintained that we should think of our bodies as homes and groom them in a way that allowed the (chi) energy to flow freely. By placing our hair and makeup in a certain way he asserted, chi will flow through our souls, though the way of this certain way was less than clear. Feng shui, Yamaguchi expanded, is based on the belief that each individual’s personality is dominated by two of five elements: fire, earth, metal, water and wood (what happened to ‘air’? Oh well, never mind). After readers answer a rather involved 17-question quiz, they will find their most dominant personality elements. They must then wade through two chapters of jargon and unfathomable charts to determine the strength of each element in their personality, and then flip to the paragraphs throughout the book cross-referencing to their score to determine which hair style, hair color and makeup will bring forth their best physical traits. Luckily for the woman who gets lost in the maze of complicated feng shui calculations Yamaguchi saves the last chapters to straightforwardly explain make-up and hair techniques. Jerry Hall simply said that her Feng Shui hairdresser had ‘listened’ to her hair (while her hair presumably ‘whispered’ to her hairdresser) to find out how it wanted to be and let it do its own thing. She looked no different to how she had always looked.

Now Asian hair stylist Jawed Habib looks set to start the next big hair health trend with his tome Hair Yoga. Habib offers a much simpler philosopy – yoga induces relaxation. Relaxation reduces stress. Relaxation thus prevents hair loss. Dare I tell the poor man I know a female yoga teacher who does headstands on a virtually daily basis yet still suffers from hair loss? Though he does advocate getting to know what’s right for your hair, oiling the hair twice a week and daily shampooing as well.

These trends and theories are interesting to read about, but I don’t think they come any closer to curing hair loss (unless any reader wishes to disagree). Thank goodness for Aspiration and real hair we can rely on!