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Hairdressing Glossary

Ever been confused by the terminology your hairdresser is using during the consultation? Here is a lift of 100 common industry terms, and what your stylist actually means!





1. Balayage - A technique for highlighting hair in which the dye is painted on to create a graduated, natural-looking effect.

2. Toner - A product used after bleaching to enhance the tone of the hair color or to neutralize unwanted brassiness.

3. Ombre - A hair coloring technique where a darker base color is gradually lightened along the lengths, usually starting from the mid-shafts to the ends.

4. Sombre - A softer version of ombre with less contrast between the colors.

5. Undercut - A haircut where the sides and back are trimmed short, with the top hair left longer.

6. Layering - Cutting hair at different lengths throughout the hairstyle to create volume and texture.

7. Point Cutting - A technique used to texturize hair by cutting into the ends with scissors at an angle.

8. Thinning - Reducing the volume of thick hair using special thinning scissors or a razor.

9. Babylights - Very fine, subtle highlights that mimic the natural highlights of a child's hair.



10. Keratin Treatment - A chemical process that smooths and shines frizzy hair.

11. Brazilian Blowout - A hair-smoothing treatment that seals a liquid keratin and a preservative solution into the hair with a hair iron.

12. Texturizing - Techniques used to add or remove volume and create texture in the hair, often involving layering or thinning.

13. Chignon - A knot or coil of hair arranged on the back of a woman's head.

14. Demi-permanent Color - A type of hair color that lasts up to 24 washes and fades gradually.

15. Permanent Color - Hair dye that lasts until the hair grows out or is cut off.

16. Root Touch-Up - Coloring the roots of the hair to match the color of the lengths and ends.

17. Bleach Bath - A less aggressive hair lightening technique that mixes shampoo with bleach.

18. Pixie Cut - A short hairstyle typically short on the back and sides of the head and slightly longer on the top.

19. Fringe - The part of the hair that is cut and styled to hang or curl over the forehead, also known as bangs.



20. Fade - A very short taper that "fades" into the skin at the neckline and/or sides.

21. Taper - Gradual decrease of length in hair, especially from the top to the natural hairline.

22. Highlights - Sections of hair dyed lighter than the natural color to add dimension.

23. Lowlights - Sections of hair dyed darker than the natural color for added depth.

24. Weaving - A highlighting technique where selected strands are colored, leaving other strands in their natural state for contrast.

25. Slicing - A technique used in highlighting by taking a section of hair and applying color or bleach to the whole section for a dramatic effect.

26. Bonding - The process of attaching hair extensions using adhesive glue.

27. Micro Links - A method of attaching hair extensions with tiny, silicone-lined beads.

28. Tape-ins - Hair extensions that are pre-taped and then taped/glued together on either side of your own hair.

29. Cornrows - An African style of hair grooming where the hair is braided very close to the scalp.



30. Dutch Braid - A three-strand braid where each section is braided under the others, giving it a raised appearance.

31. French Braid - A three-strand braid that incorporates hair from the sides into the braid as it goes down the back of the head.

32. Fish Tail Braid - A type of braid that resembles the tail of a fish.

33. Box Braids - Individual plaits that are usually divided by small squared off parts or boxes.

34. Razor Cut - A haircutting technique in which the hair is cut with a razor blade.

35. Clipper Cut - A haircut achieved with the use of electric clippers.

36. Detangling - The process of removing tangles and knots from the hair.

37. Diffusing - A method of drying hair using a diffuser attachment on a blow dryer to reduce frizz and define curls.

38. Double Process Color - A two-step coloring process where the hair is lightened to remove natural color, then toned to the desired shade.

39. Silk Press - A modern day press and curl that gives natural hair the look like it has been chemically straightened.



40. **Gloss

/ Glaze** - A semi-permanent treatment that adds shine and enhances or corrects the tone of hair color.

41. Root Smudging - A technique used to blend hair roots with highlights for a more natural look.

42. Shadow Root - Coloring technique that darkens the roots of the hair to add depth and reduce maintenance.

43. Balayage Ombre - A combination of balayage and ombre techniques for a graduated color effect.

44. Virgin Hair - Hair that has never been chemically treated or dyed.

45. Partial Highlights - Highlighting only certain sections of the hair, typically around the face.

46. Full Highlights - A highlighting technique that covers the entire head.

47. Sectioning - Dividing the hair into sections during cutting, coloring, or styling for easier management.

48. Overdirecting - A styling technique where hair is brushed or combed in the opposite direction of its natural fall for more volume.

49. Backcombing - Combing hair towards the scalp to create volume.



50. Teasing - Similar to backcombing, but involves tangling the hair to create volume at the roots.

51. Blunt Cut - A straight-across cut at the ends of the hair, creating a clean line.

52. Graduated Cut - A haircut where the hair is cut at progressively shorter lengths toward the back to create a curved layering effect.

53. Asymmetrical Cut - A haircut where one side is longer than the other.

54. Stacked Bob - A layered bob haircut where the layers are stacked upon each other at the back of the head.

55. Inverted Bob - A type of bob haircut with the back shorter and angles longer towards the front.

56. Layered Bob - A bob cut with layers added for volume and movement.

57. Curtain Bangs - Long, parted bangs that frame the face on both sides, resembling a curtain.

58. Bottle Blonde - Someone who has dyed their hair blonde.

59. Brunette - A person with dark brown hair.



60. Redhead - A person with red hair.

61. Co-washing - Washing hair with conditioner instead of shampoo to retain moisture.

62. Pre-lightening - The process of lightening the hair before applying the desired color.

63. Base Color - The primary tone of your hair color, either natural or dyed.

64. Dimension - The range of tones in the hair, which can be enhanced with highlights or lowlights.

65. Tint Back - Returning previously lightened or colored hair back to a darker shade.

66. Growth Pattern - The natural direction in which the hair grows from the scalp.

67. Hair Density - The number of hair strands per square inch on the scalp.

68. Hair Porosity - The hair's ability to absorb and retain moisture.

69. Hair Texture - The natural condition of the hair, whether it's straight, wavy, curly, or coily.

70. Hair Volume - The amount of space the hair occupies, often achieved through styling for a fuller look.



71. Heat Styling - The process of styling hair using heat tools like straighteners, curling irons, and blow dryers.

72. Ionic - Refers to hairdryers and other tools that emit negative ions to help break down water molecules, speeding up drying time and reducing frizz.

73. Keratin - A protein that is a primary component of hair, skin, and nails.

74. Leave-in Conditioner - A type of conditioner applied after shampooing and left in the hair, not rinsed out.

75. Mousse - A foam hair product that adds volume and shape.

76. Pomade - A styling product that adds shine and smoothness, often used for sculpting hairstyles.

77. Serum - A liquid or gel that provides shine and smoothness, often used to tame frizz.

78. Shag - A layered haircut that results in a messy, textured look.

79. Shampoo - A hair product used to clean the scalp and hair, removing dirt, oil, and product buildup.



80. Conditioner - A hair care product used after shampooing to moisturize and detangle hair.

81. Split Ends - The fraying or splitting of hair strands, typically due to damage.

82. Strand Test - A preliminary test done on a small section of hair to assess how it will respond to a chemical treatment.

83. Updo - A hairstyle that involves arranging the hair instead of allowing it to fall freely.

84. Volumizing - Products or techniques used to add volume to

the hair.

85. Wrap - A hairstyle in which the hair is wrapped around the head to create a smooth, sleek look.

86. Yaki - A texture of synthetic or human hair extensions that resembles chemically relaxed Afro-Caribbean hair.

87. Zero Fade - A type of fade haircut that tapers down to the skin.

88. Twist Out - A method of styling natural hair in twists, then unraveling them for defined curls.

89. Silk Wrap - A technique used to straighten natural hair without direct heat, using a silk scarf and a blow dryer with a comb attachment.



90. Scalp Treatment - Treatments designed to exfoliate, moisturize, or cleanse the scalp for healthier hair growth.

91. Protective Style - Hairstyles that protect the ends of the hair to reduce tangling, shedding, and damage.

92. Hair Extension - Artificial or natural hair added to one's own hair to add length, volume, or color.

93. Clip-in Extensions - Hair extensions that can be clipped in and out of your hair.

94. Bond Extensions - Hair extensions that are bonded to the hair using adhesives, beads, or thermal bonding.

95. Weft Extensions - Hair extensions sewn onto a horizontal strip, or weft, that can be woven into natural hair.

96. French Lace - A type of material used in wig making that is fine and undetectable at the hairline.

97. Monofilament - A type of wig cap construction that gives the appearance of natural hair growth at the scalp.

98. 360 Lace Frontal - A lace frontal that goes around the entire hairline to provide the illusion of a natural hairline.

99. Detox Shampoo - A type of shampoo designed to remove buildup of products and toxins from the hair and scalp.

100. Acid Wash - A technique for quickly removing semi-permanent hair color using a high pH solution.


These terms cover a wide range of techniques, styles, products, and tools used in the hairdressing industry. Some of these might be familiar to people who frequently visit salons, while others might be more specialized and known mainly to professionals.

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