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Hair Hydration…and a Hiatus

Good morning and welcome back to Friday! It was a short week, what with the Canada Day holiday on Monday, and we hope it felt like a short week for you. Sometimes those 4-day work weeks can really seem extra long, but now that Friday is here, we feel like we can do anything!


Last week we introduced – or rather re-introduced – you all to the newly launched Sap Moss Weightless Shampoo and Conditioner, and today we want to add a little more information to that introduction with some more details about this product, what it can do for your hair, as well as some of the thought and research that went into it. 


Living Aveda gives us all the details for the recreation of the amazing Sap Moss aroma, and it’s an interesting read. Learning about the desire to modernize it and not just bring it out of vault intact is quite fascinating. The Sap Moss aroma is often described as earthy, and if you’re familiar with the original, you’ll understand what they mean when the article goes on to describe it as ‘sexy dirt’! Love that. And an updated version of this is just perfect.


We also get to learn all about the ingredients that make Sap Moss so special – and there really is both sap AND moss in there! Iceland moss and larch tree sap, to be more specific. The moss is rich in nutrients and can absorb nearly twice its weight in water, making it an excellent ingredient for a product that won’t weigh down hair. Other ingredients include a blend of coconut and kukui oils for deep conditioning, shine, and softness. 


We are so excited for you to give Sap Moss a try, can you tell? Get that deep, deep hydration that we all need in the heat of the summer. Sun exposure, salt or chlorine water, and wind can all do a number on your locks. Let Sap Moss help prevent some of that damage!


Enjoy the weekend, friends, and enjoy the rest of the summer too! The Willow Salon blog is taking a brief hiatus until September. We’re going to rejig a few things, make a few changes and return afresh with some new ideas to share with you. It’s hard to believe the blog has been coming at you twice a week since March 2016! That’s just over three years, and three is the magic number, after all. It’s time for an overhaul, a refresh, a renovation if you will. And we’re excited to bring this new version to you.


Until then, friends, take good care, and see you in September!

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Tuesday Tricks: Fake It ‘Til You Make It!

Good morning and happy day after the long Canada Day weekend. Was it tough getting up this morning? We totally get it. The weather is making us feel like staying in bed all day long so far today, that’s for sure. It’s a little dull and overcast out there for starters; humid and muggy to boot. The weekend itself was lovely, which is honestly all that matters in our opinion. Let the iffy weather happen during the week, just give us sunny days on the weekends all summer long!


If motivation is an issue for you today, you are not alone. It’s hard to shift gears from relaxing on a patio, taking in the fireworks, and other long weekend entertainment to heading back to the daily grind. And so, like we’ve said on many other occasions, fake it ‘til you make it! That is, put on a motivated face, even if you’re not feeling it 100%. And the best way we know how to do that? A bold, mood-lifting lipstick always does the trick!


We did a little digging around for the hottest lipsticks of the season, and found a few that will help you wake up on the toughest of mornings – including days like today after a stellar long weekend! 

Inspiration from juicy summer fruit and flowers!

Live Glam gets us started with their picks for the seven best lipstick colours for the season, and they are definitely bold, in-your-face (on-your-face?) colours that make us think of summer flowers and summer fruit! Electric tangerine, bright orange and fuschia are among the faves we’re seeing, as well as a fiery red-orange, a shockingly dark burgundy, and purple, purple, purple! Honestly, these colours are to die for, and will go a very long way with helping us get in the weekday zone.


We also hear from Judith Jones, editor-in-chief of Who What Wear, as she shares her favourite lipstick trends for the summer of 2019. Her picks go for a little less shock value as she tries on eight different shades and colour palettes that were big during the various fashion weeks back in the spring. Soft petal pinks, nude gloss, and pretty peaches give off major 1970s babe vibes, and we’re here for it! She also hits us with a power red and a sweet berry to round things out, but the trend here is softer and lighter. Which goes to show that whatever lipstick makes you feel motivated is the one for you.


Finally, The Kit asked three of their staffers for their pick for a summer lip colour, and they didn’t hesitate. Their go-tos? Tangerine, bright poppy pink and a gorgeous lavender – another take on the oranges, fuschias, and purples we already talked about! 


So, as we finish up and the sun starts to peek through the clouds, we hope the promise of a fun lippy has made it a little easier to dive into your day! We know lipstick is not the answer to all our problems, but if a bold lip helps you fake it until you’re feeling it, we say go for it! 


Go get ‘em this week, friends. And just think: only three sleeps ‘til Friday! We can do it!


Have a great week, and we’ll chat again on Friday.

Posted in Makeup, Seasonal, Style, Trends | Leave a comment


Happy Friday and a very happy long weekend to all!


We have some pretty amazing news for you all today, thanks to Aveda. You might have been hearing rumours that a particular ‘old-school’ product is making a triumphant return. And we are here today to tell you that these rumours? Are totally true!


It’s finally time to announce that Aveda has brought Sap Moss shampoo and conditioner back into the lineup, and we could not be happier!

If you’ve been an Aveda fan for more than a few years, you might remember Sap Moss and the wonderful things it can do for your hair. It was kind of an unsung hero of a product, honestly. A good standby, not too flashy, not too much, just an excellent product that was sorely missed by many when it went away – your blogger included! And now that it’s back? Well it’s going to be a game changer for good!


Sap Moss is extremely moisturizing. Think of a good, quenching drink of water for your hair! Super hydrating but won’t weigh it down. This makes it the perfect shampoo and conditioner combo for those hot, humid, and hazy days of summer, and Sap Moss is back in our lives and arriving just in the nick of time!


And, it’s perfect for all types and textures of hair too. 


Sap Moss shampoo and conditioner arrives in salons this weekend, so make a plan to give it a try next time you’re at Willow!


And, speaking of Willow, a reminder that Willow will be CLOSED tomorrow, Saturday June 29, for the long Canada Day holiday weekend.


We wish you a fabulous weekend of fun and festivities and please, whatever you do, do it safely. Cheers to you!


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Happy (Almost) Long Canada Day Weekend!

Welcome back to the blog to kick off this week – the last week of June and the lead-up to the long Canada Day weekend!


This is officially, 100% the first long weekend of the summer and it couldn’t come at a better time! Ok, obviously it has to come at this time, since July 1st is, in fact, Canada Day…but you know what we mean. The long Victoria Day weekend seems AGES ago, and we are truly ready to embrace July. No more school, long summer evenings ahead, vacation time (hopefully!) and just everything summer has to offer.


And, as usual, we have your guide to lots of the fun stuff happening around the area for your long weekend planning abilities. If you’re looking for a place to happen this coming weekend, keep reading, because we will try to point you toward the perfect options for whatever you’re feeling!

It’s almost here! Hello holiday weekend!

First of all, let’s feature one of Hamilton’s truly great festivals It’s Your Festival, celebrating 50 years this year! 50 years of musical entertainment, foods of the world, arts and culture, and much more. Check out the website for all the details, and make a plan to make your way to Gage Park for all the fun and festivities.


If it’s fireworks you’re after, Hamilton has you covered! Find out all about the where and when on the city’s webpage. Musical entertainment, food trucks, vendors and more! The City of Burlington also has a lot going on for Canada Day down at Spencer Smith park on the lovely waterfront, and you can find more information on their website here. And, going a little further afield, check out To Do Canada for a roundup of all the fireworks events going on all over the country this weekend, in case you feel like a little (or a large) road trip!


The annual military tattoo happens at Dundurn Castle on July 1st, and the city’s website also gives all the details of what’s happening at all of Hamilton’s museums for the long weekend and beyond! 


For more – and you know there’s bound to be more – visit Tourism Hamilton and start making your plans!


And, of course, whatever you do, please do it safely, responsibly, and with sunscreen applied as often as necessary! And, finally, let us know about anything we may have missed! 


Enjoy the week, everyone. Four more days until a three-day weekend…we can do it!

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Summer Festivals: Get Planning!

Good morning and happy Friday, AND happy first day of summer!


Yes, summer arrives today, and this first day of summer is shaping up to be a pretty lovely one. Skies are clear and blue, and the sun is doing its thing. Happy summer indeed!


When you think summer what’s the first thing to come to mind for you? It might be lazy days at the beach or the park, or road tripping to a northern cottage or campground. It might be time off work and school and the ability to just be a tourist right where you live, poking around shops and boutiques you’ve always wanted to check out but never had the time. Summer also, of course, means festivals. And today we are rounding up a few for you so you can plan accordingly!


Outdoor festival season is always a good one and in Ontario, there is a LOT to choose from. And if you think festival = music, well you’re right, but think outside the musical festival box, too. You might just find a new favourite!


First up, let’s talk Fringe. Hamilton Fringe Festival happens every summer and this year you can make plans to keep July 17-28 open to take in some amazing performance theatre right here in the city. There is a lot more information on their website, and you can find more about Fringe right here.


Perhaps books and reading are more your thing? Most of us no longer qualify for the public library’s summer reading program (although they do exist for adults at some libraries!) We don’t always think of literary festivals as the thing to do in summer, but 49th Shelf offers us a list of what’s happening in the literary world for summer 2019.


And, of course, we would be remiss if we didn’t talk about music festivals because those truly are a summer staple! Hamilton has a couple of great ones, of course – It’s Your Festival arrives next weekend, and of course Festival of Friends happens in August – but if you are willing to go a little further afield, be sure to check this link from To Do Canada to find music festivals happening all over Ontario. And, if you’re super adventurous, broaden your search out to include other provinces or the entire country! You could probably fill every weekend and then some, honestly.


Part of the fun of summer festival-going is the planning. So whether it’s books, theatre, or music, get started making your plans and make this summer one to remember! It starts today and goes until September 23, so make the most of the weeks we get. Summer always feels like the shortest season here in Ontario. Make memories that you’ll be able to reflect on forever.


Enjoy the weekend everyone! If you’re headed to Pride in Toronto, we wish you an amazing experience! Stay hydrated, apply and reapply sunscreen as needed, and celebrate, celebrate, celebrate! We’re with you all.

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Summer Fashion Roundup: Yes, the 80s Are Still With Us!

Good morning and welcome to Tuesday and a special blog post all about summer fashion!


That’s right, we scoured the mags and fashion websites to bring you a nice little roundup of all the trendy trends that you’ll be seeing – or are already seeing – on the streets this season!


We’ve said it before and we’ll keep saying it: summer fashion is all about staying cool, calm, and collected while looking good. And it’s not always easy, is it? When those temperatures really rise and that southern Ontario humidity kicks in, it’s a tough go. Humans sweat. We just do, there’s no way to really get around it! And so the last thing you want during those summer heatwaves is clothing that is restrictive and tight. Summer lets us opt for loose, flowy kinds of outfits, to help us keep our cool. We also tend to move toward lighter makeup (more about that in another post!) and we accessorize in a different way too. And, summer also means styles and looks that just do not fly in any other season. Neon and tie-dye and bucket hats, oh my!


But don’t take our word for it! Let’s see what the experts have to say.


Our friends at ELLE have a great roundup of summer-infused style, including the aforementioned tie-dye. They are calling it “California Cool” and it just is. Lots of fun prints, bright colours, and pieces that are only meant for summer. Like that Prada bucket hat, for instance. Note: you don’t have to shell out $300+ for a Prada bucket hat…just sayin’…


ELLE also evokes memories of summers past with the current trend of souvenir jewelry. We love this! Think seashells, coins, beads, and stones. If you remember taking holidays with your family and stopping at roadside souvenir places, this might be a trend you can get behind.


Moving on from ELLE, we took a look at what Who What Wear is seeing as the biggest trends of the season, and their take is truly a classic ‘from one extreme to another’ kind of feel! They first highlight beige for the season, with a lot of classic looks and silhouettes, but do we have to call it beige?! No, we do not! There’s also oatmeal, biscuit, blush, and off-white to advance the idea of a sort of non-colour. But take a look at some of their examples and they are anything but boring.

A whole lot of trends in one cool snapshot!

From barely-there beige, to the 1980s (yes, the ‘80s are still hot right now) and the power suits and neon of that decade with strong shoulders, bows, midi skirts, and prairie dresses (think dystopian Laura Ashley) and whew. It’s a lot. Find your 80s bliss while you still can!


Surf culture gets a nod as well, as does athletic wear and some seriously over-the-top accessorizing. Big hats, big purses, giant headbands, and massive earrings. They all just scream summer 2019, and we are here for it.


Finally, Refinery29 gives us a few looks that combine a lot of what we talked about into some wearable options and street style. There is honestly nothing better than seeing an outrageous runway look and then turning into something you can totally own. Pick and choose your favourites from the trends and styles listed and then you can take it from there.


We hope this has given you a little inspiration for the season! Get out there and seize summer!


Have a great week, everyone. Chat with you again on Friday.

Posted in Seasonal, Style, Trends | Leave a comment

New Product Alert!

Good morning and happy Friday! It’s starting out coolish today, but moving towards sunshine and warm temperatures for the afternoon and evening – a lovely night for Art Crawl! Are you planning to attend? Or maybe you’re still soaking in the glory of the Raptors big win last night? And if you stayed up until the wee hours celebrating, well we will keep our voices down for you. Shhhhhh…


It’s a little tough to contain our excitement though, because Aveda is launching yet another incredible product in the Cherry Almond line, and this time it’s leave-in conditioner!


You already know the Cherry Almond shampoo and conditioner work to gently cleanse and soften your hair. Not only that, they leave your hair – and your entire bathroom, really – smelling incredible. The Cherry Almond leave-in conditioner will do the same and so much more.

Use this new leave-in conditioner on damp hair and comb through to ends. In true Cherry Almond style, it will add shine, smooth, and detangle hair. Use it as well to strengthen hair and prevent breakage, tame flyaways and frizz (always an issue in the heat and humidity of summer) and protect hair from heat. This is a tall order for one product, but Cherry Almond leave-in conditioner is definitely up to the challenge!


A leave-in conditioner can be your best friend in the summer months. Washing your hair but not conditioning in the shower saves water! And your leave-in can act a bit like a styling product too, to save you time. Also, think about throwing it in your beach bag and applying it after swimming to detangle your summer swimming hair and protect it from the wind and the sun. Leave-in conditioners are so versatile, honestly. Don’t leave home without them!


And, while Cherry Almond is the newest leave-in kid in town, let’s also not forget about the tried and true players from Aveda! Find Color Conserve, Damage Remedy and others here and choose the one that’s perfect for your hair!


Have a wonderful weekend, everyone. Find some time for yourself, and whatever your body is telling you you need. Take that time. It’s not selfish at all, it’s important.

We’ll see you back here on Tuesday, friends.

Posted in Aveda, Care, Hair, News, Products | Leave a comment

Father’s Day Checklist: Gifts and Plans

Good morning! It’s Tuesday, and the weekend is fast approaching!


Okay, maybe not fast enough, but it is definitely on its way. And, of course, the coming weekend also includes Father’s Day, that special day to celebrate all things dad!


And, while Mother’s Day seems to be the holiday that gets us thinking about pampering moms everywhere, Father’s Day always seems less so. That holiday is often more about BBQs and beers, sports and yardwork, isn’t it? Well, not around here! Sure, we all love a good BBQ and some tasty beer, but let’s focus on giving dad a few things that can help him relax and unwind after a full day of dadding! (yes, that’s a word we just made up, but it fits, so let’s roll with it, shall we??)


Aveda has a few ideas to get you started, thanks to the Living Aveda blog, with everything from hair products like the Pure-Formance Grooming Clay and shave products like Dual Action Aftershave, all the way to our Rosemary Mint Bath Bar, and beyond.


These are all just suggestions, of course, to get you thinking about your dad – or the dads in your life – and what they might enjoy from Aveda in the pampering realm. Your dads may vary of course, and if you know what your dad might like, pop into Willow to take a look and get inspired by everything Aveda! And who knows, you just might be able to pick up a few things for yourself. Always a perk of visiting Willow!


As well, you might be looking to take dad out on an adventure this weekend or at some point later in the month, so be sure to check out Tourism Hamilton and their event listings for the remainder of June. There is a LOT going on this coming weekend and right into July, and there is guaranteed to be something for every dad on the list. In fact, Collective Arts Brewing is hosting their fantastic Liquid Art Festival this weekend – there’s the beer we were talking about earlier!


And, of course, Pride Hamilton happens this weekend in Gage Park too, with an awesome lineup of entertainment, vendors, food and more!


So there’s a pretty good chance, with all this action all weekend and all month long, you’ll find some great options for Father’s Day festivities and gifts. It’s not too late to make this weekend one to remember for dad!


Have a great week, everyone! Enjoy, and we’ll see you back here on Friday.

Posted in #HamOnt, Aveda, Events, Food & Drink, Music, Products | Leave a comment

Sunscreen 101: Just Do It!

Good morning, everyone!


It’s Friday again, and if the weather forecast is correct – as correct as weather forecasting can be, anyway – it is going to be a gloriously summer-like weekend!


We’ve been more than patient so far this spring, and so it’s really about time we get more than one day of nice weather in a row!


With zero rain in the forecast and bigtime sunshine expected all weekend long, are you planning to be outdoors? “Well duh,” you are probably saying, and honestly, who can blame you? It is definitely that time of year. Find a patio, stroll up and down Locke St. or Ottawa St. or King St. here in Dundas; get out in the garden, or take a picnic to the park. There are SO MANY ways to be outside in southern Ontario, and if there is one recommendation we can give you it’s this: don’t forget the sunscreen.


Now, again, you might be saying “well duh” but hear us out. Lots of people have good, even fantastic intentions when it comes to staying safe in the sun, but the reality is that even those of us who do apply sunscreen before heading out to do whatever it is we are going to do, forget about the other rule of summer: reapply.

Don’t forget the sunscreen this sunny weekend!

We get that it’s often the last thing you think of when you’re out having a great time all summer long, but it’s definitely something to train yourself to do in order to protect your skin. Some of these days in June can be deceiving, since it’s not quite yet that sticky, humid heat that we’ve come to expect later in July and August, sometimes there’s a lovely breeze still, and the air moves enough for you to not feel overheated – which is wonderful, and one of the best parts about this late spring time of year. But that’s where we can get fooled, thinking that if we’re not boiling hot, we’re good to go without sunscreen, or, with just a morning application to get us through the entire day of outdoor festivities. So our recommendation is to set an alarm on your phone. Do the math to figure out how long your initial application of sunscreen will last (remember it’s less time if you’re sweating a lot or in and out of water) and give yourself a little digital reminder! No one will look at you funny if you all of a sudden pull out a tube of sunscreen and reapply to your face and any other exposed areas. In fact, you just might be the hero/heroine that saves the day for your friends! Trust us, there’s bound to be someone in your friend group that completely forgot their sunscreen, so be prepared to share!


Summer is the best, of course, and the faster we get in the habit of not leaving home without our sunscreen the better.


If you find yourself standing in the store facing the rows and rows of sunscreen and other sun-related products feeling extremely confused, you’re not alone. Fortunately, the Canadian Dermatology Association has a great list of sunscreen products that they approve (ones that meet their standards for UV protection) and it’s available here. There’s still a lot to choose from, but at least you’ll know which ones will give you the best protection. This list is great because it also lists products in a wide variety of price ranges, which can be really helpful.


So get outside this weekend if that’s your thing, and do it safely with sunscreen. You might also want to consider a hat with a large brim and sunglasses, but if you want to feel the sun on your face after the cold wet spring we’ve had, we won’t stop you. Just be sure to give that face of yours a good coating of sunscreen, though.


Have a wonderful weekend, everyone. We’ll chat with you again on Tuesday.


Posted in Seasonal | Leave a comment

Getting Ready for Pride

Happy Tuesday, everyone, and, as it is now June, HAPPY PRIDE!

Pride events are happening in Hamilton all month long, and we are excited to share some of them here with you today.


You might be the kind of person who plans and plans and plans for such a big event as Pride, or you might be someone who just kind of lets things unfold as they may! There’s really no correct way to make your Pride plans, you just have to do what works best for you. Having said that, there’s nothing wrong with a little pre-planning, is there? Especially now that there is SO MUCH happening in Hamilton all month long. And of course, you don’t want to miss out! So let’s take a look at the resources to help you plan for the best Pride ever.


Pride Hamilton has you covered for what’s happening in the Hammer for Pride celebrations all month long, including the big event Pride in the Park, which happens on June 15th this year. There is also a Facebook event page for this year’s celebration and that will have updates for the next couple of weeks.


Queer Events also has a pretty great roundup of what’s on all month long in Hamilton and also around the province, in case your Pride plans take you a little further afield! With so much going on it would be a shame to miss out!


You can also follow organizations like BentQ Media (@BentQMedia), Hamilton Pride (@HamiltonPride), and Queer and Trans Youth Collaborative (@QTYC_Hamilton) on Twitter to round out your Pride plans and stay current on what’s happening all month long, as well as stay in the know about other resources and information in/for/by the LGBTQ2SI+ community.


We’ll likely have more for you throughout the month in relation to Pride and other events that are happening around the city, so, as they say, watch this space! And, if there is anything you want us to highlight, or anything glaring that we’ve missed, please do leave us a comment or get in touch to let us know! We want you to have the best month, of course!


Enjoy the week, everyone. Make time for the things you love as often as possible. We’ll chat again on Friday, friends.

Posted in #HamOnt, Events, Food & Drink, Music | Leave a comment
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