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Willow News: A New Addition!

Happy Friday everyone!


How is the week going? Making plans to hit up the festival this weekend? Fingers crossed the weather holds for all the festivities. Nothing worse than a rainy outdoor festival weekend, although we always seem to make the best of it, don’t we? That’s the way! When summer is fleeting, we have to try to squeeze as much out of it as we can!


Today we’re talking not just about the weather and the goings on in Dundas, but we’d also like to draw your attention to something else. It’s Dundas-related as well, and about to be a new addition to Willow! No, not a new team member this time, but something unique and exciting to add to Willow’s charm. Any guesses?


If you’ve been to some local Hamilton and area restaurants, you might be familiar with the art of Paul Elia. Take a quick look at his website, and chances are you’ll nod in agreement in a sort of “Ooooh, yes, I know those!” The street scenes offer a unique look at Hamilton neighbourhoods, proving there is beauty everywhere in the city.


You can read more about Paul and his work here, and of particular note for this post, is this information about his Hamilton Strip series:


“In 2007 Paul moved back to his hometown of Hamilton and started the Hamilton Strip series. The series is inspired by the city’s surreal tension between the imposing industrial shells from a manufacturing history vs. the residential family homes built around it.”


Now, what does that have to do with Willow? Well here’s a little background from Kim:


“I’ve always admired Paul’s work and have enjoyed seeing it displayed in local restaurants like Bread Bar and Detour. His street scenes capture what I love about living downtown and the walkability of Hamilton neighbourhoods. My husband and I were fortunate to receive as a gift, a print of Paul’s James Street – a street we spend a lot of time on –  and this got me thinking about the other downtown community where I spend my working hours – Dundas. I reached out to Paul about a commission of the west end of King Street, and my home away from home, Willow Salon! Many, many thanks to Paul, I am absolutely thrilled with the result, and I hope Dundas enjoys it too.”


And, here is a little sneak peek of what will soon be gracing the walls of Willow:

Do you love it? We love it too! And, you too can own this little slice of Dundas, but connecting with Paul via his website. There is something very special about collaborating with and promoting local artists, and Willow has always been committed to this kind of support. 

Thanks once again to Paul for capturing this for Willow, and please do make a point of checking it out next time you’re at the salon.

Have a great weekend, everyone. See you Tuesday!


Posted in #HamOnt, News, Willow Life | Leave a comment

Festival Style Inspo: Gearing Up for Cactus Festival Weekend!

We’re back for another week of blogging about the best of the summer…and maybe with a tiny bit of fall prep thrown in for good measure. Hey, it’s bound to happen, right? It is getting to be that time of the year


For now, though, we want to help get you prepped for the big weekend! That’s right, it’s Cactus Festival time, friends! The biggest party in Dundas returns this weekend, beginning with the Thursday evening parade, and going straight through until Sunday! The entire core is one big pedestrian thoroughfare, with vendors, bands, food, a midway, and so very much more!


Not familiar with the Cactus Festival? Or want to know exactly why Dundas has a Cactus Festival? Look no further than the fantastic festival website for all the info and details including the schedule of live entertainment, and a handy map for finding your way around.


So that’s all great, of course, but we know that it just wouldn’t be the Willow Salon blog if we didn’t give you some fab pointers on festival attendance, would it? And so the big question is…what the heck are you going to wear?!


We’ve got you covered with a nice little roundup of festival style and fashion. Now sure, some of these are really big festivals like Lollapalooza, but hey, who is to say you can’t take those hot looks and translate them to downtown Dundas for the weekend? Nobody, that’s who!


InStyle gives us the goods with their Festival Fashion 2017: The Cool Girl’s Guide on What to Wear. Granted a LOT of these looks are the equivalent of a week’s salary for us regular types, but it’s always good to get a look at what’s hot, and then make it your own – affordably!


Vibe has a short but sweet gallery of some great Lollapalooza styles, and you can also take a look at what the cool kids were wearing at in Montreal for Osheaga too, courtesy of Fashion Magazine.


Finally, NYLON shows us what people wore to NYC’s relatively new Panorama Music Festival, and the results might be some of the best festival fashion out there. Period.


Like most festivals or any large gathering, there is going to be lots of variation, lots of new takes on old favourites, and just lots of people doing their own thing. Taking what you see and making it your own is the best possible style guide, honestly.


So if you’re taking in Cactus Festival this weekend, and you’re keen to strut your stuff, show us YOUR festival style! Leave us a comment with a link to your social media so we can see what’s all the rage – Southern Ontario festival style!


Have a great week, friends! Talk to you again on Friday!

Posted in #HamOnt, Events, Seasonal, Style | Leave a comment

Colour Obsessed

It’s time for some Friday fun, friends!


Now, you know that we are nearly at the halfway point of August (sorry to be the bearer of this news) and – and, well, there’s no easy way to say this – you might also have heard the Back to School ads on the radio, seen the signs in the stores and the malls, and flipped through the flyers with their chalkboard graphics, beaming children, and gleaming backpacks. So yes, we are making our way toward the beginning of the end of summer. Not the very end, of course, there is still a LOT of summer left! But reality is setting in and you are perhaps starting to make some fall plans…sad but true.


But remember, it’s not over yet! And, if you need to be dragged kicking and screaming from summer (as many of us do) we have just the information for you today that can help to keep some of that summer sizzle alive and well.


First up: Rihanna.


Seriously, have you SEEN those pics? Her Instagram has some fantastic ones, and every major fashion and beauty mag and news outlet seems to have picked them up because WOW. That gorgeous turquoise/blue/teal hair is giving us LIFE! Not to mention the bejeweled bikini and amazing head dress, the body jewels and the makeup…we could go on, honestly. Now THAT look says Endless Summer, and it’s one of her best ever, in our not-so-humble opinion!


Next: Matchin’ your Mani to Meat


Um, what? Well, according to PopSugar, and lots of Instagrammers, the standard photos of your manicure next to the polish bottle are sooooo 2016. These days the best “artistes” are just using whatever household objects best represent their colour, and the results are pretty funny. You know, why NOT match your mani to a slice of deli meat? Or a Pepsi bottle? So much more relatable!


Hopefully, these little bursts of colour help get you through the dog days and keep the summer vibe alive for a little bit longer. We know that September’s arrival is inevitable, but hey, you know what THAT means? Three words: Summer Blowout Sales. Watch for them and get the deals while you can, while summer stuff is still on the shelves!


Happy weekend, friends! See you Tuesday!


Posted in Hair, Seasonal, Trends | Leave a comment

Parched summer skin? Help is on the way!

Good morning, and welcome to the week! We hope you all had a fantastic long weekend. The weather cooperated, and there was no shortage of fun things to do the past few days. Did you check out Festival of Friends on its triumphant return to Gage Park? By all accounts, it was a successful weekend for the ol’ festival, which was great to hear.


Now that we’re deep into summer – kicking off the second week of August already, how is THAT possible?! – you might be finding that the great outdoors if you’re lucky enough to be able to spend time outside, might be doing a number on your skin. And this time, for a change, we’re not talking specifically about sunscreen! Of course, we hope that you’re using it – whether it’s sunscreen on its own, or makeup/lotion with some SPF. But mostly today we want to talk about some of the other things that can interfere with glowing, gorgeous skin. And then, of course, what to do about it!


We know that the sun can cause damage, which is why we spend so much time encouraging the use of sunscreen, but if you’re an outdoorsy type of person, you probably also know that wind, pollution, dust, etc. can all do a number on your skin. And yes, even sunscreen itself can affect how your skin looks and feels.


If you’re starting to notice a bit of a dullness to your skin around this time of the summer, you’re not alone. Your skin – especially your face – puts up with a lot all year round, of course, but the majority of the bombardment seems to start in late spring when we all emerge from our self-imposed hibernation, and hit the patios, the golf courses, the beaches, the parks…all the out of doors places that humans like to congregate!


This is why – and it’s all been leading up to this – Aveda has chosen this month to introduce their brand new Tulasāra Renew Morning Creme, the help combat the elements, and bring out the true beauty of your skin.

From the Aveda Canada website:


Instantly renew the look of your skin to face the day—every day. Inspired by morning renewal in Ayurveda, Tulasāra™renew morning creme is a powerful 97% naturally derived* soft creme that instantly brightens, smooths fine, dry lines and helps strengthen skin’s defenses against environmental aggressors before starting the day.

*From plants, non-petroleum minerals or water.


Think about it: instant brightening and smoothing AND the added bonus of protection against those skin-unfriendly environmental issues we were talking about earlier. And, over time, it can help even out skin tone, reduce dark spots or skin discolouration, and reduce the appearance of fine lines. This could be the product we’ve all been waiting for!


Tulasāra renew morning creme will be available at Willow very soon, and until then you can check out to read more about its fabulous properties, ingredients, and usage.


So when the elements have caught up to you and your skin in this mid- to late-summer era, don’t despair! Help is here – or at least it will be soon – and having a plan is half the battle.


Have a wonderful week, everyone. We’ll be back to chat with you on Friday!


Posted in Aveda, News, Products, Skin | Leave a comment

Friday Five: Civic Holiday Weekend Edition

Happy Friday and Happy Long Weekend!


It’s the first Friday of the month, which means it’s time for another Friday Five, and this week we’re catching up with the newest member of the Willow team – Melissa!


Now Melissa isn’t 100% new to Willow, some of you might remember her as part of the team from a few years ago, and we are thrilled to have her back in the fold! And of course, we want to catch up with her and find out what’s going on! So hey, Melissa! What’s up for you this weekend?


One Place

A weekend full of birthdays…all over the city!


One Outfit

Cute little sundresses all weekend long.


One Song

Come Closer by Wizkid, featuring Drake.


One Product

Shampure Dry Shampoo or Aveda Air Control to keep that hair in place from party to party.


One Word

Obligated! Lots of fun family activities this weekend.


Thanks so much, Melissa! Sounds like a busy weekend, but a busy FUN weekend, and we hope you enjoy. And once again, welcome back to Willow!


We hope the rest of you have a fun long weekend planned too! Enjoy, stay safe, stay hydrated, and stay cool, friends. See you Tuesday!


Posted in People, Willow After Hours, Willow Life | Leave a comment

Giving You Some Lip About National Lipstick Day

Good morning, friends. We would like to issue an official apology for something that we’ve done – or rather that we haven’t done – here on the blog. Somehow, one of the most important days of the year has come and gone, without your Willow blog even recognizing it. Yes, it’s true: we managed to let National Lipstick Day pass without any acknowledgment! Aaargh!


Now, after that dramatic introduction, we’d like to also say that National Lipstick Day isn’t exactly a high holiday in the year – YET. And, if you’re looking at sources like Refinery29, you’ll see that they even go so far as to call it a made-up holiday. And fair enough, you’re not likely to see National Lipstick Day listed on the calendar between Canada Day and the Civic Holiday, but still. What a great reason to celebrate! The Refinery29 article talks about MAC and their free lipstick giveaway in honour of NLD, so for not giving our readers the heads up about this, we do apologize. Although, we still haven’t been able to learn if this is a US-only deal (as those things sometimes are) or if we here in Canada were also eligible to take advantage of the MAC generosity. If you know, please fill us in so we can ensure that we make a note on OUR calendar at least, for National Lipstick Day 2018!

But even though we missed the actual official DAY, we can still celebrate all things lippy! We tend to focus quite a bit here on the blog on Aveda’s hair and skin care products – and with good reason, of course. But Aveda has some really great makeup options as well, and their lip products are nothing short of outstanding. So let’s take a little trip through lip colour and care!


Beginning with the Nourish-Mint line of lip colours, Aveda has the original smoothing lip colour and the sheer mineral lip colour. Between the two, they offer nearly two dozen gorgeous shades for intense moisturizing and subtle plumping – that’s where the “nourish” part comes in!


You can also get high shine and gorgeous colour with the Nourish-Mint Rehydrating Lip Glaze, and serious hydration with Nourish-Mint Renewing Lip Treatment.

We also can’t forget the Nourish-Mint Lip Shine in six sheer, lovely shades. Lip Shine goes on like a gloss, but without that overly sticky feel we tend to associate with lip gloss. And all of these, of course, contain the revitalizing aroma and feel of organic mint. Hence the name Nourish-Mint! Aha! Now it all makes sense.


And, even though we’re late to the National Lipstick Day game, we encourage you, the next time you’re in Willow and taking some time to browse the products, to hit up the makeup station for what we hope might become your new favourite lip colour!


Have a great week, everyone! Happy lipstick shopping AND even happier lipstick wearing!

Posted in Aveda, Makeup, Products | Leave a comment

Summer Continues…What’s Up, August?

We’re here at the final weekend of July, with August just around the corner, coming at us on Tuesday. We hope your summer continues to be excellent, that you’re getting to do all the summertime things you’d hoped you would, and going to all the summertime places you possibly can. Whether that’s north to enjoy cottages, lakes, bonfires and the great outdoors, or it’s here in The Hammer with patios, festivals, live music, galleries, and other city destinations, we hope it’s been a blast for you and yours so far.


Once August rolls around, sometimes we’re kind of caught unaware. As Canadians, with a short summer season, we try to pack A LOT into those first few weeks of summery, hot, and sunny weather. So by the time we get to the second half of the summer, we might be tapped out for ideas as to what to do. Once you’ve checked off your summer to-do list, what’s left? Plenty, as it turns out!


Tourism Hamilton has a sweet, sweet list of the 10 Must-Attend August Events in Hamilton 2017 with something for everyone, and we are pretty sure that’s not just an exaggeration! Find information about everything from the Brott Music Festival, to the Quilt of Belonging, to the beloved Dundas Cactus Festival. So much to do!


You can get a jump on the August plans with Tourism Hamilton’s guide to what’s on this weekend as well, and again, there’s a lot of variety! Hamilton, you’re just so awesome.


Looking for music? Like FREE music? The Inlet has a seriously good roundup of the Best Free Music Series to See Before Summer Ends and it is jampacked with great options to suit practically every taste.


For another fun idea, check out Pop Up Hamilton for their next big event. You’re going to want to know that August means Luau in Hamilton, which sounds pretty great. Ticket information and more details on the Pop Up Hamilton website.


So now that we’ve covered nearly everything there is to do in #HamOnt this summer, there’s much less chance that we’ll all just be sitting around wondering where the fun is, right? Get out there, friends! The city awaits!


August is going to fly by, as it always does, and before we know it, we’re talking about those S words: September and school. But for now, enjoy all the Hamilton area has to offer, pack in as much as you can, and if you find out about something we’ve missed, let us know!


Have a great weekend, see you back here Tuesday.


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

Tuesday Trends: The Bold and the Beautiful

When you think summertime makeup, what’s the first thing that pops into your mind? We’re probably safe in saying it’s not “pile as much makeup on as I possibly can” is it? For summer, those of us who wear makeup on the regular do tend to lighten it up a bit. It makes sense to avoid a lot of layers where possible, especially since you’re also probably applying sunscreen prior to any kind of makeup steps, right? RIGHT? Ok good. Sunscreen, we all know, is pretty important year round (the sun IS always with us, isn’t it?) but during summer when we here in this part of the world get the most hours of sunlight, and when we spend (potentially) the most amount of time outside, we need to be extra vigilant in making sure we are sunscreened daily.


But back to makeup. If you’re already doing sunscreen, or maybe you’re using a foundation or tinted moisturizer with SPF (always a good call) and perhaps a dusting of bronzer or some kind of light, sunkissed-looking blush, you might think that is ENOUGH when it’s hot. And you’re probably right! However…


Sometimes you just have to go for it. If you’ve got a special occasion coming up – and summer is often FULL of those – you are going to want to step your makeup game up a wee bit, and you know what is a good area to focus on? Your eyes, that’s what!

Go bold with this amaaaaaazing (not enough As, honestly) purple trend featured on PopSugar! When summer seems to call for soft pinks, corals, and a hint of bronze, shake it ALL UP with some of the hottest purply hues out there. We are not so sure about the word Smurple (a combination of Smoky + Purple) but we can totally get on board with that fab colour scheme. Guaranteed to turn heads.


Harper’s Bazaar has three great looks for summertime eye makeup: tri-liner, inner highlight, and pink smoky…oh my! Find the details here and take your eye makeup to the next level. Something about that navy/aqua/gold combo in the tri-liner look just makes us say YESSSSSS! Very summery, very chic, and very, very on trend.

And, just so you know, we can hear you, worried about the ol’ “what about the sweat???” so we’ve also included The 10 Best Eye Primers for Oily Lids and now you don’t have to worry. We got you, friends.


Have a great week, everyone. Chat again on Friday!


Posted in Seasonal, Style, Trends | Leave a comment

Aveda’s Invati for Men

Good morning and welcome to Friday!


Today on the blog, we’re focusing on men. Well, men’s hair, anyway.


We spend a lot of time writing and posting about women’s hair – styles, care, trends, etc. – so once in awhile it’s good to switch gears and talk about what’s going on with men’s hair.


Aveda has products exclusively designed for men’s haircare needs, and you might be thinking “Hair is hair! What’s the difference?” Well, it turns out there are some differences, and a lot of them have to do with body chemistry, and with our scalp. Which makes sense, given that’s where our hair begins! As well, as we know, some men deal with hair loss, hair thinning, etc. and Aveda has specific products to help combat some of these issues as well. We’ve talked about these products before, but it’s always good to have a refresher, and the Living Aveda blog has a nice feature this week on Aveda’s Invati line and more specifically the Invati Men two-step system for thinning hair.


In What The Boys Want, Aveda artists from all over North America weigh in on the Invati system and what it’s done and continues to do for their clients and for themselves. Many of them talk about the simplicity of this two-step system, and how clients are thrilled with the results.


Aveda’s YouTube channel also has a great series of videos with information, demonstrations, and tips for  thinning hair featuring the Invati line of products, and of course you can learn more about the products themselves on the Aveda Canada website, or by chatting with your Willow stylist next time you’re in the salon!


If you’re a user of the Invati system and want to weigh in on what the products have done for your hair, leave us a comment! Testimonials from Aveda artists are great, of course, but it’s also nice to hear it from our own clients.


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



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

Transport Your Senses With Aveda’s NEW Pure-Fume Hair Mists!

Happy Tuesday! We’re glad you’re back to join us here on the blog. It’s hard to believe, but we are more than halfway through July, friends. And at the halfway point, it’s always good to check in. So. How’s your summer going so far? We’ve had some…well…odd weather, you could say. Definitely lots of rain, but the positive spin on that is of course that we’re not having to constantly water our lawns and gardens, thus saving ourselves some time, and allowing Mother Nature to foot the water bill for a bit.


One thing the rain can also do though, is increase the mugginess in the air, and hoo boy have we had that going on lately. Those days where you’re just walking a block or two and you’re not hot per se, in fact you might even feel a bit of a coolish breeze, yet you’re sweating. Profusely. It’s weird, but that is, of course, summer in this part of the country. Get your sweat on, and there’s not much we can do about it.


If you attend any of the local outdoor summer festivals, one of the cool (literally) features we’ve seen in the last year or two are cooling stations. Often large tents or even blow-up structures similar to a kids’ bouncy castle that provide a cooling mist for participants who might be overheating. It’s a nice touch, especially for kids who often don’t realize that they’ve overheated, or for elderly visitors who may not be able to cope as well in the afternoon heat. Walk through the light refreshing mist with your water bottle and refresh and recharge in order to get back to enjoying the summer sunshine.


Right now we are NOT going to focus on what that lovely soft cooling mist might do to our hair BUT we are going to introduce you to another type of mist that IS good for the hair and, like all Aveda products, also good for the soul.


Aveda is excited to introduce Pure-Fume Hair Mist, a light, weightless, gorgeous mist to spray on hair that adds softness and shine, and transports your senses, allowing you to experience beautiful fragrance whenever you like.


There are three mists to choose from: Mihana evokes the spices and citrus fruits of Japan’s gardens and forests; the fragrance of Marassona is inspired by the lush forests and the coastline of Brazil, and includes notes of neroli and ylang ylang. Finally, Alanara takes us to the Fertile Crescent in the Middle East with pure organic rose and sandalwood.

Simply spray onto hair for an ultra-fine mist that won’t weigh down your hair, but will take you on a sensual – or, as the description on tells us – a scentual journey.


What could be better than taking the beautiful Pure-Fumes of Aveda that you know and love and misting them onto your hair for an all-day burst of aromatherapy? Just another wonderful way to #SmellLikeAveda.


Watch for Pure-Fume Hair Mists coming soon to the shelves at Willow! Choose your favourite, and take your hair – and your senses – on a beautiful summer journey.


And, of course, we’ll be back here on Friday to help you kick off your weekend. See you then, friends.

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