The "Wu Wei" Way: Effortless Beauty

The philosophy of "Wu Wei" in Taoism "refers to the cultivation of a state of being in which our actions are quite effortlessly in alignment with the ebb and flow of the elemental cycles of the natural world" (Reninger 2017).  The essence of Wu Wei is felt through the photos of these two women.  They become one with the water-a life force and intrinsic Wu Wei master.  The Wu Wei of water has a magical ability to allure. Wu Wei is free of rules or judgements.  It just is.  

Beautiful and sound are the faces that sprinkle across the rolling ocean waves.  Her hair glides into the wind and sets sail into the blue sky.  There is a curiosity in her smile, and a deep understanding of herself as her dress drinks up the water of the sea.  She is confident, but not too proud, as her toes meander through the grainy floor.

 

 

blonde beach waves
salty beach hair
blonde beach hair-ocean
salty beach hair-texture
balayage beach waves-hair
salty beach hair-long layers

Bohemian Wanderlust Wedding

bohobridal

"Wanderlust consumed her;

foreign hearts

and exotic minds

compelled her.

she had a gypsy soul

and a vibrant hope

for the unknown."

d. marie

 

 

"Sandōkai" according to Zen Buddhism is the "harmonious song of difference and sameness."  In other words, we are all unique and one great wisdom simultaneously.  It is possible to recognize our unique qualities as individuals, while maintaining awareness of the common thread we all share as human beings of the universe.  There is no better time, than the celebration of two hearts uniting, to understand the magic of "Sandokai."  During this Bohemian Wanderlust Shoot, I recognized the power of this duality.

Through the forest, under the trees, there is a woman robed in white lace.  She is confident, strong, and unapologetic for her regal beauty.  She stands tall as the grasses tickle the train of her gown.  The sun casts softly upon her edges and caresses the light inside her.  Only nature can feel the tenderness of her earthly lips.  Across the field a free spirit dances her song.  She is playful and wild.  Her hair marries in the adventures of the wind, and her eyes live on with their mysterious gaze.  Her smile excites the spirit of joy.  

Between the field and the trees, there is a space where two unique creatures come together and exchange energies.  Suddenly, they are one and two at the same moment. They begin to take on traits of the other.  While one lets her hair down and gives a soft smile, the other finds solitude in silence and internal contemplation.  When the sun rises the next day, they will be a little wiser. Their hearts cannot undo the harmony that occurred in the forrest.  Nor do they want it to be undone.  They will live on to celebrate their differences, and find comfort in their sameness.  This is what I call Love.

 

Photography:

Leah Herndon -- @leahherndon

 

Hair + Succulent Crown:

Sierra English -- @sierraenglishhair

 

Makeup:

Rachel Silber -- @rs.makeup.artistry

 

Models:

Milenda Andrews -- @weddingdresswanders

Lauren Dodge -- @herbal_intuitive @fruitstotheroots

 

 

Andrea + Sam: Romantic Beach Wedding

When Andrea came in to Eco Heads for her first wedding hair trial, I knew it was going to be a treat to work with her.  She is the kind of bride who's heart and smile cast a genuine appreciation for life.  As I got to know her a little bit more, and discovered her carefree yet tasteful spirit, the vision for her wedding day began to form its roots.  She asked for something slightly bohemian, and a little romantic.  We looked through several photos on Pinterest to get an idea of the direction we wanted to go.  In addition, we talked about the style of her wedding, her dress, and the feeling she wanted to have on her big day.  Andrea told me she was getting married in Long Beach, and that the reception would be outdoors.  She wanted something that felt secure, but not too "done."  I suggested a loose braided up do with lots of face framing tendrils.  Andrea was all in.    

After her first trial, we both decided that adding some buttery blonde balayage highlights would accentuate the softness of the style, and really make the look come together.  In addition, I suggested we do a haircut and add long layers throughout with face framing layers in front.  By doing this, I added just the right amount of volume and texture.  I cut off a couple inches since her hair was so long.  The result was that her hair was much more manageable and ready to be integrated into this beautiful updo.  In addition, I created a personalized sustainable succulent hair piece to compliment the updo style.  

The whole look came together beautifully, and she was simply glowing on the big day.  And by the smile on his face, I'm pretty sure her new husband thought so too!

Thank you Andrea, for allowing me to take this journey with you! 

Hair: Unveil Bridal by Sierra English Hair

Photography: TBA

Makeup: TBA

 

Eco Friendly Flower Crowns and Hair Pieces!

Hello lovely brides to be!  I have recently decided to delve into the world of flower crowns and hair accessories for brides.  I have always loved the whimsical look of a gorgeous flower crown.  Flower crowns can add depth and dimension to your overall bridal look.  In addition, there are so many possibilities for style.  Whether you are boho, rustic, elegant, or classic, there is a flower crown somewhere out there just for you!  And, if flower crowns are not your jam, I can make a custom flower clip or pin that will work just right with any style!  

When I decided to embark on this journey, I knew I wanted to create eco friendly hair pieces that would carry their beauty from the big day into the future home of the bride and her family.  Using succulents are a great way to stay eco friendly, and they are very easy to replant.  I know because I replanted a few of the succulents that were in my own wedding bouquet!  It has been over three years since my wedding day, and the succulents from my bouquet are thriving in my garden.  Every time I see them, it reminds me of this wonderful day.  It is also a reminder that the bond created through marriage does not end on the night of the wedding.  A union is planted on the wedding day, and continues to grow and blossom throughout the years.  The succulents grow and transform, and so does the relationship with my husband.  It is magical.  

In addition, using succulents in wedding hair pieces is a great way to be an eco conscious bride.  Succulents are drought tolerant and require much less water than many other flowers or plants.  If you live in California, you know that we are in a heavy drought.  Anything we can do to reduce the amount of water used is helpful.  Nevertheless, succulents are not the only drought tolerant plant.  If you aren't a fan of succulents there are a variety of other drought tolerant plants local to California that can make a beautiful flower crown or hair clip.  According to the Los Angeles County Waterworks Districts' Water Conservation Program, there are several flowers, shrubs, plants, and herbs that are both drought tolerant and naturally grown in Los Angeles.  Some of my favorites are:  Blue Flax, California Fuschia, Cleveland's Beardtongue, California Flannel Bush, Lavender, and Rosemary. 

Blue Flax

Blue Flax offers small blue white flowers in springtime.  They can be a lovely addition to a flower crown with their interesting texture and soft presence.  These are perfect for the whimsical organic bride who's subtle beauty calms the crowd as she walks down the isle.  

 

 

California Fuschia

California Fuschia offers scarlet tubular flowers, and attracts hummingbirds.  If you are a bride who loves a bold look, and a possible visit from your neighbor hummingbird, these are the flowers for you!  The California Fuschia does not apologize for its vibrant beauty.  Instead she hums a confident and lively tune as she walks down the isle to greet her mate.  

 

Cleveland's Beardtongue

Cleveland's Beardtongue offers rose pink flowers with gray foliage.  This flower is perfect for a wild, free, and playful bride. The long stems and dainty buds can prompt any bride to spin in circles with joy.  They can be added to any flower crown to accentuate the playfulness of the bride.

 

 

Lavender

Lavender offers beautiful light purple flowers, and carries a magnificent scent that will float you through your wedding day!  These can be a great addition to a soft, feminine flower crown.  In addition, lavender has calming effects that will make you feel completely zen on your wedding day!

 

 

Rosemary

And finally, Rosemary!  I love Rosemary for so many reasons.  If you are feeling festive, Rosemary gives off a bold herbal scent that will keep you dancing merrily throughout your big day!  It is a great way to add greenery to any flower crown or hair clip.  The stems are sturdy and great for using as a base to a flower crown or clip.  They can also make a great 'green' flower crown all by themselves if you are going for a more earthy look.

 

Succulent Flower Crown

All of these plants, flowers, and herbs would be wonderful in a flower crown or hair piece!  Of course, my true love are succulents which is why I created my first flower crown and hair clips with succulents from my garden.  I am very pleased with the way they came out, and I cannot wait to create more!  I used a variety of succulents along with some moss for a softer, earthy feel.  The best part is I can replant these!  I will not be using this specific crown for any bride.  So, it is important that I can recycle the succulents, and use them in a flower crown for a future bride!

Succulent Flower Clips

It is clear that there are so many eco friendly choices when it comes to creating a beautiful and unique flower crown or hair clip, which is why I am so excited about this new journey.  I am always thinking of ways to enhance the natural beauty of the bride, and create a look that is truly authentic and unique to her.  This is also another way for me to express my creativity and passion for hairstyles.  The only thing better than a gorgeous updo or wedding style is one with a complimentary hair clip or flower crown!  To Request your very own custom made and eco friendly flower crown, contact me @ www.sierra.english@gmail.com!  I am so overjoyed about this new journey!

 

Resources: 

https://dpw.lacounty.gov/wwd/web/Documents/DroughtTolerantPlants.pdf

Google Images:

SummitPost, Plant of the Month, Las Pilitas Nursery, Wikipedia, Old Farmers Almanac

 

 

Jess + Blake: A Fairy Tale Wedding

"Her messy hair a visible attribute of her stubborn spirit.  As she shakes it free, she smiles knowing wild is her favorite color." -- j. iron word

When Jess told me she wanted something loose and unkempt, my heart rejoiced.  As an artist, I believe creativity works best when it is uncontrolled, and allowed to roam free.  There are no hard and fast rules.  Her vision for the big day was one that allowed for loose ends, and room for exploration.  It was a joy to work with this beautiful soul.  Everything came together like ribbons floating in the wind.  Her Leanne Marshall dress adorned her soft shoulders.  Her hair mimicked her free spirit with gentle, flowing pieces that framed her face.  The soft tendrils married into one another as they gathered at the nape of her neck. 

A Few of My Favorite Things: Hair and Beauty Products!

Hey everyone!  Today I want to share with you a few beauty products that I am absolutely swooning over right now.  These products are a fine balance between eco friendly, organic, and efficient.  I believe the key to beauty is balance, which is why I choose my products consciously.  Unfortunately, not all products are created equal, and sometimes you need a little extra oomph in order for things to work properly.  I always strive to find products that are mostly organic, eco friendly, and sustainably harvested.  But I also believe that you can't have your cake and eat it too.  Sometimes, you have to compromise to get the perfect balance between natural and something that actually works!  So here it goes!  My favorite beauty products right now are: 

1) "Body Builder" by Kevin Murphy- being a fine haired chick myself, I looooove when I can get body and volume!  Body Builder provides the perfect amount of body and volume, and it smells amazing!  Kevin Murphy is an cleaner line than many of those out there, and it works!  You can pick this up @ Eco Heads Salon.  www.ecoheadssalon.com

To use: Spray at roots all over wet hair, then blow dry!

2) "Water" by Fruits to the Roots- this products is so clean, so fresh, and sooooo worth it!  It is completely organic, and contains ingredients such as: chlorella, fennel, chamomile, and dead sea salts.  It is amazing as a gentle facial cleanser, but I really love it as a mask.  You can find this @ www.fruitstotheroots.com

3) "Venuserum" by Fruits to the Roots- This facial oil is an incredible moisturizer without clogging pores!  All organic ingredients including: black cumin, lavender, and ylang ylang.  www.fruitstotheroots.com

4) "The Healthy Deodorant: Sport Luxe" by Lavanilla-the absolute BEST natural deodorant I have ever found!  After trying so many natural deodorants and failing miserably, I was so thrilled to find this product!  As a stylist, sweat and armpits are part of the job, which makes having great deodorant ESSENTIAL.  This one WORKS.  And, it is paraben and aluminum free! You can find this product at Sephora or Amazon.

5) "The Healthy Fragrance: Vanilla Grapefruit" by Lavanilla- I stumbled across this gem at Sephora and knew I had to try it.  The smell is luscious, but not overpowering.  AND, bonus it is more natural than most fragrances on the market.  I use this on date night when I want to spruce things up with the hubby...ooooh lala.   Find it at Sephora or Amazon.

I hope you all have enjoyed this post!  I will continue to update you on new and exciting products to come!  Cheers!

Sierra

"Body Builder" by Kevin Murphy  www.ecoheadssalon.com

"Body Builder" by Kevin Murphy 

www.ecoheadssalon.com

"Water" by Fruits to the Roots www.fruitstotheroots.com

"Water" by Fruits to the Roots

www.fruitstotheroots.com

"Venuserum" by Fruits to the Roots www.fruitstotheroots.com

"Venuserum" by Fruits to the Roots

www.fruitstotheroots.com

"The Healthy Deodorant: Sport Luxe" by Lavanilla http://www.sephora.com/the-ultimate-sport-luxe-set-P411211?keyword=healthy%20deodorant%20sport%20luxe&skuId=1863570&_requestid=606895

"The Healthy Deodorant: Sport Luxe" by Lavanilla

http://www.sephora.com/the-ultimate-sport-luxe-set-P411211?keyword=healthy%20deodorant%20sport%20luxe&skuId=1863570&_requestid=606895

"The Healthy Fragrance: Vanilla Grapefruit" by Lavanilla http://www.sephora.com/vanilla-grapefruit-fragrance-P174901?keyword=LAVANILA%20Vanilla%20Grapefruit%20Fragrance%20P174901&skuId=977363&_requestid=609600

"The Healthy Fragrance: Vanilla Grapefruit" by Lavanilla

http://www.sephora.com/vanilla-grapefruit-fragrance-P174901?keyword=LAVANILA%20Vanilla%20Grapefruit%20Fragrance%20P174901&skuId=977363&_requestid=609600

Summer to Fall Transitions

It's that time of year again when the kids go back to school, the days begin to get shorter, and the beach becomes colder.  Now, this kind of sounds like a drag, but it doesn't have to be!  Autumn is one of my favorite times of the year.  Of course, living in Southern California can feel like every day of the year is part of one continuous season.  This doesn't mean we can't celebrate fall.  Fall is a feeling.  Fall is the warm sun caressing your body after a chilly breeze.  Fall is grounding.  Fall is transitional.  Fall is everything and anything you want it to be!  This is why I am putting on a fall challenge.  How do you want to feel in fall?  Make fall YOUR season to sink deeper into who you are, whether it's richening up those highlights with some chocolatey lowlights or spicing things up with reds, and warm browns.  Fall is yours to explore!

red balayage