Some people thrive off tweaking their look like they change their underwear. I, on the other hand, since having sported a few different shades of platinum blonde (at the same time) in high school for three years, haven’t been one of those people. Other than monthly trims, my locks maintained the same ol’ look for about a year: mid-length, a little above the chest, in a beautiful balayage color by Bianca Hillier from Andy LeCompte Salon. You’re joking, right? You work for THE Jen Atkin, who helms two of the most major hair companies—why is your hair so predictable?! I know, I know, it’s pathetic. But cut me some slack. It’s not that wild hues of dusty peach and jade green don’t entice me—they do!—just not enough to sacrifice my hair health. So when Anh Co Tran and Johnny Ramirez, the founders of 90210’s lavish Ramirez Tran Salon, launched a line of tape-in hair extensions, Lived In Hair Extensions, my helluva bored hair had a thought—hey, let’s spruce things up and go Cher hair-length, shall we? One week from now I’ll be on a flight to my first New York Fashion Week, so the answer was yes, yes, a million times, yes.
After dealing with the drudgery of coloring extensions to match their clients’ hair color for too long, Anh and Johnny decided to create their own pre-colored extensions, I learned, when I arrived for my appointment with Anh. We were going live on Instagram to show the Mane Addicts peeps the full process. The extensions come in two different lengths, 18 inches and 20 inches. We went with the 18 inchers. For now, the collection includes six shades (the six most requested at Ramirez Tran), but the boys tell me a variety of other colors are in the works.
My hair is wavy, semi-curly so I had reservations about my real hair sticking out like a sore thumb against the silky-soft extensions. Impossible, Anh assured me, these extensions aren’t as fine as standard extensions. Rather, they’re a mix between European and Asian hair—a harmonious fit for different textures due to its natural wave. As Anh swiftly applied (he said 20 minutes is all he needs to finish the entire process) the pieces while rolling followers’ questions on IG Live, while maintaining his OCD approach to hair, it felt like the extensions were nonexistent. Lightweight beyond belief. Too good to be true. I thought, wait until all the pieces are in, then I’ll feel ’em. Nope. That moment never came, even after Anh finished. I mean, he ended up using three and a half packs of hair on me (some dark brown pieces and the rest balayage blonde), how could I not feel the weight of the hair?! Surely they were playing a Magic Castle trick on me.
As I glanced in the mirror, a Garnier commercial model slash mermaid smized back at me. Why hello, goooorgeous! Girl got a mean makeover. Incessant hair flips and Boomerangs ensued. Somehow, somewhere, hair heaven perhaps, Anh and Johnny crafted the most natural-looking colored extensions—so on point that they matched my five month-grown out balayage flawlessly (see for yourself). And because I can’t stress it enough, it feels as though the extensions (which, mind you, are hanging onto my bare hair via tape) aren’t even there. Not light as a feather, no—light as a kitten hair. The only way I can describe the way the hair feels when I run my hands through it is comparing it to the sensation your taste buds experience when they meet the first few bites of a chocolate lava molten cake—full, rich, and deliciously decadent. Now I’ll look runway-ready when I hit my first New York Fashion Week, and beyond—Anh tells me I can keep the tape-in extensions on for about 1-2 months. And get this: the hair itself lasts six months to a year! Too good, right? If you’re in the market for a mane makeover, Anh and Johnny’s Lived In extensions got you covered.