What to Do About Dancing with Real Long Hair...
(you, or your partner)
At the Salon...
Well, here I type, sitting under this hair dryer, staring the most gorgeous Puerto Rican Salsera
I've ever seen. Not only does this woman have looks and a body to kill, but the most beautiful, healthy, long, dark brown hair in Los Angeles. "It's to my tailbone now", she says with a laugh. Meet Jessie Lynn Martinez, owner of Goerge-Michael Hair Salon in Beverly Hills, California.
The Challenge with Long Hair...
Aside from her natural ability to beautifully move her body on the dance floor, only as a Puerto Rican Salsera can, one of the first things people notice about her is her hair. "Sometimes when I'm dancing after a while, it starts to stick to the sweat on my body and starts getting in the way, so I'll put it up. 90% of the time, the guy I'm dancing with invariably will say says, 'NO!' Leave it down! I LOVE to watch your hair!'"
It wouldn't be so much a bother for them, as it is for her. Jessie dances for the fun and sheer pleasure of it. However, she uses the few times she gets to go out dancing as an aerobics session, and needs the freedom to perform the spins, dips and flashy turns that are so popular in LA Salsa clubs.
We at Dancer Hangout get asked many questions about dancing. One of those is what women should do with their hair - especially when it's past shoulder length. Jessie was surfing the site one day, and found my comments about long hair in our "Dear Edie..." section. They basically said "Geez, I don't know - maybe you should stop spinning the girl so much..." I went on to explain, from personal experiences that when a girl puts her hair up, if it's not glued down with goop, pins, and clips, it will fall out..."
After reading my comments, Jessie immediately sent me an email suggesting I come by her salon in Beverly Hills where she would show me what works for her. It just so happened to be a Friday (dance night), and we decided to go ahead and meet at a club that evening. I recognized her right away from her website's pictures. The minute we started talking, I felt like we had already known each other and been friends for years.
Equipped with a camera and notepad in my bag, and a few simple clips and combs in her purse, we headed to the ladies' lounge upstairs. Immediately I sensed the men all around us, watching and just gazing at her, taking her all in with their eyes. I got such a kick out of the men just watching her, I was inspired to write about it:
This is how the guys would check Jessie out. When they saw her, they would first elbow the guy next to them, and very inconspicuously gesture with their heads to look at her. They would continue just watching her, slowly walking by. Their method was to start from the top down - first looking at her face, then down her chest, then progress on past her mid-section to those beautiful long legs. When she passed by, they right away noticed her famous long flowing hair. They would elbow each other AGAIN, and continue to STARE HER UP AND DOWN from behind. They would then glance at each other, look again, shake their heads in complete amazement, and take very slow sips from their drinks. Whew! It turned out to be more entertaining watching THEM than Jessie's hair!!! I was cracking up! I told Jessie she should start charging for what appeared to be a free show!
My Little Lesson...
When we finally made it to the ladies' lounge, Jessie started me off with teaching me how to brush my hair "correctly". I didn't know there was a "right" or "wrong" way. I realized this was not only going to be a "how to put your hair up" lesson, but an educational experience on how to "treat" my hair as well. She showed me methods of brushing, combing, and keeping my hair healthy. She told me of conditioning "treatments" that are necessary to maintain the strength and luster of longer hair over the years. She discussed the myths people are lead to believe, such as "layering the top and fluffing it to give you height" and "bangs look cute", etc.
She then showed me two methods for quickly putting her hair up without bobby pins, goop, or hair spray. I was amazed. She used small comb clips, inserted at specific angles. They held up solid, like a rock. To test out her new "do", I asked her to dance with a high-speed LA Salsero after she put her hair up (a TRUE test of her methods - if you know how LA Salseros dance, you'll appreciate this...) Amazingly enough, her hair did not, I repeat DID NOT fall out! She was able to do multiple spins, get dipped, duck, and do ALL THAT other stuff he puts his partners through!
All I have to say, is that Jessie
knows what she's talking about. She should - she's been making "Long Hair" her business now for a VERY LONG TIME.
Salsa Dance Classes in her Beverly Hills Salon... "Only in L.A..."
I'm thrilled to announce that Jessie will be opening up a new salon in Beverly Hills in the next few weeks that will have - you guessed it... A WOOD FLOOR for dancing!!! She will clear the chairs and tables, to host SALSA DANCE CLASSES for her clientele! She is currently in the process of auditioning instructors for her classes. For more information, you may contact her directly via her website at: http://georgemichaellonghair.com/
Have we heard it ALL now, or what.... ????
Only in LA, folks... YOU GO GIRLFRIEND!!!
- Edie, The Salsa FREAK!!