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Power hair: Why you need it, how to get it at every age

Hairstylist to the stars Julien Farel gives tips

Hairstylist to the stars Julien Farel gives tips on how to get fall's power hair. (Credit: Handout)

By now you've traded in your no fuss summer uniform of sundresses and sandals for fall's power suits and heels, but it's time to take that final step-- upgrading your hair.

“We saw power style all over the runways from structured jackets, tailored, feminine skirts, and slimmer silhouettes, but the hair is what really gives it the edge-- the full package,” says Julien Farel, hairstylist of powerful women including Ivanka Trump, Nicole Kidman and Maria Sharapova. “Your hair is your costar in life."

Farel says a great place to look for inspiration is Hollywood, including the textured waves on actresses Sophia Vergara and Allison Williams and the chic girl's go-to of the moment, bobs, ranging from super sleek on Kate Mara to soft and sculpted on “Downton Abbey” star Michelle Dockery.

Not sure how to take the plunge? Here, three looks he recommends.

For short locks: The sleek bob

“Short, refined bobs are having their power moment, offering the most inventive and diverse variation on chic,” Farel says.

Good for: Round faces, all ages

STEP 1: Comb through damp hair with a flexible styling balm.

STEP 2: Hold up the top and sides with clips.

STEP 3: Start in back using medium sections, blow drying downward with a medium round brush.

STEP 4: Remove clip from sides and repeat same technique.

STEP 5: Both sides should be aimed forward and inward towards the face.

STEP 6: Remove the clip from top and blow dry up and forward, when complete use a smoothing agent to keep hair in place.

For medium length hair: Loose, textured waves

“Shoulder-dusting waves with loose texture made a big splash at Fashion Week and recent awards shows, proving that tousled waves are in,” Farel says. “This style has made headlines and quickly captivated the beauty and fashion power sets.”

Good for: Heart shaped or oval faces, all ages

STEP 1: Apply a flexible gel to wet hair and brush through for even distribution.

STEP 2: Blow dry one side of your hair up and over to the other side using a large round brush until almost dry.

STEP 3: Flip hair over to other side and repeat.

STEP 4: When hair is almost dry, start with the front and use a small, round brush.

STEP 5: Separating by 2-inch sections, wrap the ends of the hair around the brush and roll brush down to roots. Heat the hair for ten seconds or until dry, and unravel hair from brush. Roll hair into a curl at the root and pop a clip in to set.

STEP 6: Continue to the back, and then the sides, until hair is completely set. Remove clips and brush out hair with a large round brush. If needed, use a medium curler on the ends upward and away from the face.

For long hair: Polished ponytail

“Ultra-sleek, side-parted ponytails are also jumping up the glam ladder this season,” Farel says. “To me, this is a look that exudes day-to-night style and sophistication.

Good for: All face shapes and ages

STEP 1: Blow dry hair straight and part the hair to the side.

STEP 2: Pull the hair back with a medium round bristle brush and secure with a thick elastic.

STEP 3: Apply a sculpting gel and gloss to paste down the hair and give it that shiny and sleek look.

STEP 4: Complete the smoothing procedure using comb and fingers, not a hairbrush, and smooth out the top and sides of the head. Always check the volume with the help of the mirror.

STEP 5: Top it off with Julien Farel Haircare Vitamin Smooth to tame any small stray hairs.

Additional tips for every hair type:

1. Can't decide on a cut? "The key to a great haircut depends on two things," Farl says. "First, you must find a hairstyle that flatters your face shape, then you must consider your hair texture. Coarse hair usually needs to be worn longer, and fine hair should be worn shorter and layered if you want body."

2. Need volume? "Layered hair is very flattering, flat hair isn't," he says. "Give your fine hair body with layers, no matter your hair length." Highlights can also help to give hair more texture, emphasize layers and brighten your complexion.

3. Considering bangs? You can rock bangs, even with a cowlick, Farel says. Just have your hairstylist re-layer the bangs once they're dry to give them extra volume. "Thick, side-swept bangs gives you attitude and an edge," he says. 

Recommended products: Julien Farel Haircare includes all of the products mentioned in the steps above, $23 each at Julien Farel Salons, Zitomer and dermstore.com. Select products will also be available at Bergdorf Goodman in December. Find more information and salon locationas at julienfarel.com

Julien Farel Haircare Vitamin Smooth: "It’s a smoothing crème that works for all hair types to keep the hair soft, moisturized and manageable,”  Farel says.

Julien Farel Haircare Flexible Styling Balm: Nourishes and detangles, and leaves hair soft with natural movement.

Julien Farel Haircare Flexible Gel: Protects, maintains and fixes hair naturally, leaving it defined yet flexible.

Julien Farel Haircare Sculpting Gel: Adds definition while locking in moisture for a smooth, long-lasting finish.

Julien Farel Haircare Sculpting Gloss: Creates texture while giving the hair anti-aging benefits and conditioning for an extra shiny finish.