I have a confession to make. I have never seen The Only Way is Essex. So I had no preconceptions whatsoever when beauty writer Amy Lawrenson suggested I try out Lauren Popes range of hair extensions for a wedding hair trial at Headmasters in Mayfair.
The owner of a head of fine hair, I thought any extra hair could only be a good thing, and so I went to meet session stylist and best friend of Lauren Pope Aaron Carlo for a consultation. Aaron is a bit of a fashion insiders wedding secret, having done the bridal hair for a number of editors and stylists who have poached him right off the catwalk for brands such as David Koma and Thomas Tait. He is a wizard.
Heres me before my Disney makeover. Aaron blow-dried my hair, spraying a thickening mousse into it first. Yep thats my hair with thickening mousse and a professional blowdry. You see why I might have needed some help.
Here are the Hair Rehab extensions. Made entirely from real hair, the lightweight clip-in hair pieces can be dyed, styled and treated just as you would your own hair. Aaron ordered mine in for me after doing a hair matching consultation but you can order them online using Hair Rehab's Colour Matching Wizard.
Aaron adds the extensions to my hair tier by tier, starting at the bottom. He lightly back-combed the hair at each level before clipping in the extension, so that it would hold better - after that, they actually don't budge.
Aaron then tonged my hair and set it in large curls...
Et voilà! Disney princess all the way.
I felt utterly swishy and luxurious; the hair extensions felt wonderful and looked amazingly real.
The beautiful headband is by Donna Crain, who makes the daintiest and most beautiful vintage-inspired headbands, combs and veils. Her site is a must-visit if you're looking for something a little bit special for your hair.
Aaron experimented with a number of other bridal hairstyles: the half-up, half-down style is a very popular one for brides, Kate Middleton being a chief reason. I think I am rivalling her in the hair stakes here, which leads me to wonder, does the Duchess wear Lauren Pope's extensions?
Just wind my right arm to see how it grows.
For an updo, Aaron removed some of the strands of hair and simply twisted it up. He did this in about 14 seconds, no exaggeration. As mentioned above, a wizard.
So, the verdict: faux hair is not a faux pas for a wedding. In fact, unless you are blessed with naturally full tumbling locks, you should really consider investing. The Hair Rehab extensions cost £79.99 and if you treat them well they will last a long time.
Unfortunately you won't have an Aaron Carlo to bring around with you all the time and ensure you look picture-perfect, but you can always book in for a wedding hair trial with him at Headmaster's in Mayfair: I would highly recommend it.
Thanks to the lovely Anna Wills for taking the pictures, to Aaron Carlo for the hairstyles and to Lauren Pope for being the brains behind the beautiful hair.
Hair extensions are Hair Rehab available at www.hairrehablondon.com
For hair trial bookings contact Headmasters Mayfair www.headmasters.com/salons/mayfair/
Hair bands by Donna Crain donnacrain.com