Sixteen-year-old Christel Khalil had a pimple on her forehead.
This is certainly not unusual for a teenage girl, but Christel
was preparing for a special event: As the troubled Lily Winters
on the CBS daytime drama The Young and the Restless, she was about
to attend the 2004 Daytime Emmy Awards, where she was nominated
in the category of Outstanding Younger Actress.
“I can't have pimples for the Emmys!” she wailed
to her mother.
Like Christel, almost all teens are obsessed with their hair,
skin and makeup, and a single imperfection can ruin an evening.
Born and raised in Los Angeles, the 5´3" actress has
luminous brown eyes and luxurious long brown hair, which she usually
wears loose and curled—often with distinctive crimping.
Being in the spotlight can create undue stress for adolescent
actors like Christel, who first became recognizable for her guest
roles on TV shows like That's So Raven! and Family Matters, as
well as parts in films like Matilda and Dragon Fury. But Christel
understands that her celebrity allows her to serve as a role model
for other teens, especially when playing a character who must
cope with mother-daughter strife, boyfriend worries and sexually
Photo Courtesy of Mia & Maxx Hair Studio.
As teens transition to adulthood, parents need to give them more
leeway, even though they may feel reluctant to relinquish control,
Christel stated in an interview for CBS. “If you just keep
holding them back so hard, when they finally are free, and you
can't hold them anymore, and they turn 18, they're just going
to go crazy,” she stated.
Renae Bertucci agrees. She serves as an artistic director for
Mia & Maxx Hair Studio, a U.S. chain of energetic “street
chic” salons that cater to a unisex clientele of teens and
young adults. Most of her clients are in their early teens to
Stylists—and parents—should be open to teens’
ideas, she asserts.
“Teenagers are excited about trying different things,”
says Bertucci, who has worked as a stylist for five years. “They’re
willing to change styles and not get in a rut. If an idea doesn’t
work, you don’t want to say, ‘That will be disgusting!’
You want to find a compromise that works for everyone.”
When working with teens, Bertucci finds that girls ask for styles
they see on magazine covers (Christina Aguilera’s recent
Elle cover was a popular request), as well as their own creations:
elements of one photo, combined with details from another photo,
and perhaps snippets of a third. Some teens start to color their
hair as early as age 13, but Mia & Maxx policy requires parental
consent. Current trends include softer looks for formal occasions
like proms, extremely bright hair colors like red and pink, soft
highlighting (semi-permanent), medium and longer lengths, and
To create Christel Khalil’s polished look, the secret weapon
is a curling iron. Shampoo and condition hair, as usual. Towel-dry
it to absorb excess moisture, and let hair air-dry. Apply styling
gel and wind individual strands around the curling iron’s
barrel to crimp hair. Gently separate strands with your fingers
for definition. Apply a gloss spray to add shine.
For a creative shortcut, create a dozen or more braids when hair
is still damp, and allow them to dry. Undo each braid, and you'll
have the natural crimps a curling iron would produce.
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