the adventures of yoshi

FLAME: The Hairstylist, The Educator.

Posted in Hair, Interview by yoshi on September 29, 2009


I entered the Patricia Field shop and headed downstairs to the Hello Beautiful salon – just as vibrant as the shop itself. Flame, much like his name: hot, colorful, and a ball of fiery fun; is sitting in front of the mirror readying himself for our Q/A and hair sesh.

To my left, another client is getting her red hair washed…

For the past few months I’ve been debating whether or not to make the drastic decision to go blonde. Now I’ve done every single hairstyle and cut imagineable, but never had I made the commitment to go permanently a color unnatural to my heritage – especially after witnessing so many Asian fails with going blonde.

IMG00604My friend Jess bbm’d me a few pics of when she had her hair dyed pink with hints of blonde and I absolutely loved the dye job!!! As fate would have it, my other friend, Emma, sent me a craigslist link that lead me to Flame – sooo meant to be.

Flame, originally from Ecuador now living in Queens (1 block away from my fav Filipino restaurant by the way), has been doing hair since he was 11. As many of us were learning how to cut folded pieces of paper into unfolded hearts, Flame was busy mending bad haircuts himself. Now 28, Flame is working at one of the most acclaimed salons in NYC, Hello Beautiful, known for its edgy, funky cuts and colors – not to mention working under the vivacious Patricia Field name.

He was tired of all the horrible cuts he received as a kid, so he decided the best way to get the perfect mohawk (at 11) was to do it his damn self, “I was born fashionable!” As so, I would agree!

IMG_5621Hair coloring? He started dying Barbies’ hair with food coloring (yea, I was still fascinated with the fact i could pull off Barbie’s head). He started cutting and coloring his friends’ hairs too, but it wasn’t until he graduated high school that he decided to follow his calling to do hair professionally.”Why so long?” I asked, he said he didn’t want to fit the gay stereotype doing hair. I asked if it was difficult, he said, “My mom is my biggest fan,” his family and friends also now shamelessly ask for him to do their do – ha!

He then went on to work on countless fashion shoots while in beauty school, such as Prada and Dior (oh my!). Soon after, he was a sought after hair educator/consultant for L’oreal…

So now, I’m sitting in the chair as he applies the first batch of bleach to my hair, as the good stylist he is, he warns me that we may not be able to achieve the full platinum effect because I had recently dyed my hair. These parts would probably turn a bronzy tint. I was ok with it, it was my own fault for trying to hide my grays. Below is the first batch of bleach application, he only applied it to the main head of hair that had some of the dye left in.


As I sit and ask as many questions as possible, the red haired woman is now seated to my right. Patricia Fields herself chimes in to give me a rundown on her hair experience with the bleaching/coloring process.


Look that's patricia field!

Single-process vs Double-process interlude:
Single-process, Pat explains, in her thick ny accent as she lights up a cigarette, that basically its what you achieve when using, say, a do at home dye. It basically creates a new base color for your hair, typically used to cover shades of gray or go darker… Which is, Pat says, what she’s been using for her red hair =)

Double-process is typically used when lightening hair by more than two shades. First the hair is bleached to remove natural or colored hair pigments, so yea, a bit more complicated so I would leave this process to the pros… like Flame!

Flame and I chat more about random shit while he applies the rest of the bleach all around my head. After, I’m taken to “the chair” to get some overall heat action. Let me tell you, do NOT wear tights when you’re under the dryer – you’ll end up sweating your ass off, literally!


After a few minutes under the dryer, and after my pores feel all oil-free, he washes my hair out and dries. Although we’ve reached a tone much better than we both expected (not orange) it still held a bit of bronze tint. In order to avoid damaging the rest of my hair and to help decrease the bronzy look, Flame brings out the foil to give me some platinum highlights. He uses the foil in order to protect the rest of my hair and scalp.


More time under the dryer, by this time we’re heading into hour 2, but time flies by quickly when Flame is there providing tips and great conversation – oh and my galpal Suz passes by to help snap some photos too.

l_8c7abde47ac54f409d3e4389dbb6ac5cBleached Hair 411 Interlude:

When bleaching your hair, you’ll notice two shades used to lift your natural color: purple or blue. Use violet toner to achieve a more white color, use blue to achieve more yellow/blonde.

l_44386388759563524dd8e3f25446a390How to Choose the Right Color when dying at home?

Flame explained, that if you’re trying to go for a lighter brown and your hair is naturally darker brown with red tone, you may want to use a Light ASH brown color. Ash colors contain the blue/violet tones that will help avoid the orange/bronze look that many some of us have experienced when picking up that Dark Blonde box in hopes of it looking like the examples provided… gah!

What kinds of Hair Product to use?

This is the question of all questions for me when it comes to hair. But really, it all depends on your hair type. For instance, if you’re going for a wet spikey look:

  • Dry hair: use wax
  • Oily hair: use putty

And for those of you with oily (or Asian) hair like mine, I was just told dry shampoo does wonders! Yes, it MAY freak you out that you don’t really wash your hair, but essentially it does EXACTLY what shampoo does: absorbs the oils from your hair! So go for it!

l_2c6277bf21ad4f60b07ba6af7cc867d9Finally, after almost 3.5 hours, its time to wash the bleach out of my hair and view the finished product!

*He explains that I may have to set dry it for the first few times I wash my hair to avoid any heat damage from blow drying too much. Once my hair is damp, I can then blow dry.

I’m now totally blonde (although I’ll have to come in for one more session to lift up more of the orange tint left behind from the dye) and I can now explore the age old question: “Do blondes really have more fun?!” — hehe I’ll definitely keep you posted, although I have to share that I received a “God Bless You,” from a man on Bowery – yea so what if he was a bum! Still counts right?!


Flame, thank you SO much for taking time out of your schedule to not only work on my hair, but also to answer all my questions. Patricia Field, it was a joy meeting you and I was more than giddy when you actually gave me some helpful tips in hair maintenance.

Folks, if ever you’re in the NYC area, you NEED to visit Flame at Hello Beautiful, he not only did my hair up, but he also gave me a rad cut – all within a great price range. He’s on the up and up and we should all expect more great works from Flame…


Hello Beautiful at Patricia Field

302 Bower New York NY 10012


Check Flame’s MYSPACE for more before/after photos!

18 Responses

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  1. Lali said, on September 29, 2009 at 6:20 PM

    it turned out lovely!!!

    i love how i read the whole thing and all i can ponder is “which pinoy-food spot is she talkin’ about?”

    can you say hungry-fatty-girl? food is always on my mind.

    • yoshi said, on September 29, 2009 at 6:24 PM

      omg looove! its that one spot off 69th and roosevelt! you ever been??? ihawan is the name! did you like the write up??? it took me FOREVER lmao

    • yoshi said, on September 30, 2009 at 8:56 PM

      flame replied to your comment! lol =)

  2. FLAME said, on September 29, 2009 at 6:33 PM

    omg if you go there try the bbq pork!! its amazing!!! im totally a fatty girl trapped in a slim boy body! ps th write up was amazing! thank you so much!! im glad you liked it!

  3. Lali said, on September 29, 2009 at 6:37 PM

    GAH! yes i have been there,…mmmmm

    the write up was great girl!

    Flame-I so recognize you from Jessica R. (from Jersey now in Cali)

  4. Kay said, on September 29, 2009 at 9:24 PM

    omg yess i love ittttt!!!! how much did he charge?? i want my hair done…lol great post!!!

    Flame.. you areAWESOME

    • yoshi said, on September 30, 2009 at 8:56 PM

      flame replied back to your comment! =)

  5. gorillaintheroom said, on September 30, 2009 at 9:51 AM

    great write up! even though the tips were great, i don’t trust myself to diy hair color anymore (bad memories of sewage green hair in high school) i’ve been thinking of getting the Cindi Lauper inspired Paramore do with orangey/blonde color. but i’ve got the natural flip tan hehe and never thought the colors would work for me. after reading this though i’m going to plan a trip to nyc… oh gosh, is it hard to book an appointment with Flame???

    i have to admit, this is THE first i’ve seen an asian chic rock the blonde. loooove it!

    • yoshi said, on September 30, 2009 at 10:39 AM

      you should send him a message on his myspace!!! or you can try calling the salon too =) DO IT!!!!!

  6. vern said, on September 30, 2009 at 11:00 AM

    usually when i see lots of text in a blog post i open a new window. lol! but, this time i really read your whole write up! lurve! well done on the play by play and your new color is gawguhhs! now let’s party it up and show off your new doo!

  7. FLAME said, on September 30, 2009 at 7:23 PM

    oh wow! i didnt expect to see this many replies to your post! your blond is a hit! yey!! im glad everyone liked it! and cant wait to add some cute new purple streaks to your hair! on me of course! conceder it a thank you for posting this awsome blog!
    hey lali, have we met? jessica is my girl! weve known each other since our early teens from our punk rock days!!! she was one of the first people i did tri hawks on aside from myself! hahaha! how do you know that crazy bitch? lol

    kay, thanks! let me hook you up, im not gonna lie ,the salon is kinda pricey but i do like to hook up my friends, and friends of friends that i meet through my myspace, and well, i guess now from this blog lol! come in anytime for a free consultation and ill give ya a good rate, just mention jess,or yoshi, or this blog! lol

    hey gorilla, sounds like you have a neat hair idea!! im all about cindy lauper and love the paramour red, in fact thats what i just did with my hair today! and i also have that natural tan youre talking about, you can def pull off the bright colors, just need a darker,less pastel version of those colors around your face so you dont get washed out.

    its not hard to get an appt with me at all, just contact me directly, i prefer this as apposed to calling the salon because every stylist is in charge of booking their own appts. you can get my contact number from jess (yoshi) or contacting me on my myspace!

    • Lali said, on October 1, 2009 at 10:58 AM

      I know Jess from High School (MAST) she was one of the few girls I could relate to in HS. Let me tell you how hard it was to “grade” her in a ROTC uniform with her awesome hair šŸ˜‰ miss her a ton!

      I kinda wanna do some plum tones in my hair-but i gotta see if I can pull it off in my UES job.

  8. FLAME said, on October 2, 2009 at 10:05 PM

    maybe if we all call her at teh same time and beg her to come home she wilL! heheh…worth a shot?
    as far as your hair if you wrok in the ues i prob wouldnt suggest doing purple al over but you may be able to get a way with some plum underneath, like a peekaboo highlight pattern, or even go more subtle by doing a plum brown that just shines purple in the un light . where theres a will theres a way!

  9. […] 1.5 with FLAME! Posted in Hair by yoshi on October 7, 2009 last weekend i visited flame at pat field’s to try some purp in my hair! i wanted to add a lil something to break up all […]

  10. […] hair makeover videos Posted in Hair by yoshi on October 22, 2009 FLAME has answered our prayers and has updated his Youtube channel […]

  11. […] you guys just need to get used to it, i love maintaining my hair so you’ll be seeing a LOT of FLAME posts and a lot of me sitting my ass down at pat field’s salon “hello beautiful” […]

  12. YESENIA (COCO āœ‚ STYLISTA) said, on June 1, 2010 at 12:42 PM


  13. janyna said, on March 29, 2011 at 1:10 PM

    Nice article man. It’s very interesting!

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