Tuesday, January 27, 2015

DNa Lab Organic Hair Chemistry Salon: Healthier Hair Coloring And Styling

Meet the brilliant David and Ana Maria Seifarth. Together they are 'DNa Lab Organic Hair Chemistry'  an exceptional non-toxic salon located at the circle in Urbana, MD. Both share a passion for styling hair and sourcing hair products that can safely give clients fantastic results without the worry and danger of noxious harsh chemicals like ammonia. They have created a nourishing healthy environment at their phenomenal 'DNa Lab' salon. During their own professional careers within the salon industry they realized that not only are the carcinogenic chemicals of modern hair products bad for us consumers, they are doubly toxic for those hair stylists who must work with those chemicals every day! This stunning husband and wife team wanted a healthy sustainable beauty experience for their customers, staff, and also themselves. They opened the 'DNa Lab' salon a year ago outside of Frederick Maryland, just off of I-270, north of Washington, D.C., in order to supply the need for top notch hair styling along with state-of-the-art certified organic hair product alternatives. They have succeeded in both as their ever growing list of clients are singing their praises. In fact clients travel from out of state, and across Maryland, including Baltimore, Virginia, West Virginia, and Washington D.C. to savor the 'DNa Lab' experience.

Thanks to 'DNa Lab' I can feel good about the process of coloring and styling my hair. Having had a cancer diagnosis, safe chemical-free products are very important to me. David worked his organic styling magic on my hair and I am thrilled to feel like myself again! Honestly I know even if you are currently enjoying vibrant health that finding a new hair stylist can be a bit daunting. Read on and feel confident about your conscientious choice to work with a salon such as 'DNa Lab Organic Hair Chemistry.'  This service makes even coloring our hair a worry free restorative choice for our well being. Just when I thought I would have to give up on my hair issues I can instead enjoy having a bit of glamour back in my life! 

Do you realize that 85% of cancers are caused or triggered by toxins from our modern world? Skin, our largest organ, absorbs everything that comes into contact with it and then sends those substances into our cells. Just think about skin lotions, and medical patches... the fact that they work is based on that amazing absorption power. For over 40 years I had been using the highly destructive chemical hair dye process and breathing in the fumes too. Plus I was rubbing those harsh dangerous chemicals into my scalp to color my roots every two months.Yuk! Ultimately I could no longer do something like that to myself again after cancer. My son used to complain about the awful ammonia odor and say, "Mom that cannot be good for you to breathe in!" He was right. What did I know? I trusted corporations and government regulatory agencies way too much back then. Like many I just assumed that they do the right thing when it comes to the public's health. Not so my friends. After my cancer research on the truth about our modern carcinogenic food and personal care products one of the things I stopped was dyeing my hair with harsh chemicals. I let my hair begin to grow out natural. I no longer trusted the little bottle in that box, along with regular shampoo and conditioner too. Though unfortunately, even as bohemian as people may perceive me to be, I was not really happy with the end result of growing out "my natural hair." Feeling sadly drab I wondered what do I do now? Should I be content with a gloomy attitude towards my hair? No way! More kick-ass research... and 'DNa Lab' to the rescue! We can still shimmer and shine!

Those who follow 'The Queen's Table blog' know I view improving our horrible modern processed food eating habits and the transitioning to healthy nutrient dense food as moving through 'good... better... best.' You can use this same scale when you are considering upgrading your personal care products too. I would say if you stopped dyeing your hair and went completely natural that would be 'best.' Since I was not happy with 'my natural hair' the 'better' choice for me was to find an organic color salon. I asked friends who were hairstylists if they could help my situation. They said that they were sorry that they could not as everything they used was toxic. As I continued researching hair coloring products the 'Organic Colour Systems' line was one that kept rising to the top. 'DNa Lab' uses those products along with other healthier coloring options! I am so happy I found them! The name of their salon (d = David  n'  a = Ana Maria), while a play on their initials, is also the symbol on 'The Periodic Chart Of The Elements' for sodium. Salt... natural... and detoxifying. A good fit since going organic and plant based we are now detoxifying our hair and body from the dangerous chemicals of modern industrial methods. Let's do this!

Yep my natural hair color was so blah that I was totally over it! Even in the photo above during David's consultation I am one sad puppy looking at myself in the mirror. My real natural hair turned out to be a lackluster mix of brown and gray. Although I admit I do have two wonderful secret silver stripes hidden next to each of my ears. Imagining the uber-coolness of Led Zeppelin's Jimmy Page, I would indeed stay natural if all of my hair was his shade of silver! Unfortunately it is not. I needed some safe healthy professional help if I was to get some glam-o-rama back into my life! David who is a certified organic colorist listened and made suggestions. Actually at 'DNa Lab' they will hook you up with a specialist stylist that suits your particular hair needs. (Check out the Bios page at their 'DNa Lab' website.) You may have curly hair, fine hair, short hair, long hair, prefer modern cuts and color, love dimensional color, would like a perm, or be in need of bridal hair. You get the idea, we all have our own preferences. 'DNa Lab' will listen to your concerns and set your appointment up with the perfect stylist for your desires as they want you to be happy with the final results. 

Since we know the word 'organic' in the world of personal products does not have the same meaning as 'food grade organic' products stamped with the familiar green circular USDA label, we do need to be careful about what is actually in them. So in order for me to do 'better' at a hair salon like 'DNa Lab Organic Hair Chemistry'... what are they doing different with their product protocol? David and Ana Maria have made a point to research brands with natural and organic ingredients that are tested by outside sources, have sustainable practices, and are cruelty free. Just having the word "organic" on the product does give them a reason to carry the line in their salon. It takes more than adding that word to a bottle.

Therefore some of the products they carry are called organic and some are not. Most of the product lines that they carry in the salon do use 'Certified Organic Ingredients.' Carefully they have chosen product lines that do not contain any ammonia, sulfates, formaldehyde, and parabens. They even provide gluten-free hair products for their clients that are so sensitive to gluten that their skin breaks out in a rash. At first I thought gluten-free hair products sounded silly, although David assured me they do have clients where this concern really is an issue. 

The atmosphere of the 'DNa Lab' salon is hip retro industrial with a 'Renovation Hardware' vibe. The staff was welcoming and cheerful. They took my coat, and immediately offered me and my hubby a nice cup of tea. You can be served other drinks if you prefer. My favorite thing is that when you walk into the salon there are no chemical smells in the air! How refreshing!

During my first appointment with David we discussed blending my natural grown out hair with the old blond chemically treated hair on the bottom section. Most of the chemically damaged hair was then cut off. Then he added very natural highlights and low lights, with a great cut. The tradition is to take a selfie in their awesome restroom... actually I never shared this selfie till now... so there ya go world.

A month later I realized that I expected to see a blonde when I looked in the mirror. So now I wanted even brighter highlights to satisfy my rock n' roll soul. I needed to call David at 'DNa Lab' right after the busy holidays and make a few additions to my 'do!' Make way for the glitter-atzi!

My True Confession: My mother dyed my hair darker when I was in fifth grade for Easter photos because she said I had very ugly mousy brown hair. Great boost for the inner child self-esteem. Anyway when my mother finished my hair it looked black, and my teacher was horrified. At that time as a creative kid I was making and wearing chain mail looking vests from soda and beer zip tabs. That sure annoyed the grade school lunchroom attendants for some reason. Hey! Just having some funky fun ladies! Shortly thereafter in seventh grade I started dyeing my own hair, alternating from auburn to strawberry blonde, wearing my mothers bits and pieces from sparkly gowns, donning different colored wigs, and not giving a fig what anyone thought about it. I was having fun. Bowie before Bowie, which is why I related to the chameleon aspect of him immediately. And yes I was in the front row of 'The Tower Theatre' wearing my lightning bolt platform shoes on his first (and second) 'Ziggy Stardust' American Tour! I was a Glam 'T-Rex Jeepster' baby and loving every minute of it! Damn I wish I still had some of those outfits!

Truthfully I have been 'on the bottle' for most of my life. I may have assimilated into looking "normal" after motherhood... yet going completely natural was never going to work for me if it looked drab and boring. When I attend my yearly fairy festivals I always get shiny fairy strands put in my hair. My kids say, "If it sparkles Mom will love it!" Therefore I felt getting bright highlights is a 'better' safer option and more "me." Okay... break's over! Enough of my retro secrets!

When I called David to let him know I wanted to add some lighter brighter highlights to the front of my hair he was excited! "You called at just the right time! We just got in a new product that now makes that possible. You will be the second client to be using our new Olaplex product. Next week we will be training all of our stylists on how to use it on each other!" Perfect!

You might realize that, compared to traditional chemical hair color, organic and natural hair color is very gentle on your hair. David and Ana Maria care about the healthy quality of your hair. In the past David would not allow his customers with naturally dark hair to get the really lighter shades because it damages the hair from stripping. This new professional use only product called 'Olaplex' is free of silicone, sulfates, phthalates, DEA, aldehydes, and is not tested on animals. Olaplex reconnects the bonds in your hair broken by thermal, mechanical, or chemical processes. Your hair gets extra protection and lighter organic shades are now possible for us darker haired ladies. 'DNa Lab' is very happy that they can now offer this solution to their clients like me.

Actually only a few salons in the country even have access to the new product at this time. Ana Maria and David were trained in New York to use Olaplex and in the future will probably be training other salons on the east coast. So lucky me!

I told David that I wanted the brighter blonde highlights mixed with some strawberry blonde shades of red to change it up a bit for me. A slight nod back to my old red haired days. He liked the idea and agreed it was a complimentary combination. With this method the color does not sit on your scalp and sink into your skin. The color mixture stays in the wrapped foil package. Plus the mild ingredients of the products 'DNa Lab' uses on their clients are much safer! The process is so clean that I noticed David that did not even wear gloves on his hands. He told me he really appreciated the fact that the whole process did not smell bad anymore either! In the old days of dyeing my hair I only had to smell that stink for an hour. Imagine having to smell it all day long! Ugh... nasty like a nail salon. 

David and Ana Maria are certified organic colorists; they mix up the colors at their rustic color bar, and then wheel their custom result over to your salon chair on a mini cart.

The hair coloring product David used on my hair is made by Organic Colour Systems. 

A wide variety of shades are also available from 'DNa Lab' in the 'Original Mineral' O&M color line as well. So many healthier choices!

Be sure to talk to an organic hair color specialist about which brand of color is appropriate for your hair situation and needs. Certainly it depends on your own natural hair color and/or if you used chemical color how any particular shade will appear on your hair after the coloring process. Gone are the smells, the stinging scalp, watery eyes, and total damage done to your hair from all the chemicals. Your hair will actually be shinier and healthier than ever before! You are free to enjoy a wonderful experience! 

While I sipped on my herbal tea served up lab style, which by the way was hand crafted by Ana Maria, David focused on placing the colors and foils onto my hair.

When he was finished I spent a short time pretending to be reading under the heat lamps while listening to their well chosen music. (As you can see I was actually communing with the mother ship.)

Now it's time for serene restorative relaxing: A complimentary hand treatment under a hot towel, and herbal shampoo with a soothing scalp massage. Just ease on back into your oh-so-comfortable shampoo bed. No 'bent neck' aches here people! Sweet! The botanical products they use are delightfully 'smelly good' and provide soothing aromatherapy! 

Time to Zen out...

Below is a peek at the retro looking shampoo and conditioner bar that the hair stylists use on your hair while you slip into that other world.

After my hair was towel dried I was back to David's chair. Hubby did a nice job of taking a windy photo while David was blowing out my hair.

Below the product shelf photo is a brief outline of some of those healthier beneficial professional brands that are used by 'DNa Lab Organic Hair Chemistry' salon.

O&M = From Australia (Original Mineral). Free of parabens, sulfates, propylene glycol, sodium chloride, phthalates, MIT, and Triclosan. Hair color contains no harsh chemicals and is ammonia, resorcinol and PPD free. They use natural Australian minerals and ingredients such as Kaolin, Montmorillonite, Illite, Lilly Pilly, Quangdong, Tasmanian Sea Kelp, Argan oil, Macadamia oil, other natural oils, and aloe vera within the hair care product line. No animal testing.

Yarok = 100% Vegan botanicals made in fresh batches from organic pristine sources that are responsibly harvested. Free of alcohol, paraben, sulfates, and gluten. Cruelty free.

Loma = Hand crafted in small batches all products are free of paraben, gluten, sulfate, and sodium chloride. Certified Organic Aloe Vera gel is the primary base for all products, with other organic ingredients such as lavender, fennel seed, and sunflower seed. Organic essential oils of avocado, sunflower, olive, jojoba, castor and safflower as needed.

Organic Color, Curl, Care, Control, Systems = 100% ammonia free, Certified Organic Ingredients, cruelty free, 100% vegan, no plastics, and no thioglyolates.

MILK Anti frizz = Handcrafted in California. Organic ingredients from sustainable sources.

Hanz de Fuko = No animal testing. Certified Organic and Non GMO plant based ingredients when a choice exists for their styling products.

Back to David's station for that amazing smoothing action that professionals can achieve when blowing out your hair. Sometimes before some of my husband's gigs I wish someone would please do this for me, especially to the back of my hair where I cannot reach. Ya know what I mean ladies?

I noticed some lab n' library action up at the front desk.... so I asked David about some "Product." I am using the lingo... and admitting my ignorance.

David says the 'Milk' anti-frizz product handcrafted in California is the most popular with their clients. It protects the hair and scalp while promoting growth and restoration. Since at 'DNa Lab' they do not push you to buy products, David was honest and said my hair was in great shape, and I actually did not need to use it. On the plus side... that's what growing your hair out natural will get ya.

This has been my first time other than a touch of hair spray to use "product" regularly on my hair since the eighties! (OMG! Remember mousse? Big frosted Barbie hair and giant cans of hair spray?) In this century I am in love, love, love, with 'Hanz de Fuko Quicksand'. It gives fine limp hair like mine natural volume and lift. Truly amazing! Lasts until you wash it out! I could even be "ah-lah Bowie in Labyrinth" if I so wished!

There is David at the reception desk getting me my quicksand supply! Can I have five?

After being so pleased with the 'Hanz de Fuko Quicksand' product this past month I wanted to try more of the 'DNa Lab' product lines. So I asked David to recommend a few that I would use with my personal hair situation needs. Here is what I decided to purchase:

Shampoo: 'O&M Original Detox' removes deposits on hair and refreshes with Australian Mint.
Conditioner: 'Loma Nourishing' for dry thirsty and chemically treated hair. Aromatherapy - cranberry and pear.
Dry Shampoo: 'CocoLab' A locally crafted product made from arrowroot powder, spices and oils for those in between shampoo days.
Protection from Blow Dryer use: 'O&M Atonic Thickening Spritz'
Free sample Loma Nourishing Oil: protection, shine, aromatherapy - vanilla bean and orange.

'DNa Lab' is always creatively thinking about how to improve their customer's experience. Most recently they added a dedicated bar for computer laptop use. Anyone waiting for the clients who are getting their hair styled will be able to go online comfortably. After three more shampoo beds are installed, then two new stylists hair stylists will be added. Although I have not experienced any of the other hair stylists personally they each get wonderful reviews on Yelp! Obviously they take great care to find people who have impressive hair skills yet fit in with the comfortable friendly atmosphere of the salon. Going to have your hair done can be like going to a therapist for some people. I observed that the other stylists were pleasant souls who can handle the laid back social interaction with impressive ease while satisfying the customer's hair style needs.

Since my personal quest in life has been finding healthier ways of living I love seeing this industrious couple succeed with their vision of better safer hair solutions for their growing list of satisfied clients. We need more people in the world who include making life healthier as part of their business model! I am so thankful that they have created this space with such superb care! Let's review our overall thoughts about 'DNa Lab' ... for pampering our senses, getting superior hair styling, giving exceptional service, using healthy safe organic products, and creating a distinctive setting... Yes! The Queen will take all of that... any day!

I look forward to my next visit to DNa Lab! If you want a fantastic cut, and/or color executed in a safe caring environment I would say it's time for you to get pampered with kindness at DNA Lab Organic Hair Chemistry! I feel really good about how my hair looks, in addition it also feels soft and healthy too!  Oh... I think this is the beginning of a very beautiful relationship! After all... hair is our crowning glory! (So says the Queen!) Now go get the hair you've been yearning for safely and don't forget to take your fabulous selfie in their mirror! Be happy. Be healthy. Be peace.

(Check out even more reviews about the 'DNa Lab' experience on Yelp! here.)
If you have been to DNa Lab leave a comment!
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1 comment:

  1. I read about your salon in Md and now your are opening in Spring. I Live in Savannah Ga and to travel 2 hrs to shop in Charteston. I am interested in ypur salon because I have celiac and color my hair highlights and low lights. I am a hairdresser for many years in the New Jersey area. Very hard to color my hair and use only chemical free products. I saw you and your wife on the HGTV channel I am hopping to come to Chareston and go to your salon. Thank you Beverly Milley