Fluidity by Ulta

Aptly titled Fluidity, the Ulta Beauty Artistic Team has unveiled a new collection of six aquatic-inspired looks featuring cut, color and texture.  Inspired by runway trends seen at New York Fashion Week, the Ulta Beauty team crafted a delicately fluid series of hair statements with contrasting textures and a distinct movement of free, flowing pieces. Choosing a palette steeped in deep steely blue and spanning through smoky blushes, the Artistic Team released signature styles that are evocative of the ocean.

“With this collection, we opted to create a series of liquid-like statements for hair that are not only fluid and fun, but that also defy a certain sense of logic,” said Jen McGann, director of artistic development and training for The Salon at Ulta Beauty. “The movement in the hair creates an interesting story that blends together natural movement and contrasting texture.”

In addition to unique finishes, the Artistic Team wanted to create a cohesive color story. They chose soft, smoky hues with added pops of color for a subtle contrast, while staying true to color trends in hair to tie everything together.

The Looks

Sea Swept (top left)

With an edgy yet bohemian appeal, the details are in the texture of this hairstyle, which starts with a bold braid along a Mohawk section on top. Light tipped ends move freely while a basket weave adds a textured surface quality to the sides.

Redken Velvet Gelatin 07 was applied on dry hair to create to a wet and shiny look. Super sleek strands were used to craft the very precise basket weave on the sides while amped up volume helped create the robust braid along the top. The dual ponytails at each extreme were created using Fashion Work 12, while Take 32 over the top offered a firm hold.

Resonant Reef (top center

This hairstyle was created using a series of wave-ironed shapes on top, with long flowing lengths in between.

Using Redken Triple Take 32, wefts were sprayed, folded in half and wave ironed using a triple barrel appliance. Once set, the pieces were sewn into cornrows created close to the model’s head. Long, straight and contrasting pieces were added in between the waved wefts, which were allowed to move freely for a tentacle-like effect.

Gliding Stingray (top right)

With a strong bob shape, this highly geometric look offers hard lines in the front with a boldly arched fringe that blends into a super straight edge in back. Long, loose, disconnected pieces in a silvery blue hue add airiness to the otherwise solid shape, giving a juxtaposed appeal to the finished look.

To create this hairstyle, Redken Guts 10 was applied on damp hair, which was then blow-dried with a paddle brush while flat wrapping strands against the shape of the head. Shine Flash 02 added luster and tamed flyaways from the darker, solid shape while Windblown 05 added airiness to the lighter, disconnected pieces. At the end Fashion Work 12 stepped up with a pliable finish.

Coral Crested (second row)

For this breezy effect, a very strong fringe and long flowing pieces balance the shape of the style, offering smooth contrast to the otherwise textured tresses. The overall look incorporates varied braids with different finishes including French, Dutch and classic three-strand plaits, each enhanced while styling so they look larger with ample softness.

This bold look was done using the model’s own hair mixed with extensions attached to cornrows at the base. Redken Guts 10 was used to prep the hair while Powder Grip 03 gave the extensions some cushion. Fashion Work 12 finishing spray provided just the right amount of hold but still allowed the pieces to stay pliable and move freely.

Fluid Ambiance (third row)

For this mesmerizing catch, a sleekly rounded shape on top seems to work loose and escape at the ends. With the look of a large shell, the solid shape is broken up with delicate details on top and lengths reaching outward through the offset length.

This swept up wave of hair reveals accents of a smoked strawberry hue delicately breaking up a pale blonde base. In creating the final look, the hair was first prepped with Redken Guts 10 and flat wrapped with Fashion Works 12. Large barrel curls were created all over, alternating the curl direction from section to section. The side was Marcel waved for an even tighter texture. Curls were then brushed through and sculpted into a rolled shape, leaving the ends out on the side for delicate tendrils of movement.

Tranquil (Fourth Row)

With a distinctive tonal contrast at the root, light and cursive accent pieces interlace into head hugging pin curls, which offset the vibrancy of the cascading length.

Redken Hardwear 16, a super strong holding gel, was used to set the swirled sections and maintain the wet look on top of the head. Windblown 05 helped maintain the airy texture of the free ends so they could drift with the passing current.

About the Team

The Ulta Beauty Artistic Team is a group of certified professionals from across the country that oversees all of the haircut, color and style collections for The Salon at Ulta Beauty.  These stylists are hand-picked for their exceptional talent, creativity and leadership skills.  Regulars at New York Fashion Week, the team works alongside Rodney Cutler, Redken Expert/Celebrity Runway Stylist, to create the hair looks for shows such as Tadashi Shoji and Taoray Wang.  Taking inspiration from looks seen on the runway, the team creates the haircut and color trend looks that every stylist from The Salon at Ulta Beauty is trained on each fall and spring.

The Artistic Team at Ulta Beauty • Hair: Aki Hill, Haley Kimble, Doris Sanchez, Feliciano Abad, Rachel Bettis, Brittney Ounanian, Pamela Lynch, Tiffany Cooksey, and Samantha Manuzak • Makeup: Samantha Manuzak • Wardrobe: Kara Kiensicki for Colleen McCann Style • Photo: Taggart Winterhalter for Purely Visual