Renee is a masterful, wonderful, and thoughtful stylist, an excellent listener (and then doer!) and she has given me several of the best curly hair cuts I've ever received. My hair is about a 2C-3A, mostly wavy but very curly/springy immediately after washing. I live in New Haven for grad school, but when I come home to Baltimore, I always go to Renee, and in fact I went to her because I read the amazing review on this website of her work and specialization in naturally curly hair. One of the best things about Renee is that she sits with you to listen to what you want, offers suggestions without being too pushy, and will even look through thumbnail photos you may have on your phone to see the kinds of styles, cuts, and colors that you like. She will be honest as well about what things are easily done with your hair/skin tone etc and what things would be harder and may not work as well. She also does a great and attentive dry cut, examining where your curls actually fall and how they fit together, and then unlike many stylists who just assume their work is perfect and what you want after the shampoo and dry, Renee knows that curly hair is weird and can appear in various ways after every wash. So she continues to work with you, if you want it, to do touch ups to ensure that what you walk out with is what you want--AND she offers to have you come back in later, for a touch-up, if you notice something you'd like a bit differently. Isn't that amazing? That happens so much with curly hair, since, as I said, it can turn out differently based on the way it dries. In wrapping up, I'll just say that I've been to many salons over the years, and several "top of the line" ones in New York, where I used to live. These have included Ouidad, Bumble and Bumble, and then some Devacurl salons. These cuts were all OK. But none of the stylists at these places really gave me the time that I wanted to discuss options and whether they would actually look good on me and be relatively easy to maintain. And, frankly, the success of a haircut is at least 50% "does the stylist get what you want and/or offer suggestions that end up being something you want/like?" and then the other 50% technique/skill/precision of cut. At Ouidad, as many people know, everyone pretty much comes out with the same "sculpted curls." You can get that from Renee, but you can also really customize the cut or color, drawing from photos, your imagination, and her expertise, in ways that are just fantastic, fun, and flattering. Finally, as an example of this, I'll say that I came in having some vague notion that my hair color had become dull, a duller brown, and that I wanted highlights to assuage this problem. I'd had highlights in the past and they helped enrich the color of my dark brown hair. We discussed it, and I said that I wanted it to look natural, that I needed it to be professional enough because I'm going on job interviews, and that I generally preferred darker hair. Well, Renee suggested the demi PM Shine, which did exactly what I wanted without going all the way to the highlight side of things. Warmed up the hair, made the color richer, more vibrant, more depth, and added some dark reddish tones to the brown. And this took about 20 minutes, was a lot cheaper than highlights. So we figured out that this was what I wanted through communication. She's amazing!!!
Renee is not only a hairstylist, she's a scientist. I have never had anyone cut my hair who understands it more. She approaches curly hair with a practical sensibility, thinking about both the technical aspect of how a cut will interact with curls and also about the aesthetic aspects of the cut. She is the best hairdresser I ever had work on my hair. She will often do dry cuts, in order to help maintain the shape and it's a technique that really worked for me.