For once, trend-conscious Houstonians are part of fashion movement that’s simultaneously happening on both coasts. Feathers are nesting in hip tresses everywhere and a handful of local salons are adding the colorful additions quickly and with very little cost.
The feather-in-the-hair trend was brought back to Houston by many who attended Austin’s South By Southwest in March, but for creator Dakota Hills, the trend started at Red Rocks in Colorado in the summer of 2010. Hills split her time working as a bartender and attaching the feathers at concerts and within months, the trend had spread across the country.
Hill’s Fine Featherheads started in her basement where she and a handful of friends colored the bundled rooster feathers with an organic, mineral based dye.
“It’s just taken off,” Hills says. “I saw a heavy demand and I really think the sky is the limit with this trend.”
The feathers are 10 to 16 inches long and can be washed, brushed, blown dry, straightened and curled as long as the heat doesn’t extend past 450 degrees. The bundle of seven feathers equals one feather hair extension and are attached using a Micro Links method that doesn’t require heat or glue.
Salons such as Cutloose and Craft in Montrose started attaching the feathers in February and March, but the trend isn’t limited to the inner Loop. Josephine’s Day Spa — with two locations, one in Pearland and another on Eldridge — attaches the feathers for $40. Changes Hair Studio in Conroe, J. Thompson Salon in The Woodlands and Salon Demi in Spring have also jumped on board.
In town, Cutloose charges $30 per bundle (ask for Traci Burke) and at Craft the extensions range from $10 for a single feather to $40 for a bundle.
Hills credits the influence of Native American Indians and a surge of updated 1970s trends for the sudden interest. Not surprisingly, celebrities are flocking to the trend and Hills recently added the feather extensions to Paula Abdul as well as Paris Jackson and Bella Thorne at the Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Awards Gift Lounge.
What did come as a bit of a shock, was excitement the feathers set off in four-legged circles.
"The equestrian community is very interested in the feathers for horse shows and we are also working on a puppy pack," Hills said.
One never knows just how long the feather extension trend will stick around, but for the moment, Houstonians can finally revel in being in the style moment.