Ken Paves Shares "The Biggest Loser" Makeover Tips

One of the most anticipated episodes of The Biggest Loser is the makeover episode, and Ken Paves Salon has been responsible for the transformative makeovers for the last four seasons. Paves explains, "I am always amazed at how much the contestants inspire me. It's an honor to be a part of The Biggest Loser, the show gives us all hope that it's never to late to get healthy and become your personal best!"

Ken Paves shares his experience on season thirteen of The Biggest Loser:

Why is the makeover process an important step in The Biggest Loser?
The makeover process is hugely important because the contestants have looked at heavier versions of themselves in the mirror for years. Even though the weight has come off, often they have a hard time recognizing just how far they have come, because they still see their heavier self when they look in the mirror. My job is to erase that old image, make them take a double take and recognize their new self! People always ask why did you cut "so and so's" hair like that. Because it's about a fresh start! I want to help them recognize how beautiful they are in this moment. It's about letting go of how they saw themselves before and truly seeing themselves now!
Did the contestants want major hair makeovers to match their major weight loss or were some of them resistant to change?
The makeover episode has become so popular that I think everyone, even the contestants, anticipates it. They have worked so hard and given it their all, I don’t think they want to stop now. They are usually very eager for something new!

Can you tell us about some of the makeovers?
Here's the thing about makeovers. For me it's all about that one person sitting in my chair! I ask them to disregard what anyone else has told them, (friends, family, foe's, other stylists) about how they "look good". It's not up to anyone else. I want to make them feel great in this moment, and they are all that matters! I never just make someone over. I include them in the process and figure out what is going to make them feel the best about themselves. I encourage them to go where they have always wanted to and have been afraid to. It is about the courage to change, and they have already proven on the show that they have it!

*We gave Mark a nice tight shave on his head. He has a good head shape. We originally left a slight goatee, but then Mark said he wanted to go all the way! So we did, shaved off all his facial hair. Like I said, its all about the contestants and feeling great in the moment.

*Jeremy has great hair so we gave him a modern haircut with a lot of texture. We squared off his sides to enhance his new slimmer jaw line. He also had a little cleaning up in the brow department!

*Kim has a lot of great curly hair that she likes to wear curly or smooth. We shortened her length and layered her hair more to give her a versatile updated look. The layers not only make her hair look fresh, they make her look lighter. Her hair was lightened to a cool auburn color. Sometimes heavy dark hair can weigh someone down. This look definitely lifted her up.

*Buddy was great and eager as well. We put a natural color in Buddy's hair just to "buff down" and soften his grays while keeping it very natural. Since he was eager for a change, he also wanted to see what was under that facial hair and go all the way. Adding texture to his haircut, gives him a relaxed vibe. As with Jeremy, we kept his sides very straight and masculine, this enhances the "squareness" of a man's jawline making it look even "stronger".

*I think gray hair is beautiful…but, the makeover episode is about seeing the "new" you. Chris' gray hair was dyed a natural med/light brown color, instantly transforming her. She already had a short cut, but I wanted to put a little more sass into her look. We eliminated all the weight in the back that was dragging her down and added a fresh look with choppy layers for movement and versatility.

*After a few minutes of talking Conda was ready for a change! She mentioned donating her hair to "Lock of Love", (wigs for children with cancer) so I had her put her money where her mouth was and handed her the scissors! It can be very liberating to do the first cut yourself. I gave her an updated A-line bob that instantly elongated her over all physical appearance. We gave it a little extra attitude with layers throughout and a side fringe! To enhance the change her hair was lifted to a nice cool caramel tone.
What products did you use on the styles?
I used all my new Ken Paves Self Help products, which are perfect for creating your own makeover! I created them from everything I learned doing makeovers for years on The Biggest Loser, The Oprah Show, The Doctor's, and many others.Do you have any advice for stylists on how to consult clients who want a makeover after having gone through a major transformation?
Yes, find out what that person finds attractive about themselves when they look in the mirror. Create a look that enhances and helps them only see what they like about themselves when they look in the mirror. Hair is like a picture frame and can often crop out what we don’t want to see. I never ask what they don’t want to see. Only what they do want to see, then I crop out the rest. I never discuss negatives in my consultations!

Make sure you also understand their texture and hair type so that you can create a style that they can live with after you're finished.


[Ken Paves image by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images Entertainment; Ken Paves Self Help Products image courtesy of Ken Paves Salon]

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