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In honor of the launch of Vital Proteins new Collagen Water™, we’re kicking off a weekly series on Lively called "How I Uncap My Potential," where we feature amazing women doing incredible things in their field. Today, we’re spotlighting expert hair colorist Christine Silverman, the woman behind some of your favorite influencers' manes. Learn more about Silverman, the life advice she'd give her younger self, and her balayage do's and don'ts.

Lively: Thanks for chatting with us! Can you briefly explain your career path?

Christine Silverman: My career path has been a very windy road. I got my bachelor’s degree in Fine Art at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, which was an incredible experience that definitely helped mold me into who I am today. The next span of time, before I started pursuing my career in beauty, was a series of jobs to help make ends meet; the longest being a nurse's aide at a state-run mental hospital in Ohio. During that time period, I considered going into forensic psychology but lacked the discipline needed to undergo another six-year stint of school. When I moved to California, I finally found a pursuit that connected in a practical way to my lifelong interest in aesthetics. I always enjoyed anything involving hair, makeup, and fashion, and I found my inspiration in Los Angeles's unique blend of art, style, nature, film, and fitness!

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L: Who is on your client list?

CS: I've been working with Dana Patterson for quite a long time and utterly love her! I do work with many models including Devon Carlson (who is an absolute angel as well), and her boyfriend Jesse Rutherford who is the lead singer of the band The Neighborhood, as well as having his own amazing solo career. I work with yogi models Claire Niels and Alexandra Lerner, and Mimi Elashiry when she is in town. I have a wide range of clientele, including twin sisters Ashley and Leslie Saunders who are authors of several novels and are now working on a television series based on their books. My client Janet Zuccharini is a restauranteur and owner of Felix, one of the best restaurants here in L.A.  She is a super inspiring self-made business woman who more than holds her own at the top of a male dominated industry. I have a huge amount of respect for her. I am incredibly lucky to have clients that I genuinely adore and love being around – they make my job super fun! 

dana patterson

L: Why are you passionate about hair coloring?

CS: After finishing my apprenticeship, I was looking for further education by assisting a stylist. I applied at many salons within Beverly Hills to be a stylist's assistant, but as fate would have it, I wound up training with an incredible colorist named Lorri Goddard. I had always envisioned I would focus on cutting and styling hair, as I was drawn to the sculptural aspects, but working under Lorri unlocked my passion for color and composition that echoed the aesthetics I pursued in my studies at art school. Lorri taught me so much about hair color and the balayage technique. She gave me a strong foundation which has allowed me the confidence to create, experiment, and develop my own artistic expression and my own brand of coloring. I'm so glad it ended up this way, as the process of coloring hair is always exciting to me. No two heads of hair are alike, and I'm constantly being challenged to solve problems and create different formulas. I love how much it makes me think – even if it nearly drives me crazy some days. 

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christine silverman

L: What advice would you give your younger self?

CS: Don't worry so much about what other people think or what their standards are. The only thing you can compare yourself to is your own growth and your willingness to always strive to learn no matter what. Be kind to yourself. Time is infinite, and everything changes constantly. I also truly wish I had followed my mom's advice of not tweezing or waxing my brows. It may not have been career advice, but I've now spent years trying to get my bushy brows back! 

L: Do you have any balayage do's and don'ts for someone looking to get it done for the first time? 

CS: Go slowly! You may think you want to be super blonde or have a big change, but sometimes the subtlest and more natural balayage yields the most amazing result. You might not have to be as blonde as you think – what looks good on Instagram or magazine may not be the best solution for your hair type or lifestyle. Also, balayage is a technique that was created to mimic the natural highlights created by a summer spent in the sun, which are typically a bit warmer in tone. If you want super white or "ashy" highlights, this may not be the technique you actually want to have done for your hair color, as it works with the natural tones present in your hair which are typically on the warmer/golden/honey end of the spectrum.

christine silverman

L: How do you "uncap your potential"?

CS: I do my best to maintain a healthy lifestyle. For me, this includes regular exercise, a lot of green juice, and a meditation practice. I am always looking for ways to do things more efficiently, or elevate my techniques, and sometimes this means seeking outside education or asking a co-worker how they do something. I just spent a weekend in Big Sur at Esalen for a workshop on expanding consciousness. Being in nature and elevating my spiritual side is as important as anything else for me to be my best self, and to be of service not only to my clientele, but anyone else I may encounter in life.

L: Do you have a favorite Vital Proteins product? 

CS: I have been a big fan of Vital Proteins for a long time, and I use a wide range of products. My favorites are the Collagen Beauty Greens and Beauty Boost capsules. I add the Collagen Beauty Greens to my smoothie, which adds a good range of nutrients to my diet. Every night, I take three Beauty Boost capsules, and my hair and nails have been looking great since introducing this to my routine! I recommend it to my clients who are trying to grow out their hair, and the fact that it has added skin and nail benefits is a major plus. I also love the Lavender Lemon Beauty Collagen, and I mix that with my pre-workout [beverage] before a rigorous fitness session. I find that collagen not only helps my hair, skin and nails but it has made a difference in my gut health as well. I don't think I'll ever be without it!

Photos: @christinesilvermancolor/Instagram