So as you probably all know by now, my mum is a hairdresser. As a result of this, I’ve always self-admittedly been terrible (and snobby) in the hair department. I know nothing, I’m capable of nothing. However, I’ve been seeing some articles in magazines about haircare ‘hacks’ that I’ve always known but that are seemingly new revelations to people. I’ve also become great at washing my hair up to salon standards so I thought that I’d share my haircare hacks that will help your hair to grow long, stay healthy and look shiny, even if your hair is bleach, coloured or damaged like mine.
I’m not too sure if this is a well known fact or not (which is why I’m starting with it) but when you wash your hair, you should be shampooing it twice before moving on to your conditioner. Lather the shampoo onto your scalp (not your ends, it will end up there anyway but don’t do anything to your ends with the shampoo) and make sure you get those hard-to-reach places behind your ears and underneath your hair at the nape of your neck!
Only put conditioner through the ends of your hair, not on your scalp. If your hair is coloured on the top then carefully put some on top of your hair but don’t let it touch your roots, they’ll go greasy.
3. CONDITIONER (AGAIN)
Once you’ve applied your conditioner, comb through your hair. Start at the very bottom and work your way up to minimise your chances of having tangles and knots. Afterwards, twist your hair up so it’s out of the way and clip it on top of your head. Let the conditioner sit on your hair for a while before you rinse it off.
It’s common sense that using a lot of heat on your hair is bad for it. Sure, you can use a heat protectant but they honestly aren’t doing too much to save your hair from the heat that you’re using on it so don’t think that it’s ok to fry your hair with your GHDs every other day just because you’re using heat protectant. If your natural hair is way too frizzy and tragic for you to be able to eliminate using heat completely (like mine is) then instead of drying your hair and then straightening, curling or waving it, do a two-in-one and blowdry your hair straight of wavy. It will hold in your hair the same as it would if you used a straightener or curling tong/barrel but it means that you only use half the amount of heat to style your hair everytime you wash it. If you have the time, don’t dry your hair straight after washing it, wait half an hour or even an hour. If you can get away with not using any heat on your hair at all, get a good styling product and apply it to your wet hair, then let it air dry.
5. TYING YOUR HAIR UP
Do you notice a kink in your hair when you take it out of the ponytail that it’s been in all day? Most hair bands / elastics / whatever you wanna call them will break and snap your hair, as well as kink the hair, which you obviously don’t want to happen. The one hair elastic that will ensure that your hair doesn’t break or kink is the Invisibobble. They’re sold in all good hairdresser wholesalers such as Capital Hair & Beauty, and if you aren’t in the industry to be able to go to the wholesalers, Topshop has recently started selling them. They come in a few different colours, including a clear, see-through colour, so you can make sure yours blends in with your hair if you don’t want it to be noticeable. I have seen a few fake versions that are a bit of a different shape (usually much thicker and flatter) and they won’t do any good for your hair, only these ones will.
One of the biggest errors people make is washing their hair too frequently. Washing your hair everyday is way too much. In fact, washing it every other day can even be too much in most cases. Two or three times a week is best and if your hair is bleached or coloured like mine is, once or twice a week is enough. This is when you’ll be able to get away with blowdrying your hair. If you’re only washing your hair twice a week then you’ll only need to use heat on it for about half an hour twice a week.
Using Argan Oil to smooth down your hair is great for when it’s not been washed in a couple days and some pieces of hair are starting to go a little frizzy. Instead of running a straightener through your hair to tame it and ruining your hair with the heat, use some hair oil.
Make sure you’re using good products on your hair. While you may think you can skimp on the better products and stick to your cheap Nice n Easy shampoo and conditioner, it’s a lot better to invest in ‘higher end’ brands for your shampoo and conditioner. You don’t need to break the bank either, TK Maxx sell great brands like Schwarzkopf Professional for between £4 and £13 depending on the size of the bottle, and it’s also sold on Feelunique for around the £10 mark. Beautybay also sell Matrix products and the shampoos and conditioners usually range between £5 and £20 depending on the size of the bottle.
9. HOME DYING
I only have to say one thing here. DON’T DO IT! Unless someone you know is a qualified, experienced hairdresser and they’re doing your hair at home using professional, salon colour then do not do it. I don’t care if your friend dyed their hair at home using a cheap box colour and it turned out amazing. That’s a one-off. Go to the salon! You might think that you’re saving money by quickly colouring your hair at home but it’s horrible for your hair and, nine times out of ten, it goes horrifically wrong and you end up needing to go to the salon anyway to have it corrected. If you have no other option and you genuinely can only dye your hair at home with a cheap box colour, it’s only good to colour your hair a darker colour (a brunette or black) instead of going lighter or bleaching it. Don’t ever home bleach your hair if you aren’t a real hairdresser. Just don’t. And if you’re going a darker colour, it’s better to use a semi-permanent colour. Permanent colours are only recommended if you’re covering grey hairs.
10. HAVE THE RIGHT MENTALITY ABOUT YOUR HAIR
So this isn’t necessarily a tip on keeping your hair healthy but this needs to be drilled into peoples heads because so many people have unrealistic standards on their hair. Your hair won’t grow really long, really fast. Everyone has different hair types so if one of your friends of your favourite celebrity’s hair can grow a certan length or can achieve a certain colour, don’t think that you can. Sure, Kim Kardashian could go platinum blonde despite her naturally dark hair but she has the time and money to do so. Unless you’re Kardashian rich, don’t walk into a salon and say that ‘if Kim K can do it, I can too’ when you’re told that you can’t achieve the exact same colour. The same goes for when you have a picture of a certain hair colour or style you want, everyone’s hair is different and you might not have the right hair texture or undertone to achieve what you want from the picture. In fact, your hair will never look like the picture – unless it’s a picture of you. As soon as you can realise and embrace all these things, you’ll start making the right choices for your hair and that will in turn help you keep it healthy.
Those are my top tips for keeping your hair healthy, shiny and being able to grow it long. I hope this helps you!