So, You Wanna Have Nice Hair?
I know, I know, the title completely makes it seem like I’ve got professional-smooth-criminal type moves to give advice to others about hair, when in reality my professional hair resume is worse than a beauty school dropout’s.
But wait, hear me out.
Growing up tubby I’ve always put a lot of thought and effort in prettifying my hair. During my heaviest weight my hair was
pretty much the only thing that would give me a sliver of confidence most days to face the world. If it was just curled, styled, and shiny enough people wouldn’t notice I was fat, right? And so my hair became my secret obsession; long, glossy, hair-commercial-approved hair I wanted.
But despite staying up way-too-late most working nights to curl my hair, I am just your average gal, with no technical salon/styling skillz whatsoever. I’m really lazy, impatient, cheap and get 99% of my hair knowledge from the Interwebs, notably youtube and pinterest.
So, the facts? I used to (Toronto working days) have smooth, shiny, thick hair which I was (secretly) super proud of, but then after eight plus months of traveling my hair became brittle, straw-like, flat, broken extensions on my head. It was awful. I didn’t even like getting too close to people because I swear my split ends were visible from a meter away.
And so I declared, on a night of despair, Operation Sexy Hair (remember? man, that feels like a long time ago). My plan was simple —> to get my shiny, sexy, hair back as quickly as possible, and as cheaply as possible.
The Results? One billion percent it worked. I have different hair on my head than I did 3 months ago. (To be honest, I’m shocked everything worked this well!!)
The below is a list of all the things I changed. Unfortunately it’s hard to say which exact thing changed my hair the most (or the least), as I went from zero to hero when I declared Operation Sexy Hair, but the below list is listed from what I *think* was *most important to meh-may-not-have-made-a-difference.
Hope this helps!
I love long hair, like, a lot, and as I know one day I’ll have be forced by my age (sigh) to cut my hair, I figure I’ll enjoy it while I can. This, of course, means I was very reluctant to chop a chunk of my hair off, but the reality of the situation was my hair was damaged, dry and dead on the ends. Cutting a good few inches off was vital, despite it slightly making my heart hurt.
I’ve also never been one to opt for fancy hair cuts. I’ve always figured hair cuts have nothing to do with the salon, but everything to do with the person who cuts it. So my advice? read reviews online about the hair stylist, not the salon - I scored a great hair cut from a lady that came with GREAT reviews, and an average salon.
Conditioner & Shampoo
“Oh hello there conditioner & shampoo that’s on sale, you’re coming home with me. Yes you are!” <— Me Before
“Fine! I’ll spend a little more money on a better product” <— now
And? I’ve found the price really represents the product. I was stunned at how ah-mazing and soft my hair felt like from switching to a more formal conditioner & shampoo
Old brand: Whatever was on sale usually Pantene (which I found really dried out my hair)
New Blow Dryer + New Hair Straightener
Ok, *as I look to the side* I have to admit I spent some mega bucks on a new (Australian) blow dryer and straightener. I sucked it up and purchased myself a GHD Hair Straightener and Blow Dryer.
The verdict? I don’t know why, but compared to my CHI (North American one) ones back home, meh. GHD had great reviews from Australian girls, but I was really disappointed with both the prodcuts.
Ps. My tips for buying a straightener would be: Find one with a temperature dial, a cord that swivels, a light so you know it’s on, sleep mode (incase you forget to turn it off) and obviously one that’s ceramic covered (although even the cheaper ones are now ceramic)
I realize this is an odd point, but having patience with my hair was key to getting the shine back. I would never wrap my in a towel after my shower any more, or turn the blow-dryer up on high and fast, I would patiently let it air dry at least a few times a week (giving it a break from the appliances), and I would let my conditioner sit on my head for a long, long time.
Cold water explosion at the end of my shower
I am a sucka for hot, hot, steamy, sexy, hot showers. The hotter the better. Like, we’re talking the water is so hot it’s THISCLOSE to burning my skin. But in the process, I think it was also burning my hair, which means, I sucked it up, and washed my hair with cooler/luke warm water and rinsed it was cold water (oh yes, I would hover against the glass and lean my hair in - I’m such a chicken!), but believe it or not, I think this helped.
Remember? Remember? Remember my hair masks? I did a total of four, but was too cheap to buy store ones, so I used all natural products. AND? <— you. Yes! They worked, but only temporarily. Like the next day my hair was all soft n’ sexy, but I don’t think they did anything long term. But I suppose I should have done them once or twice a week consistently.
I don’t think I’m back to where I was, but still, I’ve come a long way from a 3 months ago.
What are your hair tips? Do tell!!