June 2, 2014

On Hair

So, with respect to hair.

You guys, I love my hair right now. Is that weird for me to say because I never seem happy with my hair? I wouldn't blame you for thinking so. But I mean, I am LOVING my hair right now. I stare at it in the mirror all the time. It feels healthy and soft in my hands (and in my husband’s). I love it so much I want to talk about it. You dig?

Length: My hair was pixied last February in an effort to cut off all of the damage and try something new. Now 15 months and a few trims later, my hair has reached my collarbones and I just love this length. The ‘lob’ is definitely where it’s at!  Truthfully, I’ve made 3 appointments since Christmas to go in for a trim thinking I’ve reached the perfect length, but then had to cancel for one reason or another. Then I'd end up loving it more at the next stage of growth. Right now it is long enough to rock a messy bun and short enough to feel fresh and trendy. I do not have bangs and I’m not sure I ever will again. There are hidden layers in my hair to allow for movement, but it looks like it is all the same length. I have toyed with the idea of allowing it to grow a bit longer, but can’t decide. Bryon loves this length, he said. I will need my ends trimmed by August for sure, so I guess we will see!

Product: I am convinced that the products I am using are Holy Grail for me right now. I use Living Proof Perfect Hair Day shampoo, conditioner, and 5-in-1 styling treatment when I wash. I use Batiste dry shampoo before bed each night (it continues to feel better than the Sauve dry shampoo I was using previously). I also use Kerastase Oleo Relax oil twice a week on my dry hair before bed. That smells lovely and keeps the ends healthy. Overall these products combined have allowed me to style my hair, restyle it, and keep the style for DAYS without feeling gross. I keep two other products for special occasions - Bumble&bumble Thickening Hairspray, which I use on wet hair at the crown/roots (yes, really) when I want to dry and then backcomb. Holy awesome bedhead!  I also have Hairplay Messing Cream from KMS California for those times I really want messy bedhead or need some more ‘tack’ to my hair in order to rock the messy bun.

Care: I am washing my hair approximately every 4 days, though I can make it last 7 or 8. Before washing, I comb my hair and apply Oleo Relax or coconut oil to the dry ends before I get in the shower. This prevents the natural oils from being stripped out and I notice far less static later. Then I thoroughly shampoo my scalp and give it a good scratching and deep massage. I want it clean as a whistle. I do not work the shampoo down my ends on purpose, I just allow the suds to slide down on their own. After rinsing well, I apply conditioner to only the ends, avoiding the scalp. I also finger comb the conditioner through and leave it on for a couple of minutes. Once it is rinsed out well, I towel dry to absorb most of the moisture, and then I brush my hair gently. I apply the PHD 5-in-1 treatment and work it through the middle and ends of my hair, avoiding the scalp. Then I blow dry!  On the days that I do not wash my hair, I twist/clip/duct tape (not really) my hair up into a shower cap so that it doesn’t get wet in the shower.  

** I still do the same professional ‘blow out’ technique that a stylist taught me almost 10 years ago because it is the bomb like Donkey Kong. It takes about 15 minutes but it is so worth it, especially if you only wash once or twice a week. After applying product (which should include heat protectant), I first divide my hair into 4 sections: bang area (doesn’t matter if you have bangs or not; dry this area first to control your part and avoid cowlicks from going cray cray), top crown, middle, and bottom. I twist each section and clip it with jaw clips – and then dry one section at a time. I start with bangs and once they are about 75% dry, I round brush them straight and smooth with the pointer nozzle on my dryer and my dryer on hot/high. You roll and pull a little chunk of hair at a time, starting the round brush up next to your scalp and then pulling the hair taut as you reach the bottom. Then, roll down so the ends bend a bit. After bangs comes the bottom section. Once that is 75% dry and then round brushed out, I release the middle section and do that in the same way. BEFORE doing the crown, I dry all of my hair on cool to close the cuticles and cut down on frizz. Then I quickly run a 1” flat iron through most of my hair to polish it off. I have wiry hair so this helps me conquer the frizz. After I flat iron the hair, I let the wet crown section down and round brush that to dry, using the same process as before. Finally, I blast it with cold air and then swipe the flat iron through the crown to finish it off and define my part. This method seriously lasts for DAYS and resists humidity. [If I wake up to a kink in my hair during the week, I quickly run the flat iron through that spot only.] You may be wondering why I don't just dry and then flat iron and the answer is because the round brushing adds tons of volume.

Style: While my hair is naturally wavy and I’ve spent lots of time and dollars trying to make that look nice that way (to little avail), I prefer it smooth and straight. Once a Jennie Garth fan, always a Jennie Garth fan, right? Okay, for those of you who did not watch 90210 on primetime, think Rachel from Friends. I prefer hidden layers in my hair to allow for movement, but I like a straight cut.  No bangs for me ever again. I do love backcombing and bedhead for texture. I don’t wear my hair in bands or clips very often. Ponytails are reserved for running, yoga, or cooking something messy – but even then, I usually leave my hair down. I do love boho braids sometimes and a messy bun, though!

Color: I am loving the all-natural, baby. My balayage highlights are growing out better than I ever imagined. So well in fact, that I am having trouble deciding if I even want to go back and touch up a few of them. It looks so naturally grown out and I mean, I love it right now so why  mess with it? Balayage highlights made me fall completely head over heels for my natural hair color again. I suspect that I will have a few new ones painted in by the end of the summer because my growth will be about 6” long by then. We will see. Additionally, I've been giving so much thought to gray hair lately - probably because I keep plucking out a dozen at a time. Folks, I think I'm going to give that up and just... see what happens. I don't want to color my hair all my life. 

I feel I should also note that, while this may be completely coincidental,  my husband CANNOT keep his hands out of my hair since I started using the PHD products. On the couch, in the morning, every time he kisses me. It is AWESOME.

So that is hair right now.

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