Our hair is something that is unique to each of us - it can feel as if our hair is as individual as a snowflake. Hair comes in so many colours, textures and weights that coming up with a hair care routine that works universally is pretty much impossible. Whether your hair is thick, fine, curly, oily or something else entirely: you need to find the products and a system that works for you and that makes you feel like everyday is a good hair day. I am often asked about my hair-care routine and as the dry winter weather approaches, I thought I’d share my basic hair care strategy with you.
Firstly, you can go back and forth on the internet all day reading articles that claim washing your hair every day will damage it and strip it of its natural oils and then find just as many that advocate for washing your hair every day (with a mild shampoo) in the same way you that you wash your face. With that said, I find that I can wash my hair every day without too much damage. This washing schedule is highly dependant on my work schedule. If I am going to an event, I will wash my hair that day . I have very fine hair, which gets greasy easily (I also fiddle with it throughout the day, which adds extra oil & dirt). I try to leave a day between washing, for example giving it a rest on Sundays… but if I need to look my best, I will give it a quick wash.
When I wash my hair, I apply shampoo mainly the roots and I am sure to give my scalp a good scrub. This helps to wash out the oils that accumulate on my scalp and leave the rest of my hair clean but not overly dried out. I use conditioner about once a week to make sure that my hair is conditioned and soft. I don’t like to use too much conditioner because I find that my fine hair gets weighed down and isn’t as voluminous, it also slips when I try to style it.
We put serum on our faces, so why not treat our hair in the same way? I usually use a serum once a week - I’m currently using Sisley Paris’ Hair Rituel Revitalising Fortifying Serum. I apply it to the roots of damp, freshly washed hair and then rub it into my scalp using circular motions. Serums are great because they are an additional protective layer between your hair and the outside world. They are especially good for frizzy and damaged hair - they will protect your scalp and make the hair follicles stronger, helping to avoid hair loss. If you don’t want to invest in a serum, there are plenty of foods that help strengthen your hair such as eggs. My mum is always telling me to eat more eggs. If you’re vegetarian or vegan, you could take a supplement that contains Vitamin A and B12.
I took the plunge and went blonde towards the beginning of the year. This means that I not only have to colour my hair more often, but as such means that my locks are drying out slightly faster than they normally do. To combat this, I have added a hair oil (either Moroccan Oil Treatment or Hair Rituel’s Precious Hair Care Oil) to my regime to help lock in some hydration and I apply more generously when my hair is tangled. I put oil on my hair 1-2 times per week: I add a few drops to my towel-dried hair, mainly on the ends. If the oil works itself up too high in my hair, my fine hair can lose some of its volume.
I’m a firm believer that we should treat our hair like our skin, so a hair mask is a must for maintaining its beauty and shine. I use a deep hydrating hair mask once a month to repair any damage I may have caused in the previous month and hopefully prevent any future damage that can occur. There are hair masks out there for every type of hair and every type of problem: fine, thin, damaged, frizzy, you name it. I like to put the hair mask in my hair and curl up with a good book while it works its magic.
COMBING & BRUSHING
I know, I know, they say that when your hair is wet you should never brush it and instead opt for a wide-toothed comb which is far more gentle, but I can’t help it! I hate tangles and have little patience for combing them out slowly so I use a soft cushion nylon and bristle brush to brush them out . The bristles help to redistribute your scalp’s natural oils as well as detangle in a hurry while the cushion keeps it gentle.
Once my hair is washed and detangled, it’s time to style. Before I blow dry my hair, I use a volumizing spray - currently Volumizing Spray by Sisley. I spray it onto my damp hair at the roots to help pump up my fine strands. When it comes to blow drying my hair, I start at the roots with my trusty Dyson Supersonic hair dryer and I flip my head upside down to get as much volume in my roots as possible.
The curling iron comes next. I am currently using a Babyliss curling iron but have been meaning to upgrade to the GHD wand. I curl the ends of my hair to have a bit of a loose wave more so than a tight spiral curl. If I’m going out, I’ll lock in the curls with Elnett hairspray, which I’ve been using since I was teenager. for ages.
On days when I’m not washing my hair, I turn to a classic beauty must-have: dry shampoo. Dry shampoo is a spray that you put onto your roots and then work in with your fingers or a brush and it helps to soak up any oil on your scalp or in your hair that weighs it down. It is a lifesaver for early morning meetings or after long airplane rides and it can even be used on clean, freshly washed hair as a bit of added texture and volume to help hold a style.
If I need to throw my hair up into a ponytail or a bun, I like to be sure I’m not using anything that will cause damage or breakage. Right now, I’m using scrunchies, not only as they’re back in as they are back in fashion, but the and the fabric also allows them to slip out of your hair with little-to-no damage.
Lastly, I try to maintain a healthy diet and eat foods that promote hair strength and growth. Hair is made up of proteins, so making sure I eat enough protein is high on my list of priorities. Eating a balanced diet full of foods that are high in iron, omega 3, vitamins a, c, and e, biotin - (as I mentioned earlier) , zinc and selenium can also help your hair grow strong and healthy. Some of my favourite hair healthy foods are eggs, nuts, avocados, sweet potatoes and leafy green vegetables.
NOTE: I’ve been getting my hair cut & coloured by the brilliant Naher stylists - a great resource if you need your hair done in Paris!
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Words by Amanda VanOsdol. And special thanks to Hotel Panache.