Fried Hair.. Now what?

Whether you’ve been toying with the ombre trend, been a devoted bleach bunny, or dappled with pastel tones, you probably have noticed how your hair has started to become a bit brittle. This could range from being slightly dry, to completely snapping off (what we refer to as a chemical cut!)  Obviously you would like to try to avoid any breakage and damage, so I would like to share a few tips and tricks!

  • ALWAYS go to a professional to have bleach done.  This almost goes without saying, but I can’t recall the amount of times I had a client in my chair on a Monday morning with patchy, frizzled, orange and yellow hair that a friend has done on a whim, and has ended up in a lot of tears!
  • When considering a make-over, be open to set up a plan with your stylist.  The colour you have in mind might not be advisable to do in one visit, so when you work with a plan, going to the salon every 6 weeks, lightening your hair gradually, you’ll leave the salon with healthier hair, toning down the unwanted ‘inbetween’ colours. It’s so important to have a good relationship with your stylist, so make sure that you’re both on the same page!
  • Bleaching will dramatically alter the structure of your hair.  Without being too scientific, I will try to explain it like this:  Hair consists mainly of proteins.  Once you start chemically altering your hair, the proteins break down.  That’s what makes the hair sensitised and brittle.  I swear by using Redken’s CAT treatment before the bleach treatments (you could start a few weeks before you see your stylist), spraying it on your hair before bleach is applied, and then using it as an aftercare product.  Use this product 1 – 2 times a week, depending on the condition, after shampooing, but before conditioning.  What makes this product work, is that it prevents the hair from forming cysteic acid, which causes the hair to feel like bungee cord when wet.
  • You could also get a protein overdose, so alternate with a moisturising treatment to get the balance right.  Try using Redken’s All Soft Heavy Cream once a week, instead of your conditioner.  A little goes a long way, you’ll only need the size of a 20p coin for thick shoulder-length hair.
  • Take it easy on heat styling.  Give your hair a break over weekends, and ALWAYS use a heat protection product before using any heated appliance, whether it’s a hairdryer or a styling iron.
  • Go for regular cuts. If you’d like to maintain your length, let the stylist know, but also know that if you have damaged ends, you will need to have a good trim. (I’ve once had a client asking me to remove ‘half the damage’?!?!) Your hair will grow, and isn’t better to have healthy shorter hair than have long, wiry ends?

Everyone’s hair is different, and reacts different to products, so I’ll also recommend the following treatments:

I really hope that this has helped some of you!  I’m considering making these blogposts a regular feature, so if you’d like any questions answered, please leave a comment below, and I might use it in a future post!

How to make the best out of your hair – Part One

I have originally intended to write only one post on hair products, hair issues, and basically how to make the best out of your hair.  After a quick survey on twitter, I’ve been bombarded by hair problems that made me realise that I’d have to do more than one post (in fear of boring you to death by squeezing it all into one!)  So without further ado, here’s part one.

BACK TO BASICS – HOW TO WASH YOUR HAIR

(You could stop giggling now, you’d be surprised at how many people still don’t do it right!)

Step 1 – Wet hair (I’m cringing because it’s so obvious!!)  The water temperature should not be too hot.  ALWAYS try to use a shower head, you’ll struggle to get your hair squeaky clean washing your hair in a bath.  (Bad hair day cause  #1!)

Step 2 – Pour a SMALL amount (50p size for medium length) of shampoo in to your palm, work it through your hands like a moisturiser, then apply it EVENLY through your hair and scalp, using your fingers to work it through in circular motions.

Step 3 – Rinse, and repeat step 2.  This is important – the first shampoo gets the dirt out, the second wash makes the shampoo’s active ingredients work.  You’ll also notice that if you use small amounts twice, you’ll do better than using one big blob.

Step 4 – Rinse, and TOWEL DRY your hair by blotting – not rubbing – with a towel.  This step is often left out, but you’ll notice the difference, as the conditioner will now be less diluted when applies.

Step 5 – Work a small amount (£1 size for medium length hair) of conditioner through your hands, and apply it to the midlengths and ends ONLY.  Your scalp produces its own oils, what I normally suggest to clients is to apply conditioner on the ‘ponytail’ part of the hair.  You might see a massive change in flat hair if you do it this way!  You could also gently run a comb through your hair, as the conditioner will make it easier to comb.  Try to leave it on for a few minutes.  This would also be the time you would use a hair mask/treatment once a week, or as suggested by your stylist.

Step 6 – Rinse out thoroughly, until you feel that squeaky clean feeling.  Try to do the final rinse with cooler water for extra shine.  Then towel dry again by blotting your hair with a towel.  For longer hair, try gently squeezing the hair with the towel.  I flinch whenever I see people vigorously rubbing their hair!  Your hair is at its most vulnerable when it’s wet, and rubbing it is just going to damage it.

It sounds like a lot of effort, but soon it will become second nature.  I would love to hear your thoughts and experiences after trying this!

Now I need your input.  Feel free to comment on topics you’d like me to blog about.  I’m planning to cover common problems, styling tips, product suggestions, but it’s great to hear what people really struggle with!