My hair has been the bane of my life pretty much since forever. It’s only been in the past year or so where I’m more or less happy with it, and – shock horror – wear it down in public! A few simple changes and the odd product have done wonders, and whilst I still have good and bad hair days, it’s a huge improvement from having it constantly tied up in ponytails. Letting my hair down used to be an extremely rare occurrence, and when I did risk it, it’d being to look limp and ratty within minutes of leaving the house. Now I can wear it down a few times a week, and there’s so much more shape and volume than ever before. Here’s what I’ve learnt through a bit of trial and error:

1. Stop breaking your hair. My hair isn’t brittle, but I had a lot of bad habits that were causing unnecessary breakage. I stopped tying my hair up while I sleep, and when I do want my hair up during the day, I’ll more likely twist it up with a hair stick or large clip, only wearing a ponytail if that’s the style I want. This reduces snapping as I move around on my pillow or pull the hair tie out. Another way I reduced breakage was by investing in a good hairbrush. I purchased this Mason Pearson brush around five years ago and I would never go back. The boar bristles gently separate knots, rather than getting stuck in them, and is far more gentle than the cheap brushes I’d been using before. Start brushing from the bottom, too, rather than yanking at your scalp. This helps work tangles out, bit by bit, rather than pushing more hair into them.

2. Shampoo the roots, condition the ends. This should probably be obvious but I never really gave it much thought until someone mentioned it on a hair forum. My hair leans towards the greasier end of the spectrum, so cleaning with shampoo at the scalp is a must, but conditioning the roots was only making the problem worse. Now I only condition the tips to prevent frizz and split ends, and I’m not adding unneccessary moisture to the roots.

3. Use products to create body and texture. Um, duh. On freshly washed hair I use a mousse to give a bit of initial texture. I’ve been using this Schwarzkopf invisible one that they don’t seem to sell in the UK, but a lot of mousses will offer similar benefits. When it’s more or less dry I’ll spritz in some Lee Stafford sea salt spray for even more body. The real game-changer, however, is definitely Bumble & Bumble’s Pret a Powder. As soon as my hair starts to show signs of oil, I shake a bit of this onto my scalp, work it into my hair, and poof! Perfect hair! Not only does it work as a dry shampoo, but the powder creates instant texture, and my hair looks thick and healthy. From washing my hair every second day, I now go around 3-4 days before I need to rewash. At £22 for a 56g bottle it’s not cheap, but it will last a long time as you need very little product for full effect. Well worth the expense!
Volume and texture, and movement. Oh my!

Has anyone else got any tips? Overcome any hair woes? Let me know!

– Niko


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