Every season brings a new trend in hairstyles. In fall, the perfect flip id de rigeur, by spring undulating waves and crop cuts are hot. The problem with all this whimsy is that you barely learn how to do one ‘do when another one takes its place.
To get back on track, rely on the following top 8 commandments, and you”ll look like you have a hairstylist in the house.
1. Start With A Great Cut
The most obvious clue to a great cut is that it falls right into place and is simple to style. If your hairstylist spend 45 minutes fussing to finish it, chances are you won’t be able to re-create the look once you get home. When you get a good cut, it’ll fall in place even on windy days. It also works with your hair texture and type, so that if your hair naturally frizzes when it’s humid, that won’t become a major problem for you. A good cut even controls frizz.
2. Don’t Fight Nature Too Much
You can fool Mother Nature, but if you try to wear your ultra-curly hair in a long, sleek look or bleach black hair to an arctic blonde, you’ll become a slave to either upkeep or bad hair days. Layers and finger-styling work better for curly hair than blow-drying and flat-ironing; a rich, warm brown probably looks better on a dark brunette than arctic blonde does.
3. Don’t Overuse Products
If you mix a gel and a silicone shiner, use too much, then add hair spray over the top, you’ll get dull-looking locks that have a gummy feeling. A small amount of product gives you control; too much weighs hair down.
According to Jesse Briggs of Yellow Strawberries Salons in Ft. Lauderdale, FL, how much product you should use depends on the texture, length and density of your hair, and the type of product your using. You can use lots more mousse than super-hold gel. In general, start with a dime-sized amount of gel and setting lotion; use a half-dollar-sized dollup of mousse; mist on just 3 to 4 pumps of spray on gel, leave-in conditioner, volumizer and finisher; use just a drop or two of shiner, glosser and pomade. Remember, you can always add more, but you don’t want to start all over at the sink.
4. Use Rollers Right
Whether they’re velcro or heated, rollers are perfect for achieving today’s hot curls and waves. If you’re using cold rollers, set hair when it’s just damp. Add a bit of product when hair is damp and roll up rollers, positioning largest ones at the top for maximum volume. Allow them to dry completely, then unwind carefully.
5. Think Roots First
When you’re blow-drying, lift hair and blow-dry the root area first. Also, concentrate the most product at this area, bringing just a small amount through to the ends. This gives you height and volume. Once you’ve dried in “root lift” continue to dry the ends, using a smaller diameter brush if you want end curl.
6. Be Prepared
If your hair starts out great and poops out on you mid-day, be ready for it. A small bottle of water can be used to mist the lightly and “re-activate” product. Today, there are lots of purse-sized curling irons and setting tools that you can use to quick touch-ups between office and dinner. If you have long hair, wrap it into an up-do during the day; when you let it down, you’ll have instant, long-lasting volume.
7. Add Body
To boost body, start with freshly washed hair. Bend at the waist and begin drying hair as you finger-style it. When 50% of the moisture has been removed, add most of your gel or volumizer and lift hair with a vent brush or a large-toothed comb. Continue drying, then flip your head up. If it is humid outside, use a tiny amount of product to re-define waves. Rub it between your palms and finger-style it into dry hair.
8. Get Regular Trims
Because the best way to avoid the bad hair day is with a great cut, regular trims are essential. In fact, most women who have bad hair days go much longer than 4 to 6 weeks between trims. Even if you want to grow your hair longer, keep it neatly trimmed. If hair is grown out so much that it has little shape left, use gel to smooth it or flip up ends if they are long enough. If your hair has none of the shape of the original cut, that’s when you find yourself resorting to ponytails, hats and paper bags.
By Victoria Wurdinger