Friday, January 27, 2012

How To: Care For Long Hair

Pictured: Paul Mitchell Awapuhi Wild Ginger Shampoo & Conditioner, Paul Mitchell Brush 413, Moroccan Oil Treatment, CHI Nano Hair Drier, GHD Ceramic Flat Iron. Not pictured: Fish Oil vitamins.

As the owner of a large amount of hair, I get my fare share of hair-care and hair maintenance questions, so I thought I would share my routine with you today! I've been growing my hair out from a rather artistic (read: mullet) hairstyle since 2007, but have always treated it like my best accessory. To be honest, while insecurities about one thing or another will arise from time to time, I don't often feel bad about my hair, and it certainly comes in handy when my skin acts up: instant curtain. Just kidding. Kind of (not at all). Anyways, all true life confessions aside, here's the deal:

I wash my hair two or three times a week. I know this can be difficult for some, it's a habit that I got used to when I had super short hair in college, and it just stuck with me. The more you wash it, the more it dries out. I strongly believe in using high-quality products, lately I've been using Paul Mitchell Awapuhi Wild Ginger shampoo and conditioner and love it (the normal sized bottles have lasted since early October). EDIT: Sometimes I'll wash my bangs alone if I need to freshen up my hair but don't have time or energy to wash the whole thing.

When shampooing long hair, only shampoo your roots, the suds will run down and give the remaining length a good once over, but shampooing the ends will dry them out and cause splits.

Do the exact opposite with conditioner: focus on mid-hair-shaft to ends. Leave on as long as you can, and rinse. Conditioning your roots will just weigh them down and make them greasy.

Post shower, apply a quarter size amount of Moroccan Oil to hair from mid-hair-shaft to ends. My bottle of Moroccan Oil has lasted for about a year and is still going strong.

Air dry your hair as often as you can. I will typically wash mine at night, blow-drying my bangs so they don't get crazy, then allowing it to dry overnight. Heat styling dries out your hair and breaks it down, so it's best to invest in high quality hot tools- I like CHI and GHD, I usually flat iron at least my bangs and roots almost daily.

I like to use Paul Mitchell brushes as well, they're great quality (the one pictured above has lasted me since 2004) and glide through hair easily.

Coloring: I do get my hair colored, about twice a year. I know a lot of people can't wait that long, and I should probably go more often, but as I'm sure most ladies with long hair can attest to: it takes too freaking long!

A word on vitamins: I take fish oil vitamins and strongly believe in them. I can't say for sure whether they have a positive affect on my hair, but I feel like they do. However, I'm no expert, so consult your doctor before starting any new kind of vitamin regimen.

Getting your hair trimmed every six weeks will not make it grow faster, it just makes it so that there is less to cut off when you do go for a trim.

So there is my routine. Once again, I'm no expert and I'm not pretending to be. But I did work in a salon for my Mother in Law, and the above is a brief synopsis of what I learned there. Enjoy!