What gets you feeling sexier than a full head of glossy hair, right? Yet stress, fatigue and poor nutrition can all take their toll on our crowning glory. I certainly suffered with less than glorious locks during times of my life when things weren’t going right. And its no secret, hair health is a reflection of your overall inner health and general fertility. Luckily, I’m able to recommend my top tricks and tips to pamper and grow your crowning glory to silky train heaven. Choo-choo!
Firstly, rather than suggesting quick fixes (which I will mention later on in this post) I think its integral to establish a hair hygiene routine, like you would with your skin, that ensures a long term goal for creating healthy hair in its best condition. My hair is naturally dry and curly hair texture (à la Cousin-It caught in a thunderstorm, if I’m not careful) though many of my tips apply to all hair types, and where I can I’ve offered alternatives for finer hair more prone to greasy roots. Work with your bouffant type girls.
These hair tips should have you on your way to getting the crowning glory you well deserve.
1. Diet and Exercise!
Eating a balanced and varied diet, with a decent serving of healthy fats, protein and iron to promote healthy growth has to be top of la liste. And don’t think you’re getting out of exercise. Its no coincidence our face is all red and flushed with blood after vigorous exercise (or other activities I’ll leave to your imagination) Blood flow oxygenates the hair follicles, bringing nutrients which promote shine, lustre and growth. Think Amazonian Hair Goddess Woman. Don’t say you heard it from me, but getting regular exercise and incorporating a balanced healthy, is not just essential for healthy hair, but for your overall health. (Darn, she’s thrown the book at us now!) If you’re confused about where to start, or need a push in the right direction, check out my coaching packages for a little inspiration.
2. End the vicious cycle of over-washing with silicones
While I love the glamorous shine and smooth appeal of silicones (as we all do) it’s a slippery slope to climb and I’ll explain why. Silicones essentially coat your hair with a layer of plastic, giving the shine you love, yet attracting double the amount of dirt to your hair. If you live in a polluted city, like me, this can mean washing you hair 3-4 times a week, or every day, as is the case for some women. Shampoo companies love this, as they sell more, yet over-washing your tresses does them simply no good. Stripping out protective natural oils, it exposes hair to the elements, leaving it more often dry and unmanageable. Over washing also disrupts sebum production (that’s greasy roots to you and me) and you guessed it, leads to more washing. Our shampoo company’s answer? A whole host of product lines to deal with breakage, dry ends, greasy roots, thinning, clarifying shampoos for build up, and frizz. All symptoms, which could simply be improved by washing less. So what is la solution? Avoid products with silicones!! Opt for gentle, organic versions, which I find work best, suited to your hair type. Your local health shop should stock a good selection. While you may not be overly wowed by the results initially, things are a much brighter picture for the long run. Your hair will regulate after time and you’ll love the feel of thick healthy, and naturally shiny hair as the end goal. While I appreciate some hair types tolerate silicone better than others (you straight haired girls) if you have any sort of texture, or wave to your hair naturally, a word of warning to you: If you really want to use silicones, keep them for special occasions only. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!
3. Use Oils on your hair
Yes you heard it right ladies. Oil your hair, once a week if possible. Embrace the Grease Lightning look for one evening, It’ll be worth it. Its no secret, women from Asia to Japan have harnessed the benefits of oils to condition and invigorate their tresses. Even if you are ideally eating your way through plenty of Essential Fatty Acids (chowing down that smoked salmon, rapeseed oil, avocados, and nuts) a little secret- your body will prioritise distribution to your essential organs, and very lastly your crowing glory. If there’s any left over. There’s no harm giving nature a helping hand by applying topically. I have experimented with a couple of oils, and I have found Coconut, and Hemp seed Oil my favourite girls. Jojoba is a good choice for ladies with greasier hair as its most similar to our natural sebum, so washes out well. Leave in overnight and wash out the next day. Cover your head with a plastic cap, or cling film, to keep the heat in. Et Voila!
4. Upgrade your tools
There’s no point in taking meticulous care of your cranium, if you’re going to rip through it with an old ridged comb, or a plastic scratchy hairbrush. The sheer thought sends shivers down my spine akin to running nails down a dusty chalk-board. Mais non! Using the wrong equipment leads to nothing but breakage, fly always and stunted growth. That’s right-ladies, Cousin -It’s aunt visiting from out of town look. Imagine your hair as a fine piece of lace. Your ends could be 10 years or older, they require some delicacy. Invest in a seamless hand sewn comb, and use a hairbrush made from natural fibres, boar bristle or bamboo are fantastique.
5. Embrace le look au natural
While styling for an event (using heat, different products, and backcombing) can all be great once in a while, to get your boofante preened to hair perfection, your hair will not appreciate this level of maintenance every day. We all have a unique texture, colour and thickness of hair that is individually beautiful to each woman. Embrace it, don’t fight against it! A good, flattering cut, suited to your texture, combined with clean, combed hair is the naturally beautiful way forward, When your taking care of your hair and not over-processing it, it will naturally start behaving more manageably. Trust me.
And finally, if you are in a serious hair rut catastrophe, (I refer back to my cousin-it-caught in a thunderstorm look) I would suggest trying all of the methods above, get a decent cut (off with those limp ends!) and try some extra supplementation. There are various forms out on the market, but Biotin, Zinc, Marine Complex, Selenium, Iron and Vitamin C have all been linked to better hair function and growth. French women swear by Brewers Yeast, their secret to keeping tresses on top form. You’re welcome.