Healthy Hair Habits
One of the topics that I get the most questions about is my hair routine. A couple months ago, I shared a beauty tutorial centered around my go-to curl. This time, we're going to be diving a little deeper into my hair habits and how I keep my locks healthy from year to year.
If you've been following along for awhile, you might remember my hair from this time last year. It was shoulder-length and dark brown... you could say that it was quite different than it is right now! I've definitely never been one to shy away from a bold hair transformation. I've been red, black, brunette, orange (accidentally), white (again, accidentally), AND blonde in the past.
My first real job was at a hair salon and I always loved playing around with my own look. It's really no wonder that I've learned how to take care of my hair - it's been a necessity with how much I've experimented with it. With that being said, I feel fairly confident that I'll be sticking with my long, blonde hair for awhile; at least until after our wedding.
While I attribute a lot of my "Instagram-worthy" hair photos to heat styling, my colorist, and my photographer, these photos really wouldn't look nearly the same without a healthy head of hair. It all starts with how you take care of yourself.
Throughout the years, I've picked up on what makes my hair feel and look amazing, and what doesn't. Today I wanted to round up my top 6 healthy hair habits for you bombshell ladies who want your hair to look shiny, feel full and silky, and continue to grow in a healthy way!
MY TOP 6 HEALTHY HAIR HABITS:
1. Using a Hair Mask Once a Week
Because I get my hair colored regularly with chemicals, it is very important to have a conditioning mask in between treatments. I was introduced to my #1 favorite hair product by my stylist, Megan Buzbee, of Honeycomb Hair Artistry. The product is Olaplex No. 3. Unlike a typical conditioner that rests on the surface of a strand, a hair mask works its way inside the hair cuticle. I am considering writing a full post on the practice of using a hair mask regularly, but for now I'll just give a quick overview. Once a week, after my shower, I towel (t-shirt) dry my hair and brush through it. Then, using my fingers, I cover my hair with a few handfuls of Olaplex No. 3 from roots to the very tip. I massage it in to make sure that every piece of my hair is covered. I usually sit with the hair mask on while I watch a TV show or work on a new post for about an hour. Once I feel that it has soaked in, I shower again to rinse it out. The difference in the texture of my hair after I use Olaplex No. 3 is truly incredible. It is unlike any hair product I've used before. The texture is so silky and I know it is doing wonders for my colored and damaged hair.
2. Taking Biotin Regularly
I know that this is a little bit controversial because a lot of people believe that hair, skin, and nails supplements do not work. But, I honestly can say that, for me, consistently taking one Biotin supplement every day for the past year for me has made a HUGE difference. First of all, the most obvious is that my hair has never grown as quickly or looked as full as it has this past year. Seeing myself in photos from last Fall with shoulder-length hair is insane to me. I have even gotten questions about which hair extensions I use; my answer is none! As you'll see in #3, I have gotten it trimmed pretty regularly over the past year as well. I am hoping that with my daily Biotin supplement, my hair will grow down to my waist by the time our wedding rolls around so I won't need any hair extensions for the long, full look I want. P.S. I'm only a few inches away from this goal already!
3. Trimming the Ends Every Few Months
Since I am continuing to grow my hair out (as mentioned above), I really dread getting it trimmed every few months. But as my hairstylist Megan has reminded me, this is necessary to keep it healthy, looking full, and growing as quickly as I would like it to. By trimming unhealthy split ends, your hair will have less breakage and flyaways, making it look thicker and even shinier.
4. Shampooing two to three times Per Week
On the surface, this may sound a little gross, but a ton of studies have shown that it's actually much healthier for your skin and hair. As long as you're not sweating a lot in between from the gym, it's okay to go without shampoo for several days at a time. This is also a great tip for those of you who color your hair; not only are you washing away the natural oils that moisturize and keep your hair color looking fresh, you also wash away a little bit of your hair dye every time you shampoo. Sam may question my hygiene from time to time, but this is what I have always done with my hair and it works well for me. Ain't nothing wrong with a few pumps of dry shampoo in between if necessary!
5. Keeping Heat Tools to a Minimum
Heat can damage the cuticle of your hair, creating split ends which then break off, which leads to less hair on your head. Because I only shampoo my hair 2-3 times per week, keeping heat tools to a minimum is pretty easy for me to do. I usually keep the same hairstyle (straight or curled) for several days in a row without touch-ups. Also, I air dry my hair after a shower instead of blow-drying. The only time that I blow-dry my hair is if I'm running late in the morning, or when I have a shoot for the blog and I need that extra bit of volume from adding my favorite thickener (Kristin Ess Lift Spray). You don't need to abandon your heat tools entirely, but cutting back on the use of these items (especially if you're using them every day) can make a major difference! There are a ton of really cute, no heat hairstyles you can do in between shampoos - exhibit A: 18 No Heat Hairstyles.
6. Using a Cotton T-Shirt in place of a towel
This is a little trick I learned from Sam's Aunt, Sherrie. Using a standard towel to dry your hair can absorb too much moisture and rough up the cuticles, causing extra frizz. The hair shaft can be damaged when you wring out your hair or squeeze it too hard with a towel. “This can worsen split ends and cause small craters along the hair shaft, weakening the hair,” says celebrity hairstylist, Monae Everett. “Noticeable signs of damage are dry hair and frizz. Frizz is a major indicator of damaged, dry hair in need of moisture.” You might feel a little goofy the first few times, wrapping sleeves around your head like a turban. But, swapping out your towel for a simple cotton t-shirt is an easy, no-cost way to add more care and intention into your hair routine.
Photography by Jade Nikkole Photography
What do you guys think about my healthy hair habits? Do you use any of these 6 tips? Comment on my latest Instagram post and tell me!
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xo Anna Elizabeth