How I Learned to Love the Hair Pregnancy Left BehindCasey Mullins
I have really good hair, I mean, assuming you don’t compare it to the hair I used to have. You know, the hair I used to have thinned out on purpose because it was so full and voluminous? The hair I had before two pregnancies, PCOS and a wicked rough hormone treatment? Yeah, as long as you don’t compare my current hair to that hair, I have really good hair. Unfortunately good hair and easy to care for hair have absolutely nothing in common when it comes to my hair. My hair is good when it is properly cared for, and over the last several years I’ve learned to do just that. You see, if I even think about my hair? It gets just a wee bit greasier. And when I sleep on it? It grows and curls into insurmountable piles of frizz.
But that’s okay! Because eventually my good hair turns into really good looking good hair. Curious how to do the same with your own hair? READ ON DEAR FRIEND!
- Regular trims with the same stylist – I used to be a “I’ll get my hair cut when I remember” kind of girl. I’d go to whatever salon was closest, take whoever was available and I was never loyal to any one stylist. That is until I met Kristine. Kristine knows my hair almost as well as I know Cody. I’ve been seeing her every 6-8 weeks for almost two years and y’all? Regular trims from the same stylist make a big fat difference. She knows where I poof, where I curl funny, where I’m a little bald and just how short she can go with my layers before I have a funny looking ponytail. With trims every 6-8 weeks I’ve never considered my hair to be bad. In fact, I haven’t had a legit bad hair day (when I’ve put effort into my hair) since I met her two years ago. Having a good stylist is just as important and life affirming as having a good partner.
- Dry shampoo – So we all kind of know about dry shampoo and how wonderful it is for morning after hair. But here’s the thing, as soon as my hair is dried and set? The grease begins. It’s totally a hormonal thing in my situation and I refuse to wash my hair everyday because of time and cost. By day two I’m in a fancy updo. By day three? My hair can get so greasy it physically hurts to brush it out at the end of the day (ew, right?) Dry shampoo was doing wonders for me on days two and three until I learned that I could apply dry shampoo to freshly washed hair and IT WILL STOPS THE GREASE BEFORE IT STARTS! I can get up to four days out of my hair now and not feel like an oily dish rag by the end of day four. I alternate between the Oscar Blandi Powder (smells like lemons!) and a cheap TRESSemme Spray Dry Shampoo (smells like, hairspray?)
- Learn to braid – I never knew how to do any sort of fancy braid until February of 2012. I saw all these braids on Pinterest and thought “Gosh, I wish I knew someone who knew how to braid, or someone who could teach me how to braid.” Then I just decided to practice. Turns out I can braid my own hair pretty well, but fail at braiding other people’s hair. BUT THAT’S OKAY! This is about me and my hair. My braid knowledge is somewhat limited but it doesn’t really matter because any braid is more impressive than no braid. Know what makes three day old hair look fancy? A braid. Know what impresses my kid? Braids. Know what’s better than a boring ponytail? A ponytail with a braid. The sock bun is also a valuable skill to learn if you have at least shoulder length hair.
- Realize your hair is getting old – Womp Womp, this one is so depressing. The truth is my hair has thinned by at least half and it’s just not capable of the same curls and bounce it was 15 years ago. A lot of it is thanks to climate (cheers humidity!) but most of it is thanks to birthing babies and just being a girl who’s getting older and losing her hair. No big deal. There came a point where I had to realize that long thick hair is not in the cards for me, but fun layers with great colors? Totally possible. I’m fully prepared for the day I lose my mind and chop it all off just like my grandmothers, and mothers before me, but until then I will work within the parameters of what my hair is actually capable of producing. I have a very unfortunate bald spot on the top/back of my scalp, it surprises me sometimes in photos but it’s a hard earned bald spot and assuming I do my hair correctly, no one will ever really notice it but me.
- Get blown – I had my first blowout in 2010 and it kind of changed my life. I never thought there was a difference between what a stylist did at the end of a haircut and what they did during a blowout. THERE’S TOTALLY A DIFFERENCE! If you gave me the option of having one spa treatment a blowout would be my choice every time because you leave feeling gorgeous and pretty, AND IT LASTS! With facials you leave looking like a science experiment and massages, eh. They’re nice, but nothing like a blowout. Blowouts remind you of just how good your hair can be and how such a simple little thing can put a major spring in your step.
- Pay attention to your eyebrows – Good eyebrow grooming has changed my entire outlook on life. Invest in it, believe in it, subscribe to it, amen.
- Realize that hair is not everything – I have had several friends lose their hair to cancer and a couple of others that keep their hair covered for religious or spiritual reasons. If I were to lose my hair tomorrow it would not be the end of me, not even close. I have worked hard on my inside, the parts no one actually sees, to become a happy and confident person, the fact that I have good hair to top off my head? Bonus. I had amazing hair back in the day with rotten insides and no amount of styling product could have ever made me into who I am today.
I joked last week that a benchmark of aging seems to be when you wake up looking rough and puffy and after a good shower, a few good minutes of smoothing, moisturizing and priming you look familiar again. Dozens of my parts are beginning to show their age, my hair included. But rather than fighting and screaming about how beauty is wasted on the young (because seriously, it is) I’ve learned to find my own definition and way to achieve a new kind of beauty.
Hopefully I’ll be able to keep it up even when I’m old and gray (speaking of gray, I’ve found two) and as long as Kristine never retires? I’ll be in good hands until I am old and gray.