Confession: I get my hair cut once a year. Did your jaw just hit the floor?
This lifestyle is necessitated by my three children and a crazy “they-need-me-all-the-time” mom calendar. Combine those limitations with the fact that I have a fantastic stylist who’s incredibly hard to get an appointment with. It just never seems to work out. So, I’ve had to get creative in how I manage my locks. Fortunately, it’s a lot easier than I anticipated. I’d love to share with you the few tricks I’ve learned to get away with it, making that cut last 365 days.
Tip 1: Wash 2-3 times a week.
The curlier your hair, the longer you can get away without washing it. If you’re wondering why, try to imagine your hair like the pole at the playground. Oil can slide right down it, giving your hair a greasy feel and look. When you have curly hair, like a swirly slide, the oils have a harder time going down the hair shaft.
On the off days, you can still shower of course, just don’t wash! On gym days, if you feel like you need to wet your mane to get rid of all the sweat, just rinse and you’ll still feel refreshed and clean. If your hair is on the dry side, condition it.
Tip 2: Save water, don’t rinse!
This isn’t necessarily an environmental tip, but it couldn’t hurt, especially with the drought in California! When you’re rinsing the conditioner out of your hair, don’t flush it all out. You’ll notice less frizz and fly aways, and way more shine. If your hair is on the finer side, I’d recommend rinsing most out. If it’s very thick, like mine, you can get away with just a quick rinse, leaving most in.
Tip 3: Dry your hair with a t-shirt.
I used to love wrapping my hair in a terry cloth towel after a shower, and have done so since I was a little girl. My mom used to tell me it was a crown, so I always felt regal doing it. Little did I know that those soft cotton-y hooks that felt so good on my skin were actually breaking my hair! I started using a soft, XL t-shirt to wrap my hair and have noticed a huge difference. I don’t have any of those odd-length strands anymore.
Tip 4: Sleep on a satin pillowcase.
Speaking of feeling like royalty and hair breakage, did you know that a standard pillowcase tugs on your tresses every night?! Not only is it so incredibly comfortable to sleep on a satin pillowcase, but your hair (and skin) will also thank you. Never flip the pillow to look for the cool spot again. You’re welcome!
Tip 5: Throw out those brushes.
The only brush you’ll ever need is a round one for straightening. Otherwise, everything else should go in the garbage! Brushes are horrible for hair, especially when wet. They tug and pull on our delicate strands, and create fly aways, breakage, and weaken the follicles. Find a wide tooth comb that you like, and when you’re ready to brush, split your hair into sections; I split my own hair into four. Gently comb out each section, and it won’t be long until you notice the smooth difference in your ‘do!
Tip 6: Use coconut oil as a leave-in conditioner.
I adore coconut oil for everything beauty. I don’t just use it in the kitchen. Once a week, I saturate my hair with coconut oil (how much you need depends on the length and thickness of your hair), and leave it on for as long as I can; a minimum of 30 minutes if you’re in a rush. Occasionally I’ll sleep with it in my hair since it doesn’t have a harsh scent or drip like other oils (if you decide to get your beauty rest with the oil on your hair, cover your head with a shower cap or plastic bag to protect your new satin pillowcase from getting oily!). Afterwards, I wash and condition as usual.
It’s highly moisturizing and my hair is so much shinier afterwards. Secret: I’ll also rub a very small amount on the ends if it’s looking like I may have a bad hair day. It calms the frizz, and if I use unrefined coconut oil, I feel like I’m on the beach from the delicious smell of coconut!
Tip 7: Toss the hair ties.
If I had a nickel for every hair tie I’ve ever bought … and lost … I’d be a very rich woman! Thankfully, I ran out and stopped using them for awhile and noticed something different: I didn’t have breakage or kinks anymore. Sure enough, when I asked a hairdresser friend, she admitted that she too had tossed her ties long ago, with the same results.
If I need to pull my hair back, I use claw clips, and immediately take them out afterwards. At night, I’ll sometimes French braid my hair to keep it out of my face. It works two-fold, as you’ll also wake up to beach-y curls the next day! There’s no need to reach for a hair tie to tie the braid, since you are now resting on a silky smooth pillow, and your braid will awesomely stay in place. If you still feel the urge to secure the bottom of it, wrap a loose strand of hair around the bottom and slide a bobby pin in.
You may not want to wait a whole year in between cuts, but if you try these few tips, you should notice shinier, healthier hair in no time!More On