I often get asked how I style my hair (in fact, even just yesterday!). While I’m always super flattered by the compliment inherent in this question, I have to laugh because my response is always the same – oh, it’s actually just dirty! And 100 percent of the time that hair style also took me zero effort. I’ll be the first to admit it took me years to get here—years of straightening my naturally wavy hair, years of trying products that just didn’t synch up with my hair type, and even a few years of using too much hairspray and dry shampoo for ‘dos that were way more primping than my casual everyday style. It wasn’t until more recently that I realized that those perfect mermaid, bedhead waves I (and everyone else) was pinning left and right on Pinterest? I have that hair. So why am I messing with this very desirable, covetable thing?
The problem was embracing my natural hair while figuring out how to make it look its best—and all with as little effort as possible. Let’s be honest: I would much rather get some extra shut eye in the morning–or drag myself out of bed to pre-sunrise yoga–than spend time fussing with my hair. Spending hours in the bathroom getting ready is just not my style. So today I thought I’d share two haircare tips and four products I’ve recently adopted to fit both my style and hair type.
Secret #1: Wash Your Hair Less
All self-deprecating humor aside, the “dirty hair” response when people inquire about my locks is totally true. My number one hair tip is to stop washing your hair. Over time, I’ve learned my hair is not at its best freshly washed and styled, but rather the next day or the day after—or in the case of my ballerina buns, several days dirty is preferable. So I only wash it once a week. I’ll either air dry or blow dry, then do as little as possible with my hair the rest of the week. As the oils return to my hair after washing, it just looks better. My scalp doesn’t start to get greasy until I’m almost through the full week, and then at that point I eek out another day or two by employing a ponytail, high bun, or low chignon.
Secret #2: Find the Right Product, Then Leave Your Hair Alone
My second hair revolution was finding the right product for my hair type, then just letting it do its thing. I spent years and years trying different products and techniques, but nothing seemed to keep my naturally wavy locks free of dreaded frizz and dryness. That is until I found Living Proof a few months ago. After one wash and style I was hooked. My hair has transformed into the frizz-free, bouncy, super-soft, wavy locks I previously could never quite achieve. So here’s my Living Proof routine:
Full Shampoo & Conditioner – The longer my hair gets, the heavier it gets. I wash with this sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner, which cleans away buildup and hydrates my hair without weighing it down.
Prime Style Extender – Like a makeup primer, this extends the life of your style (and smooths strands as well). I start with a dollop of this, working it in starting a few inches down from my roots through to the ends. If I’m going to blow dry, I do that next.
Restore Targeted Repair Cream – You can use this moisture-imparting cream, which smooths as well as adds shine and repairs split ends, on wet or dry hair. So I use a very small amount after blow drying and on air-dry days, just after the primer.
It’s safe to say these four products have produced life-changing results for my hair woes. At the same time, they’ve simplified by hair care immensely and eliminated the need for a lot of other products—a hair brush, dry shampoo, moisture masks, straightening and curling products–I don’t need any of that anymore. I literally wake up and do nothing to my hair for days, which is really quite liberating (not to mention time saving). I may spritz on a little Bumble & Bumble Surf Spray if it’s feeling flat a couple days in, but that’s it.
So now that I’ve shared my haircare routine and secrets, what are yours? Any products you just can’t live without? Anyone else an infrequent hair washer?
Photo of me by Joe Craig