I was born a blonde and as far as I’m concerned that is the color I will stay. Needless to say, I bleach my hair. This wasn’t as much of an issue when I had short hair, but when I told my hair stylist and colorist that I wanted to grow my hair out nice and long once last time for my 40th year of life, they both told me… “no more bleaching, we’ll use a high lift color with just a few highlights of bleach in the front”. I begrudgingly agreed and liked the color at first, but as the date drew near for my next appointment, I grew increasingly annoyed by the “yellow” (not brassiness) of my hair. Yes, I am one of those people who want her hair super white blonde. Needless to say, I convinced my guys that it was okay to bleach the crap out of my hair because I had a plan to keep the damage to a minimum.
Here are my quick and long term fixes for color and sun damaged hair:
- I only wash my hair every 3-4 days. Yep, that’s it. Granted, my hair is really dry because of the bleach, so I need to let my natural oils have a chance to really do their job and condition my scalp and hair. If you work out, try just rinsing your hair one or two days and putting your hair up in a ponytail or updo.
- When I wash my hair, I only wash the scalp, not the ends of my hair. Just wash your scalp (massaging with your fingertips, not your fingernails) and then when you rinse, just let the soap rinse through the ends. It is less drying to your ends and they aren’t the real dirty or oily part anyway.
- Use a really good, moisture filled conditioner and leave it on your head (especially the ends) while you shower. Rinse it off as the very last thing you do.
- I use one of those turban head wraps rather than rubbing my head with a towel. Rubbing your hair like that can cause breakage. You just want to gently have the water absorbed.
- While still wet, I use Olive Oil by Hollywood Beauty found at your local drugstore in the African American hair section. African American hair is often dry and this stuff is awesome. A friend of mine recently commented on how soft my hair is and I told her that this is what I use. She is African American and had a good laugh, but agreed that it’s great stuff. You only need a tiny bit (especially me because my hair is thin and fine). Just work it through from about one inch from your scalp to the ends using your fingers.
- I don’t brush or comb my hair while it’s wet as much as possible. I use my fingers to work out any knots or snags.
- I let my hair air dry until the last possible minute and then break out the brush and blow dryer to style my hair. And, I only use my straightener during the week or if I’m going out.
- I use a natural boars bristle brush on my hair when it is dry. They are more expensive, but worth it and give great scalp massages.
- I sleep with my hair down. Putting it up in a ponytail can cause breakage. This is hard for me because I hate the feeling of hair on my neck, but it’s better than breakage. I even used to sleep with a satin pillowcase because it is less likely to cause breakage than cotton, but I have since abandoned this practice.
- And finally, about once per month, I sleep with conditioner on my hair. Again, I don’t put it up, I just put a small towel on my pillow. In the morning, I style my hair up and then rinse it at night, or just do a quick rinse and style in the morning before work.
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