I remember being young and swimming with my mom at the pool, and every time we went into the pool she would insist on keeping her head out of the water and her hair dry. I also remember thinking, How lame.
Fast forward 30 years, however, and I’m all, I totally get it now, ma. When you don’t have the time to shower, let alone try to get your hair halfway decent looking again, you try at all costs to avoid dunking your head into pool and ocean water.
But then you have two toddlers, and this kind of logic and rationale goes out the window. About ten minutes into remembering how actually awesome it is to swim, your hair is already halfway toward the point of breaking off your head.
That’s why it’s so important to have a game plan to get your hair strong and healthy again, and that, my friends, is why I’m here.
These are some tricks that I have used time and time again to make sure my hair stays at its best, even dozens of dips later. Hope you enjoy!
1 – Brush your hair before you get in the shower, while it’s dry.
Hair is at its most sensitive to breakage when it’s wet, so having tangle-free tresses going into the shower will help tons. And always start brushing at the bottom, working out tangles as you go up.
2 – Swap your conditioner for a masque.
For those of us with extra-dry hair, there’s no need to use a regular conditioner, especially if you’re only washing once every few days. A masque will give you more moisture, and there will be no need to waste money buying an extra bottle if you feel like your hair could always use the extra boost of moisture.
3 – Shampoo only at the roots!
Suds up at the roots, then drag the bubbles down through the shaft of the hair. Repeat after me: DO NOT PILE YOUR HAIR ON TOP OF YOUR HEAD TO SHAMPOO! Your ends don’t need that kind of cleaning, and it can lead to more tangles and dryness. All you have to do is massage the scalp well with the shampoo, and then drag those suds down through the rest of your strands.
4 – Consider a prep spray.
Think about this like the putty that fills the holes in your hair. Sometimes dry or porous hair soaks in styling products in different ways at different spots in your hair, so the prep spray smooths it all out so you can have an even application of your styling product.
5 – Switch to boar bristle brushes.
Sure, those with plastic or tourmaline bristles can get the job done quicker, but they also have more potential to torch your locks. Metal conducts heat, and so those bristles can heat up quickly and burn if you’re not super careful.
Consider leaving the metal-bristle brushes to the hands of professionals, and while you’re at home try a good boar-bristle brush. Bonus: It smooths your hair like no other, because it grips your hair super tight. Bonus Bonus: When your hair is dry, the boar bristles help distribute your natural oils from the roots to the tips.
6 – Skip the heat styling.
Every month I try to take a week where I skip the heat styling altogether on my hair. I wash, do a masque, towel dry and put in some MoroccanOil, then braid it and let it air dry. Of course this won’t work if you have to have a polished look for work, so in that case, try to take one weekend afternoon where you put on a nourishing oil to your ends (I like olive or coconut oil), then shampoo, condition and style as usual. It’s not as beneficial as skipping the heat styling entirely, but it will give your hair a nice moisture boost.
7 – Invest in Olaplex.
Also, know that Kim Kardashian uses it. You may not like her, but you’ve gotta agree, chick has incredible hair. I also use it periodically and notice an immediate improvement in the softness and strength of my hair. Worth it!
8 – When beach- (or pool-) bound, slather on the coconut oil.
Why? 1 – It’s nourishing, so when you wash it out later, it will leave behind much-needed moisture.
2 – You’ll smell like a tropical drink.
Have a happy and healthy hair summer, friends! Have any tips on how you keep your hair healthy? I’d love to hear more in Comments below!