So, this bank holiday weekend, I decided to take the plunge and get my hair cut short. But, for years, I have lived with long, coloured hair and experimented with many damage-prevention techniques. So, I thought it would be fun to share the haircare routine I have used for years in the lead up to this moment!
Back to the beginning…
When I was five, I moved from Dorset to Oxford and had hair all the way down to my bum! But, my mum felt it was good to have a new look for a new start, and we agreed to chop off my locks for something a little shorter, and very new. However, as everyone knows, once you chop off long hair, you want it back! And I can honestly say, even at just five years old, I was the exact same. But no matter what I did, it never seemed to grow past my shoulders – probably due to the amount I bleached it in my teens.
This all changed when I was about 17. I started to learn as much as I could about hair care and experimented with everything! I even once attempted cracking eggs on my hair – as the protein was supposed to help it to grow (this didn’t work well, and just left my hair looking very shiny, NOT long). However, I did find a few things that really helped me to grow my hair, whilst I was still colouring it.
Before I start, I just want to mention that I am in no way a qualified hairdresser or hair expert, and all my advice comes from my own experiences!
You read it everywhere, washing your hair is the enemy of health. But, we’ve all been in that cycle where you wash your hair daily, and the second you stop it’s full of grease. I’m prone to extremely greasy hair, and I don’t actually like dry shampoo. If you’re the same, I’d recommend to stay away from high street shampoos and conditioners, and look to some professional haircare brands. I usually pay around £20 per bottle now, but each bottle lasts around 3-4 months compared to 1-2 weeks as I get the 1L supersize bottles, and only use a fraction of what I used to to achieve better results!
Tip – Use a hair mask once a week. The £1 Argan Oil Mask from Savers is AMAZING, and what I use the most.
I personally use Redken, but there are lots of professional brands – I know L’Oreal’s Professional range has amazing reviews, and Pureology is great for those with a little more budget to spend.Also, if you’re at home for a day, put your mid-wash hair into a topknot or a braid – it really helps to make it through until your next wash. Oh, and for coloured hair, you’ll want to use a colour-care shampoo, and either a colour care or moisturising conditioner – depending on your hair type.
I try not to use heat when I dry my hair – instead opting for products that will work with my natural-dried hair. Use a wet-hair brush so you don’t damage your strands, like the Tangle Teezer. And I usually then spray my hair with a lot of leave-in conditioner before rubbing oil on my ends and spreading a little up my strands.
If you are using heat to style, make sure you use a good heat-protect spray, and try not to leave on the heat for too long. As my hairdresser actually told me the other day, heat damage occurs from over-drying the hair, so the less time applied – the better. If you’re looking for a style with a little more texture, but want to retain your hairs’ health, I usually use the TiGi Catwalk Sea Salt Spray and love the beachy-effect it gives my hair.
And there we have it, professional products, leave-in conditioner and a little oil and your coloured hair can stay long – no need to cut! At least, until (or if!) you decide to grow your natural roots like me and want to get rid of the lighter ends. 💖
Oh, and, here’s a shot of my new shorter hair. I’m really looking forward to getting back to my natural colour, after being red for so many years 😄
How do you care for your hair? If you have any heat-free style tips I’d love to hear them!
– Megan Grace, xo