PDA

View Full Version : One month till "show time"



dagny
July 19th, 2011, 10:51 PM
I will be visiting old friends in 1 month and I am wanting my hair to look as great as possible (shiny, healthy, long, thick, etc.).

I don't really do much currently, other than "benign neglect" -- washing once a week, occasional brushing, up during daytime, braid at bedtime (or loose...). I don't take vitamins or use oils routinely, and I do not do any deep treatments on a routine basis. The reason is mainly because I am lazy.

What I am wondering is if there are some things that I could do (or stop doing) to improve the health of my hair from now until Aug 20th in order for it to look it's best -- like some sort of hair "boot camp". I have a lot of time during the day, and I don't mind purchasing certain products -- as long as they will help.

My hair is currently wl (avatar is most recent photo) and I am going to try and thicken up my hemline by removing 1" and then sticking with 1/4" each month --- but I think I want to wait to remove that 1" until after the reunion because I don't want to loose any length right now. If, however, my hair will look BETTER by removing an inch now, then I will be open to that suggestion.

My hair seemed dry and dull last week and with some great advice from this forum, I clarified and did an SMT. It worked great and my hair was really soft and shiny after - so I know that I will probably want to do this the night before the reunion. But I am not really sure what I should be doing from now until then.

I also am wondering what I should do on the day of the reunion to make my hair look good in a quick/superficial way -- shine spray? cones? blow dry? curl? Since I don't do these things on a regular basis, I wonder if much harm will come if I do them on that special day?

Thanks a lot! :)
Dagny

ElusiveMuse
July 19th, 2011, 10:54 PM
The most immediate results (without having to do too much work) I found from bi-weekly apple cider vinegar rinses and daily oiling. You can up the ante of your rinse by diluting with a hair tea instead of plain water, but either way make sure you're using filtered water.

If you are willing to do more work, I'd really think about weekly deep conditioning treatments.

Also, I was in a similar position of needing to trim an inch but wanting the length for an event (my wedding) and I waited to trim until after the wedding and honestly, looking at how much better my hair looks now, the inch wasn't worth it and I should have done it before.

ETA- On the day of my wedding, I used a curling iron to flatten out my hair and give the ends some curl. But I let it air dry completely first.

dagny
July 19th, 2011, 11:02 PM
ElusiveMuse -- thank you so much for your advice! I have seen photos of people who cut 1" off and to my eyes it doesn't make it look shorter -- but I am sure that to them it really seems a lot shorter. So, yea, maybe I should cut the inch off now? OR should I wait until right before the reunion?

Please tell me how you do your biweekly vinegar rinse: Do you do this after your wash or is it something else? Can i find a recipe for "hair tea" on the boards? Also, do you oil your hair dry or wet?

Thanks again! :-)

sun-kissed
July 19th, 2011, 11:04 PM
Coconut oil has made my hair as healthy as it has ever looked. If you have not tried this stuff before, you need to. It is amazing. I bought my first jar three weeks ago, and use it on my tips, and on the damaged part in the back. It cuts away any friz, and makes the hair stay beautifully conditioned for days without needing to be washed out. Bottom line: best thing I've ever used on my hair.

As for the ends, go ahead and trim. I had trim-a-phobia for the longest time because I liked the extra length, but then when I did get a trim, it looked amazing; much better than before the trim. Loose the inch, it'll be worth it.

dagny
July 19th, 2011, 11:15 PM
Coconut oil has made my hair as healthy as it has ever looked. If you have not tried this stuff before, you need to. It is amazing. I bought my first jar three weeks ago, and use it on my tips, and on the damaged part in the back. It cuts away any friz, and makes the hair stay beautifully conditioned for days without needing to be washed out. Bottom line: best thing I've ever used on my hair.

As for the ends, go ahead and trim. I had trim-a-phobia for the longest time because I liked the extra length, but then when I did get a trim, it looked amazing; much better than before the trim. Loose the inch, it'll be worth it.

Sun-Kissed -- how do you use your coconut oil: on wet or on dry hair? On ends only or also on the length?

Do you think I should loose the inch now or wait until Aug?

Thanks ! :)

sun-kissed
July 20th, 2011, 12:12 AM
Sun-Kissed -- how do you use your coconut oil: on wet or on dry hair? On ends only or also on the length?

Do you think I should loose the inch now or wait until Aug?

Thanks ! :)
I use it on dry hair, so that I can see how much oil is in it, and know when to stop. Usually I put a drop of oil on my fingers(getting more when needed), divinde my hair into two sections down the back, apply it to the tips until they are very well-coated and shiny, and to the length up to my chin until it is soft looking. You shouldn't use too much on the length, or it will look super greasy, you just want enough to make it look like it is well-moisturized. The first time I tried it I used wayyy too much, and it took days to get it back to presentable. You kind of have to mess with it, it took me three tries before I got it down. (: Just use as much as you think is decent looking, apply before bed and/or after showers and/or whenever you feel it's looking dry. ;D

When I cut my hair, it looks a little chopped off because of the fresh cut. So I would cut it now so that it has time to grow more natural looking by August. But it is totally up to you. Some people like that super-straight hemline look.

dagny
July 20th, 2011, 09:24 AM
I use it on dry hair, so that I can see how much oil is in it, and know when to stop. Usually I put a drop of oil on my fingers(getting more when needed), divinde my hair into two sections down the back, apply it to the tips until they are very well-coated and shiny, and to the length up to my chin until it is soft looking. You shouldn't use too much on the length, or it will look super greasy, you just want enough to make it look like it is well-moisturized. The first time I tried it I used wayyy too much, and it took days to get it back to presentable. You kind of have to mess with it, it took me three tries before I got it down. (: Just use as much as you think is decent looking, apply before bed and/or after showers and/or whenever you feel it's looking dry. ;D

When I cut my hair, it looks a little chopped off because of the fresh cut. So I would cut it now so that it has time to grow more natural looking by August. But it is totally up to you. Some people like that super-straight hemline look.

Oh, great! I have tried coconut oil before - but looking at your post it appears I used WAAAAYYYY too much... which is why I didn't really like it! :o

I washed last night and put a bunch of oil on my hair (will keep it up all day) because I figured this would work as a deep conditioning also. Since I only wash my hair once a week (I did CO last night) I will keep this on until I wash it next (on Saturday). I wonder if doing this every week would be a good idea -- kind of like a perpetual "deep conditioning treatment"? Or if it would be best to do a proper deep conditioning treatment and only do a light oiling daily?

Any thoughts?

SallyCinnamon
July 20th, 2011, 09:43 AM
Sounds like you have a pretty good plan, and a lot of good advice too! I just wanted to add that you might consider using a clarifying shampoo sometime within the week before the reunion. That will get all the buildup out and let your hair be as gorgeous as possible the day of the reunion.

Also, the day of the reunion, go with what you're comfortable with. Don't try any crazy new products or styles that you haven't had time to experiment with. (I have done this, and it was a disaster.) I would say, do a basic hairstyle that you know looks good on you, and maybe jazz it up with cute barettes, or a cool hair toy.

Good Luck!!!

MaryLA
July 20th, 2011, 09:49 AM
I also use coconut oil and I love it! I use it as an overnight treatment on dry hair then wash it out the next day. It will make your hair so soft and healthy looking.

ElusiveMuse
July 20th, 2011, 09:51 AM
I have extremely hard water, so I dilute about 3 tablespoons of ACV in 1 cup of filtered water or tea (try some combination of dried nettle, rosemary, sage, burdock root, horsetail, linden, and hibiscus flower). I find it's better if it's cold-to-room temp. After I wash, I ring out the excess water and pour the tea onto my scalp, working it gently into the roots, and down the length. I wring it out again but personally, I don't rinse it out. Some people do because they hate the smell but it doesn't bother me for one and doesn't linger in my hair long for another. I'm not sure how they get the benefits of the rinse that way but...*shrug*

Anyway, I have an oil combination of jojoba, evening primrose, apricot kernel, and avocado oils and I work a dime sized amount through my damp hair, comb, and air dry. Usually I damp bun towards the end.

Once my hair is completely dry, I use a nickel sized dollop of coconut oil from about my ears down to the tips, running the residue left on my hands over the top for flyaways when I'm done.

growingpains
July 20th, 2011, 10:28 AM
Hi there! For a nice bit of shine I like to rinse my hair with cool water after the conditioner is out then give it a blast of freezing water. It doesn't do anything long term, but helps the cuticle lay down flat so it looks shinier.

I echo the suggestion to trim it an inch. It'll do wonders for your hem and will improve the look of it I think!

Good luck and have fun!

Cania
July 20th, 2011, 10:48 AM
If you don't mind using product, try Herbal Essences "Hello Hydration" mask - both my long, thick hair and my mothers short, thin hair love it. I just stick it on, put it up in a shower cap and leave for 15 minutes while I'm bathing, fast results.
Also for a quick fix, Aussie's "Luscious Long" leave-in conditioner.

If it's defninitely just a one off, spray hairspray into your palms and run it through the lengths of your hair. Another very quick fix for me, just don't use too much and never too often!

dagny
July 20th, 2011, 02:36 PM
I have extremely hard water, so I dilute about 3 tablespoons of ACV in 1 cup of filtered water or tea (try some combination of dried nettle, rosemary, sage, burdock root, horsetail, linden, and hibiscus flower). I find it's better if it's cold-to-room temp. After I wash, I ring out the excess water and pour the tea onto my scalp, working it gently into the roots, and down the length. I wring it out again but personally, I don't rinse it out. Some people do because they hate the smell but it doesn't bother me for one and doesn't linger in my hair long for another. I'm not sure how they get the benefits of the rinse that way but...*shrug*

Anyway, I have an oil combination of jojoba, evening primrose, apricot kernel, and avocado oils and I work a dime sized amount through my damp hair, comb, and air dry. Usually I damp bun towards the end.

Once my hair is completely dry, I use a nickel sized dollop of coconut oil from about my ears down to the tips, running the residue left on my hands over the top for flyaways when I'm done.

Elusive -- thank you so much for explaining your routine to me. Do you do CO or CWC when you wash? I am not too happy with my current shampoo/condish and am looking for some alternative options. I like the idea of "all natural", but so far I am not having much luck with what I am using, as I think they are either too drying or make my hair limp because they are too heavy.

Also, do you blend your own "tea" and oils, or do you use a certain product that has them all together?

dagny
July 20th, 2011, 02:42 PM
Sounds like you have a pretty good plan, and a lot of good advice too! I just wanted to add that you might consider using a clarifying shampoo sometime within the week before the reunion. That will get all the buildup out and let your hair be as gorgeous as possible the day of the reunion.

Also, the day of the reunion, go with what you're comfortable with. Don't try any crazy new products or styles that you haven't had time to experiment with. (I have done this, and it was a disaster.) I would say, do a basic hairstyle that you know looks good on you, and maybe jazz it up with cute barettes, or a cool hair toy.

Good Luck!!!

Sally -- thank you! Since I found such great benefit from the clarifying treatment I did last week (and since I anticipate some buildup from the oiling/conditioning I will be doing henceforth) I will DEFINITELY repeat it prior to the reunion! :)

My hair is straight but I thought it might be nice to try an sock-bun it at night for a curly look. I still don't know if my hair would look more impressive (:p) straight and shiny or curly and bouncy...but hopefully in the next several weeks I will decide on either of the two. Hmm....maybe I'll post some photos with a poll to see what you all think!

I also agree with the caution of trying new products for the first time for an important event. I purchased a natural shine spray and put it on my hair the first time right before and event -- hoping to make my hair look nice and shiny. Unfortunately, the spray made my hair look limp and greasy... not the look I was going for! :rolleyes: Lesson learned! :D

Cheers,
Dagny

sugar&nutmeg
July 20th, 2011, 02:43 PM
Sounds like you have received some excellent advice!

My only caveat would be to remember if you cut to 'blunt up' the ends, it may make updos a bit more difficult. Those tapered ends do help sometimes!

Fwiw, I think your hair looks lovely right now, just as it is, and I'm sure your friends will agree. But if they don't...um...oh, well?

dagny
July 20th, 2011, 02:49 PM
If you don't mind using product, try Herbal Essences "Hello Hydration" mask - both my long, thick hair and my mothers short, thin hair love it. I just stick it on, put it up in a shower cap and leave for 15 minutes while I'm bathing, fast results.
Also for a quick fix, Aussie's "Luscious Long" leave-in conditioner.

If it's defninitely just a one off, spray hairspray into your palms and run it through the lengths of your hair. Another very quick fix for me, just don't use too much and never too often!

Cania -- thank you so much for the product recommendations. :) I will have to check them out.

Do you use oils on your hair, too? Or just stick with the product? I am wondering which of the two will penetrate the hair better. I also don't know about if my hair needs protein or not or if it is happy with or without cones. It has been several years since I have used products other than "all natural" -- and I only stopped using them because I was worried about all the chemicals, not because I didn't like what they did to my hair. Perhaps now is the time to reconsider...?

Cheers!
Dagny

Alvrodul
July 20th, 2011, 02:53 PM
I would actually suggest that you don't tinker too much with your basic routine - when your hair is healthy, shiny and beautiful on its own, not much else is needed! But do clarify and do a SMT before the meet, so that your hair is at its best.

Too much tinkering in a short time can actually have a negative impact on your hair, so be careful!:)

dagny
July 20th, 2011, 02:59 PM
Sounds like you have received some excellent advice!

My only caveat would be to remember if you cut to 'blunt up' the ends, it may make updos a bit more difficult. Those tapered ends do help sometimes!

Sugar&nutmeg -- thank you for the nice compliment. :) I think I will be doing a self-trim in a "U" shape -- but only remove 1/4 inch at a time to check and see how it looks, as well as how it performs with my "signature bun". I will go ahead and do this now (as opposed to waiting a month) to let the ends soften, as suggested by a previous poster.

Everyone has given me such great advice -- things that I would have never thought of!

Thanks so much!

chahuahuas
July 20th, 2011, 03:09 PM
I'm definitely in favor of "blunting up" the ends, as sugar&nutmeg put it. Alot of LHCers consider "fairy tale ends" to be very beautiful, but I'm with the mainstream who likes a nice blunt hemline that makes your hair look thicker.

I think the blunt look will impress your friends more than the tapered look (since it's more in line with mainstream beauty), and that seems to be your goal here :)

ETA: I know cones are considered horrible, but sometimes my hair looks it's best after some heavy cone-ing... It looks shiny and amazing (but only for a single day, haha). Maybe you could consider using cones in a finishing product (leave in cream or gel) just for that day? Of course you would have to try it once or twice before to be sure it works for you. :undecided

dagny
July 20th, 2011, 03:09 PM
I would actually suggest that you don't tinker too much with your basic routine - when your hair is healthy, shiny and beautiful on its own, not much else is needed! But do clarify and do a SMT before the meet, so that your hair is at its best.

Too much tinkering in a short time can actually have a negative impact on your hair, so be careful!:)

Ohhh...this is a good point! Do you think if I made some changes now (like the oil or ACV/tea rinse) that I will notice any negative effects right away? Or do changes like this not show problems until they have been used for several weeks?

dagny
July 20th, 2011, 03:14 PM
I'm definitely in favor of "blunting up" the ends, as sugar&nutmeg put it. Alot of LHCers consider "fairy tale ends" to be very beautiful, but I'm with the mainstream who likes a nice blunt hemline that makes your hair look thicker.

I think the blunt look will impress your friends more than the tapered look (since it's more in line with mainstream beauty), and that seems to be your goal here :)

You are correct in my goal. When you say "blunt look" do you mean straight across or no layers?

In a post I made last week, I mentioned that I didn't like the fairy tale ends on me due to my age and lifestyle (and I am kicking myself for ever cutting them into my hair along with the layers...grrrrr). If I were to completely remove the layers/"v" shape then my hair would be above BSL and I don't think I want to go this far. So that was why I thought I'd now do a total of 1" to remove the tip of the "v" and then regular micro-trims until the hemline thickens.

kidari
July 20th, 2011, 03:28 PM
My advice is to really show off your hair on that day: wear it down for sure! If you are not going to be getting it styled at a salon I strongly suggest you do some research on how you would like to wear it and practice some non-heat/hair-friendly methods to achieve that look. You will find what works best and looks best on you and practice makes perfect! You don't use a blow dryer, flat iron, or curling iron everyday so chances are on that day you won't really know how to use it the best possible way to style your hair. You could always go to a salon that you trust for them to do it for you or you can practice how to style it until then. Sometimes I experiment with rag curls, bun curls, pin curls, and see what it looks like the next day. You don't have to wear it down the whole day- the curls really help with updos.

xoxophelia
July 20th, 2011, 03:50 PM
If you want a more blunt hemline I would suggest a deep "U". This would make the sides more blunt as well and blend the bottom 1" trimmed off so it isn't the shape of a V but with the tip cut off.

chahuahuas
July 20th, 2011, 03:53 PM
You are correct in my goal. When you say "blunt look" do you mean straight across or no layers?


By blunt, I just mean you can't see through the ends like you can with fairy tale ends. I love layers! I think fairy tale ends aren't real layers, they're just what happens as your hair grows, since your hair naturally grows at different speeds. I think that if the layers are well placed, the bottom layer should still look thick. (though I'm not sure if that always happens with ultra-fine hair... :undecided)

Kidari mentioned a salon, and i think that's definitely something to consider. I wouldn't worry too much about the damage from a single day, so a salon can be a great option, so long as you go to a decent one and be sure to bring in a couple pictures of the style you want. Just telling them verbally could result in some weeeird hair...

Cania
July 20th, 2011, 04:13 PM
Cania -- thank you so much for the product recommendations. :) I will have to check them out.

Do you use oils on your hair, too? Or just stick with the product? I am wondering which of the two will penetrate the hair better. I also don't know about if my hair needs protein or not or if it is happy with or without cones. It has been several years since I have used products other than "all natural" -- and I only stopped using them because I was worried about all the chemicals, not because I didn't like what they did to my hair. Perhaps now is the time to reconsider...?

Cheers!
Dagny

I haven't had a go with oils yet - I'm dying to, but you'd have to ask others for advice there I'm afraid! All I know is that if you're using products, you need to clarify before you put the oil on. Tresemme seems a good one for me, but I'm sure others have excellent recomendations if you need them or you could make one with baking soda (I think?)

My hair is definitely happier with cones and a little product, but everyones hair is a bit different, which makes giving advice tricky! :P

ETA: Someone else might have already mentioned it, but what about a henna gloss? The ones without the stain? I don't know much about them but they're popular on here and apparently amazing.

dagny
July 20th, 2011, 05:27 PM
I do have layers -- but I also have the "v" shape overall. I don't know if the 1" trim would actually thicken up my hemline until some of the layers grow out (I will have to see what the length is from hemline to longest layer). The trim would, however, change the shape from "v" to a deep "u" -- so perhaps trimming it now won't make much of a difference?

I will be traveling to this reunion (8 hours in the car!) and won't be able to go to a salon -- so my hair style will have to either be up, down with "bun" curls, or down and straight.

I have used a henna gloss in the past with cassia -- but the cassia makes the gold in my hair really stand out whereas I would rather the red/copper stand out. Also, I can't stand the lingering scent of henna/cassia. I don't really like too much of ANY scent, actually! :-)

I wonder if I should re-think cones. The last time I used cones (5+ yrs ago?) I got a TON of compliments on my hair that day -- it was wavy, and shiny and bouncy. Sigh... But I was worried it might damage my hair, so I stopped. And, as I mentioned, I started to not want a lot of chemicals dumped on my head. But I guess I could find an "all natural" version with cones?

dagny
July 20th, 2011, 05:36 PM
Ok. I just measured. I'd have to remove 3" before I reach the next layer -- so I don't know if my hemline would look thicker if I removed only 1".

Darn those layers!!!

chahuahuas
July 20th, 2011, 07:14 PM
I do have layers -- but I also have the "v" shape overall.

...I wonder if I should re-think cones. The last time I used cones (5+ yrs ago?) I got a TON of compliments on my hair that day -- it was wavy, and shiny and bouncy.

Oh, I wasn't implying that you don't have layers! Fairy tale ends can happen after layers grow out, since they're basically what happens when any haircut grows out and leaves it's natural, uneven taper.

I think you should consider doing "special occasion cones." I doubt they would be that damaging if its a one-day thing.

Also, I think a 1" trims will definitely make a difference, even if it is 3" to the next layer. It will make a difference because your hair naturally tapers as it grows (because of the natural shedding and uneven growth of hair), so even a small trim will get it back to a hemline that's more blunt. A 3" trim might make more of a difference, but I don't think it's worth trimming that much for a single day (unless maybe it's your wedding day or something huuuge).

BlazingHeart
July 20th, 2011, 08:13 PM
I think taking off the 1" will still make your hair look thicker. Having a bunch of ends cut so they end at precisely the same place gives a visual illusion of thickness - that's why people tend to think of a blunt cut as being thicker.

I'd go with down and straight if I was trying to impress people, rather than curls, because straight hair is 'in' right now. And there's nothing like a wall of shine to make people notice your hair.

As far as products, I've used the John Frieda Frizz Ease Shine Serum for a show once, and got loads of complements. It's loads of cones, so I wouldn't use it regularly, but as a one-off it produces impressive results, imo. It is somewhat heavy stuff, so put on a little and add a little at a time until you get the result you want. (I had straighter hair back then, fwiw)

dagny
July 22nd, 2011, 08:34 AM
Well, I cut 1" off last night.

I did a "U" shape self-trim method and I think it turned out just fine. The hemline does look more blunt and the hair doesn't really look much shorter. :-) Yeah!

I also searched the boards and found some "shine" recipes that I thought I'd try, as well as some herbal rinses and vinegar rinse recipes.

While I am not really interested in a henna gloss, I did find a website with a mix for red hair that included henna -- but it was only to bring out the hilights and not change the hair color. Since my hair is naturally red, I figured I might try a mix like this just to give a little more red highlights. I used to use pure henna 6 yrs ago and always got a ton of compliments on it, but I don't like commitment regarding hair color and would rather have something that fades out so I don't have to keep treating the roots every few months. I'm so lazy. :-)

Since I will be with these friends for a couple of days, I figure I could wear my hair straight one of the days (going to try and mix up some horsetail/marshmallow/nettle/ sage rinse) and I am currently working on bun curls as another option. My hair has been kind of frizzy lately (very hot and humid here) and I know that any treatment I put on it will change the way the bun curls work for my hair. For example, if I used henna or any cones, my hair will be straight with a lot of slip and gloss -- but won't hold any curls whatsoever. If I don't do anything (cones or tx), then my hair gets more full and fluffy -- but less shine.

Since I have been staying home with my twins (now 5 yrs old), I have lazy hair habits -- ponytail or bun -- and I havn't bothered to play around with products or a routine. But now they are older, I really need to reconsider. I mean, what is the point of having long hair if I only wear it up every day! I should be showing it off!!

Cheers,
Dagny