How to keep a smooth hair groove
Imagine your hair is an avocado
I know -its hard to imagine, but if you think about the structure it will help you to understand how to visualize the structure of your hair.
In the middle of each strand there is the medulla – like a pip – but in the case of our hair it isn’t really there for any particular reason – it just makes up the centre core of the hair shaft
Around the core is the flesh – or in the case of your hair it is the cortex…this is where the action is and it is the most important part of the hair. The cortex is responsible for the strength, the colour and the manageability of your hair. Once you expose or damage the cortex your hair will become vulnerable and weak.
On the outside is the protective ‘skin’ – in the case of your hair that is the cuticle. The cuticle is the hairs line of defense again aggression and it is only when it is in good condition that your hair can shine! Every time you knock or damage the outside layer you expose the inner core and when this happens your hair will become frizzy, fluffy, brittle or broken.
Protect the cuticle…preserve the hair
As the saying goes ‘an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure’ and there is no place this is more relevant than your hair!
Protection comes in many forms…but what we do to our hair effects the hair the most…so invest in a good quality shampoo & conditioner, indulge in some at home treatments, never dry your hair without heat shielding to ensure your precious cuticle layer stays in tack.
Top Tips for Smooth Hair
Be smart about blow-drying.
It’s best to not whip your hair back and forth as you dry it. Instead, use your blow-dryer’s concentration nozzle. It makes the air come out in a flat plane instead of a circular flow. Always aim the air downward so it smoothes the strand’s cuticles. Pull hair taut with a round brush and dry it section by section. When your hair seems dry, its inner layers are probably only 80 percent there, and if you don’t get it 100 percent dry, the moisture that’s left will cause frizz. Finish by pressing the “cool” button on your hair dryer – the cool air produces a reflective effect similar to that of a cool-water rinse after shampooing. So spend an extra five minutes blow-drying hair. For supersleek results, wrap dry sections around big Velcro rollers while you do your makeup.
When it’s steamy outside.
Humid days don’t have to mean unruly hair. To preempt fuzzies, forget shampooing — scalp oils make a great natural moisture barrier — and whip out your flatiron or curling iron. The combo of heat and pressure seals the hair shaft so tightly that it takes a great deal of moisture to penetrate it. Don’t iron more than a couple of times a week, though; it’ll parch your hair and exacerbate frizz long-term.
When you’re in the shower.
Protein shampoo? Moisturizers? what do you need???? It can seem quite complicated, but in fact what your hair needs is quite simple.
Hair is made of 80-90% Protein and this is what gives your hair its strength. Lack of protein makes that hair weak and vulnerable and likely to break. Protein is substance as well as the glue that holds the structure together.
Each strand also contains 10-15% Moisture and this is what makes the hair soft, supple and flexible. Dehydrated hair is brittle and hard to manage with a dull rough feel
There final two ‘ingredients’ in our hair are carbohydrates (which regulate the volume) and lipids (that smooth the surface) – we have styling and finishing products to add or replicate these actions on the hair
If your hair is naturally curly, if you have more than 50% grey hair, if you work outdoors or in air-conditioning, if you blow wave or flat iron daily, if you are Maori, Pacific Island, Asian or have particularly coarse hair then your will have naturally dehydrated hair and need as much moisture as possible. Is your hair gorgeous when damp (or wet) and fluffy and frizzy when dry…so the only difference is moisture. Make sure you use a moisture based range in the shower, shampoo, treatments, leave-in conditioners and smoothing serums to maintain the moisture balance. If you have fine hair, colored, straightened or permed you need protein to give the hair more strength. In the chart below, give yourself a tick for everything that applies to you and you will see if you need more moisture or more protein for your hairs health.
When you’re at the beach.
Just bring along a bottle of leave-in conditioner — we like BC Repair Rescue Spray — and mist it on. In a pinch, use spray sunscreen instead; this will protect the hair and help the hair cuticle lie flat. And no need to abandon your boogie board for the sake of a pretty ‘do. Salt water makes hair stick together and weighs it down, which helps control frizz and gives you that sexy beachy texture.
When you’re working out.
Your hairstyle can survive a fitness class. Pre-cardio, make a braid or bun instead of a tight pony; you’ll avoid the hair-tie crease, and there’s less loose hair to stick to your sweaty neck and puff up later. Use a headband to keep hair off your forehead. Once damp, cotton can promote frizz (the exception: a rolled-up bandanna, because it’s thick enough to absorb perspiration). Post-workout, quickly blow-dry your scalp as leaving any sweat to evaporate slowly will cause frizz. If you get seriously drenched, pat a moisture-sopping powder, such as BC Volume Boost Refresher, onto roots.
When you have free time.
Indulge in a deep-conditioning treatment that will replenish your hair’s lipid barrier so it repels water better and is less prone to frizz. Try a mask or apply a gloss, such as Redken Diamond Oil Mask or BC Smooth Perfect Mask once a week. It’s like the clear protective topcoat you put on your nails, it makes hair really shiny and helps smooth down frizz.
If you pause for a second in your battle with frizz, you’ll find that there are situations in which it actually looks — gasp! — pretty. To convey that your frizz is a look, not a bad hair day, do some strategic styling: Put on a headband so the front of your hair is neat, and let the back do its thing. If your hair is straight, add some wave with a curling iron; flyaways blend better with strands that have plenty of texture. Rough up your hair for beachy messiness, try rubbing the tips of your fingers into the scalp and use hair spray all over to boost body. Another ideal style for frizzy days: Make a pony, braid the tail and bobby-pin it into an undone bun. Then pull out random loose hairs along the sides for the perfect bed-head look.
Say yes to hair serum.
Shine serums are available that have been specially formulated to give frizzy or unruly hair a sleek sheen. There are spray-in versions like BlondeMe Shine Enhancing Spray Conditioner which are ideal for finer or longer hair and liquid serums for medium to thickk hair, like Redken Diamond Oil Shatterproof Shine Intense These products moisturize your hair with a light concentration of oils or silicone. To apply, “use a pea-sized amount to start and start at the bottom of your hair and work your way up, rubbing it into wet hair with your hands. It’s important not to use too much serum, because it can weigh hair down, but if you feel you need more moisture, go ahead and add a bit more.
Use a leave-in conditioner.
Regular conditioners are great, but if you really want to pump up the shine, add a leave-in conditioner to your routine. These come in both spray-on and lotion forms. Apply them the same way you do shine serum. The great thing with leave-in conditioners and treatments is they usually offer dual benefits of heat protection, styling hold and condition. From lightweight gels like Redken Extreme Anti-Snap to frizz-controlling cremes like BC Smooth Perfect cream there is a leave in option for all hair types and textures
Spray on the shine.
When your hair is dry, finish your look with a spray-on shine product. Whether it comes in a pump bottle or aerosol can, a shine spray can be misted onto dry hair – no matter what texture it is – to give it an extra glistening effect.
Get a smoothing treatment.
If you really want to get your shine on, consider having a professional smoothing treatment. These are often performed after a hair-coloring treatment, but you can get one without the dye job. There are several options available in salon from Keratin Supreme (which is an intense de-frizz treatment), to Keratin Complex Blow Out which will tame the frizz for 6 weeks right through to the Keratin Complex Treatment which smooths the hair for a full 3 months.
Hydrate your body.
Drinking plenty of water will ensure that your hair is properly moisturized from the inside out. About eight glasses a day is ideal. Keep a bottle by your side and sip from it often!
Eat nutritious foods.
Shorter recommends getting your daily recommended allowances of vitamins A and E for shiny, healthy hair. Also, be sure you’re eating plenty of protein, which promotes hair growth. “Eggs and nuts are excellent sources of protein,” Shorter says.
Avoid harsh chemicals.
Shiny hair is healthy hair – so don’t abuse it! Limit your hair’s exposure to harsh chemicals, like the chlorine in pools, and lye-based hair-relaxing creams. Use heat-styling as infrequently as you can get away with, and avoid products that contain alcohol, which can dry out your hair and strip its shine.