Posts Tagged ‘hair tips’

How to: DIY hair chalking

       
Thursday, November 21st, 2013

How to: DIY hair chalking

It's likely that the last time you used art chalk was in the 5th grade – but you may be picking it up again very soon. The only difference is that this time, you'll be using it in your hair, not the sidewalk.

Skeptical? Hair chalking is a super simple DIY hair color method that's great for people who want to test out a wild new hue. Since it's temporary, you can experiment with any color you desire on your strands while knowing it will wash out in a few shampoos. The best part? Whether you're a redhead, blonde or brunette, this technique will work just as well. Even stylish celebs like Lauren Conrad have played around with hair chalking to try a fun new look.

All you need are some soft chalk pastels, gloves, some water and a dash of courage. Here's how to do it yourself:

Step 1:
If you have dark hair, fill a small spray bottle with water and spritz a small section. There's no need to wet the entire piece, just soak up to the point where you want the pigment to appear. Blondes should avoid moistening their locks as the chalk could end up actually staining your hair. So if you have light hair, just draw onto dry strands unless you plan to rock this color for a couple weeks. Redheads may want to test a section without water first to see how bright the color shows up, and then determine if water is needed to amp up the intensity.

Step 2:
Slip on a pair of rubber gloves, reach for your desired pastel hue and begin coloring directly onto your strands. It can be helpful to twist your hair as you go, as this tactic will rub off more pigment from the chalk. You can select more than one shade, but Seventeen magazine noted that it's best to start with the lightest one first to avoid dark color from getting on your gloves and muddying the whole effect. Brush out the excess chalk and wait for your hair to dry completely.

Step 3:
Depending on the look you're going for, you can use a flat iron or a curling iron to go over the colored strands and seal in the pigment. Continue to style as you normally would, but have fun with it. Feel free to try out a more eccentric 'do, like a top knot or a fishtail braid, which will show off your vibrant tresses in a whole new way.

Ways to protect your hair in winter

       
Monday, November 11th, 2013

Ways to protect your hair in winter

There are some things you always do to prepare for the cold winter months: buying a new parka, sliding on some boots with a sturdy tread and stocking up on warm, comforting foods. So you should also be taking certain measures to keep your hair happy despite the frigid temperatures and dry air. The changes in climate can be harsh on your hair, and if you don't tweak your routine, you could end up with dull, straw-like strands.

Here are a few tips to make sure your tresses stay healthy until spring:

Be wise about washing
The lack of moisture in the air means your hair is far more likely to appear brittle. You're not sweating as much as you were in summer, so it's OK to skip a day or two of shampooing. In fact, Nicholas Penna, Jr., owner of Boston's SalonCapri, told Teen Vogue that washing once every three days is ideal. Be wary of using too much product, too. A quarter-sized amount is sufficient for average length hair, and using any more will strip all of the oils out so that your hair feels and looks parched. Try to turn down the water temperature to lukewarm, as hot water is harsh on hair. Dry shampoo can help you to keep your locks looking grease-free between showers.

Also, try to put down the blow​dryer now and then, or at the very least, let your hair air dry almost completely before blasting it with heat.

Condition constantly
Leave-in conditioners and rich hair masques are a lifesaver during this time of the year. Consider a deep hydrating mask once a week to repair and fortify your strands so that they stay shiny and smooth. Plus, Penna pointed out that these products can act as a shield between your hair and heat from your styling tools, thus minimizing damage and breakage. You could even make you own DIY mask by warming up a few tablespoons of coconut, avocado or olive oil and mashed bananas and leaving it on your tresses for 20 minutes before rinsing. 

Wear a hat
Putting on a hat in winter won't only keep your head warm, it'll save your strands. Opt for one in a soft fabric that won't snag or break your hair, and also consider styles that won't completely flatten your 'do. Struggling with static? Greg May of Greg May Hair Architects in Toronto told Elle magazine that it's best to look for alcohol-free hair styling products formulated with lanolin, which naturally fights flyaways.

Ponytail inspiration for every look

       
Monday, October 21st, 2013

Ponytail inspiration for every look

There are a few reasons the ponytail has been a go-to hairstyle for decades: It’s convenient, chic and completely understated. Still, achieving a polished look with a pony requires more than just piling your hair up and winding an elastic around it. While that’s fine if you’re heading to the gym, you probably want a little more drama for other occasions.

If you’re looking for a way to shake up your style, consider these ideas for a completely different take on the ponytail:

Sleek
A ponytail doesn’t have to be casual – in fact, it can be supremely elegant if you use the right products and techniques. Refinery 29 suggested taking a cue from the latest runways and opting for a super slick low pony. If you don’t have naturally pin-straight hair, use a flat iron to smooth it out. Part your hair down the middle and pull it into a pony at the nape of your neck. Then take a small section of hair and wind it around the elastic, securing with a bobby pin at the bottom. Split the pony into two sections, weave several inches into a fishtail braid and secure with another elastic. Then repeat your previous step and coil another thin piece of hair around the bottom, using a pin to hold it in place.

Tousled
A bedhead-inspired pony is alluring without being over the top. To get the look, use a texturizing spray or dry shampoo and only comb your hair enough to get the tangles out. Next, gently tease hair at the crown and pull back into three even sections. Begin to weave only the center and the right section like you were beginning a braid, then use a large pin to secure it from underneath so it’s invisible. Pull the left section and wrap it all the way around both pieces, pinning it at the bottom. The result? Imperfect yet irresistible.

Curly
Coils can add an unexpected playful bounce to your pony. After blowdrying your hair with a round brush, secure at the back of your head with an elastic. It’s up to you where you pile it – a high pony has a coy and girlish look while a low one looks elegant for the evening. Try wrapping the entire pony around a two inch curling iron barrel if you have fine strands, or dividing and curling multiple sections if your mane is thicker. Finish with a mist of strong hairspray to freeze your locks in place.

A guide to growing out your hair

       
Tuesday, October 15th, 2013

A guide to growing out your hair

If you’ve ever dreamed of long, lustrous Rapunzel-worthy hair, you know that growing it out is the hard part. Considering hair grows an average of just one-quarter inch every month, getting to your ideal length could take some serious patience. Still, anyone can accomplish long locks, as long as they’re willing to put in the effort to maintain healthy strands.

There is no one surefire way to make your hair grow at a rapid pace, but there are tactics that can speed up the process. Follow this guide and you won’t have to wait as long for the mane you’ve always wanted:

Go on a ‘do diet
It should come as no surprise that your diet can have a significant impact on how shiny and strong your strands are. Still, did you know that certain foods can also help to promote growth?

Protein is the building block for hair cells, so it’s crucial to have a source at every meal, whether it’s yogurt, lean poultry, tofu or beans. It’s also important to have enough of the “good fats” – which include polyunsaturated and monounsaturated types. Find them in nuts, olive oil, avocados and oily fish, such as salmon and mackerel.

U.S. News and World Report revealed that not getting enough iron or zinc could hinder the growth of your locks, and potentially cause hair loss. Therefore, you’ll want to incorporate foods like oatmeal, lentils and oysters to get enough of these vitamins – or consider taking a supplement. A vitamin C deficiency compromises the strength of your hair, so nosh on kiwis, leafy greens, guava and chili peppers to make sure your hair isn’t dull or prone to breakage.

Don’t forget biotin – the National Institutes of Health noted that it simultaneously supports healthy growth while preventing hair thinning or loss. Look for this vitamin B complex in egg yolks, soybeans, peanuts and almonds.

Remember regular trims
It might seem counterintuitive to cut your hair frequently when you’re trying to grow it out, but this practice is key. If you neglect to trim off dead ends every five to eight weeks, you may end up having to lop off a lot more on your next visit to the hairdresser. That’s because once the ends split, the breakage begins to creep up your strands at a faster rate. It’s not that regular trims will make your hair grow faster at the root, but they will will prevent your strands from breaking off farther up, meaning you’ll be able to achieve the length you want more quickly. Besides, split ends can give the illusion that your hair is thinner at the bottom, and isn’t the point to get a full mane?

Treat your scalp to a massage
Soft, shiny hair depends on a healthy scalp, as that’s where the roots of your hair follicles are. Just as muscles need a helping hand once in a while to recover and rejuvenate, so does your scalp. This requires a massage, which can accelerate blood flow, thereby stimulating the scalp and allowing essential nutrients to travel there more quickly, nourishing hair follicles.

This doesn’t mean you have to go to a professional, either. L.A. stylist Philip B recommended to Marie Claire magazine simply using your fingers to firmly massage in a revitalizing shampoo for a minute or two while showering. Use this tactic while you’re rinsing as well, starting at the back of your head and moving forward. As added benefits, you’ll feel totally relaxed and you’ll cleanse your strands more thoroughly.

Making waves with minimal effort

       
Friday, October 11th, 2013

Making waves with minimal effort

Just because summer is long gone doesn’t mean you have to abandon those carefree waves.

Wavy hair is just as appropriate for cozying up to the fireplace as it is for basking on the beach. Plus, it’s simultaneously laid-back and romantic, meaning it works for nearly any occasion, from a casual coffee date to an elegant affair. Creating the perfect style doesn’t have to take a lot of effort, either – after all, the idea is to look effortlessly stunning. Ditch the styling tools and use these tips to achieve flawless, fuss-free waves overnight:

Braids
You may already know that braids are big this fall, but were you aware that un-doing this technique can also make instant waves? After washing your hair and combing it out, pat it dry and part down the center. Then begin weaving it into two braids while it’s damp. Looser braids will make for gentler waves, while tightly wound braids will produce a more crimped effect. You can also change the look with the number of braids: One will produce a subtler curvature, and three or four of them will make high-intensity waves. Secure the ends with an elastic and leave them alone until dry. Doing this a couple hours before bedtime is ideal, as you can wake up and quickly finish styling them.

Once your hair is dry, unbraid it and use your fingers to comb through your strands, which will help to create a natural look. A spritz of strong hairspray will provide the hold you need to lock your waves into place.

Buns
Another supremely simple way to get whimsical waves is by twirling your hair into multiple buns. While it’s still damp, smooth some shaping cream over your strands and twist it into coils on top of your head, securing with bobby pins. As with the braid method, more buns will make for a drastic finished look. Unpin them once your hair is dry and shake your tresses out to get a tousled effect.

Headband
There are endless possibilities when it comes to wearing a headband, and one of them can create perfectly sculpted waves. Using a soft elastic headband, wrap your hair section by section around it, using pins to secure the ends. Once all of your strands have been wound around the headband, leave it to dry, ideally overnight. After unpinning every section, scrunch them with some texturizing mousse for extra oomph.

How stress is sabotaging your beauty

       
Tuesday, October 1st, 2013

How stress is sabotaging your beauty

There are obvious reasons to avoid stress, as it can do some serious damage to your body. Did you know that it affects your appearance as well?

Between work deadlines, social obligations, paying bills and taking care of other responsibilities, sometimes it’s inevitable to feel overwhelmed. However, you might want to consider ways to keep your calm once you realize the potential impact on your complexion. Here are just a few ways that stress is sabotaging your skin, hair and nails:

Wrinkles
It’s no secret that stress can affect mood and energy levels, but it also makes you look olde. Daily Makeover explained that when you’re under a lot of pressure, your body continually churns out cortisol, a hormone that can break down collagen – not to mention also make you gain weight. When your cortisol levels are high, it’s more difficult for the skin to reproduce elastin and repair damage, leading to faster formation of wrinkles. Dr. Doris Day told Woman’s Day that it can be helpful during a particularly stressful day to stop and take a deep breath, thereby relaxing the muscles in your face to prevent fine lines.

Puffy eyes
One of the major negative effects of stress is that it can disrupt your sleep, and as a result, you end up with tired, puffy eyes. Daily Makeover noted that when you don’t get the deep sleep you need, your body is unable to rid itself of excess liquids. Therefore, that fluid ends up settling in the undereye tissue, causing dark circles and bags. It’s crucial to get an adequate amount of shuteye, but when you still need some extra help, use a moisturizing eye cream and a yellow-based concealer to fake an awake look.

Breakouts
Unfortunately, you’re also more likely to get pesky blemishes and breakouts when you’re tense, which can be frustrating and exacerbate the problem. According to She Knows, one of the other effects of a spike in cortisol is increased oil production and an inability to control inflammation. Therefore, you’re a lot more likely to see redness and clogged pores. Skincare expert Lavinia Borcau recommended looking for cleansers and toners that are formulated with green tea or chamomile, both natural anti-inflammatories.

Dry skin
If your skin is looking flaky and feeling dry, stress might be the cause. Borcau told She Knows that when you’re especially strained, your skin can’t hold moisture as effectively. She suggested using a rich cream that contains shea butter and avocado oil. Not only will your complexion feel softer, but these ingredients can also act as a barrier from irritants, free radicals and bacteria in the environment.

Damaged nails
Your digits are also dealing with negative impacts when you’re under pressure – and not just because you might be nervously biting your fingernails. Dr. Flor Mayoral, dermatologist and clinical instructor from University of Miami’s Miller School of Medicine in Miami, Fla., said that many people make a habit of pressing their fingers over their thumb nail, leading to a raised ridge in the center. On top of that, your nails may become weaker, peel or even begin to show white horizontal lines. When they’re looking particularly brittle, nix the lacquer for a week and brush on a strengthening treatment.

Hair loss
Is your hair starting to shed? Daily makeover explained that hair loss is another issue that can be caused by anxiety. Your hair follicles immediately go from a growth phase to a resting one. Dr. Mayoral noted that the “fall-out” phase that follows typically lasts for up to three months after a stressful time, and it can take six to nine months for the hair to re-grow. In the meantime, switch to a shampoo that can energize your scalp and a nourishing, thickening conditioner.

Fresh hairstyle ideas for fall

       
Thursday, September 26th, 2013

Fresh hairstyle ideas for fall

Your beachy waves were just fine for summer, but you might be getting bored with your hair now that autumn is here.

Something about the changing leaves, cozy sweaters and richer colors in your wardrobe may have you itching for a change in your coif. If you don't have the funds – or the guts – for a dramatic transformation, don't fret. There are plenty of ways to shake up your hairstyle without a ton of time or effort. Here are a few ideas to consider for your new 'do:

Fetching fringe
Even if you've been too timid to try bangs, sideswept fringe is flattering on a variety of face shapes, and can be relatively easy to maintain. Feeling bold? Elle magazine noted that blunt bangs are a major trend this season. The source recommended using a heat protective spray on damp hair before blowdrying them. A shine serum can help to eliminate frizz, and a spritz of hairspray ensures they stay in place.

Still, you might not be ready to take the plunge. Fortunately, Harper's Bazaar reported that the side faux bang is an ideal alternative when you can't commit to the real thing. Redken creative consultant Guido told the magazine that all you have to do is part your hair farther to the side and sweep it across your forehead to give the illusion of bangs. You can use a bobby pin to secure the section in place.

Deconstructed bun
While a neat bun always looks elegant, a messier version is on trend this autumn. Fortunately, it not only looks chic but also takes considerably less time. Refinery 29 explained that the first step is spraying your strands with a thickening product that will boost the volume. The key is not to overbrush your hair to keep the tousled texture. After rough drying your hair, pull your tresses up the top of your head and tie in a ponytail with an elastic. Fold your hair through the band to create a loop, and then twist the ends that are sticking out around the base of the pony to build the bun. Keep playing around with it until you're happy with the undone look, then pin the ends in place.

Wet and wild strands
You might be surprised, but hair that looks soaking wet is actually a major trend this season. Harper's Bazaar explained that models for Prada, Oscar de La Renta and Roberto Cavalli all sported this sleek look on the runway. Don't leave the house just after showering, though, especially as the temperatures are starting to drop. Instead, get the same effect with hair oil, which creates a high shine finish.

Surprising beauty secrets from the stars

       
Monday, September 23rd, 2013

Surprising beauty secrets from the stars

There are certain beauty tactics you already know are foolproof: Using lash primer before your mascara, moisturizing before bedtime and leaving your conditioner in for an extra few minutes, for example. Yet you still might be trying to figure out how celebrities look flawless all the time, whether they're stepping off an airplane or strolling down the red carpet.

Some of their go-to products and strategies may seem like common sense, but others might catch you by surprise. Regardless, they seem to be working, so they might be worth a try. Here's a few of their secrets for a stunning look:

Hair
Ever wondered why starlets never seem to have flat hair? The trick lies in the temperature of the blowdryer. Harper's Bazaar revealed that actresses like Jessica Alba and Jessica Biel maintain a voluminous mane because they switch back and forth between the hot and cold setting. Professional stylist Oscar Blandi noted that while it seems counter-intuitive to blast your strands with cold air, it helps promote lifted roots that last for up to nine hours, while also adding staying power to the style.

You might already be aware that avocado is good for your body, but did you know that it's excellent for your hair as well? According to Women's Health magazine, Denise Richards mashes the creamy fruit and smoothes it onto her strands with one tablespoon of olive oil for an ultra-rich conditioning masque. Stay away from rubbing the substance onto your scalp, though, to avoid greasiness.

If you're a product junkie, it's important to deep clean your hair to remove buildup once in a while. A clarifying shampoo will do that, but Catherine Zeta-Jones has another tactic: she washes it in beer. Women's Health explained that the alcohol gets rid of any substances that have accumulated on your tresses, which can make them look dull. After working in the solution, just cover your head with plastic wrap for five minutes and then rinse it out.

Skin
A-listers always appear to have clear, glowing complexions. According to Daily Makeover, Cate Blanchett concocts her own scrub with olive oil, macadamia oil, grapefruit juice and sea salt for a revitalized, radiant face. Meanwhile, Emma Stone, who has hyper-sensitive skin, swears by natural grapeseed oil as a moisturizer.

Other stars make their own skincare products at home. Us magazine reported that Kristin Cavallari's DIY solution requires tossing half a papaya in the blender and leaving it on your face for five minutes. She told the source, "It's really hydrating!"

According to the magazine, Olivia Wilde gets rid of puffiness around her peepers by steeping tea bags in warm water and laying them over her closed eyelids.

Makeup
You may have tried a multitude of lip products to get a plumped-up pucker, but you may be surprised to find that the secret is in your pantry. Women's Health noted that Lisa Rinna puts a few drops of cinnamon oil in her lipgloss for a plumping effect. Makeup artist Patrice Evangeline told the source that it's important to test the oil on your skin first to get the sought-after bee-stung look instead of a negative reaction.

If you can't seem to get glitter off your lids, take a cue from Lady Gaga, who's always rocking dramatic eye makeup. According to Women's Health, she uses fabric tape to remove any stubborn stray pieces. However, the source pointed out that it's best to resort to traditional makeup remover if your skin is at all sensitive.

Starlets always seem to look bright-eyed and alert, even if they've been on set shooting all night. Women's Health revealed that Miranda Kerr just uses shimmery lip balm as a highlighter on her browbone and around her eyes to perk them up. For ladies who are prone to breakouts, makeup artist Stefanie Syat advised using a natural product and avoiding gloss, which could clog pores.

How to get a magnificently messy mane

       
Wednesday, August 28th, 2013

How to get a magnificently messy mane

While a perfectly polished blowout can be inarguably alluring, there’s something about an unkempt ‘do that’s effortlessly sultry. Ever since Brigitte Bardot sported a mussed up hairstyle, women everywhere have sought to get bedhead that’s somehow chic instead of grungy.

In fact, a hairstyle that’s not flawless can add some edge to a prim and proper ensemble. By sporting a wild mane with a ladylike dress, for example, you’ll never look too fussy. Still, achieving this look takes more than jumping out of bed in the morning. Ready to take the plunge? Follow these steps and you’ll look divinely disheveled.

Bun
This not your typical tidy ballerina bun. The hairstylist behind the always flawlessly unkempt Alexa Chung, George Northwood, told Refinery 29 that the key to getting her look is roughly drying the hair, but leaving it 10 percent damp. Next mist some hairspray onto your roots and comb from the back of the head forward. Pull your locks into a loose ponytail that sits haphazardly on top of your head and comb forward toward the hairline again. Northwood noted that this back combing technique is key to creating a messy effect. Finally, coil the ponytail around to create a bun and use bobby pins to secure it. Another shot of hairspray will lock the style into place.

Ponytail
This pony is far more punk rock than preppy. StyleBistro explained that in terms of styling products, it’s important to opt for solutions that mimic your hair’s natural texture. For example, a defining cream is ideal for curls, while pomade can do wonders for waves. Start by twirling your strands into four tightly wound top knots to enhance body. Next, flip your head upside down and use your fingers to comb hair up into a ponytail either low or high, depending on your preferences. If you’d like more lift, you can tease your hair at the crown.

Braid
Braids have been everywhere this year, with an overwhelming amount of starlets rocking them both casually and on the red carpet. For this mussed up version, apply a texturizing cream and weave your hair into a braid that starts low on your head, close to the nape of the neck. After tying with an elastic, pull horizontally at the braid from top to bottom, widening it and loosening it up. Finish by pulling out a few stray pieces of hair in the front.

Caring for curly hair: Essential tips

       
Friday, August 16th, 2013

Caring for curly hair: Essential tips

While you may have battled with your curly coif your whole life, you’re likely the envy of most of your friends. In fact, some straight-haired women spend hours trying to get the same bouncy, voluminous tresses. The question is – how do you discipline your ‘do? With these tips and a powerful combination of products, you’ll be able to keep curls under control.

Comb carefully
The more you brush curly hair, the greater the frizz factor. So before you step in the shower, use a boar-bristle brush to make sure the natural oil from your scalp is evenly distributed throughout your hair. Tommy Buckett, celebrity hairstylist for Garnier Fructis, noted to Glamour magazine that curls tend to get tangled and knotted. In the shower, use a wide-toothed comb to brush your conditioner through your strands from roots to ends. Buckett explained that color-treated curls are extra thirsty and require a deeper conditioner. Opt for a weekly treatment like the Fekkai Advanced Essential Shea Ultra Rich Mask, which enhances hair’s strength and manageability. Once you’ve rinsed out the conditioner, avoid wringing your hair, rubbing it with a towel or putting it in a turban. Instead, lightly squeeze the moisture out with a clean towel, encouraging your curls’ natural shape.

Style smarts
This is a key step in your regimen, whether you have kinky ringlets or looser ones. While hair is still damp, work a reasonable sized amount of de-frizz serum or styling cream into your locks, scrunching as you go. Finer hair can benefit from the lightweight Leonor Greyl Algues Et Fleurs Curl Enhancer, which uses seaweed and other film-forming proteins to restructure the curls so they maintain their shape. Thicker, coarser curls should opt for a heavy-duty product that can tame and relax the hair, like the rich Hamadi Shea Hair Cream.

Whatever product you use, don’t go overboard as too much can make your hair greasy and weigh it down. Air drying is your best bet for avoiding poofiness, but if you’re jetting out the door, blowdry your bangs and roots. It’s helpful to pop a diffuser on your hairdryer, which can distribute the heat more evenly.

Sleeping beauty
Waking up with flattened or frizzed out locks? The way you style your hair before you go to sleep can have a big impact on how it looks in the morning. For a better bed-head, pile your hair high on top of your head in a  neat knot. You’re less likely to have a tangled mess in the morning, and more importantly, you’ll avoid the risk of breakage. Buckett also recommended in Glamour purchasing a silk pillowcase, as it won’t cause as much friction on the hair fibers as a cotton one.