Are you battling a bad case of stringy hair? Do you have a perpetual case of "bed head" that refuses to hold a style? If so, your limp and lifeless locks are likely trying to tell you something: you need to make a change to your hair routine. Pronto. Here are 10 things that may solve your hair woes and transform your unmanageable mop into some gorgeous locks.
1. Keep that head off the pillow
Do you have your shower at night before you go to bed? This is not recommended for anyone with thin, fine hair, especially if your hair is wet. All sorts of strange things can happen when you sleep on soggy follicles. To avoid resembling a hairstyling-experiment-gone-wrong, you may want to switch to a morning shower.
If you treasure your sleep more than your hairdo, you could try braiding your wet hair before you hit the hay. This will at least ensure that your locks are wavy and prevent them from "doing their own thing."
2. Dry your hair upside down
Put the brush down. For now. When blow-drying your hair, it is best to start by using your hands. Brianna Colette, a stylist at L.A.'s Nine Zero One, says, "Flip your head upside-down and start by rough drying. This will lift the roots and rough up the cuticle, maximizing volume." When your hair is almost dry, you can bring out the brush for finishing touches. This method is a sure-fire way to transform stringy hair.
3. Split up with split ends
Split ends do not magically fuse back together. The only way to deal with them is to cut them off. In fact, Mia Emilio, a Senior Stylist at Devachan in New York City, warns, "A split end will continue to split. That split will just continue rising and damaging healthy hair."
When it comes to having long, healthy locks, the scissors are not your enemy. It is recommended that you trim your hair at least every three months -- more if your hair is fine or prone to damage. Adhering to regular trims will ensure that split ends and stringy hair will no longer have a home in your head, and don't fret if you need more than just a trim to kiss all your split ends goodbye. You can always add length to your locks by introducing a few hair extensions.
4. Plump up with Argan Oil
Argan oil is like a superhero for dry hair, nourishing your follicles, plumping them up, and transforming your stringy hair into a crown of glorious locks. Dry Hair Causes and Remedies explains, "Argan oil is full of antioxidants and vitamins helping to increase your hair's elasticity and restoring moisture...giving you natural oomph."
Every superhero needs a sidekick and when it comes to combating stringy hair, castor oil is the perfect thing to step into that role. How to Deal When Your Hair Texture Changes explains that castor oil is "a great TLC remedy...since it is rich in Vitamin E, proteins, and minerals."
5. Be wary of plastic combs
Your plastic comb may look innocent enough, but he or she is, in fact, an enemy to your follicles. According to 10 Ways to Deal with Static Hair, "Plastic is non-conductive, which means your hair will become much more staticky." A wooden or metal brush does not share these properties, enabling them to better battle static. Not only have you learned how to prevent your hair from standing straight up on end, but you have also learned a new scientific fact. You can almost hear your dendrites growing.
6. Heat is not your friend
While a hot shower may feel great on aching muscles, it is very hard on your hair. Fall Hair Horoscopes recommends "sticking to short, lukewarm showers and blasting your strands with cold water at the end to help lock in moisture." Bidding adieu to dry, stringy hair will be worth the short-term temperature shock. And, as an added bonus, your skin will likely become less parched too.
Your curling iron and flat iron also subject your hair to extreme heat, leaving it dry and brittle. How to Get Rid of Oily Hair adds that when it comes to straightening your hair, "the straighter your hair, the closer the iron lies to your scalp, causing oil to come into easier contact with your locks." This will lead to an increased amount of "grease" on your hair, which will make it look even stringier. No matter what way you look at it, heat is your hair's arch enemy.
Instead of plugging in an appliance, you may be able to achieve the style you are going for by adding some of the best clip-in hair extensions. This will not only give your hair a fuller, bouncier look, but it will also give your own hair a break from styling-inflicted damage.
7. Keep the conditioner away from the scalp
Conditioners are a must. They are great for adding much needed moisture and improving the overall texture of your hair. According to Mark Townsend, celebrity hairstylist, "Any time you wet your hair, you should use conditioner, but only from mid-length to the ends." Never apply conditioner to your roots -- unless you like it when the top of your head looks greasy, flat, and limp.
8. Add volume with hair extensions
While there are a plethora of products on the market that promise to add volume and body to your hair, the surest way to create volume is to simply have more hair. This is where hair extensions come in. Not only can they help you achieve a fuller head of hair, but they can also add bounce, improved texture, and highlights -- all key factors in transforming stringy hair into divine tresses. Plus, as 6 Updos for Day or Night shows, hair extensions open the door to a bevy of new and fun styles.
9. Slumber on silk
Your cotton pillowcase seems innocuous enough, but when you lay your head down to sleep at night, that very pillowcase is declaring all-out war on your follicles. First of all, cotton is thirsty -- sponging up all the oils from your hair, leaving it parched. Furthermore, cotton grabs on to your strands, creating knots as you toss and turn at night. And we all know how much damage is inflicted on your hair while trying to detangle it.
Silk, however, lets your hair move freely, preventing tangled masses and the resulting stringy hair. Plus, sleeping on silk feels decadent. And every woman deserves to feel like royalty or a movie star.
10. Master the art of the backcomb
Have your hairstylist teach you how to backcomb your hair properly. This can give your style extra height and volume. Celebrity stylist, Mark Townsend, uses this technique regularly, stating, "Lift hair in small sections, backcomb each section two or three times using a fine-tooth plastic comb, spray with dry shampoo, and then comb the hair down on top lightly to smooth it out and hide the teasing." The secret to backcombing is to not make it obvious, unless of course, you are attending a 1980's costume party.
The truth is that stringy hair is not a lifelong sentence. You do not need to panic or take drastic action. With a little tender loving care, a few styling techniques, and the right products, you can achieve a healthy, flowing mane. So, go ahead and breathe that sigh of relief. Your hair is going to look perfect.