Monday, May 23, 2011

Natural Solutions: Stop Brushing Your Hair

Whaaa??? Stop brushing my hair? Are you serious?


Well, kinda yes. In certain cases, for certain people.

{in my best marketing voice:}
Is your hair poofy? Is it fluffy and unruly? Does humidity make your head resemble a squirrel nest or a burdock?

You might have wavy and/or curly hair and not know it. I did, and I’ve helped others (my mom and my cousin-in-law) discover this about themselves.
{end pseudo-advertisement}

I have curly waves, and I figured this out by not brushing my hair. I was unemployed for a couple months a few years back and when I’d get out of the shower I’d towel dry my hair, skip the brush (because I was lazy and didn’t care who saw me), throw on some ratty sweats respectable clothes and be about my day. Around day three of this routine I discovered that my hair was doing some nice looking things. Like making waves and loose ringlets (updated). Sweet! Score one for laziness!

I found when I tried to style my hair it would fall flat or frizz out. The best thing I could do to encourage my new-found waves was to lightly re-wet my hair if it was frizzing and strategically and gently scrunch with my hands. (You all know what hair scrunching is, right? If not, leave me a comment and I’ll explain) Except for winter when I dislike letting my hair air dry (freeze), I haven’t looked back.

No styling, no brushing, just let it go. If it starts to look like I stuck my finger in an outlet, I either rewet or pull it back into an artfully messy ponybun. Waves and curls are awesome for that. See here. Or here.

And, I lied. I do brush my hair at night before bed. Sometimes. A few times a week. I also brush when I want a smoother ponytail or when I straighten my hair. That’s about it.

A few tips:
Give yourself a grace period. It’ll take a couple of days for your hair to un-train and figure out what it wants to do. I suggest starting out on a weekend, or when you don’t have to look socially presentable for a couple of days. Straighten out your bangs. Curly bangs are a no-no unless it's part of the style. If you don’t have bangs, straighten out your part for a few inches around your forehead. It doesn’t have to be straight straight, I generally finger comb mine so it doesn’t do weird things. Get a good haircut. Go in with your un-brushed hair to the salon, tell the stylist (preferably one with wavy or curly hair) that you want something to bring out even more curl, and take a photo with you. I suggest Steven Tyler, he’s got some great waves. (Yeah, I’m serious, I get my hair cut inspirations from Steven Tyler. I love that man, and his hair. He started parting in the middle, so I started parting in the middle and I LOVE IT. He’s my celebrity hair twin.) And while you’re there, Get some long layers. I get my hair cut in long layers in the front and shorter long layers in back, aka an A-line cut. This works best for my hair since my hair is curlier in the front but not so much in back, hence shorter layers in back to allow for more bounce.

So, take a weekend and don’t brush your hair. See what happens. It could be cool. Let me know what happens.

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