When I was sixteen years old I worked as a tea & tidy girl at a hairdressing salon. I got $40 from the till every Saturday for working 5 hours. As much as I loved getting the pay at the end of the shift (it seemed like so much money at the time), I just couldn’t stand washing greasy heads of hair, mopping the huge salon floor by scooting around on old towels, dehairing brushes and sweeping up numerous piles of hair. One thing that was a bonus of the job though was the free haircuts and free hair colour!
It was Christmas holidays of 1998 and after my Saturday shift, I decided to defy my private school’s rules and go from a natural brunette to a platinum blonde (all done free of course). I remember enduring the couple of hours or so it took for the bleach to set wanting desperately to scratch my head that was being made itchy by the bleach penetrating my raw skin. When it was done, I loved it, it suited the beach bum I was at the time. But little did I know the pain that my new and dramatic hairstyle would bring.
I got to show off the new me to all my ‘surfie’ friends in Byron Bay, but after numerous root touch ups and a head of hair that was breaking and felt like straw, I was back at school and in quite a bit of trouble. I went to an all girls Catholic private school you see and hair colouring was definitely a big no no. What on earth was I thinking? I was ordered to change the colour back to brown immediately, but little did they know that going from blonde to brown wasn’t that simple and in the end, my new hair colour showed me as more of a red head. My hair had received an absolute battering!
It took a VERY long time for me to get my healthy hair back after this hair colouring escapade. The most I’ve ever done since has been a half head of foils (as seen in my hair evolution), but this didn’t last long either because it’s so damn expensive and continued to ruin my hair.
Since then I’ve kept it pretty simple, I do my own non-permanent colour and get it cut regularly, I can’t really weigh up spending any more money than that on my hair or time styling it. I’ve tried the bangs, but they always ended up getting pinned back because I couldn’t bother blow drying. I might run the straightening iron over my hair once in a blue moon but it’s usually about keeping my hair looking
presentable natural and healthy and having a style that’s easy to maintain whip up in 10 seconds. Being a Mum has also seen me being greeted by strands of shiny grey hair and moments where I’m surprised I’m not bald with the amount of hair I’ve lost. Poor Mr. G, I think he’s a bit envious that I can lose hair but still have lots there…he has the opposite problem the poor bugger.
A part from these follicular challenges, my hairdresser always boosts my confidence in saying that although I have fine hair, I have a lot of it and that it’s very healthy hair. Well I must be doing something right and really, it’s not that fancy schmancy:
- I get a good trim every 8 weeks (a great opportunity to leave Elliott with Mr. G and get some me time)
- I use baby spinach in almost every meal. The iron, beta carotene, folate, and Vitamin C in baby spinach helps to keep hair follicles healthy and scalp oils circulating.
- I rarely use heat on my hair like straightners or hair dryers and let it dry naturally.
- I only use colours that wash out, no permanent colours and definitely no more bleaching. The colour rinse gives my hair a boost and shine and is more gentle.
- When using hair elastics, I make sure I use ones without the metal bit because these can catch your hair and split it.
- I shampoo and condition my hair a couple of times a week so I don’t strip the natural oils (or maybe I only wash it once every often because I’m either sharing a shower with a toddler…but I prefer the former).
I may not have a fancy hair style but I do have a practical hairstyle that suits both the Woman and the Mum in me. It also beats some of the horrid hairstyles I had when I was younger. Gone are the days of intense colours and heat styling, who has the time or money for that? These days my life is made so much easier by sticking to the basics and it gives me more time to do what I love doing best – changing nappies, dealing with tantrums and playing with toy cars!
What regime do you have to keep your hair healthy?
This post was in collaboration with
TRESemmé and run in accordance with my disclosure policy.