Merry first Monday of December! This time of year always puts me in a reflection mood and makes me think about what I did during the year. In addition to creating this blog officially in March, one of the most memorable things that happened this year was my hair.
It went from an all time high to an all time low within a matter of months. Let’s just say 2017 was a the ultimate hair roller-coaster. At one point the condition of my hair felt like I went through a 2007 Brittney Spears moment and it was very stressful. But like Brittney Spears in 2017 who is killing it, you live and you learn. If you’d like to know more about my hair story and what steps I took to keep me in the right track, please keep reading!
Hair Story Time
To give some history on my hair, I have been slowly lightening my hair with at-home box dye over the last 2 years. This year I decided to amp it up and I started using bleach for the last 6 months and recently I went over the edge.
Cringe alert: The last time I used bleach my hair, I used it back to back and came out with literally melting hair. That is literally a hair sin! I ruined my hair to the point where my hair was falling out so much every day for a couple months and I was so worried I’d go bald. I immediately started taking steps to help get it back to normal and so far its been working for me.
My hair was always above shoulder length growing up and for the life of me I couldn’t figure out why it wouldn’t grow. Then I figured out secret during college. During my undergraduate degree, I used to take daily vitamins with Biotin. I’m a child and hate pills, so I take it in gummy form. This step helped my hair grow in length, so if you want to be a mermaid this tip is definitely for you.
In addition to multivitamins, it is also important to add collagen in your diet. Since my hair was thinning from the over-processing, I really wanted to find a solution to get me back on track to my thick hair. In addition to helping with skin hydration, Collagen is actually great for adding moisture and thickness back into your hair.
I have been taking NeoCell Super Collegen powder for the last couple of months and I definitely noticed a difference. On days when I would forget to take it, I felt a lack of moisture in my skin and hair, so I would definitely recommend giving this a try. The powder formula may not be for everyone since there is a distinct taste and a lot of viscosity when mixed with liquids, but I personally did not mind this since I mixed the powder in with my coffee, protein powder, and morning oatmeals 🙂
Thank you NeoCell for partnering with me in this blog post. You can find NeoCell Collegen and other supplements 1) online at iherb, Vitacost, Swanson, Vitamin shoppe, and Amazon or 2) in stores at Whole Foods, Sprouts, CVS, Walgreen’s and Sam’s Club.
Research, Research, Research
Do your research. The internet is yours to explore, so always look at tons of reviews and look at the ingredients whenever you can. You don’t want to invest in a expensive shampoo or conditioner that is actually stripping your hair! Avoid using shampoos with alcohol based ingredients and sulfates in them especially if you have colored hair. I always gravitate towards shampoos that state “sulfate free”.
Best Drugstore Sulfate Free Shampoos
Its always ideal to use the best ingredients for your hair. If you are balling on a budget, check your local drugstore! Drugstore shampoos can be the best bang for your buck, especially with many companies nowadays are switching over to better ingredients. There’s tons of options you can choose from but here are some of the top online drugstore favorites!
More of the favs
Avoid using Too Much Heat
It’s a given that adding lots of heat can damage your hair. When it comes to blow drying and straightening my hair, I always try to choose one or the other. If you use heat, remember to always use a heat protectant and you’re good to go.
Routine Hair Trims
Treat yourself and let a professional handle your hair maintenance. I know it can get pricey, but from my hair experience this year, sometimes you just have to let the pro handle it. I recommend (at minimum) routine hair trims to prevent your hair from a split end disaster.
I’ve definitely had some interesting experiences with getting my hair done, so my best advice is to have an open conversation about your hair with the hair stylist. If you messed up your hair from an at home box dye (or in my case, at home bleach), just spill the tea. It’s important for them to know what condition your hair is so that they can best help you get what you want out of your hair. Also, its important to understand how realistic your hair goals and how to create hair goals to get your from A to B without the intense damage AKA no Pomi, you can’t go to steel gray hair color… yet.
Be Extra and add Hair Products
Masks, serums, and oils are your best friends when it comes to helping your hair. Obviously, too much of something isn’t good so don’t do too much of everything, BUT find products that match your needs. Masks are great because they are usually cheap (you can even DIY them, I share some hair recipes in my 10 Hair Hacks, Tips and Tricks You Need to Know) and great for nourishing hair with vitamins. I love oils and serums because I feel like it helps smooth out my hair while hydrating it. If you’re looking to strengthen your hair, go for items that say “Keratin”.
More of the Favs
Limit your Hair washes
Again, this is a great tip for all of you who have color treated hair. Dry shampoos and conditioners will be your savior. I usually go 5-7 days without washing my hair (I still shower, obviously) and dry shampoo has helped keep my hair looking and smelling fresh. If you know me, you’ll know that my favorite dry shampoo is Batiste because its affordable and gets the job done.
Healthy Lifestyle = Healthy Hair
I know, pretty standard textbook stuff, but a healthy lifestyle will impact the health of your hair. Try drinking more water during the day, exercising more, and eating more healthier hair-food options. Personally, I’ve been making healthier goals by taking kickboxing and “pound” (aka group fitness inspired by drumming… its literally the most fun workout ever), drinking a few 16 oz waters a day, adding supplements and more leafy greens in my diet. Gotta do what’s best for the ‘do!
Cheap, College Budget Hair Growth Foods
I get it, food can be expensive. I’m in college after all and don’t necessarily have the money to hire a Kardashian dietitian. However, you can still eat foods for cheap while helping your hair. Try adding foods with more biotin, Omega Fatty Acids, and Vitamin B.
Omega 3 Fatty – Oatmeal
Biotin – Eggs, cauliflower, cheeses, mushrooms, sweet potatoes, almonds (probably cheaper where you live because in Alaska they are so expensive nowadays), and spinach.
B vitamins – Proteins like fish, poultry, meat, eggs, and dairy products such as greek yogurt. Veggies like leafy green vegetables, beans, and peas. Many cereals also have B vitamins added.
If you learned anything from this, just know to do your research. Everything works different for everyone and what may work for me may not work for you and vise versa. My hair is still growing and still not in the condition I’d like it to be, but these are the tips I’ve used to keep me on track for. So watch out 2018! My hair is coming for you.
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