All my life I’ve struggled with hair issues – much like how some people struggle with skin issues. My hair is thin, oily, breaks easily, and doesn’t get past my shoulders without becoming stringy and full of split ends. I also have a hormone disorder (PCOS) which contributes to my hair falling out and thinning. So, I’ve been on a continual hair journey to make the most of what I’ve got going on. I’m going to share with you some of the devil magic I’ve discovered along the way.
Around 5 years ago I discovered that coconut oil was the magic ingredient my skin needed to stay clear, and I began to apply that same logic to my hair. If my skin broke out not because it was oily, but because it was dry, maybe my hair/scalp was getting oily so fast because it was thirsty. I did some research and found this was a whole thing, the “No-Poo” movement. People were throwing out their shampoo and using only water and conditioner on their hair. I tried this for a month and I admit the first week or so my hair was heavy with oils, but that was just my scalp adjusting to years of being overstripped by harsh shampoos filled with sulfates. I invested in a few sulfate-free shampoos and cleansing conditioners and I haven’t looked back. Now I wash my hair maybe once a week, with a sulfate-free shampoo. In between I use cleansing conditioners or dry shampoo. This is probably the biggest step that changed up my hair game. My hair stopped thinning and falling out constantly, became thicker almost immediately and began growing at a much faster rate. When I do wash my hair it comes out all shiny and healthy and full of body which was such a drastic difference to how it used to be. Another major thing is that my hair began to actually hold curl. My entire life I would curl my hair and watch the curls fall out within an hour. I could use a shitload of hairspray and then it would be crusty, stiff, and still somehow the curls would fall out almost right away. After switching to sulfate-free shampoo/shampooing less often in general, my hair will hold a curl for 2 days. The science behind this is that our hair actually needs the oil our scalp produces to stay strong, flexible, and protect it from heat. The oil lubricates (lol) the strands making them more pliable and less likely to break. Also, NO you don’t walk around with oily hair all the time. My hair actually stopped being so oily and other than a little dry shampoo for my bangs, I can go a week without having to wash it.
Some of my favorite sulfate-free shampoos:
-Anything from the Loreal Sulfate-free line is awesome and usually around $5
-Redken Color Extend Magnetics (the pink/magenta bottle)
-Anything from the Shea Moisture line
-Bonus: TJ Maxx has a ton of fancy sulfate-free hair products for hella cheap so go nuts
Boar Bristle Brush
You can find these dudes anywhere for real cheap these days, and they are great for keeping your hair super soft and shiny. The boar bristles pull oil from your scalp and deposit it along the length of the hair strand which not only keeps oil from building up on your scalp but also keeps your hair from getting too dry and breaking.
Biotin is Bae
Another bit of literal witchcraft that I can’t live without is some Biotin, y,all. I will straight up OD on this stuff. (There are no negative side effects, whatever your body doesn’t use it will dispose of in your urine lol) So I usually get the highest dosage of Biotin I can find and take twice the recommended dosage. Obvi if you don’t feel comfortable taking more than the recommended dosage that’s cool too, I just notice a huge difference in my hair when I take a ton of Biotin. What to expect: Your hair will become noticeably thicker and grow much faster. You will also notice your nails growing faster and stronger, which actually annoys me because I hate having long nails but for some people that’s a bonus! As far as thickening my hair, Biotin is the only thing that works for me. I also take Hair, Skin, and Nails vitamins which contain Biotin as well as Collagen, Vitamin E, and a slew of other stuffs to make your hair happy.
Hair Masks are another must have for me, I use one every single time I shower even if I skip shampoo. They make your hair soft and silky and shiny which is #hairgoals forever amiright?! While I have tried a ton of hair masks I have a few that stand alone.
-Macadamia Natural Oil Deep Repair Masque
This one is on the pricier end but I usually find it for much cheaper at TJ MAXX. It will run you between $30-$50 retail. It smells like godsex, and makes your hair so shiny and soft and movie star like I can’t even describe how good this mask in. Another plus is its all natural ingredients so its actually good for your hair.
-L’oreal Total Repair 5 Damage Erasing Balm
This guy does pretty much exactly what the Macadamia mask does, except it’s $5 and not all natural. I like to have both of these masks in my shower and just alternate between the fancy one and the more affordable one. If you’re not down to spend the extra cheese then I think you will be just as happy with the L’oreal version. The only down side is I’m not sure how great the chemicals in this mask are for your hair?
-BONUS: Aussie 3 Minute Miracle
This mask is like 3 bones and while it’s not quite as good as the other two, it makes your hair soft and shiny and it’s a great alternative if your hella broke or just don’t like splurging on hair stuffs.
Y’all already know about DIY masks unless you’ve somehow managed to avoid Pinterest for the last 5 years. There are so many fun DIY masks with ingredients such as : Olive Oil, Coconut Oil, Avocado, Eggs, Caster Oil, Apple Cider Vinegar, etc. I have tried a few of these and the results are usually awesome. I’m planning to do individual reviews on some DIY hair masks for next month so stay tuned my loves.
Trims at home
No, this is not a drill, I cut my own hair all the time and it’s actually really easy and not a big deal. It does take some practice and I suggest you watch several Youtube videos before attempting it. You can find some pretty decent hair cutting scissors at Walmarts and there are several different methods for a casual trim. I don’t suggest trying to give yourself a layered bob or anything intense, but for getting rid of split ends and avoiding a pricey trip to the salon I think everyone should get comfortable with cutting their own hair. I have even given myself bangs a few times, but that one is a bit more treacherous so I don’t recommend it unless you really know what you are doing or don’t care if you fuck up. My current method for trimming my hair is something I discovered on my own while searching for a way to give myself a blunt cut. I am trying to grow my hair out but I like to keep the ends blunt, which doesn’t last long since our hair strands grow at different speeds and also breakage causes uneven ends. Point is, I have to trim every three weeks or so to keep my hair looking dope.
My method is to split my hair into four sections, (I have thin hair so you may need more sections if you have thicker hair). Take the first section, twist it until its pretty tight, and then cut the first inch off. Repeat on the other sections, paying close attention to the length of the other sections. If one section seems longer than another, you can twist again and cut a little more off. This might sound wild but I have done this three times now and I always end up with even, blunt ends as if I had my hair cut professionally. I do have shoulder-length hair and I haven’t tried going much shorter so I’m not sure if the method would work for a chin-length situation. Worst-case scenario you can have a professional fix your hair if you fuck it up. I think it’s worth it to learn how to trim your hair at home because you’ll end up saving a ton of money over your lifetime.
Since my hair is naturally thin and doesn’t get far past my shoulders without becoming stringy and gross, extensions are bae. Not only can you achieve the mermaid aesthetic, but your hair will appear fuller all over. Extensions are an investment, so for nice ones you are looking at at least a hundo or more, but if you ever have a chance to splurge they will change up your hair game dramatically. I DO NOT recommend glue-in extensions, they can fuck up your hair for months afterward. I know from personal experience. The clip-ins are easy to use and don’t tend to break your hair much either, unless you sleep in them. I usually find them at Sally’s or Ulta but there are some great online companies I am hoping to try when I get my money right. My next endeavor is clip-in bangs and I can’t wait!
I’m not a huge product junkie but there are a few items I prefer not to live without.
This is a no-brainer. Get you some dry shampoo. It’s especially great for oily bangs but also absorbs oil all over and gives your hair tons of added body. I like the Not Your Mother’s dry shampoo because it’s cheap and you get a ton of product in that big white and green can. I also like the Suave dry shampoo because it’s also cheap af and smells awesome.
-Fekkai Brilliant Glossing Cream w/ Olive Oil
While my hair is mostly straight it’s just frizzy enough to be annoying. I don’t like to use a straightener on it because it really doesn’t need or want all that heat. This is the only product I have found that will ease my frizz enough to skip the straightener and also makes my hair glossy and manageable. Use a sparing amount for thin hair, and for anyone who has thick curly hair, go nuts. Also this stuff lasts me like a year so it’s worth the $12-$15.
Well that’s all for now, my newborn mermaids. If you have any hair sorcery to share with the world, let the Julie girls know because we are always thirsty for new magic.