Category Archives: hairstyling

freshly cropped

clavicut with highlights

Chopping your hair is such a thing right now, isn’t it? I jumped on the bandwagon late last week, after I realized all those topknots and tortured ponytails weren’t a fashion statement; they were a rut. I needed a makeover.

So I waltzed in to my hair appointment Thursday afternoon and declared to my stylist that it was time to freshen things up with a good old fashioned chop, “up to here.” [Insert dramatic hand-gestures to communicate desired length, somewhere between chin and shoulders.] 

We agreed to compromise with a healthy three-inch snip. “We can always take more off later,” she reasoned. But when she finished, I asked her to lop off one more inch, which removed the last of my layers and left me with a long, one-length bob that falls to my collarbone. Hash tag: clavicut.

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crowning glory

crowning glory | 01

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I have two go-to hairstyles: loose and wavy, and messy top knot. I pin hair tutorials like it’s my job, but I never make an effort to try anything new. Like, ever.

So let’s not get crazy and call this a resolution, but I’m hoping to mix up my mane now and then, master a few [easy] styles, and maybe share them on the blog in a completely random and noncommittal series, aptly named after the Pinterest board that houses all my good hair inspiration.

Kicking things of with the easiest of ‘dos: the throwback topsy tail, made modern with a little mess.

You can find simple instructions for this classic pony on Gal Meets Glam.  I sprayed mine with Lush Sea Spray for texture, then teased the pony a bit with a boar bristle round brush for extra volume. To finish the front, I quickly curled any fallen pieces away from my face with a 1.5″ curling iron, and gave it all a good spray with Elnett satin hairspray for all-day hold.

Next time, I’ll give the crown a good back combing for an extra boost before I pull my hair into the pony.

my favorite haircare products for highlighted hair

hair favorites

Drastic changes can be tough on your mane. In my case, I’m fortunate to have healthy hair and a stylist who knows what she’s doing with color, so even after three rounds of highlights — both foils and balayage — it’s still in good shape. But my lightened locks definitely require more TLC than before my hair was processed, and my haircare arsenal got an overhaul.

Someone once told me that professional hair color is an investment, and you want to protect that investment with quality products. Your stylist is your best resource for letting you know which shampoos, treatments, and styling products are ideal for your hair type, but here are the products that have worked best for me, post-peroxide.

I usually shampoo twice a week, and alternate between Moroccanoil Hydrating Shampoo and Lush Daddy-O.  The Moroccanoil is extra hydrating, and the Daddy-O keeps my highlights bright and blonde instead of brassy. Both clean my hair as well as a clarifying shampoo (no rinse and repeats necessary) without stripping it of moisture, and both smell incredible. After lathering up, I always condition with a handful of Moroccanoil Hydrating Conditioner, and leave it in for as long as I can in the shower.

After gently towel-drying, I generously spritz It’s a 10 Miracle Leave-In Product throughout my hair and carefully comb out any tangles with a wide-tooth comb. I try to let it air dry as often as possible, but when I have to blow it out I swear by my Hanaair Professional Hair Dryer from Misikko. It’s a splurge, but it cuts my drying time by at least 70% (you can find an old review here). 

For styling, I stick to two products every day: Lush Sea Spray and Tigi Catwalk Your Highness Root Boost. The sea spray is awesome for creating and holding soft, beachy waves without feeling greasy or dirty. Your Highness gives volume right at the root where you need it, and doesn’t weigh your hair down or leave it sticky like some mousses.

Finally, every few weeks I deep condition with Lush Marilyn. It’s a pre-wash treatment that brightens blonde tones with chamomile, saffron and lemon, and moisturizes with linseed. I coat my dry hair with it from root to ends, pile it on top of my head, and leave it on for 20-30 minutes before shampooing. It leaves my hair super soft and shiny, and like most Lush products, also smells divine.

Now if I could just stop the nagging voice in my head that keeps telling me to go lighter

Do you have processed hair? What are your favorite tricks and products for maintaining it and keeping it healthy?

new lengths

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I’ve spent the last three weeks pinning hairstyles. Asymmetrical bobs, long layers, bangs, color and tutorials I’ll probably never try. I’ve waged a war with myself over that age-old question: To chop, or not to chopI dragged Chad into the fray, showing him picture after picture of blown-out coifs and asking, “What do you think about this one? Too short? Bangs or no?” Patient and loving husband that he is, he humored me each time but ultimately gave me the same answer: “Babe, your hair looks great however you wear it. I’m down with whatever.” Code for: “I’m in way over my head here, just pick one already and let’s go have a beer.

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Why do I agonize so much over every hair appointment, like it’s going to be my last? I used to do this in nail salons, too; standing in front of that wall of color with a blank stare for several minutes trying to choose which shade to paint my toes, as if I’d have to live with the decision forever. Tell me I’m not the only one who does this. Please?

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I’d never been particularly attached to my hair, until it was long. When you’ve dealt with the awkward grow-outs and months {years!} of waiting to reach that target length, you don’t want to go back and do it all over again. But you also start to get the itch for something new; and if you wake up in the middle of the night with your hair wrapped around your arm just one more time you swear you’re going to lose. your. mind!

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By the time I sat in my longtime stylist’s chair yesterday afternoon, I still didn’t know what to do. I gave her a rundown of all my manic ideas, and a free pass to just do whatever she wanted. She took off about 4 inches (thankfully removing some over-dyed ends from my home haircolor fail) and added layers around the front to remove some bulk. I’m going back next week for some subtle ombre foils!

wearing: 

Sonoma chambray shirt dress (Kohl’s, now on sale for $16.00!) | Seychelles sandals (Hautelook) | Duro Olowu for jcpenney clutch (now on sale for $24!)