We all admire good wash and go and elaborate party hairstyles, but washing hair daily is bad, and there is often no time and place for intricate updos in the everyday life.
A hairstylist who has recently transitioned to a natural gray color, I do want my hair to look decent every day. And I still often wash it just once a week! No kidding! Here is my extended routine and the easy everyday hairstyles that help me come through the week till the next wash day.
Day 1: Blow Out or Curl It
I always begin with a GOOD wash and blow dry. Then I decide if I’m going to flat iron, curl it or not iron at all (my approximate heat tool choices per year are 15% Flat iron, 30% Curl, and 55% No ironing to keep hair healthy). All of these easy everyday styles will work with whatever finish you choose on day 1.
I only use a SEXY Hair Healthy Tri-Wheat Leave-In Conditioner before my blow out, as my hair is naturally reflecting light while giving it a shiny appearance. I achieved the look below by blow drying my hair in sections with a large round aluminum-based brush. Then, I flat ironed my hair using small sections and the small wonder brush for handling assistance. If you struggle to do a good blow out at home, get some professional assistance once in a while and watch the process carefully. Then, practice at home to get a knack for it.
Day 2: Sleek It
I love sleeking my hair, it makes me look more professional yet trendy. On day 2, I know I’m going to sleek it, so my choice is in the parting. A center part or a side part enhance your features differently, and a deeper side part can make thin hair look fuller, so try both out!
Using a comb, create a sharp part (side or center is up to you). Hairspray the part and brush down to set it. Use hair pins if necessary for about 10 min and then remove them. Tuck your hair behind your ears, spray a little more and you’re ready to go.
Quick tip: If your hair shifts, tweaks or bends while sleeping, simply blow dry that area and watch it relax. Avoid ironing again, unless you really have to! The key is to try to go without ironing it again.
If your first day choice was curling, you can easily revive a yesterday’s hairstyle with a little hair oil, hair cream, hair spray, and a couple of bobby pins. First, DO NOT brush it out. Most of the time, the hair wakes up still set from yesterdays’ curls. Hence, products are all you really need.
Begin by flipping your hair upside down and applying hair cream to your hair using the prayer hands method. Use your hands to scrunch the hair to allow it to absorb the product and keep scrunching to bounce back some curls. Flip back over. Rub a drop of oil with your hands to warm it up and pick up random clusters of curls to add oil to them. Last, with your fingers, pull back your fringe to sculpt and balance the look and bobby pin it in place.
Day 3: Band It
By day 3, the natural oils in my scalp are peeking so I use a dry shampoo. I then detangle my hair and band it! Mind that headbands can be tricky: some can create tension at your temples creating headaches or some headbands slide off depending on the shape of your head. If it does, try tying a scarf or a handkerchief instead.
In fact, a hankie works best for my square head! I love that it’s cotton, washable and easily sizable… Mama’s happy! Gently bobby booby pin it down to prevent the scarf/hankie from sliding off.
Day 4: Twist and Pin It
On day 4, my go-to hairstyle is a little bump at the fringe, twisted and pinned. Sometimes I center part-twist and pin. It all depends on your mood or where you like to part your hair. Changing your part might be the easiest way to switch things up!
I begin with a gentle detangling every morning. Day 4 requires dry shampoo at the roots and argan, coconut or jojoba oil at my ends. I basically achieve this look with my favorite hairspray, SEBASTIAN Re-Shaper, and my hands for the bump or a comb if I’m doing 2 twists. I spray lightly as I’m stroking my hair fringe, sculpting the desired shape. I twist while the hairspray is still a bit wet and pliable and then I pin it.
Quick tip: the trick is on HOW the booby pins are inserted. Make sure you twist a full circle or two of hair and insert the bobby pin against the hair growth. This helps conceal the bobby pins and it looks so much better!
Day 5: Braid It
By day 5, we are highly considering washing our hair, right? Know that you can still delay the wash day by braiding hair instead. If the shaft still looks ok, braid just the fringe or half of your hair. If your hair shaft is tweaked or in bad shape, braid the whole head.
One French braid, two mohawk Dutch braids or four box braids – all will work great. And if you don’t know how to braid, twist it. Braids are a great way to protect hair, conceal oily roots, or simply polish up a tidy look.
Day 6: Hat It
A baseball cap or a trendy fedora hat are a bad hair day’s BFF. A side ponytail, a messy low bun at the nape or two Indian braids are the default hairstyle for these hats. Heck, if your shaft still looks good by this day, then wear your hair down with the hat! Poor hats, if they could talk…
I have lots of layers in my hair, so I prefer to do two side low ponytails with small clear rubber bands every inch going down to the tip of each ponytail. It’s a good way to up my two Indian braids look and it solves my hair layers popping out of the braids problem. Remember, experiment and have fun! Philip Treacy was definitely right saying that “The personality of the wearer and the hat makes the hat.”
Day 7: Pony/Bun/Pun It
Last day of the week! Have we survived? For all the brave ones that can go a whole week without washing your hair, I salute you! You are not only saving water and time and money but, your hair is LOVING the natural oils coming out of your head. By the way, I take my hair ends and rub them on my roots before I grab any purchased oils.
By this day, my hair goes up in a bun or a pony. You can wear a high polished bun or a low messy one. I prefer a pony as I just like the way the tail sways, but that’s just me. Gitty up horsey! A pun is another option if it goes with your outfit. You achieve a pun by starting the pony with the elastic, but on the last loop, pull the hair halfway, leaving the tail of the pony halfway out. Fancy up your updo by twisting and pinning or braiding your fringe. It instantly elevates a plain updo into a chic updo!
Bonus Easy Hairstyle Idea: Crimp It
Crimping hair is a TOTALLY different experience than curling. I’m not talking about the styling part. I’m referring to wearing crimped hair, which is a totally different experience. Crimp your hair and witness.
Use a crimper on a clean blowout and work in small sections, starting with your nape. Crimp the roots first and then re-crimp over the last kink to join those two sections. Drop sections down as you go and repeat. When your entire head is finished, lightly break it up with your fingers and play with the desired finish.
Of course, you need to consider your lifestyle and your hair type to know how often to wash your hair, but it’s great to have those default styles in a back pocket whenever you need to pull out a quick do! My average is 4 days between shampooing, but when I go 7 days without washing my hair, these styles are the healthiest choices I can make.
Whatever style you choose, remember to have fun and try new things! If the compliments roll in, get excited! Practice easy styles and don’t judge yourself. Experiment and play. Literally! Who cares what the outcome brings: when you create a tumbleweed, you can just jump in the shower and start all over again. For more inspiration on fun and happy styling, follow my Instagram @norma_blaque.