Nighttime Routines That Strengthen Your Hair

woman on a bed

Have you ever been totally and completely satisfied with your hair? Probably not, which is totally normal – although if you have, tell us your best-kept hair secrets in the comments! —our hair goes through major changes throughout our lifetime. Things like hormones, stress levels, environmental pollutants, and even your diet all have a role in determining your hair’s strength, resilience, texture and more! Although, you probably already knew that. But, did you know that you can actually contribute to your hair’s overall quality, including its strength and texture, while you sleep? Yes, we’re serious. No, this is not a drill.

That’s right, we’ve done some digging and found a few tricks that you can add to your nighttime routine which will strengthen your hair while you catch those zzz’s. This article is dedicated to all Princess Aurora, who once wished that they too could had the powers of Sleeping Beauty; by following these tips, you too can be a sleeping beauty.

Quality Sheets are Key
Typical pillow cases are manufactured with cotton or some other cotton-poly mix. The reason for this is that it cuts down on costs and it allows for all kinds of patterns to be printed on the sheets. The one drawback to this is that cotton or cotton-poly mix pillowcases create static and cause breakage with every toss and turn. Avoid all this by switching to silk or satin pillowcases! Another bonus is that silk and satin pillowcases are optimal for those with aging or sensitive skin!

woman straightening her hair

Brush it Out
A lot of women only brush their hair post-shower with the intention of detangling their locks prior to styling. However, very few women enlist in the help of their brush before hitting the sack. Believe it or not, Marcia Brady had the right idea. Brushing your hair before bed is super beneficial because it ensures the distribution of natural oils to the mid and lower shafts of your hair. However, there can be too much of a good thing, as over-brushing can cause more harm than good. With that in mind, you can get the job done with ten-to-fifteen strokes using a boar bristle brush.

Conditioner is a Must
Sure you know the importance of lathering on a conditioner after rinsing out your shampoo, but did you know that leave-in conditioners are just as important and beneficial as rinse-out conditioners? Even if you use a leave-in conditioner on damp hair before styling, you should consider reapplying a leave-in treatment before hitting the sack. As you go about your day, your hair is exposed to all sorts of environmental factors including wind, sun, and pollutants. All these things reap havoc on your hair and cause your stands to feel less nourished by the end of the day. Take control of the situation by applying an overnight treatment or extra nourishing leave-in; just make sure that you re-dampen your hair before applying, that way all the good ingredients can do their job and soak into the cuticle.

Getting Sticky Stuff Out Of Your Hair

If you’ve ever gotten something sticky into your hair, you experienced some panic trying to figure out how to actually get the sticky stuff out of your hair.  It’s always a bit alarming when it happens, because we never really feel like we’re fully prepared to get whatever stickiness is in our hair…not to mention it always seems to happen at the most inconvenient of times.  You know we’re all about keeping you well informed, so we’re sharing  getting sticky stuff out of your hair – we’re going to cover a couple of the most common sticky things people have gotten in their hair so you’re prepared.

woman with hair brush stuck

Bubble Gum
Ahhh, bubble gum, if you haven’t personally gotten gum in your hair you probably know someone who has gotten gum in their hair.  It’s definitely not any fun to end up with gum in your hair (to put it nicely).   The good news is it’s not as complicated as you probably think to get gum out of your hair.  Seriously!  It’s suggested to use olive oil or peanut butter to remove the gum from your hair in a safe way.  Simply apply either ingredient to the gum and hair around it, let it sit on your hair for a few minutes to really let it soak into your hair and the gum.  Once you’ve let the olive oil or peanut butter sit on your hair for a few minutes, it’s said that you can just simply comb the gum out of your hair after that.  And in doing so, you won’t be causing major damage on your hair – win win!

Glue
If you have young kids, you’re definitely going to want to take notes on this one – since kids tend to be the ones who often end up with gum in their hair.  It’s suggested that similar to getting gum out, oils like olive oil and canola oil are found to help get glue out of hair without causing a lot of damage to the hair.  However, if you’ve mistakenly gotten some super glue  in your hair, it’s suggested  to skip trying oil to remove it from your hair and going to acetone to remove it.  It’s important, however, to make sure that you thoroughly wash and condition your hair after using either substance to remove the glue from your hair.

Vaseline
Vaseline seems to be one of those miracle products that works so well on so many different things in life, however, it’s not such a miracle when you get it in your hair.  It’s sticky and tacky and just not any fun to have in your hair.  It’s  suggested  that if you’ve gotten some Vaseline in your hair the best way to remove that product from your hair is by using corn starch or corn meal.  All you do is apply either the starch or meal to your hair or the area needed and then washing your hair.  It’s said to remove the Vaseline seamlessly and keep your hair in a healthy state.

Experimenting With Dip-Dyed Hair

woman with dip-dyed hair

Dip-dye and ombre colored hair have been quite popular for a few years now. The looks can be seen in both hi-fashion and street-style, and now you’re ready to give the trend a try too. You may be wondering what the difference is between dip-dyed and ombre colored hair; some of you might not have even known that there was a difference. Well, ladies, there is indeed a difference between dip-died and ombre hair! The easiest way to differentiate between the two is recognizing that ombre-colored-anything is the gradual process of once color smoothly blending into another. So when you look at ombre hair, you will notice that the chemically colored ends of the hair get gradually get lighter and lighter along the strands. Dip-dye, on the other hand, offers more of a solid transition from one color to the next – almost like a color block.

If you’re interested in dip-dyed hair, but aren’t ready to call your stylist and take the plunge at the salon that’s totally understandable. This bold look can be…well, bold. Which is why we’ve put together this step by step tutorial for you to experiment with dip-dyed hair at home. In doing so you should be able to get a good idea of how you feel about the look and if you think it’s something you’d want to consider more permanently.

  1. Before you go coloring your hair all shades of the rainbow, take the time to get inspired and figure out the color that you want. Even though this tutorial is only going to give you temporary color, it’s still going to stay put for a few weeks, so you’ll want to make sure that it’s a color you’ll be happy with.
  2. Once you’ve settled on a color, you’ll need to purchase a product that is labeled as “semi-permeate.” This will ensure that the color doesn’t last for months.
  3. In addition to the coloring product, those with darker hair may need to purchase a  lightening or bleaching product. The reason being that light colored tips is the key to achieving the actual color that you want; bleaching out the dark color from your hair allows the colored dye to set.
  4. When preparing to dip-dye, you should purchase more color than you think you need. It may seem silly, but the last thing you want to do is run out of color before you’ve completed coloring your hair. You should also purchase a pair of gloves, to avoid skin irritation and some sort of plastic cover-all for your counters.
  5. Be sure that you’re wearing an old shirt that you wouldn’t mind throwing out. Additionally, wrap your neck with an equally old towel to protect your skin from stain and irritation.
  6. Brush or comb hair that it already completely dry and set up all your products in front of you on the countertop. It’s easiest to do this in the bathroom that way you have a mirror right where you need it.
  7. Section by section, bleach the hair where you want the finished color to be. Because every bleaching product is different, it’s best that you follow the instructions for the product that you purchased.
  8. After you’ve rinsed out the bleach, repeat the same process with the color, directly on top of the bleached hair. You can either use a brush and paint it on, or you can literally dip each section of hair into the dye bowl and use your fingers to spread the color.
  9. After you’ve applied the color to each section wrap it in foil. This will help the product cure faster. Again, to ensure the best possible results from the product you purchased, follow the instructions on how long to let the product sit on the hair.
  10. Once the product has had enough time to color your locks, remove the foil wrappings and rinse the product out of your hair until the water runs clear. After the product is rinsed out wash your entire head of hair with conditioner only. Keep in mind that the more frequently that you wash your hair, the sooner the color will fade.

First Time Blonde

Blonde woman

If you haven’t yet noticed, blond is the hair color right now. From Kimmy K and Kylie Jenner to Miley Cyrus and Miranda Kerr, and even leading ladies of the silver screen such as Anne Hathaway and Emma Roberts have been spotted with lighter colored locks. Often times, we see these celebs with drastic hair color changes and assume that they went from chocolate brown to platinum during their lunch break, but this isn’t the case. Any colorist will tell you that going blonde is a process, and they’re not just pulling your leg. Depending on the natural color and type of hair you have, it can take anywhere from two to four salon visits to achieve the desired color. We’re not telling you this to discourage you, rather hoping that by reading this article you will be prepared for the blond transformation. Continue reading to learn more about what to expect and keep in mind during your first time going blonde.

Good Things Take Time
We talked about this briefly above, but we can’t stress enough that achieving blonde status doesn’t happen overnight. The main reason for this is to save your hair from detrimental damage. The darker hair you have to start, the greater amount of bleach is needed to get you to blonde. If your stylist left bleach on your locks for an extended period of time, you would leave the salon with a burning scalp and severe breakage – not to mention, it’s still unlikely that your locks would be the color you were hoping for. The take-home point of this is to have patience when it comes to achieving the color you want and keeping your hair healthy.

This isn’t a DIY Transition
Let’s be honest, dying your hair at home is risky business. Now, bleaching your hair at home, that’s asking for trouble. Chances are your hair will not turn out the color of your dreams, but it’s likely to turn various shades of orange, yellow, or even green. On top of that, often times the product in boxed color is much harder to alter or reverse in the event that you do try to lighten your own hair, only to realize that you need a stylist’s help.

You Might Want to Make it Facebook Official
Because going blonde is a major commitment, it takes time, effort, and dedication to keep your tresses looking their best. A general rule of thumb is that the greater contrast between your natural hair color and the blonde hair, the less amount of time between root touch ups.

TLC is a Must
Regardless of how blonde you go, you’ll need to carve out some time in your beauty routine for regular blonde hair TLC. Since it’s not your natural color, you’ll want to use a purple or tonight shampoo to keep your hair from turning too yellow. Additionally, it’s important to keep your hair hydrated and protected from the heat to keep it looking its best. Thinks like SPF-fortified hair products and hydrating masks should be in your arsenal at all times.

All You Need to Know About Hair Texture

Woman combing her hair

When choosing a hairstyle, there isn’t a single thing more important to consider than your hair texture. Just about everyone has experienced either first hand or knows someone who has hair that is straight, wavy, curly, or frizzy/kinky. While this quad of adjectives does describe hair’s texture, these attributes are more-or-less changeable. On the contrary, understanding the attributes of your hair’s width and pattern, which are (for the most part) unchangeable, can help you truly understand your hair’s texture. No matter what shape hair holds – straight, wavy, curly, or frizzy/kinky – there is the possibility that is one of the three following widths of texture: fine, medium, or thick/coarse.

These width descriptors – fine, medium, thick/coarse – aren’t used to explain how the hair feels in your hands, rather it describes the thinness or thickness of each individual piece of hair. The standard measurement which is used to determine the width of texture is the thickness of a piece of sewing thread. If a single strand of hair is thinner than a piece of thread, then it is labeled as fine; If a strand of hair is the same width of a piece of thread, it is medium; if a strand of hair is thicker than a piece of thread then it thick/coarse.

So, what does this all mean? Well, a few things really; knowing the width of your hair can help you figure out why your hair “acts” a certain way, and knowing these common hair behaviors can help you style your hair so that it’s always looking its best.

Fine Hair
Typical behaviors of fine hair include not holding styles (i.e. curls) for very long, is easily weighed down by heavy product or too much product, often looks thin, and has a tendency to break easily. While it might not always seem like it, individuals who have “fine” hair texture actually have more hair than those with thick hair. Those with fine hair may also notice that their hair gets oilier faster than others. If you find that achieving volume is a struggle, you should try out either a texturizing powder or a dry shampoo. Both products contain ingredients that absorb oils and bond to the cuticle of the hair, giving it a temporary thickness without weighing it down like most products.

Medium Hair
Typical behaviors for medium hair include the ability to maintain style; a tendency to cover the surface area of the scalp; and it’s typically resilient to breakage. Those with medium hair will find that because their hair is less prone to breakage that it can hold just about any style. One thing that individuals with medium hair may struggle with is dehydration or dryness of the strands. To cure and prevent dry hair you should use a leave in conditioner after washing and get into the habit of using a conditioning mask on a semi-regular basis.

Thick or Coarse Hair
Typical behaviors of thick/coarse hair include a dense, full appearance; the ability to maintain styles with little hair spray; a high heat tolerance; and it is often unwilling to take to chemical hair color. Those with thick or coarse hair may never need extra-hold hairspray, but they do need some sturdy hair elastics. Unlike fine and medium hair, thick or coarse hair contains three layers: the cortex, the cuticle, and (the additional layer) the medulla. Although the medulla is filled almost entirely with air, it’s the protein in its composition that gives it the extra strength. If you find that your hair is resilient to hair color, talk to your stylist about a color compositing shampoo which will prevent the color from fading.

Timeless Bridal Hairstyles

Although traditional and modern brides may differ in the details of their weddings, neither bride wants to look back on wedding photos and cringe. Which is why deciding on a hairstyle can be just as difficult as picking out a dress. In an effort of helping all soon-to-be brides, we’ve narrowed down the choices for you by selecting the most elegant and timeless bridal hairstyles to date. Each is a little different from the next, and some might even seem too timeless for your taste (if there is such a thing?). The hope is that by the end of this list you will either have found a hairstyle that you’ll be happy with for years to come, or – at the very least – you’ll be inspired and have a slightly better idea of how you want to style your hair on the big day.

Bridal hairstyles

  • A big, round beautiful bun is a classic wedding day hairstyle that will be in style until the end of time. Trust us, if your daughter doesn’t wear a bun on her wedding day, you’re daughter-in-law or even your granddaughter will because it truly is one of those timeless hairstyles. If you’re having your hair professionally done for the big day, the stylist may ask for your opinion and direction specific details for the bun (i.e., placement, volume, etc.). However, this is also a great hairstyle for those of you who are planning to DIY your wedding day style. You can simply create the look by smoothing all the hair back into a ponytail and wrapping an elastic around it. Then use a sock-bun or bun-doughnut over the ponytail, then roll and tuck all of the hair around until it’s sitting securely over the base of the elastic.
  • Loose and lavish curls may seem too typical for a wedding day hairstyle, but they are the ultimate timeless ‘do. If you are going to do this look, you’ll want to prep in the months leading up to the big day by washing your hair with shampoo and conditioner that encourages strength and shine, you’ll also want to be using hair masks on a regular basis and try not to over process your hair. Following these few steps will ensure that you have a head full of flawless, cascading curls. If you’re going to curl your own hair on the big day, you might want to take it upon yourself to practice using a curling wand once a week or so, that way all goes smoothly the morning of.
  • A prim and proper ponytail is another classic wedding day hairstyle. At first thought, it may seem insignificant, but when it comes down to it, a ponytail will never go out of style. A great thing about going to pony route is that you can alter it to fit your personality. If you have an eye for all thigs prep, you might center the ponytail in the back of your head, then accessorize with a small headband. If you have a chic style, you could wear a low, side ponytail with loose waves. The opportunities really are endless for this timeless wedding day hairstyle.

Your Hair Has Muscles

Woman twisting her hair.

Do you ever feel like you have to shave the hair on your legs more frequently in the summer than you do in the winter? If so, it’s not all in your imagination! Believe it or not, hair all over your body grows a bit faster in the summer than it does in the winter. In fact, while we’re on the topic of hair’s growth, you might be interested to know that hair also grows faster during the day than it does at night. How is this all this possible? Our hair has muscles!

It may seem crazy to think, but it’s true, your hair has muscles! As many of you already know, your skin is the largest organ of your body. Not only does it make a good canvas for all the makeup and beauty trends we test out, but it also works to protect your body’s complex system of bones, muscles, tissue, nerves, blood vesicles and more. What you may not have previously known is that both hair and nails are actually modified forms of skin. In fact, hair grows just about everywhere on the body with the exception of three areas – can you guess where hair doesn’t grow? If you guessed the palms of the hands, soles of the feet, and lips, then you’re correct.

Arrector Pili Muscle
The what?! You’re probably asking yourself. Remember how at the beginning of the article we told you that your hair has muscles? Well, being that there are about 320 different types of muscles in the human body, scientist figured it would be easier to identify them by giving each one a name – makes sense. Anyways, “arrector pili” is the name given to the muscles of the hair. Of course, your strands aren’t exactly weightlifting all day, but the arrector pili are getting quite the workout. The muscle isn’t on the part of the strand that you style, it’s actually attached to the root of the hair follicle under the skin. When the muscle contracts you’ll see goose bumps (this is why we never get goosebumps on the soles of our feet, palms of our hands, or lips – because there’s no hair there, remember!?).

If you’re confused as to why the muscle contracts on its own to create goosebumps, that’s okay, we’re going to clear it all up for you right now. As explained above, the arrector pili are attached to the hair follicle, but it’s not just a single unit. Rather the muscle is made up of tons of smooth muscle fibers which create it follicular muscle unit. This unit branches out to attach itself to numerous hair follicles. Unlike your biceps and triceps which rely on the cerebrum to send a signal to the peripheral nervous system telling the muscles when to flex and relax, the arrector pili are controlled by the sympathetic branch of the autonomic nervous system. This means that the contraction of the muscle is involuntary, and it typically stimulated by external sensations (such as a cool breeze) and internal emotions (such as fear). When you experience a certain sensation or emotion, the sympathetic nervous system is being stimulated and causing the muscles to contract, thus giving you goosebumps.

Summer Cut, Color and Style

Woman wearing sunglasses enjoying the summer months

With summer nearing its end some women may find themselves reminiscing on all the events (birthday bashes, wedding showers), milestones (graduation, job promotions), and changes (moving into a new house, making new friends) that have taken place this past season. Isn’t it funny how all these events happen and we don’t even notice all the change that’s taken place in our lives until we look back and notice just how different things are? Life changes are one thing, but hair changes are another. It’s known that even small changes to one’s hairdo can make a major difference. If you feel like your hair needs a bit of a summer update to coincide with the rest of your life, look no further. Below are the hottest cuts, colors, and styles of the summer, lucky for you there’s still enough time left in the season for you to pull ‘em off!

Women with bob hairstyle

One of the season’s hottest trends is the bob; whether you’re into a lob or a classic bob you’re sure to turn heads with this look. This style is perfect for those who feel like they are constantly flipping, tossing, and touching their hair – feel like you’re throwing your hair into a bun before you’ve even made it to your morning meeting? This style is ideal for you as well. Not only does it get the hair off of your neck, shoulders, and back, but it also provides allows for a bit of cool relief around your upper body as you battle through the dog days of summer.

If you’re one of those who jokes about being “cold blooded” chances are you love the summer and all the heat it brings. Maybe wearing your hair down has become a mere habit simply to keep your ears, neck, and cheeks warm in the winter. If this sounds familiar, a bob might not be the small change you’re looking for, however, long layers might tickle your fancy. Rather than having your ends lay in a straight blunt line, have your stylist create long, yet soft layers. This sexy style gives hair some extra volume and texture which is perfect for all your favorite updos and downdos.

Women with stylish bangs

Baby bangs are the bomb this summer. It may seem strange that we’re proposing bangs immediately after suggesting a bob, but give the idea a chance. Baby bangs are only about half as long as regular bangs, so they do require some extra maintenance, but it’s nothing too major. They’re best for those who have large foreheads (a.k.a. all the five-head beauties out there), otherwise, they look a tad bit awkward. Although, if you have the space and are looking for a small change for summer, baby bangs are a perfect choice.

Already content with your hair cut, but dying to change the color? You’re not alone. We’ve turned to celeb stylists to find out what colors are sizzling up this summer, here’s what we found. If you’re looking to update your blonde mane check out the following color options: pale flaxen blonde, platinum gray, or soft butter highlights. If you’re considering updating your red roots check out rose gold red highlights or gradient copper. If your brown locks are looking more blah than anything else lately check out these color options: cool mocha, dark walnut, three-dimensional brunette, or mahogany.

Rock Theses Olympian Hairstyles

High bun

The 2016 Rio Olympics are only days away, and we here are Lionesse are beyond excited for Team USA to take on competitors in the pool, on the mat, and on the courts! We’re more than certain that the athletes, along with their coaches, trainers and families are just as excited for the events to take place in the temporary home base, Rio Olympic Village. The excitement of the 2012 Olympics still remains today, and as we reminisce on Team USA’s feats and fallbacks, one thing that we can’t help but think about are the fab hairstyles worn by our Lady Olympians.

Yes, you read that right – we are in awe of the glam, yet practical hairstyles worn by America’s Star athletes. Can you remember the last time that you went on a jog that your ponytail didn’t annoy you? Was there ever a time your bun stayed in through an entire hot yoga or soul cycle class without needing to be fixed or re-adjusted? If you’re like the majority of women, you may have answered no to both of these questions. So how do these top notch competitors keep their hair put while pouring every ounce of their energy into a high beam performance? To find out, we talked to an athletes’ stylist who gave us a few tips on Olympian’s hairstyles. Want to be in the know? Read on to find out how to rock Olympian hairstyles.

The High Braid
While a typical French braid seems like it might do the trick, we all know how easy they fall out of place. Because braids are a cute feminine touch to any athletes look, one of the most common Olympian hairstyles is the high braid. And guess what? It’s super simple. Use a brush to comb totally dry hair back into a medium-to-high ponytail. Before securing it with a hair elastic, you can spray in a bit of strong hold hairspray around the pulled back hair, then use the brush to smooth it out. This will ensure that the hair stays put and that flyaways aren’t tempted to pop-up and loosen the look. Secure the ponytail with the tightest elastic that you have, then braid the hair however you’d like and use another elastic to secure it again at the bottom. Give the ‘do just a bit more hairspray to lock the style in place.

High bun hairstyle

The High Bun
Ah yes, the oh-so-famous ballerina bun. Albeit it makes total sense that Olympians are rocking this new-to-be high-fashion hairstyle, as it’s managed to stay put through the twists and turns of countless dance recitals for decades. There’s nothing new to styling this look; simply get your hair up into a high ponytail, then place your hair doughnut or sock bun over the pony. As you normally would, continue to wrap the hair over itself until the bun is tight at the base of your head. Give it a good dose of strong-hold hairspray and you’ll be good to go!

Adding Volume to Thin Hair

Woman with thin hair

Any girl with thin hair knows that the classic fixes, such as sleeping with your hair in a braid or adding in some curls, don’t seem to get the job done. If you feel like you’re at your whit’s end with your thin hair read through the tips listed below of methods you should take in order to successfully add volume to thin hair.

Wash Your Hair on a Regular Basis
Those who have thicker, whether curly or straight, are able to wash hair locks less often simply because their hair has the natural tendency to be drier; Skipping washes for them allows the hair’s natural oils to linger down and condition the hair. However, if you have thin hair the oils manage to slide right down your strands. Not only does this make thin hair look ultra greasy and grimy, but it also weighs the hair down. Prevent the weight of oil buildup by giving your hair a good scrub once daily.

Allow Your Hair to Dry Completely Before Heading Out
When you begin your work day with partially dried hair, you will likely notice it looking thinner as the day progresses. This is because the water remaining in the hair is weighing it down as it dries, once it’s fully dry it will look dull and lifeless. Let you hair look alive and full throughout the day by letting it dry completely, once it’s dry, take a few moments to run the brush through your hair from different angles to infuse some fullness into those locks. Begin by brushing all your hair to the left, then to the right, flip your head upside down and give it a good brush through, then finish off with a final up right brushing.

Blow Dry from a Different Viewpoint
Save your arm workout for the gym; Give those arms a break and flip your head upside down when blow drying. This saw you are literally setting the cuticle in the most voluminous angle possible. Of course, gravity will take over and your hair will fall down, but it will have the extra lift you’ve been looking for. Keep that lift heightened throughout the day by scrunching some high-quality moose into your damp roots before blow drying.

Try a Non-Volumizing Product
Just because something isn’t specifically marketed as a volumizer doesn’t mean it won’t add volume. One product that any thin-haired gal should try at least once is a texturizing spray. Of course, you should do your research before you buy a specific product; Make sure that the product is high quality or produced by a reputable beauty company, also be sure that you are grabbing a texturizer that is lightweight – you can do this by reading reviews of the product.

With the above tips in mind, here are few things that should always be avoided when adding volume to thin hair.

Don’t Condition Your Roots
It may seem strange to only condition the mid-to-lower hair shaft, but of you have thin hair then your roots don’t need that extra moisture. Not only does your hair get enough nourishment at the root from the natural oils, but any additional oils and silicones in conditioner will weigh your roots down even more.

Use Hair Product Sparingly
While in theory, it may seem like the more volume enhancing moose added to your locks will give you a more voluminous look, but this is not the case. It’s okay to use product, but only use enough to allow it to do its job. Using too much product will only weigh your hair down more.