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The Truth About Flat Irons

By Kristin

May 18, 2013

Color Me Pretty: 4 Ways to Get Temporary, Vivid Highlights

I was sitting at a chorus rehearsal the other day and noticed that the woman in front of me was sporting a new ‘do. But it wasn’t just your standard trim. In addition to a new cropped cut, she had vibrant colors weaved throughout her brunette coiffure. There was magenta pink and deep blue, a bit of purple and some teal. It looked downright fab, but I thought to myself, “Nope, not for me — could never commit.”

The whole vibrantly colored highlights trend has always been a look I’ve loved. Still, committing to such a bold hair move requires a serious set of ovaries. I guess I just don’t have the guts to go permanent. Which brings me to my point of discussion: temporary bold hair color.

All the following hair tricks allow you to put on a fresh new hue (or two) and take it off at the end of the day.

Temporary High Octane Highlights

Whether you’re light haired or sport a mane darker than a raven, this little trick will work for you. It’s brought to you by Jill Russell at BeautyLish — one of my favorite contributor-based beauty sites, actually — and is surprisingly simple to pull off. You’ll find detail instructions and accompanying pictures on the site, but basically all you need to do is rub eyeshadow on your hair and seal it in with a little hair spray. Quite brilliant, really!

Yarned Up Fishtail Braid

So yarn isn’t exactly a conventional hair accessory, but I am seriously in love with this look. It’s inspired me to run to the craft store and buy up the prettiest pastels I can get my hands on. The idea comes from Elsie and Emma’s blog, A Beautiful Mess. (Sidebar: I just realized I follow Elsie on Instagram — her stream is awesome!) To create the look, divide hair into multiple sections and tie each section with a piece of long yarn at the top. Then, weave a fishtail braid (or similar) and snip the excess yarn off.

Hair Chalking

If you don’t want to muss up your expensive eyeshadow pots, perhaps hair chalk is the best option for you. I came across hair chalk on Etsy (very inexpensively) a while back and was instantly intrigued by it. The highlighted colors always look so vibrant! Anyway, YouTube user MadeByMarzipan actually used craft chalk, but “official hair chalk” and craft chalk will both work for the method she demonstrates in her video. I’ve actually seen quite a few different hair chalking methods, so check out the various videos on YouTube and check out the myriad tutorials floating around the blogosphere. I also like this tutorial from YouTube user HeyKayli.

Kool-Aid Dip Dye/Ombre

Warning: This one isn’t as temporary as the above options, so proceed with caution. I wanted to include a temporary hair color that did last longer than a few hours, though. According to blogger Cristina at The Fuji Files, this method will fade slowly and eventually wash out completely after a few weeks. Essentially, you boil water, add five packets your choice Kool-Aid color/flavor and mix together in a bowl. Dip your ends for roughly 30 minutes, blow dry and style! You can also try food coloring in place of Kool-Aid, which may fade/rinse out faster.

For another temporary hair color idea, you can read about hair shadowing here.

50 Best Hair Secrets Revealed

d0891 50 hair secrets 50 Best Hair Secrets RevealedThere are good secrets and there are bad secrets. The best kind of secrets, though, are the kind that allow you to better yourself. Little “tricks” or “tips” of sorts that should be common knowledge, but aren’t. These are the kind of secrets that should be disseminated widely so they aren’t secrets anymore.

Today I’m dishing on hair secrets (naturally!) and I have some positively juicy tidbits that’ll make you say to yourself, “Ooh! I’ve never thought of doing that before!”

I’m not saying the below information will change your life or anything, but I can say with utmost certainty that you will walk away with more hair knowledge and know-how than you did before reading. And that’s a wonderful thing, hair lovers.

Hair Washing

1. Try washing your hair and night before bed and then sleeping on slightly damp locks, suggests L’Oreal Professional hair artist Pepper Pastor. She says that no matter what hair texture you have, the air-dried, slightly slept in look is a winner.

2. Stuck in a hair plateau? It may be your products’ fault. “The hair is alive – a creature of habit,” says Raphael Reboh, Founder of Femme Coiffure Hair Spa in Miami Beach. “Once you find a cleansing and conditioning agent that works miracles on your strands, guess what — that feeling won’t last for long.  Shock the strands by switching up cleansing and conditioning agents at least every 4 to 6 weeks.”

3. “Washing your hair every day can take away nutrients that help keep it manageable,” notes George Gonzalez of George the Salon in Chicago. “Instead, a few times a week, just wet your hair in the shower without shampooing. Apply a conditioner, rinse out and follow with a leave-in.”

4. Determine your washing regimen by checking the oil level of your hair. To do this, professional hair stylist Joey Oso says to “Run an open napkin through your hair after a day or two of not washing it and with hardly any product in your hair.” If the napkin looks oily, consider washing your hair four to five times a week and not using an leave-in conditioner. If there’s hardly any oil, then wash hair every three days and use a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner, he says.

5. Avoid extra hot — and extra long — showers. The hotter your shower is, and the longer it lasts, the more your hair is stripped of natural oils that keep frizz at bay and locks shiny and lush. Lukewarm water is your friend.

6. “Did you know you can help shampoo away split ends?,” asks Fernando Salas, creator of White Sands Hair Care. “Look for cleansing duos containing orchid extract, which restore the ‘cement’ between the cuticle cells to strengthen and protect hair.”

7. Another hair-washing tip from Salas: “Make sure to use a wide tooth bone comb, detangling your hair from the bottom and slowly working your way up since hair is in its most delicate state wet. This will prevent unnecessary breakage from occurring.”

8. Janelle Chapman, the creative director for OM haircare line, says to “always shampoo your hair twice for a ‘hair facial.’” That’s right — twice! “First shampoo to remove grease and dirt, then shampoo again to cleanse the hair. Follow by conditioning to moisturize your hair.”


9. The more unmanageable your hair is, the more moisturizer or conditioner you need, says Pastor.

10. Always check the ingredients on your products, insists Reboh. She says that some ingredients may contribute to excess frizz, especially alcohol or water-based products.

11. Rub a protein-rich hair product on the ends of your hairs to help nix split ends caused by heating tools, hair dyes and standard wear and tear.

12. If you want to take on frizz, opt for a really rich conditioner and then style with a setting spray or hair oil. This will keep fly aways at bay, explains Pastor.

13. For bouncier or more voluminous hair, don’t use really thick or heavy conditioners or styling products, says Pastor. Instead, opt for lighter styling products and slightly tease your roots.

14. Use oil-based setting or shine spray if your hair is prone to frizz or if you live in a really humid environment, suggests Reboh. This will nourish the shaft and keep hair from swelling with the moisture in the air.

15. Have problems making bobby pins or barrettes stay in place? Klimas says to first lightly spray dry shampoo on the bobby pin/barrette before inserting into hair. “The dry shampoo will keep the bobby pin from slipping or sliding and your style will be secure all day long!”


16. If you have really limp or fine hair, use a hair crimper at the roots, advises Pastor. This will add subtle body. She says to use a mini crimper for two inches at the roots.

17. To get stubborn hair to hold a blow dry, apply a light mousse to your hair first, such as L’Oreal’s Professional Mousse Volupte, and then use a smaller round brush instead of a big one. Pastor says this will give you longer lasting curls and body.

18. “If you want a uniform curl pattern, you also need a uniform application of styling product,” says Gonzalez.

19. When blow-drying, dry your hair halfway and then use any styling products. “When you add styling agents to wet hair, you may over saturate the strands, which will leave a heavy residue on the hair and decrease the length of a healthy, bouncy blowout,” says Reboh.

20. Want that messy, grungy, scratchy hair texture? Chapman says apply a salt spray dry, day two hair. Then, tuck it all up under a cap. “Blast with a blow dry and leave to cool for five minutes, then take it out, shake it out and hit the disco!”

21. When blow drying or flat ironing, make sure you control the ends with a brush or try using your hands to press the dried hair smooth.

22. For limp, “day two” hair, Theresa Klimas, senior manager of Kenra hair care line, says to apply a roof lifting spray, such as Kenra Root Lifting Spray 13, directly onto dry hair at the root and then “over direct” hair with a blow dryer. Over directing essentially means sectioning hair further over the head and not following your natural part. Then go back to your natural part and you’ll have instant volume.

23. “To create a great base for styling, the best way to avoid frizz is to blow dry your hair from the top down,” says Gonzalez. “Direct the dryer towards the ends.”‘

24. Another blow drying tip: Always dry the roots about 70% first and then focus on the ends, advises Gonzalez.

25. Not everyone should use their blow dryer or flat iron on the highest setting. The highest settings are reserved for those with the thickest and coarsest hair. The thinnest/finest hair should use the lowest setting. Chances are, you’re somewhere in the middle of that spectrum, so set your tools accordingly. Too hot can severely damage your locks.

26. “When blow drying or setting hair with a hot tool, make sure before you brush out the curls to let the hair become cold,” advises Chapman. She says it’s more important how the hair cools down as to how it is heated up.


27. For long lasting bangs, Reboh is adamant when she says, Don’t touch them! When women consistently touch and style their bangs during the day, “they accelerate the process of oil buildup,” she says. “Additionally, your fingers have residue/oil/dirt on them. Never use the fingers to touch or style the bangs. If you do, wash them first!”

28. If you need a quick refresher but don’t have time for a full wash, blow dry and style, just wash your bangs or the face-framing layers around your face before heading out the door.


29. “If you color or heat style hair regularly, then you know the hair encompasses variations of dryness and texture,” says Salas. Everyone wants flawless hair, but you must fix your porosity first to give tresses this healthy appearance.”

30. To save money and time, opt for subtle highlights. That means few highlights and in a color only slightly different from your base color. “This will make your color last longer because this will not show re-growth,” says Salas.

31. Ask your stylist to choose the tone of your highlights from the flex of your eyes, which will help bring them out no matter what clothes or makeup you’re wearing, recommends Salas.


32. It may be tempting, but don’t ever cut your bangs yourself. If you need just a quick trim, make an appointment at the salon explaining that you just want your bangs trimmed. They’ll pencil you in for a short appointment and won’t charge you the full price.

33. Not ready for a big haircut, but notice you have a lot of breakage, wispy ends or just need a quick trim? Opt for the newest trend in haircutting: dusting! Reboh says, “If you aren’t a fan of big bi-monthly snips, ask your stylist for a dusting. It is a light sweep of trimming the ends and will carry you through for at least 2 to 4 weeks between styling.”

34. “For those of you that aren’t interested in embracing your natural curl, talk to your stylist about a smoothing service to reduce curl and frizz,” advises Klimas. “You will still have the option to wear your hair curly and it will dissipate over time alleviating the un-natural looking grow out time associated with chemical straightening services.”

On-The-Go Hair Tips

35. “When hair is fully dirty and you don’t have a place to wash it, use a diffuser on a blowdryer around all your hair for about 10 minutes while rubbing your fingers through the lumps of hair strands,” advises Oso. “You’ll find your hair looking clean and fresh like it’s right out of the showe.”

36. Carry a new, travel-sized toothbrush in your purse as a mini fly away buster, advises Gonzalez. You can also carry a mini bottle of hairspray to spray the toothbrush first, which will “easily tame stubborn hairs.”

37. Stayed the night at a certain someone’s house and have no hair products? It’s A-OK to use his products, too. In fact, a lot of mens hair products are formulated for superior hold.

38. Chapman is a believer in what she calls “the t-shirt turban,” a makeshift shower cap that you can use anytime you need to shower, but don’t have a cap (like when you’re traveling). “Remove your t-shirt so the neck is around your hair line. Roll it all into a twist and then tuck under the front to secure. Then hit the shower and no moisture or water will destroy your hair style!”

40. “Try to stash a small brush and dry shampoo in your purse,” says Reboh. ”Spray the brush with dry shampoo and brush the bangs from under (oil/residue from the face and forehead) and then on top to refresh the strands.”

General Advice

41. “Make sure to have a humidifier in your home to help avoid the drier air from pulling moisture from your tresses and skin,” recommends Gonzalez.

42. Just as your skin is susceptible to the sun’s rays, so is your hair. Excess sun exposure can damage your hair. If you spend a lot of time outdoors, use a light hair spray with SPF protection. Alternatively, carry a sun umbrella, wear a hat or hang out in the shade when you can.

43. Chances are, you’re using bobby pins incorrectly. The longest part should be on top (not next to your scalp). Also, it’s best to use two pins and cross them. Thick or thin, this will hold the hair all day long.

44. If you’re a frequent pool swimmer, rinse your hair before you dive in the deep end. This keeps hair from absorbing the chlorine and other chemicals, which damage hair (and can even turn it green). Another tip: wear a cap!

45. “I love shopping for hair goods in a hardware store,” says Chapman. In other words: don’t be afraid to get creative!  “My new favorite is using cable ties to secure pony tails.” She says it keeps them locked in really tight all day long.

46. Got dandruff? Contrarily to popular belief, dandruff is not caused by a dry scalp. Instead, it’s a minor skin disease that can be made worse when oily products are rubbed onto the scalp. Your best bet is medicinal shampoos that treat the skin disease.

47. What you eat matters. For example, consuming more salmon and nuts (or foods with essential fatty acids) will create a healthier scalp. Leafy greens and carrots also promote healthier hair. Contrarily, a poor diet can leave your hair limp and dull.

Curly Hair

48. Many women with curly hair tend to use heavier products to weigh their hair down. Lighter products will help you get the look you want quicker and easier.

49. For women with very short, curly hair (or men), Klimas says to ask your stylist for a cut that accentuates the natural curl. “This will be an easy shampoo and go style for those with less time on their hands,” she says.

50. Klimas has advice for women with longer curly hair, too. “For a longer look to show off your natural curl, ask your stylist to add layers to your look. This will remove some of the bulk that may weigh down your curls.”

BONUS: Use a hair diffuser extension on your blow dryer and gently rest your hair on top. Use a medium to cool setting and dry hair slowly and gently. This also creates more curl definition and less frizz.

11 Easy DIY Date Night Hairstyles

The man of your dreams finally asked you on a date, and now you’re not only freaking out about your outfit, but your hair as well! Sound familiar? Well, take a chill pill girlfriend. Whether you’re headed to a sporting event or a five star restaurant, these to-die-for date night hairdos are bound to make a lasting impression!

1. A Simple, Sleek High Bun

A classic bun at the top of the head screams high fashion and if perfect for fancy dates, says celebrity hairstylist Claudio Lazo, owner of C The Salon in Studio City, CA. “Carry a small can of hairspray in your bag, and always, always, always have a few hairpins handy for touchups throughout the night.” Hey, you never know when disaster might strike or a sudden gust of wind could totally mess up your mane! It’s best to be prepared.

9aaab highbun 337x500 11 Easy DIY Date Night Hairstyles

2. The Whimsical Side Chignon

According to Claudio, a chignon can be worn on every type of date. It all depends on how you rock it, however. For example, if you’re going with the whimsical side chignon (one of our favorite looks!), he suggests trying it out for a casual summer date night. “Not that much work is needed, and it’s a hairdo that turns any woman into a chicer version of herself, whether she knows how to control her hair or not.”

9aaab side chignon 333x500 11 Easy DIY Date Night Hairstyles

3. Boho Beach Waves

Boho beach waves are another fabulous low-key date night hairstyle idea. They’re effortless and give off that free-spirited, cool girl vibe. To score the messy look, Claudio recommends flash drying hair from the bottom up, about 80% of the way. Then, split it down the center and braid it. Spritz with a little hairspray, blow dry the rest and undo the braid for beautiful beach waves.

ecd4f bohobeachwaves 332x500 11 Easy DIY Date Night Hairstyles

4. The Power Pony

Headed to drinks with your date after work? Sport the power pony! “The volume in this hairstyle makes it great for the transition from day to night,” notes Donet Dee Eiwasian, a stylist at Assembly Salon in LA. First, blow dry your hair to achieve sleek looking locks. Take sections at the crown next (as shown in the photo), and tease your hair at the root. Secure the “pouf” with bobby pins in a criss cross pattern right below your crown. Now, take the rest of your hair and put it up into a ponytail. Grab the end of the teased and secured section and wrap this around the base of your pony to hide the hair elastic. Secure with bobby pins, and you’re ready to roll.

ecd4f powerpony 359x500 11 Easy DIY Date Night Hairstyles

5. The Runway Blowout

This look works in practically any setting, especially on a fancy shmancy dinner date, points out Donet. “Roughly blow dry your hair or use your round brush to get strands extra sleek. Wrap sections around a large 1.5-inch curling iron, and don’t brush out the curl. Let your hair completely cool before repeating on your entire head.” Once it’s cooled the second time around, brush out and voila: you have a beautiful, salon-worthy blowout!

6. A Super Quick Wavy Side Pony

In a rush, but still want your hair to look hot? Don’t worry! You can cheat and recreate this style in minutes by only curling the hair in your ponytail, says seasoned hairstylist Sherri Jessee. “Start by brushing your hair over to one side, and tie it off with a covered elastic band. Take a small section of hair next, and wrap it around to conceal the band. Secure it in place with a few bobby pins. Then, curl the rest of your hair with a one-inch curling iron.” Your date won’t be able to take his eyes off you!

7. A Chignon With Serious Flower Power

There’s nothing more romantic than accessorizing with a flower! “Using your fingers to amp up texture, rake your hair back into a low ponytail,” advises Jessee. “Loosely twist the ends, and pin them to form an asymmetrical chignon. Treat yourself to a beautiful bouquet of fresh spring flowers, and secure one of them in your hair for the perfect accent.” You can also find flirty, clip-on faux flowers at your local drugstore or beauty supply store.

ecd4f flowerchignon 11 Easy DIY Date Night Hairstyles

8. Voluminous Soft Waves

Soft waves are sure to win his heart every time, says Jessee. And we totally agree! To achieve this look at home, she recommends applying a volumizing mousse to freshly shampooed hair, then blow dry it. “Roll hair on medium sized electric rollers. For longer lasting curls, allow the set to cool completely before removing. Now, turn your head upside down, and brush hair with a soft bristle brush. Gently smooth it into place, and spray with a touchable hairspray like Pravana Super Shape.”

ecd4f softwaves 325x500 11 Easy DIY Date Night Hairstyles

9. Effortless Sex Kitten Hair

Wow your date with effortless come-hither hair! “On towel dried locks, apply a cocktail of styling cream and Obliphica Professional Treatment Serum; distribute evenly, and spritz a volumizing spray on your roots,” instructs celebrity hairstylist and creative director of Obliphica Professional, John Blaine. “For maximum volume, blow dry your hair with a large, round, boar bristle brush. Use large velcro rollers next, and leave them in while you do your makeup and get dressed.” When you’re ready to go, take them out, and run one pump of Treatment Serum throughout your strands. “This will give you that dreamy summer night’s hair. Plus, the smell will drive him wild!”

10. Vintage Hollywood Waves

According to John, the vintage Hollywood look is always in. He suggests spraying damp hair with volumizer to start, then mix styling cream with Treatment Serum and distribute evenly. “Create a razor straight side part (it must be straight!), and blow dry your hair with a roller brush. Set waves with hot rollers all going downward and toward your face. Let cool before brushing out and into shape.” To help mold the shape, he advises using a comb and your fingers. Finally, spritz with some hairspray and get ready to blow your date away!

11. An Artistic Textured Updo

A lot of women only associate long hair as sexy, but John believes hair pulled up is even more seductive because you can see the neck of the woman. To fashion this style, he says to apply Obliphica Professional Multi Task Styling Cream to damp hair and distribute evenly. “Blow dry your hair upside down, and begin grabbing sections of hair starting in the lower back; pin these with bobby pins. Work your way up to the front, letting your creativity flow by sculpting and molding the shape you want. Remember, it’s all about that texture!”

ecd4f texturedupdo 333x500 11 Easy DIY Date Night Hairstyles

How to Do a Perfectly Messy 5-Strand Braid

Have you ever seen the 5-strand braid and wanted to learn how to do it? My name is Melissa with My Soul Is The Sky and I’m here to show you just how easy it is!It’s really just a simple weaving of the hair back and forth in an over under pattern. Just follow these simple steps and you’ll quickly be on your way to learning the cute and intricate 5-strand braid!
1dced 5 strandBraid How to Do a Perfectly Messy 5 Strand Braid

1dced 5 strandBraid How to Do a Perfectly Messy 5 Strand Braid


1. Begin by separating the hair into five strands.

2. Starting on the right side, take the two farthest strands and cross the right one over the left.

3. Drop the strand in your right hand and cross the one in your left hand under the next strand on the left.

4. Now drop the strand on the right and cross the original strand over the next one on the left.

5. Then drop that right strand and cross the original strand under the next one on the left.

See the over, under, over method?
Now begin the same steps but working in the opposite direction towards the right side. I’ve asked my model to hold our original strand (which is now the farthest left strand, to keep it out of the way).

6. Holding the furthest left piece out of the way, take the next two strands and cross the strand on the left under the strand on the right.

7. Now cross the strand in your left over over the next strand on the right.

8. Then cross the strand in your left under the farthest right strand.

9. Drop that strand (which is now the furthest strand on the right) and begin working in the opposite direction crossing the right strand under the left one next to it.

10. Then, cross the right strand over the next strand on the left.

11. Now, cross the right strand under the next strand on the left.

12. Continue this weaving, over, under, over, until you get to the bottom of the hair.

13. Secure the end with an elastic.

14. You’re done!

If you love this braid, then you’ll love my zig-zag Dutch braid tutorial too! For more beauty and hair inspiration, come visit me over at My Soul Is The Sky.

Waterfall Twists into Mermaid Braid | Cute Hairstyles

May 12, 2013

Feel free to follow CGH on Instagram to see behind-the-scenes photos of our hairstyles and family!

Many fans have emailed or tagged me in photos from Pinterest and Instagram asking me to film a mermaid braid tutorial.

To be honest, I haven’t loved the style enough to film one because I didn’t particularly like how the strands pulled into the braid from the front and sides.

Thinking about it for some weeks now, it hit me that we should create a hairstyle combination using the Waterfall Twists as a base for the style… and then use the falling strands of those twists as the “add-ins” for the Mermaid Braid!

694a4 IMG 1791 300x200 Waterfall Twists into Mermaid Braid | Cute Hairstyles

694a4 IMG 3603 300x300 Waterfall Twists into Mermaid Braid | Cute Hairstyles

If you love this photo, please feel free to pin it!

When I tried it out, as soon as I released the braid… it nearly took my breath away! We L-O-V-E-D it!!!

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CGH#3 wanted to be my model knowing that today is Mother’s Day, and she asked to do the video introduction as well! Isn’t she adorable???

694a4 IMG 3602 300x300 Waterfall Twists into Mermaid Braid | Cute Hairstyles

If you love this photo, please feel free to pin it!

90773 IMG 1820 300x200 Waterfall Twists into Mermaid Braid | Cute Hairstyles

90773 IMG 1835 300x200 Waterfall Twists into Mermaid Braid | Cute Hairstyles

90773 IMG 1813 300x200 Waterfall Twists into Mermaid Braid | Cute Hairstyles

Items Needed: Brush, rat-tail comb, spray bottle, 1 small hair elastic, hairspray, and accessory {if desired}.

Time Requirement: 8-10 minutes

Skill Level: Hard

Step-by-Step Instructions:

  1. Begin by brushing hair, and making a center part right down the head…
  2. Complete a waterfall twist on both sides of the head, beginning near the temples and ending at the back of the head…
  3. Take the ends of both twists {you should have 4 strands total} and create three strands from them {I do this by joining together two strands, one from each side, to create one strand}…
  4. Now begin a simple braid….
  5. After one complete stitch, pick up the nearest waterfall strand {the hair running through the twist} on the left side of the head and add it into your left-most braid strand…
  6. Now pick up the nearest waterfall strand on the right side of the head and add it into your right-most braid strand…
  7. Next, complete a regular braid stitch without adding in any hair {this will space out the stranding and create the mermaid braid look}..
  8. Repeat Steps 5-7 by adding in the waterfall strands until you run out…
  9. After all waterfall strands are included, finish the rest of the hair off into the simple braid…
  10. Secure with a hair elastic…
  11. Add any accessory or ribbon as desired.


Please feel free to leave a comment below and let us know what you think, and as always… feel free to share!

Happy Hairdoing!

90773 MindySig Waterfall Twists into Mermaid Braid | Cute Hairstyles

* Note from Mindy: Google Reader will be shutting down on July 1st, so if you want to follow our blog… you can do so at BlogLovin, a new easy-to-use blog reader for women!

6 thoughts on “Waterfall Twists into Mermaid Braid | Cute Hairstyles

  1.  Waterfall Twists into Mermaid Braid | Cute HairstylesLaura on May 12, 2013 at 6:53 pm said:

    I love this one and can’t wait to try it out on my DD tomorrow. Does your little sweet pea have asthma? She looked so pitiful sitting there with her neb mask on.

  2.  Waterfall Twists into Mermaid Braid | Cute Hairstylesjamie on May 12, 2013 at 10:05 pm said:

    WOW! So beautiful!

  3.  Waterfall Twists into Mermaid Braid | Cute HairstylesOlivia on May 12, 2013 at 10:25 pm said:

    Pretty! Aren’t you going to Disney world with Jenny from show me cute?

  4.  Waterfall Twists into Mermaid Braid | Cute Hairstylesbeccaroni99 on May 13, 2013 at 5:57 am said:

    This is amazing and I can’t wait to try it!!!!!!

  5.  Waterfall Twists into Mermaid Braid | Cute HairstylesMeg on May 13, 2013 at 9:26 am said:

    So cool- looking! And so simple!
    Thank you Mindy!!!

  6.  Waterfall Twists into Mermaid Braid | Cute Hairstylesvera on May 13, 2013 at 12:41 pm said:

    Love them!!!

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Easy DIY: Get Rihanna’s Sexy Windblown Hairstyle

By Aly Walansky

May 13, 2013
3f3c9 alywalansky small Easy DIY: Get Rihanna’s Sexy Windblown Hairstyle

Easy Hair Trend To Try – The Deep Side Part

By Kristin

May 11, 2013
668f7 kristinutterback small Easy Hair Trend To Try – The Deep Side Part

Cool Off With These 6 Hot Weather Hairstyles

Admittedly, I have a fair number of pet peeves. But do you want to know what one of my greatest frustrations is? That little damp spot that shows up on the nape of your neck from sweating — even when you haven’t been exerting yourself much at all! And don’t get me started on the little dew drops that make an appearance around your hairline.

It must be said, though, dear hair lovers: a little sweat is the price we pay for glorious spring and summer weather. That doesn’t mean you can’t take action to keep cool during the hot months, though. For the next five months or so, I suggest wearing hairstyles that minimize heat overload (and consequently sweat deluge). You can start with the six hot weather hairstyles I’ve highlighted below.

The Five Strand Braid

Okay, so we all know that a quick side braid is like, the easiest solution to the frantic, “What do I do with my hair?!” dilemma you’re faced with when you have 10 minutes to get ready. Whether you’re running around the house like a crazy lady trying to beat the clock or you simply don’t want to mess with your mane, I propose the side braid. But not just any side braid. Oh no. I propose the five-strand side braid, which looks a million times cooler and doesn’t require much more effort. (Plus it keeps the hair off your neck.) Bobbyglam walks you through the steps in her video.

French Braided Ponytail

What screams summer more than a high ponytail? Ice cream and beach balls, perhaps, but you get what I’m saying. Again, though, you don’t want to throw your hair into just any old pony tail and run out the door. You have a hair reputation to uphold, after all. For an easy ponytail style that’ll garner oohs and ahhs, I suggest you try Lilith Moon’s “French Braided Ponytail.” J’adore! I’m seriously in love with this style. If I see any of you wearing it on the street, I may have to stop and give you a high five. Check out her video tutorial for all the deets.

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Twist Braid

Mmk, so nothing’s quite as unflattering as sweaty hair matted to your forehead. Not to mention, that can cause an acne outbreak which is the last thing any woman wants. The solution to the “sweaty, matted hair effect” is to sweep hair off your face/forehead. With this “Twist Braid” hair style, not only will you keep cooler, you’ll look darn cute, to boot! The tutorial comes to you from Alejandra Amador Vidal (or Ale), who runs the “Imagine Ale” blog. The style keeps most of your hair down, but sweeps up your bangs/face-framing layers into a sweet, off-center, twisted braid.

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Twist Braid Hair Tutorial from Ale Vidal on Vimeo.

Summertime Hair Wrap

This one’s perfect for hot days working in the garden or cleaning the house. It keeps hair up and out of your face/off your neck, but you still look positively darling. I can also see this one outside of the house, as well. So many possibilities! This particular “summertime hair wrap” tutorial is featured on the More Design Please blog, which provides a thorough, picture tutorial that outlines everything you need to know. I suggest wearing your wrap/scarf with hair secured in a claw or quick French twist.

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Lazy Girl’s Milkmaid Braid

Anytime the word “lazy” is in a tutorial description I’m all over it. And I assume you are, as well, if this subtitle title caught your attention read this far. “M” at the Tongue in Chic blog is one of us, too. “Sometimes, I just don’t have the time to fix my hair,” she says. “Cue the milkmaid braid, which for me is the perfect quick fix for (gasp) dirty hair.” This abbreviated version of your standard milkmaid braid takes no more than 10 minutes to complete and works on various hair textures. Win!

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Triple Braided Cinnamon Bun

Okay, so I’ve covered the side braid, the pony tail and the hair wrap. How can I not include a bun? While I love the ease of a sock bun or a top knot, I propose something less expected this summer. Ladies, meet the Cinnamon Roll Bun. Mmm…cinnamon rolls. Ahem.  This one comes to you from The Freckled Fox’s Emily, who creates three of the cinnamon roll buns at the nape of her neck. You can stick to just one if you prefer.

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BONUS: Stay cool AND chic with these creative scarf hairstyles, too!

A DIY Guide to Repairing Damaged Hair

af123 DamagedHairGraphic A DIY Guide to Repairing Damaged HairHow to Fix Damaged Hair (and when to cut it off)

Is your hair somewhat damaged or totally trashed? And, what can you do when it‘s true that you can’t mend split ends? Here’s the latest on hair that’s hurting, along the lines of prevent, correct and protect.

What Causes Hair Damage?

In 2006, a Regis salons survey found that 70% of U.S. women thought their hair was damaged; a September, 2012, Head Shoulders survey found 57% thought so. That’s progress, at least. With healthy-looking hair at the forefront of fashion and technological improvements in products that really do work from the inside out, the only new danger is in spring’s love affair with the ubiquitous ponytail—every designer embraced it.

According to the Head Shoulders survey, one of the leading causes of hair damage is putting hair in a tight ponytail. But really, it’s the chemical whammy that kills cuticles, and here’s why.

af123 AnatomyofHair A DIY Guide to Repairing Damaged HairDamaged Hair for Smarties

Chemistry is cool: it explains why and how certain products can strengthen and hydrate hair, and why specific things damage it. Technically, hair is dead because once outside the body, its cells no longer divide. But it can be degraded, just like fabric that’s over-exposed to bleach.

What is hair? About 90% keratin protein, along water, lipids and melanin (color granules). The hair’s outermost cuticle layer has overlapping scales that lie flat if the hair is healthy. Sebum naturally coats it: That isn’t a bad thing; it’s a shine thing.

The cortex is largely keratin protein, which comprises coiled chains of amino acids. The chains are cross-linked, much like a ladder with rungs, only the links form different types of bonds, as opposed to one horizontal rung.

Bonds that Bind

  • Hydrogen bonds are broken every time hair gets wet; then they reform. That’s why wet hair is fragile, and you can dry it into a new shape. Lack of moisture can reduce these bonds. They’re weak, but there are so many, they account for almost 1/3 of the hair’s strength, so you definitely want to shore them up.
  • Another 1/3 of hair’s strength comes from weak salt bonds that depend on pH. Strong acidic or alkaline solutions break salt bonds.
  • Disulfide bonds are the permanent bonds that get broken during chemical processes, like perming and relaxing. In perming, some but not all the bonds are reformed into a new shape. That’s what makes straight hair curly—it’s also why repeated perming creates mushy, spaghetti-like strands. Disulfide bonds are permanently broken during relaxing, to make the hair straight. (Some newer products like Surface Hair by Wayne Grund claim to loosen the bonds instead of breaking them.) Once these bonds are broken, the hair is naturally weaker.

Pigment granules also occur in the cortex; permanent coloring and bleaching change them through a chemical reaction that alters the hair’s color. The upshot: chemicals affect the shape, strength, elasticity and moisture level of your hair.

The medulla runs through the center and can even be absent—usually in very fine and blonde hair. Finally comes “intercellular cement,” lipids and proteins that join the cells in the cortex. You can’t see any of this, but RD departments do when they test their product’s effect on hair by viewing it microscopically. L’Oreal patented the Ceramide in Kérastase, because it replicates intercellular cement, strengthening the hair.

Damage Done

The front line defense against damaged hair is simple: Don’t do what causes the damage in the first place. Then, correct what you can and protect against future damage. According to top hairstylists, the 5 most common causes of hair damage are:

1. Relaxing, Straightening and Texturizing/Perming

If you understood the chemistry lesson, then you get that chemical treatments weaken hair. Most relaxers use sodium hydroxide (lye) or a close chemical cousin—don’t be fooled by “no lye.” Japanese Thermal Straightening uses the same chemical permanent waves do, thioglycolate.

Chemically altered hair can be protected with TLC, but the real problem comes with the retouch. Overlapping between the new growth (roots) and the previously chemically treated hair results in compound damage. Even pros find it hard to avoid that fine line—home users always create overlap. Also, relaxers should be applied to the fragile hairline last, which home users seldom do.

Once hair has been chemically straightened (or texturized to either create or loosen curl), use moisturizing products daily, deep-condition weekly and dial down the heat when styling. If you see breakage or if your hair is lifeless, get a good haircut and up your hair’s moisture/protein balance with a customized, in-salon treatment like Mizani Custom Blend Conditioning or Redken Chemistry.

Straight Tip: Brazilian Keratin treatments don’t break bonds, they coat the hair with a fibrous latticework to hold it in place straight. Shampoos and conditioners with sulfates degrade the latticework faster.

2. Bleaching and Coloring

Hair lighteners and permanent color also act in the cortex. According to Suzie Bond, who owns Perfect 5th salon in Mooresville, NC, during lightening with bleach, the internal protein chains are broken down as the color lightens. Permanent color also lightens before it deposits a new shade, but not in as stressful a manner as bleach does.

“Repeated applications are what usually create trouble,” says Bond. “The protective cuticle gets opened with every application to allow the product into the cortex. The hair has no ability to close the cuticle back down on its own or repair itself.”

Repairing structural damage takes time and there are many hair care ingredients that can help, such as moisturizers, keratin protein and amino acids—if they penetrate to the cortex and seal the cuticle. Read product claims for both these benefits.

“To avoid damage when home-coloring, apply the color to the new growth only,” adds Bond. “Demi-permanent color also opens the cuticle. With repeated applications—say, over six—you could experience some damage from it, but not as much you’d get from permanent haircolor.”

To prevent problems, never over-bleach hair. Only retouch your roots, and correct dryness with leave-in conditioners. Avoid salt water and the sun’s UV rays. The latter can break down melanin and keratin as much as a gentle lightener can.

Color Flash: Never use bleach-based lighteners on relaxed hair—it will break. And don’t think “ammonia-free” permanent color is a panacea. If it is permanent and ammonia-free, it uses MEA, a chemical that’s similar to ammonia, which may not lighten as precisely.

3. Thermal Damage

af123 heatstyling A DIY Guide to Repairing Damaged HairOver heat-styling leads to dry, brittle hair with split ends. Or worse, a burned off cuticle. Why then do barely
20% of women use thermal protectors before heat styling?

“Think of the hair fiber as fabric; silk-like, healthy fine hair can take heat at 300-degrees, but corduroy-strong coarse hair can withstand 400-degrees,” says Eric Fisher, owner of Eric Fisher Salons and Academy in Wichita, KS. “I always protect the hair first with Aquage Beyond Shine and work it in with my fingers. Then, I keep the blow dryer moving.”

Direct air flow down strands, and be fast. When using thermal irons, test a small section first, slowly increasing the time the iron is held in place. You can and should take regular breaks from heat styling—get creative!

In the End: Damaged ends either split or come to a point, as opposed to appearing blunt. “When a woman doesn’t want to cut off more than half an inch, I show her how her hair at the ends should be as thick as it is in the middle,” notes Fisher. “The only solution to damaged ends is to cut them off.”

4. Too Heavy or Incorrectly Applied Hair Extensions

When Jennifer Aniston said hair extensions ruined her hair, women started removing them—something you should never do at home unless they clip in. Attachment systems are numerous and varied, but the newest, safest one uses flat tape bonding. The old track-and-sew method also minimizes damage—in “natural hair” salons, these extension styles are known as “protective,” because they protect hair that’s transitioning and has a fragile line between the previously relaxed hair and the curly new growth.

At the country’s premiere hair extension salon, Angelo David Salon in NYC, extensions are custom created for the individual, with the natural hair’s health in mind. Home care is critical to avoiding breakage, and Angelo sends clients home with special a hand out. The key: TLC! Use detanglers and comb gently. Always shampoo, condition and style in a downward direction.  Avoid pulling and tugging.

Hair extensions that are too long or too heavy for fragile or fine hair can also cause breakage. Extensions should never be used on damaged or bleached hair.

On Going Faux: Have an experienced extensionist apply and remove extensions, and check your natural hair for breakage each time. Traction alopecia from too-tight braids or extensions destroys the follicle forever.

af123 Wet A DIY Guide to Repairing Damaged Hair5. Mechanical Damage

Rubbing, pulling, tugging and brushing hair when it’s wet stretches it to the breaking point, creates spilt ends and roughs up the cuticle. Since most of this damage occurs at the ends or on top, Fisher advises blotting hair gently, then combing through sections with a large-toothed comb, working from the ends up.

Go slowly and use a leave-in detangler. Then, section off the top to dry last. Flat wrap the hair forward, then back, as you remove excess moisture before styling. When hair is 75-80% dry, apply styling products evenly from roots to ends by starting in back and working forward. Hair will be much easer to mange and style.             “Women always start by putting products in the middle, even my wife does it,” laments Fisher.

The big brush off: According to Sam Villa, education artistic director for Redken 5th Avenue, when you hold a brush horizontally and brush downward, the rows of bristles turn little snarls into big, fat  knots. Instead, hold the brush vertically at 45-degrees, angled downward. Fewer rows of bristles engage the hair and detangling is easier.

Best Shampoos For Damaged Hair

At Home: L’Oréal Paris Total Repair 5 with Pro-Keratine and Ceramide

In Salons: Suzie Bond recommends L’Oreal Professionnel Serie Expert Fiberceutic

Best Conditioners for Damaged Hair

In salons and online: Philip Kingsley Daily Damage Defense Conditioning Spray

In stores: Herbal Essences Hydralicious Reconditioning Conditioner for Dry/Damaged Hair

Best Duos: Kérastase Resistance Force Architecte shampoo and masque

ApHogee 2-Step Protein Treatment and Balanced Moisturizer

Home Remedies for Damaged Hair

You can slather on all the olive oil and egg whites you want, but they don’t penetrate to the hair’s cortex. Hot oil treatments are fine, but anything thick and moisturizing will smooth the cuticle. The questions are: will it wash out easily, and do you really want to smell like mayo or corn oil?

If you must: Shampoo with a clarifying shampoo and towel blot your hair. Then mix1 part protein conditioner, 1 part All-Nutrient Pure Oil or extra virgin olive oil and 1 part moisturizing conditioner. Apply to your hair as a mask and cover with a plastic bag, then a towel. This uses natural heat from the scalp to encourage product penetration. Wait 20 minutes, then rinse.

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