Fact. Hormones change and things get out of balance. I look at pictures of myself from not too many years ago and sigh wistfully at my appearance and wish I knew what I was looking at then instead of wretching in front of the mirror and picking myself apart one atom at a time. I've learnt my lesson - not doing that crap anymore! I'm not exactly a withered hag tattered by every grain of sand in the hour glass, but these past few years have been... stressful and that's putting it lightly.
Today I kick up my heels though and smile at what it is and I hope that you'll join me in doing the best with what we've got no matter what the circumstances. Let's get our hair back on track or on a better track.
According to the American Hair Loss Association, (Who knew there was such a thing? I am going to write them and then perhaps take up residence in their parking lot) hair loss is caused by the production of a hormone called Dihydrotest....okay we're just going to call it DHT because no one has time to pronounce all that.
I'm not going to go into the science of DHT and its role in male and female pattern baldness. But let's just put it this way. DHT is the sworn enemy of hair follicles shrinking them and making it difficult for healthy hair to grow.
Let's get down to the business of a solution! I've been reading up on the black tea rinse. Why black tea? Caffeine evidently has the ability to counteract the effects of DHT. Topical applications of caffeine block the damaging effects of DHT on hair follicles and may stimulate the growth of new hair. Tea stains so I DO NOT recommend this for blondes. Instead, I have something of the onion variety (yep that's what I said) for the blondes, but we'll review that solution in a separate post.
For you darker red heads and brunettes, here is the potion.
1. Change into an old shirt and avoid blaming me for any potential staining.
2. Add 4 -5 tea bags in about 2 cups of water and bring to a boil.
3. Let the tea fully steep and set it aside to cool. Don't you dare attempt to do rinse with hot tea! Common sense you say... you'd be surprised how uncommon that sense is.
4. Remove the tea bags and pour the tea into a spray bottle,
5. Spray the scalp until fully saturated.
6. Cover the hair with a plastic processing cap and let sit for 45 min - 1 hour (I plan to put on some music and shake my tail feather while doing some cooking - not like I needed the excuse, my tail feather is constantly shaking!).
7. Rinse the hair and follow with a good natural deep conditioner.
My research has also shown that the black tea rinse not only reduces shedding but provides softness, volume and shine. Holla!
With shiny, soft and less shed potential on the horizon, I am so excited to use up that wretched but complementary box of Lipton black tea in the back of my cupboard. I'm thinking a black tea rinse challenge should be "on" for the entire month of June! Again, fairer headed persons among you hang tight. We'll discuss onions soon. Onions.
Check out additional info on this rinse at #ohairhooked Tip of the Week on Instagram tomorrow!
Whether you are living the expatriate life like myself, or move around in your home country, you know that there is that moment, (usually within the first couple weeks of arriving in your new location) when you cast about nervously for a new salon and stylist. It's terrifying to get on the Yelp or drive by a location, squinting and thinking...okay that looks good (sweaty armpits...) I'll try them out and see what result.
Even if the salon looks prestigious, glossy and is perhaps featured in the town circular, the questions remain. Which stylist? For what service? In which moving box are the hats to cover a potential disaster? Just because a stylist is a genius colorist doesn't mean they can cut to save his/her life.
After one of these new and "exciting" adventures, during which I have handed over the entire contents of my wallet, I am left in nothing short of shock and awe when, I walk away from the experience without half my eyebrows and/or the hair atop my head. My question is - Lady/Man. You have just messed me up - full stop! WHY are you carrying on in raptures and bleating like a happy goat about how great things look just before you hand me the mirror and expect similar delight from me??!!
I have found it a good rule of thumb to diminish my expectations of how great the 'Ta-Da' moment of the reveal will be directly in proportion to the excitement of the stylist. The more swooning - the worse its bound to be. I've categorically proved it! *groan*
I'm not a great one for showing my displeasure with a stylist. Not so much as a mutter will one get out of me no matter the results. Insults, raised voice and refusing to pay is not within my wheelhouse of reactions (I'm more of the tight smile and deer in headlights kind). I think I could do better though.
Aside: We'll have to talk about salon etiquette. I know some of you can get down right "burn the village and poison the wells" when an unsuspecting stylist messes you up. I feel your anger. Trust! But there is a time, place and way... that I'm still getting comfortable with.
As usual, I digress. The facts are these. It takes time to make friends in a new place and while I am not above it, it can be daunting to walk up to someone with good brows and laid hair and ask,
"Where did you get your service done?"
Some people are simply not forth coming. Stylist hogs! Others can be helpful. Worst case scenario they turn to you and say,
"Oh! I do everything myself! I just rolled out of bed and hit the floor beautiful girl!"
To which I shake my fist in eternal consternation.
Moving to Saudi and getting back on track with my hair meant another salon search. There were rumblings and whispers and finally when direct colleagues showed me an ad. Naturally, I, the one with the hair website was chosen to be the first of my circle to go in to Healthy Hair in Saudi salon and subsequently be judged on the results.
I wasn't nervous...well...I was nervous in the way that one gets nervous when your hair is an unmitigated mess (ahem... timid hand raised) and you're having a new person get in there for the first time. Explaining the whys and wherefores of that previous experimental disaster when you thought you'd just - real quick - trimyourownhair (shudder) is daunting.
My experience was wonderful and I definitely hit a jackpot in finding Healthy Hair in Saudi!
I'm hoping that you will share some of your favorite salon's no matter where you are in the world!. Who knows, one of us may be in that city soon! Please shout out your city, salon and stylist in the comments below.
Lastly, I am not a stylist hog and highly recommend Healthy Hair in Saudi for hair types 3 and 4 in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. Lisa's fabulous personality and genuine care for hair is the best part of visiting her salon. Well, that and of course the comfortable slippers provided in a wicker basket by the door.