Grooming is constant isn't it? I'm not an overly vain woman, but I feel like I am constantly plucking, waxing, shaving, brushing and bathing trying to get myself together.
When I was in school, usually during finals and into summer I would, for a month, (ahem...or two) let myself revert back to a state of nature - I was clean of course! Showering, which in those years meant a full concert performance of Mariah Carey's greatest hits was compulsory. As you can imagine that took a bit of time and so... when I was making a little bit of money at my very first post college job, my parents presented me with brand new responsibility! ...Payment of the monthly water bill - grimace! Let's just say my creative, octave pushing interpretations of Mariah's vocal catalog were cut to two songs with the water OFF while soaping up.
During this period of rest/regression my eyebrows which happen to be thick with a tendency to unruliness would practically grow together and out in every direction so that by the end of the trial I was very nearly able to brush them up my forehead into a deceptive faux bang.
After these long periods of groomless rest and introspection, during which I descended into serious doubts about my appeal as a female homo sapien, I would gather my coins, beg a 10 or 20 from the parents to contribute to the, "rescue the unfortunate girl living in the third bedroom on the right fund" and head for "my team" of much put upon esthetician and hairdresser who after the long absence would cluck, stare and well... after hours...make a way out of no way.
As the years have gone by and I continue with my shortened "rest" periods I have found that it has done me enormous good to keep the hair care routine to a minimum for at least a month. Over the years I've noticed that my hair shows a lot less wear and tear as a result of over styling and my brows remain thick and full because I haven't violently attacked them one time too many which can happen to us all - but sometimes sadly they just doesn't grow back.
So I want to ask you as we draw close to the end of the summer; Is it time to rest for a change? Would you ever give yourself a month even two weeks sans plucking, fussing, shaving, and carrying on? I always like to think of it as my armagedon, desert island challenge. If I were trapped on a desert island with no cosmetics to save me. Would I still be "okay"? Candidly - the answer is most definitely no. As I mentioned earlier I like to bathe in fresh water with soap and then rigorously moisturize from top to toe after. I am highly allergic to ashiness - just saying!
I am not advocating that you stop washing your hair!!! That will cause other problems. Instead engage in life au natural and examine the benefits of follicle rejuvenation by putting a pause on the coloring, bleaching, plucking and waxing.
My rest for a change suggested regime includes the following:
1. Dry brushing legs and arms - a good exfoliating regime is healthy for your skin as it sloughs off the dead cells that can build up over time and make our legs and arms look lack luster. Instead of shaving and waxing try a two week trial of lightly (emphasis on lightly) dry brushing the skin on your arms and legs with a loofah or bath brush every third calendar day before your bath/shower. Moisturize your skin while damp with a natural oil followed by cream of choice afterwards and enjoy supple skin! When you do get back to the shaving or waxing you'll notice a wonderful difference!
2. Scalp massage - scalp massage is a wonderful way to rejuvenate the hair follicles, relax after a long day or just treat yo self! Hair color can be enhancing and provide coverage for unwanted grays but if you skip your usually scheduled coloring appointment once and instead give yourself an upright or inverted scalp massage for four minutes every night with a little tea tree oil until your next coloring appointment you'll give the scalp a truly pampered rest.
For a more rigorous massage pre-shower, wet your hair and give your scalp and follicles a massage with a hair and scalp salt scrub like the Cleansing Purifying Scrub with Sea Salt by Christophe Robin . According to dermatologist Francesca Fusco, M.D., this will restore damaged follicles and help maintain their health by keeping the blood flowing actively through your scalp. Use your fingertips to gently massage the scrub into your hair for a few minutes, and then rinse it out.
3. Take a vacation from heat styling - I know its hard but put down the blow dryer, curling iron, flat iron and ALL their cousins for a minimum of two weeks! Heat breaks are so necessary (notice I DID NOT say wash break! Please do not show up anywhere looking greasy or dry or gross and say I told you to do so in the name of an au natural hair rest!) However, Do let your hair air dry! Too much heat styling can weaken your hair and follicles and may lead to breakage.
A heat styling break is the hardest part of the "rest" but can yield the greatest long term results especially for those with ultra fine hair.
Do you do a rest every now and again? Perhaps you have your own rest tips you'd like to share. Thoughts and comments are welcome below!