If you really want better (or perfect?) hair, turn away from all those pricey fads you read about in magazines and instead, pick up some daily habits that will actually make a difference between salon visits. We asked Celebrity Stylist and Master Colorist Dawn Shannon (owner of Intuition Salon and Spa in Clearwater and St. Pete) to spill her secrets on things women with fantastic hair do daily, and here’s her list!
1. Keep your hair clean!
We’re sure you’ve heard a lot about the “No-Poo movement” (basically not shampooing your hair to preserve your natural oils), but you should actually “listen” to your hair. As long as you are using high quality products (not the drug or grocery store brands!) you can benefit from more frequent washing. It reduces split ends, provides great moisture, and gives hair an overall clean and shiny look.
Not sure how often to lather up? Here’s the key: Wash daily if you live in a city with pollution or humidity, or work out daily. Wash every few days if you live in a rural environment away from pollutants, or an especially dry climate. And if your hair is normal or combination, with dry ends and oily roots, you should split the difference and wash every other day.
(And get a water filter on your shower head to reduce chlorine and mineral deposits!)
2. Know the right amount of product to use — and where to use it.
If you cover your entire head when you shampoo or conditioner, you’re doing it wrong! Concentrate the shampoo on the first few inches of hair at the scalp, where you get the most oil and product buildup — your ends don’t need cleansing as much. As for conditioner, work it in from the mid-shaft to the ends where the hair is driest and prone to split ends.
The Salon Professionals at Intuition Salon and Spa will be more than happy to show you the correct products and techniques for keeping your hair fabulous.
3. Don’t skimp on the moisturizer!
The skin that makes up your scalp needs moisture just like the skin on your face does, especially if it’s going to provide a healthy foundation for hair to grow. A general rule of thumb is to condition every time you shampoo. The skilled professionals at Intuition can analyze your hair and recommend the best shampoo / conditioner combination for your hair type and lifestyle.
But the moisturizing doesn’t end once you leave the shower. Even if you’re not heat-styling your hair (see #10) you should comb through a protective product (leave in conditioner) as this can reduce frizz, dryness, and split ends, and even protect your color!
4. Keep it cool in the shower!
When you’re washing your hair, you don’t want the water too hot. Excess heat can blast the volume out of your hair, leaving you with limp locks. Instead, opt for warm water — this temperature allows you to work up a nice lather while still staying hot enough to rinse suds clean. And when it comes to the final post-conditioner rinse, the colder the better. Chilly water locks in those coveted nutrients into each strand, adding a beautiful, healthy luster.
5. Stay loyal!
It’s a common misconception that switching up your hair care brands keeps your hair healthier because it never gets time to adapt, but many experts disagree. I suggest finding what works for you and sticking with it. Remember: Your hair doesn’t know the difference. And while it’s perfectly fine to change things up when originally searching for that perfect combination that leaves you with killer strands — once you find it, don’t let it go! Also – while store brands may appear “cheaper” at the cash register, they will cost you more in the long run as they don’t do as good a job as our Intuition Salon Brands (so you end up spending more apt the Salon to repair damage) and with Salon Brands you actually use LESS product for better results so each bottle lasts far longer!
6. Eat the right foods!
For all the attention we pay to the hair follicle once it leaves the scalp, half the battle for beautiful hair is already lost (or won) by what you’re putting into your body every day. What you eat plays a huge role in gloss, growth, and volume!
A diet rich in iron, zinc, Omega-3 fatty acids, and protein will help stimulate your hair follicles for growth. Alternating between lean red meat, chicken, and fish during the week for optimum hair health.
7. Take your vitamins!
Even if your diet is impeccable, it’s possible you’re missing out on some crucial hair-boosting vitamins. Not sure if you need them? The answer is in how healthy (or not-so-healthy) your skin and nails look. For example, if your fingernails are ridging and/or if you have dry, flaky skin, chances are your hair is crying out for help, too. But that’s easy to reverse: Once you start taking the right combo of vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and herbs, you can get fuller, shinier, and stronger hair in just a few months. Bonus: Your nails and skin will also benefit.
8. Limit your time in the sun!
You see the damage that a day without sun protection does to your skin, but even though your hair suffers just as much, it can be harder to tell. To prevent sun damage, apply a leave-in conditioner at least every other day. Careful application from mid-shaft to the ends of hair can combat damage from the summer big three — UV rays, wind, and saltwater.
And if you’re headed to the beach where the heat will be coming at you from all directions, spritz a generous application of heat protectant with SPF onto damp hair before going out, followed by a reapplication after swims — same as you would do for your skin.
9. Steer clear of snarls.
Before you go ripping a comb through your strands, think about what you’re doing — and be gentle. Use a wide-toothed comb for particularly tangled locks, and always brush your hair from bottom to top to avoid creating more knots and snarls.
10. Avoid over-heating with your styling tools!
Let’s be honest, you have to use styling tools sometimes, so when you do be sure not to over heat your hair! The professionals at Intuition are happy to show you the best and safest styling tools available as well as professional techniques for getting the most out your tools with the least amount of possible damage.
11. Sleep on silk!
Silk’s smooth texture won’t rough up your hair cuticle when you sleep the way cotton does, leaving you with smoother hair in return. Fewer frizzy strands in the morning? Now that’s the dream (no pun intended).
12. Get regular trims — even when growing out your hair.
You might be tempted to skip seasonal trims when growing out your hair, but to add healthy length, you actually need to do just the opposite. A haircut every six to eight weeks is necessary to prevent split ends from forming as the hair cuticle splits.
When the split goes up the hair shaft, it becomes so thin that it breaks — that’s when people get breakage. Once your hair splits, there’s no way to repair it, so keep it trimmed to prevent harmful breakage before it starts.
Dawn Shannon’s Intuition Salon & Spa is proud to offer Organic Hair Care, Organic Color Correction, Organic Hair Color, Organic Skincare, as well as Organic Candles and Soaps! And our boutique features a wide variety of items for any occasion!
Intuition St. Petersburg
2053 Central Ave St. Petersburg, FL 33715
16 N Ft. Harrison ave Clearwater, FL 33755