I’ve spent the past few years trying to reverse the damaging effects that bleach has left on my hair…and now that it’s healthy I have no idea what to do with it. What once paid attention to hot tools and was easy to style (albeit, a bit crispy) is now soft, silky and completely annoying.
First, some hair history. As a native ~* NoRth JerZii GuRl,*~ I’ve held onto two key philosophies when it comes to hair styling: blonde is better and bigger is not only better, but entirely necessary. My mother taught me at an early age that flat hair effing sucks, and by the time I reached fifth grade I was ready to do something about mine, which brings us to my first perm.
Your computer screens do not deceive you—I really did get a perm in fifth grade. But not before signing a waiver, promising to take care of my young, soon-to-be-chemically-treated strands. “GET ON WITH IT, LADY,” I thought to myself as I scribbled my signature across the dotted line (which was heavily-rehearsed, because a girl can never be too prepared for a life of Disney channel stardom).
For the next two years, I sported a scrunchy style that not only complimented my Bath and Body Works roll-on-glitter collection but also smelled fantastic due to mass amount of LA Looks hair gel. Alas, all good things must come to an end. By the time I reached middle school, I decided to part with my perm in order to move on up in the world of chemically-processed hair. It was time for highlights.
Once I had a taste of the blonde life, there was no turning back. For starters, I was one step closer to being Jessica Simpson, my then-hero despite the fact that she couldn’t discern the difference between chicken and tuna (we all have our flaws, so CHILL). Suddenly, the sun shone brighter, my Mountain Dew tasted sweeter and my Aéropostale shirts looked cooler. Being blonde was the shit. From then on out I stuck to a consistent highlighting schedule, returning to the salon 4 times a year rotating between “partial” and “full-foil” appointments. I had a pretty horrific encounter with a bottle of peroxide the summer I turned sixteen, but I was too busy trying to smuggle bottles of Mike’s Hard Lemonade to the beach to be bothered with salvaging it.
In college, things took a turn for the sad. I was away at a school that I hated, with friends that I didn’t really like and extra weight that wouldn’t come off. At a time when everything seemed to be spiraling out of control, I took back the reins in the only way I knew how: I printed out a picture of Lauren Conrad and brought it to some crap salon in Massachusetts with a fancy-sounding name. I ignored my mother’s dire pleas for me to wait until I came home for spring break to color my hair and let some level-one stylist totally fuck my day up.
It was all downhill from there. In order to correct the color, I had to dye my hair dark brown, which I had convinced myself would “bring out my blue eyes.” I hit a roadblock when my regular stylist told me that there were no less than 7 different colors in my hair, so instead of “rich chestnut,” I was left with “shit brown with a hint of green.”
As I gradually began adding highlights, my life saw some improvement (it probably also had something to do with the fact that I transferred schools, befriended the best people in my life and stopped eating family-sized bags of Smartfood popcorn). Since then, I’ve treated my strands with kindness, getting low-lights in the winter and deep-conditioning as often as humanly possible. The results have been exceptional, and my hair is silky and full without split ends or fried sections. Except it’s near-impossible to style it the way that I once did.
I relied so heavily on damage to create volume that healthy hair is an entirely new arena for me. My curls fall out faster and while my ponytail is fuller, it no longer stays in perfectly-teased place. Regardless, I refuse to go back down the brittle road of hair mistakes past. I’ve come to regard my teasing comb and extra-hold hairspray the same way I do tequila: indulging only in moderation unless I’m in Las Vegas. Cue Klorane Dry shampoo with oat milk-non aerosol, the all-star product that I now rely on for the texture and volume of yesteryear, sans breakage.
DISCLAIMER. I work for Klorane. But this stuff is life-changing enough to dedicate an entire blog post to, so just hear me out. The eco-friendly edition of this French cult favorite gives just as much lift and hold as certain over-priced dry texturizing sprays without completely drying out my hair. I split it into sections and squeeze some of the powder formula into my roots before flipping my head over to massage the product into my scalp. The volume is crazy-impressive and the gentle formula doesn’t leave my scalp itchy for the rest of the day. There’s a slight mattifying effect, so I often have to opt for volume over shine, but as someone who panics at the mere mention of a flat iron, it’s a worthy sacrifice.
There you have it– a supes-profesh answer to the existential “is bigger really better?” question. I invite you to go forth and blast your roots with Klorane’s natural goodness.