Tuesday, August 9

letters to the editor: straight hair styling

Several of you have asked me how I style my hair. I wear it either straight or wavy, but today I'll share my straightening tips with you.
For starters, I have very fine hair. It wasn't always that way, but now that I'm getting older (yes, almost the big 3 0) it is getting more and more fine. I also have (had) naturally curly hair, and over the years it has straightened to a wave.
After I wash and condition (just the ends!) my hair, I wrap it in a towel for a few minutes to soak up excess moisture.
Then, I comb a pea size amount of Moroccan Oil through my hair. It detangles and protects, as well as adds a shine to the finished look.
Next, I add a healthy amount of mousse to create volume (my hair is super fine, remember?). I love Davines mousse, but lately I've switched to Big Sexy Hair Root Pump: Humidity Resistant mousse. What a name, no?
It gives even more volume, and withstands humidity which is SO important.
After I massage the mousse into my roots, I flip my hair over and dry with my T3 Dryer using just my fingers. I dry at a downward angle until the underside of my hair is completely dry.
Then I flip my hair back right side up and grab my round brush and start from the front down to the back, grabbing smallish sections and rolling the brush through as I dry. I usually take about two longish "rolls" with each section. I take the brush against the roots of said section and while pointing the dryer at the root (from the front side), I start twisting my wrist and the brush "rolls" against the hair. I go from root to ends.
It is important to keep the dryer straight onto those sections of hair, so it doesn't blow against the hair cuticle. Just don't get too close or touch the dryer to the hair.
For added volume, dry in the opposite direction your hair will eventually lay.
Once I have completed drying my hair, I take another pea sized amount of Moroccan Oil to tame the frizzies. I then take some CHI Pliable Polish to the bangs portion of my hair. I have SO.MANY.COWLICKS at my hairline, and it is impossible to keep those suckers in place. Pliable Polish helps a lot.
Depending on where I'm going to what I'm doing, I finish it off with a spray of L'oreal Elnett Hairspray. And voila!
It seems like a lengthy process, but all in all, it only takes me 10 minutes max.
What is your hair routine?
PS: Can we say three cheers for no makeup? :) I always dry my hair before I put makeup on.


  1. Do you do home visits?? I would love to get my hair to lay as straight as yours but I'm just not that good with the round brush. Yours looks amazing.

  2. Do you have a good dryer? and a good brush? That has a lot to do with it. And thank you. :)

  3. You hair always looks polished Sarah. I have cowlicks at the back crown of my head that drive me nuts because if they split open it looks terrible. How do you use the CHI Pliable Polish on the cowlicks? Do you use it close to the roots? Is this product like a clay or wax that is used to make the hair piecey?

  4. Anonymous6:36 PM

    you look great without makeup!

  5. My hair used to take from 20-60 minutes every day when I wore it long, and I don't miss it. After I cut it short, I can be ready in 5!

  6. Anonymous10:48 PM

    Thank you so much for showing us this! Really helpful! Love your blog! I am learning so much!

  7. Thanks, everyone!
    @ San, Pliable Polish helps keep the hairs in place that stem from the cowlicks. You may want to give this a try. It is pretty creamy. When I had shorter hair, I used a product more similar to a wax. So depending on hair length, I'd give either a try. The wax has more hold, but I don't want the fringe of my hair to get too stiff. Bryan uses a product by Davines. Sometimes in a pinch I'll use a little just on my baby hairs.
    @Nanne, somedays I miss my pixie short hair!
    @Anony, so glad you found this helpful!

  8. Kristin9:15 AM

    Gorgeous! How do you like your hair dryer? thanks!

  9. @Kristin, I love it! It's super light weight, which comes in handy when I'm sore from my workout the night before.
    It also has little "diamonds" on the handle, which, you know, helps.
    Previously, I had used a Chi Rocket, and I admit it was hard to get used to this one because the Chi was so powerful. This one gets just as hot, and after I adjusted my drying technique, it has worked great. I've had it for about six months.

  10. This was really helpful, I was using a round brush, but not a LARGE round brush. I picked one up yesterday and it made a big difference. My hairdryer is quite old, I'm going to have to look into a new one soon. Thanks for posting this! You look lovely sans make-up!

    My hair routine is, put wet hair into a turby twist towel while I put on make-up. Then add some Wen leave in conditioner to the shaft and ends (it's the only product I use on my hair), tossle with my hands until mostly dry, then use a round brush to straighten. The tiny hairs by my face, have to get flat ironed since they curl on their own.

  11. Very interesting. Sarah, do you use the Pliable Polish on the roots where the cowlicks start, or on the ends to give the ends more weight and stckiness so they stay where you want them? Sorry if this seems like a silly question. I would love to solve the problem of my cowlicks. Thanks.

  12. On the ends. Unfortunately, there is no cure for cowlicks.

  13. Anonymous10:41 AM

    This was great, Sarah. What kind of shampoo & conditioner do you use? ~Shannon

  14. OK this is the post I really needed!! I was shocked to hear you say your hair is fine, I would never guess that. Mine is, too...it has always driven me nuts, but I've never had much of a routine, either. Thanks for showing that you can have FABULOUS hair regardless of its thickness.

    I've had the pixie for years and am trying to grow it out finally. Any recommendations for growing it out? Also, what kind of highlights do you get? So ignorant here, but I want your hair!!

    Kimberly C.

  15. Thanks, Kimberly! I have a great stylist, that's my secret. If you come to Austin, let me know, and I can hook you up. :)
    As far as growing it out, I think it's good to pick hairstyles for the in between stages to avoid as much awkwardness as you can between phases.
    Highlighting helps thin hair look thicker too.