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Identifying your hair type. | Which S A Y A Hair Oil is best for you?

Working day in, day out with all different hair types and textures, I generally divide them into 4 categories... Dry, damaged, frizzy/unruly and oily. 

Depending on which of these my client has will determine the way I treat the hair and product choice, for both me using in the salon and the client at home.

Understanding your hair type will make your life a lot easier when it comes to styling and caring for your hair. For example, someone with oily hair should use completely different products to someone with frizzy/unruly hair.

However, working out your type isn't always easy - especially when it comes to telling the difference between dry and damaged hair. I feel this is quite a common mistake but could cause problems as you treat each one very differently! The technique I usually use is called 'the wet stretch test', you can easily do this at home and it takes 2 minutes. 

The Wet Stretch Test

Pick up a very small piece of hair around 10 strands thick - I normally pick up this hair from around the crown area as this hair will show a more accurate result. 

Spray the hair damp and using both fingers and thumbs (keep around a 10cm gap apart) pull the hair. If the hair is very stretchy it shows the hair is damaged. If the hair feels very stiff and has hardly any stretch to it, it means your hair is dry. Then you can go onto choosing the correct products to nourish your hair correctly and avoid build-up of product which will lead to weighing your hair down or actually causing more damage!

When it comes to deciding if your hair is either oily or frizzy/unruly, this one should be more obvious. If you feel like you just cannot manage your hair without having to intensely heat style or tie it up because you just don't know what to do with it, I would say you have frizzy/unruly hair. The best thing with this is choosing the right products for you and letting it do its natural thing. This hair needs heavier products and choosing the correct ones will work wonders and save you a lot of time!

With oily hair you probably feel like you have to wash your hair every day or even tie it back halfway through the day because you feel its stuck to your head! Oily hair is generally a little finer in texture and isn't able to absorb heavy products like other hair types would.

So now you've analysed your hair type, what do you do from here..?

You’ve done your wet stretch test and the hair is stiff and doesn't stretch much.. So you have dry hair.

Dry hair is caused by numerous things. Too much heat styling, not using products that moisturise or nourish the hair enough. Even the elements can dry your hair out, especially in the winter months when you’re using central heating at home! The best thing with dry hair is to try not to wash more than 2-3 times weekly, as this will naturally strip oils from hair. Using a moisturising treatment through the ends of your hair once a week will definitely help (which you can easily make at home, even with things like avocados!!) Avoiding products with sulphates and parabens will help, as they leave your hair with a residue coating the strands - making it appear dryer and heavy. After you've cleansed your hair, massage through 2-3 drops of the lightweight S A Y A Nourishing Hair Oil (depending on thickness of hair). It’s packed with oils such as Sandalwood, Geranium and Petitgrain to help keep your hair feeling soft to touch, moisturised and shiny!

Hair easy to stretch? Damaged hair...

Damaged hair is generally caused by over colouring/bleaching or too much heat styling. This hair needs products that are packed with proteins such as Quinoa protein. This helps to restructure the hairs natural state and fill the strands back with things that have been stripped. Try not to over wash damaged hair - twice a week is recommended, as anymore can be quite damaging due to the hair being at its weakest form when wet, which will lead to breakage from combing out wet hair. Using S A Y A Daily Ritual Hair Oil on wet or dry hair, massage softly 2-3 drops through mids and ends daily. This is made up of oils such as, Moringa, Almond, Chamomile, Rosemary and Lavender. These all have healing properties, especially the Chamomile oil which is great for strengthening brittle hair from within, leaving behind soft and strong tresses!

Frizzy/unruly hair?

This type of hair doesn't need much shampooing and you may find it gets smoother and easier to manage the less you wash! Try not to over-style this hair as it will be quite hard work. Working against it and trying to smooth it out you may find it quickly frizzing back to its natural state. The best thing to do is work with the natural kink in the hair and nourish it with heavier products to smooth and silken the curl. Using heavier products such as S A Y A Soothing Scalp Oil is a great one for this as it is made of the heavier oils such as jojoba and almond, which are perfect for frizzy hair as it is packed with Omega 3 and Vitamin E. This will help to smooth down the hair cuticle leaving the hair looking smoother and feeling more manageable. Massage the oil through mids and ends, then let it do its thing with air drying!

Oily hair?

This one's a tricky one as you will want to wash your hair everyday, but do try not to, as the longer you leave it the hair will naturally start to cleanse itself! The more frequent you're washing it, the greasier it gets. Try cutting back to just 3-4 times a week using a Clarifying shampoo, almost working like a blotting paper to strip some of the oils out. One of the biggest problems with oily hair is dry ends - you will still need to nourish them so they don't dry out. The S A Y A Clarifying Hair Oil is a perfect one for this as it is super lightweight and made up of Grapeseed, Cypress, Cedarwood and Rosemary. Grapeseed is one of the lightest oils so won't add to the oily problem but will still keep your ends moisturised!


Article written by Talia Cooper-Gray - Organic Hair Stylist & Colourist | @tals_cg_hair