Wash Less - Brush More - By Talia Cooper-Gray - Organic Hair Stylist & Colourist
Ever wondered how some people have super healthy, glossy, strong and effortless looking hair? Working with around ten clients a day, I would see this a lot and wonder what their secret was. I started asking what their hair care routine at home was like.. and nine times out of ten the answer would always be the same.. 'I just don't really do anything...’
I started asking more questions and it seemed to be that only washing once a week and brushing their hair both morning and night (or more) seemed to be the trick (and of course having regular trims!). I found that the clients that were washing almost every day, or every second day, would always have a similar problem - their ends were feeling dry and brittle.
So I started recommending to clients that they cut back the amount of washing. At first it may seem strange, as it might start to feel a little greasy after day 3. However if you stick to the new regime it will slowly start to cleanse itself.
Both myself and my clients started noticing a difference - within even just six weeks and stopped feeling the need to wash it more than twice a week. Their hair felt thicker to touch, less frizzy and had a lot more shine to it.
Using the correct shampoo for your hair will also help as it will give your hair exactly what it needs to absorb, without leaving any residues on which coat the hair. I also found that spritzing my hair after conditioner with some watered down apple cider vinegar and leaving for a minute or so before doing the final rinse helps to naturally close down the cuticle, making hair appear more glossy. It is also great on the scalp, as it soothes any itchiness.
I also found that if you were to brush your hair using the right brush for you, the ends start to feel more nourished - because when you brush you are brushing all the (good!) natural oils from your scalp through to the ends. By brushing your scalp and hair you also increase your blood flow to the area which leads to thicker longer hair.
So you’ve cut back on the amount of time you’re shampooing your hair (and saving loads of time!), what do you do with your hair on the days in between..?
After washing your hair, style as you normally would - a little oil in the ends works great as you are restoring some of what you have washed away. That evening, brush your hair before you go to bed and again as soon as you wake up. This will help keep the hair (and any styling you’ve done) in place, free of any knots, and maintain until you next wash. You will notice your hair doesn't look dry or dull through the ends as they are getting what they need from you brushing through the oils. Of course using the correct brush will make a big difference to this as plastic hairbrushes can actually cause more damage. Using plastic brushes can be quite harsh on the hair and can easily rip and break hair, sometimes more likely to encourage static. I’ve found that using natural materials such as wood or boar bristle brushes are a lot kinder and nourishing for the hair.
Which brush should I use for my hair type?
This can be confusing as there are so many! Working with the S A Y A brushes, which are all made from FSC certified wood, they literally cover every hair type. Starting with the Paddle Brush, which is a personal favourite, as i feel this style of brush is just perfect for almost every hair type - especially long hair. With a padded canvas base and wooden pins, it will be a great way to brush through hair (wet or dry) which is anti static and will help to distribute the natural oils.
If your hair is shorter and you feel the Paddle brush is too large in size there is the Ash Hairbrush, which is slightly smaller and rounded in shape - great for stimulation on the scalp with short hairstyles, working again with a canvas padded base and wooden pins.
For curly/afro hair you will need something with slightly longer bristles to make sure it gets right through to the depth of the curl and to ensure you are distributing oil evenly all the way through. The Olive Hairbrush will be perfect for this, with 2cm long wooden pins and rounded in shape, it’s perfect for massaging the scalp. Although do be careful with over brushing curls as this may add frizz.
If you're looking for a softer brush the Boar Bristle Brush is a perfect option, best used on dry hair, as the boar bristles will easily glide through, leading to less breakage, but at the same time enhance any natural texture and body in the hair. The perfect brush for distributing oils from the scalp through to mids and ends, which will lead to a reduction in oil build up on the scalp as the natural boar hairs absorb oil. Also great for a mini head massage as the soft bristles will help stimulate the scalp.
S A Y A also have added the Vegan Hair Brush, which is a great alternative to boar brushes, using plant based tampico bristles. You will still be getting all the benefits, as Tampico fibres are also well known for their capacity to hold moisture - which will still result in healthier, glossier nourished locks!
Article written by Talia Cooper-Gray - Organic Hair Stylist & Colourist | @tals_cg_hair