Remember when Lauren’s go-to hairstyle was the bang braid? Well, lately this little lady’s had a new favorite. Check out this gem. It works on literally any hair type – short, long, curly, pin straight, anything! It’s so great for those mornings when you’re in a rush, but need something to pull your look together. Think of it as a french braid, but you only add in new hair from one side (the top). Follow these steps + be patient! You’ll get it…
- we like to part slightly off-center for this. on the heavier side, grab a section at your hairline. split it into three.
- start it just like you would a regular french braid.
- next add in a piece of hair from the top, still like a regular french braid.
- now skip the part where you’d grab a new piece from the bottom + keep braiding instead.
- then take another piece from the top + add it in.
- continue with this pattern until you have 5-7 sections added in.
- once you’re just past the ear, stop adding in new hair. Just do a regular braid + tie it off with a clear elastic like Lauren’s in the top picture.
Nearly 4 years ago, my friend Tracee was diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer. She was only 33. Hair + boobies are EVERYTHING at that age– especially to Tracee considering she was quite blessed with both. The news was shocking, but in typical Tracee fashion she soon requested we all “get it together” so we could support her in her fight. One night she called and asked if I would cut her hair off before she started chemo. I was thrilled to do that for her. We made it really fun. She always wanted to know what she’d look like with short bleach blonde hair anyway… Wish granted! We set aside 4 or 5 hours and gave her all KINDS of different haircuts on our road to a platinum pixie. We laughed so hard at some of the cuts and kept some in mind for when her hair grew back in. Seeing her so happy before bravely heading into chemo was pretty unforgettable. If you’re going through or about to go through chemo, I strongly recommend that you cut your hair short prior to fall out. Long or even medium hair can be really scary when it falls out because there’s so much more of it. Minimize the shock. No one wants to loose their hair, but on the flip side, you never know… you may love chopping it off!
During chemo therapy, a lot of your time is spent in doors, resting, eating popsicles + trying to get well. In this down time, watch some youtube videos. Learn how to draw in your eye brows when you don’t have any, and learn the trick to giving yourself lashes when there’s nothing there. Figure out how to properly wash a wig, practice putting it on, learn to style it. Figure out how to master scarves + turbans! You’ve got a lot of work to do. There is so much info on the internet, and though some is out dated, keep searching! Tracee ended up like Samantha from Sex In the City. She got multiple wigs and had fun with them. As you can see in the pictures below, she added roots to a blonde wig, cut bangs (always helps a wig look more real), styled it with headbands and braids, etc… She always looked gorgeous. How you feel about yourself is really important during recovery. Anyone will tell you, positive feelings are MAJOR.
I get asked about wigs a lot from people going through treatment. Luckily, if you live in a major city you can waltz right into your local wig shop and try things on. If you don’t, unfortunately it’s a little harder. If you can’t go try something on in person, my absolute favorite for women who have lost their hair is the Racquel Welch wig line. They update their looks, you can get synthetic or human hair, they’re easy to style and they’re not too itchy on your head like some others. If you can’t really afford a wig, check out this donation program! If you’re young enough, check out this one! You can also ask around to see if there’s a hair stylist who’s willing to help shape the wig for you. Sometimes a ready-made wig can use a little adjustment or shaping, depending on the person’s head size.
As far as regrowth, I can’t recommend any particular regrowth products because you need to ask your doctor or dermatologist about that when going through chemo. That being said, there are some incredible hair growth boosters out there! I can tell you that the new hair will usually be really soft like a baby’s hair. Sometimes even with a slightly frizzy texture. Smartest to trim the neck and around the ears as it’s growing in so you don’t grow a mullet. Look for inspiration on short cuts like this or this or this! Get a water based pomade (google it or ask your hair stylist, there are SOOO many) and learn how to use that for your short hair. Products for long hair don’t really do much for short hair.
I hope these tips are helpful and that you’re recovery is QUICK! Leaving you with some links that I love…
- PREVENT: CLICK HERE
- HELP: CLICK HERE
- LAUGH: CLICK HERE (I’ve watched all of hers! So inspiring and hilarious.)
Xx Kristin (and Tracee!)
Hair loss is truly upsetting, whether temporary or permanent. Lately we’ve been hearing about hair loss from a lot of our readers. In response, I’m writing this post to address the main causes as well as what can be done temporarily and long term. There are many studies about hair loss and even more opinions. This post comes from first hand experience with my own clients, their loss and their regrowth. This post is not for those experiencing “normal” hair loss. Believe me, you’ll know if you need to read this post!
Lack of nutrition: When the body is lacking required vitamins + minerals, the first thing to reflect that is your hair. Think of it like a flower- the first place you see loss of nutrients in a flower is the petals. Eventually petals will fall off if they’re not given what they need to stay strong. I have seen major fall out from eating disorders, sometimes irreversible damage. I can tell exactly who’s eating and who’s not in my chair because the hair feels unusually brittle prior to falling out. Brittle for no reason. That person can be using the best shampoo + conditioner, getting very little color, and air drying their hair and it will still feel brittle. Typically, image concerns and/or lack of self confidence are at the root of an eating disorder. In the long run, losing your hair only increases those things.
Stress: There are many debates over whether or not stress can cause hair loss. Here’s what I know for sure: a few years ago a friend and I went through horrible relationships at the same time. We both lost a significant amount of hair. Enough that it was visible. We both went into panic mode because the last thing you want to feel at that time is that you’re balding. She stressed about it much longer than I did and my hair had a quicker turn around. According to the Mayo Clinic that’s called “Telogen Effluvium”. With TE “emotional or physical stress pushes a large number of growing hairs into a resting phase. Within a few months, the affected hairs may fall out suddenly when combing or washing.” This simply adds to your stress. You have to get your stress in check. It’s not easy but you must. See a doctor, do yoga, play with a puppy. Whatever helps you. The minute you minimize or eliminate stress is the minute the regrowth process will begin. The sooner, the better. (Silver lining: BOTH of our hair grew back in thicker. YAY!)
Pregnancy: I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but… most of my clients have experienced hair loss with pregnancy. Not all, but most. Usually 3-6 months after the baby is born. Typically, the loss is around the hairline and/or around the nape of the neck. The reason it happens there is because that is a different type of hair. Shockingly we have more than one type of hair on our head. The hair around the hairline and nape of the neck is much more sensitive than the rest. There’s nothing you can do to stop this. The hormonal changes that happen from the start of your pregnancy to months after your baby arrives are so strong that no amount of diet, vitamin, or relaxation is going to stop this very natural process. Sorry to break it to you ladies. Get bangs.
Thyroid: Another hormonal issue: hypo-thyroid. This is a medical issue. You must see a doctor about this. After that, see your dermatologist. The doctor will help get you on the appropriate medication or treatment for your thyroid issue. A dermatologist will help with the hair regrowth. Two very different, but very important roles. I recently read a report that said “Hormonally induced hair loss happens because enzymes start to convert testosterone into DHT (dihydrotestosterone). DHT can attack the hair follicle, shrink it or even make it disappear entirely.” Best to see your doctor and dermatologist before this goes too far.
Alopecia: Alopecia in my opinion is SO random. There is no rhyme or reason to who gets it. I’ve seen it happen with the healthiest of people. It starts with small bald patches that appear for no reason and can spread into larger patches if left untreated. It is said to be caused by heredity. There is also a seperate form called “traction alopecia”. I’ve seen this caused by bad application of extensions. If extensions are applied too tightly or an extension pulls hair too far in the opposite direction of which it grows, it can damage the follicle permanently. Some extensions can also rub and irritate the scalp causing bald patches. Most of the spots I’ve seen over the years have grown hair back once the extension is out or reapplied properly. Always say something if you think an extension feels too tight.
- “Hair cells are some of the fastest growing in the body, and when your body is under stress or in crisis, hair cells can shut down in order to redirect energy elsewhere, to places where it is needed.”
- “Normally, hair grows about a half inch a month for about three years, and then it goes into a resting period. One in ten hairs is in a resting period at any one time, and after about three months a new hair pushes the old one out. When more hairs go into resting period, or the conversion process speeds up, the balance becomes disrupted, and hair loss occurs.”
- Colored dry shampoo. Spray this on your root + scalp. Not too heavily or you’ll look crazy. Just a light dusting can shadow your scalp making hair instantly appear thicker.
- Eye shadow. This is a trick I use on set a lot. Hardly anyone has a perfect hair line and in a photoshoot a sparse hair line can be a bother. I use eye shadow in the same shade as the hair and rub it on the scalp with my finger. It makes the area appear more dense and you honestly don’t see it.
- Extensions are NOT a temporary fix for fall out. You should never put extensions all the way up to the part. You should also never put extensions in weakened hair. If you MUST, use clip-in extensions so you can remove them when you’re at home and let the hair rest.
- Use a scalp massager, as seen HERE. You can get them online. Try amazon. Brushing weakend hair repeatedly isn’t a good idea. Better to stimulate the scalp directly.
- Don’t wear tight ponytails. Make sure they’re loose and not adding tension to the scalp. Or wear a messy “Fun Bun“. This sits looser and doesn’t pull downward. It also requires little to no brushing.
Long term fixes:
- Laser/light therapy. This is done with a brush-looking instrument. They will make small circles on your scalp. It doesn’t hurt at all. It’s slightly expensive, but a good alternative to medication.
- Nioxin. I’ve seen incredible results in the long run with this system. They now have specific products for women, color treated hair, advanced thinning, etc. See a professional hairstylist to get an opinion on which one you should use.
- GNC Be Beautiful hair vitamins. I’ve taken these. They’ve worked well for me and for my clients.
- At the end of the day, topical things can only do so much. Hair grows from the inside out and has to be dealt with accordingly. Work on regulating any stress disorders, significant hormonal changes or medical conditions.
My final note on this subject is to get your stress under control and your hormones in check with your doctor. If you experience hair loss, try not to panic. As “holistic” as it may sound, I think the most important thing is to give your hair a safe, stress free place to grow. I hope this info helps you guys experiencing significant hair loss.
Xx Kristin Ess
As you may know, the Teen Choice Awards were last Sunday. The radiant Nikki Reed went for full Boho beauty and here’s how I got the look:
- First, we added waves to Nikki’s hair for texture. To get waves, follow THIS.
- The night before, I pre-made a fishtail braid using an individual clip-in extension. I sewed it to a strip of elastic chord to create a braided headband that would match the golden brown tones in Nikki’s hair exactly.
- Next, I put the headband around her head and tied it together in the back at the bottom, securing all the way around with small brown bobby pins.
- I then tucked her hair up in to the headband in back until it created a texture-y chignon shape.
- Last I secured the tucked hair with large bobby pins to make sure it wouldn’t slide out of the headband. I let the pieces around the face fall out for softness and lightly sprayed all over with a medium holding hairspray so it would still move.
It’s literally one of the easiest updos and always a big hit! It’s AWESOME for short hair because you don’t need much length to tuck the hair into the back of the headband. (Spoiler alert: This is one of our short hair video tutorials coming up!) Always take a couple extra bobby pins with you when you go out just in case any pieces come loose.