Posts Tagged ‘red hair’





Believe it or not there’s a lot more to air drying hair than just letting your hair dry……. in the air. There are steps you can take to make your air dried hair look pretty epic and it’s not as hard as you might think. Follow these tips and find the air drying product for your hair type down at the bottom!

air dry air drying hair the beauty department

  1. Use a WIDE TOOTH COMB to detangle while you’re in the shower or immediately after you get out. Don’t wait too long to comb through or your curl wave pattern will break up. Find your part (if you want one) and do a quick comb through.
  2. Pick your favorite product from the round up below for air drying! I have different favorites for different hair needs so be sure you’re using the one best suited for your own hair. (Here we’re using the new AIR DRY FOAM for which I added a shopping link down below and more info!)
  3. “Scrunch” the product of your choice into your hair. Be sure to deliver the right amount to the area where your hair needs it most– for example, if you want volume, scrunch a volume-focused product into the root and work your way to the ends. If you want to focus on moisture, start at the bottom where your hair may be the driest and work your way up using a moisture-focused product.
  4. A long time ago I told you guys about my favorite thing for curly hair– t-shirt drying. Use an old t-shirt to squeeze excess moisture out of the hair. Using a t-shirt instead of a towel is genius because the little loops from a towel can easily cause frizz whether you realize it or not! They’re like teeny tiny little combs and sometimes hairs stick to them as you scrunch, breaking up the curl.
  5. Always flip your head upside down and give it a little scrunch. By doing that you can avoid that “pasted down” look that is often a result of air drying. By flipping a scrunching you’re lifting the root off your head just a little. For more volume, do this a couple times as it dries.
  6. Continue scrunching from the bottom up as the hair dries. Not a ton, but just a couple times here and there to encourage the wave or curl.
  7. If you have “puffy hair”, and it tends to get wide or super frizzy, twist your hair into a loose bun for 10-20 minutes as you air dry. Then let it to continue drying. That should help contain some of that puffiness.
  8. At the end, add a good HAIR SERUM of your choice! Only if you feel like you need it! If you don’t, lucky you. Sometimes just for extra polishing, I’ll take a flat iron on low heat and just finish off my ends very lightly. Sounds silly because the point of this is air drying but if you’re going somewhere and you just want it a little more refined, seal down your ends with the lightest amount of heat. You’re still skipping heat styling on 90% of the hair.

Here are my favorites for each hair type, including the one we used up top!

the beauty department air drying

  1. R + CO CHIFFON This is more like a light leave in conditioning foam, in my opinion. I wasn’t expecting that the first time I used it. I thought it was going to be more like a regular mousse with a little hold. My hair didn’t have hold at all, it was just soft and bouncy. This is great for anyone needing additional softness when air drying. You can use this on straight, wavy or curly hair. Not going to do anything for puffy or frizzy hair, really.
  2. JOHN FRIEDA AIR DRY FOAM I loved this and it’s super affordable. It gives a very light hold and doesn’t feel heavy. Weightless foams are becoming very popular for air drying and this was the one we used up top. Kept the waves in and frizz out. May not be enough hold for curlier hair types though.
  3. LEONOR GREYL ECLAT NATUREL I’ve been using this stuff for years. I love this for over processed blondes and anyone with significant dryness. Natural oils are packed into this cream and it’s sooooooo great. It brings the most dead hair back to life. Major nourishment.
  4. SACHAJUAN OCEAN MIST Love this for exactly what you’d think. Beachy waves. Some ocean sprays have a lil too much grit for my liking, leaving the hair feeling like there’s a film on it. This doesn’t do that at all and it’s pretty light weight which works well on finer hair (as most ocean sprays do not).
  5. ORIBE CURL GLOSS Anybody air drying major curls should have this is their bathroom. It lasts a long time (which is important because it’s pretty pricey) but I love it SO much. Curly hair lacks moisture, and often lacks shine because of that. This brings back the shine in a way that just looks healthy, not wet and crunchy.
  6. SEBASTIAN WHIPPED CREAM This one is amazing for classic wavy hair and curly hair that needs more volume. It’s whipped and literally feels like whipped cream. It encourages waves and curls to get “bigger” but also feels moisturizing at the same time.
  7. LIVING PROOF CURL ENHANCING STYLING MOUSSE I like this for anyone who’s in between. So let’s say you have not-quite-wavy or not-quite curly hair. This curl enhancer will knock you into the next bracket because it actually help form stronger curl patterns.
  8. DR BRONNERS FAIR TRADE ORGANIC HAIR CREME Shout out to my organic, vegan- loving curly girls. This a cream formula made from organic natural ingredients. I love it for anyone who needs to “take it down a notch” with the width of their hair. If you hair gets big and wide, work some of this in from root to ends and see it settle. The weight doesn’t over-power. It just helps to calm excess volume. Also, feels like you’ve had conditioner in your hair the whole time when you go to rinse it out.
  9. ORIBE GEL SERUM For those of you who need MORE! If you already have wave or curl and you want it big big big, use some gel serum. I love this for wild, untamed crazy curls. It’s going to give you a MAD curly hair flip.
  10. SEBASTIAN POTION 9 I’ve been using this since I was a kid and I’ve used it on many hair types. It’s great for the slightest hold and for adding shine and moisture. I don’t use it every time I shampoo, just once a week or so when my fine but very thick hair feels like it needs a little extra moisture and I don’t have time to do a treatment!

Do you have any favorites for air drying?


Post: Kristin Ess, top photo by Kristin Ess, bottom photos Kristin Ess, Angela Kohler + Tyler Jennings

MERMAID ALERT. Hands down the most frequent question I get asked when I meet people for the first time is how I keep my red hair so bright. Everyone looks at you when you’re a hair colorist as if you’re holding out on some mega-secret that’s finally going to crack the case on color fading. The truth is, there’s a whole list of secrets! There not just one magic potion to pour on your head. If there was, I would own it by now and I would share it with you right here. I’ve written about red hair color on TBD before as a blogger, but now I want to write from the perspective of a fellow redhead. I could just list off a bunch of color safe shampoos but there are plenty of color shampoo roundups online, right? Instead I’m going to give you a rundown of the things I do and things I don’t do to keep my hair the brightest! These are all tips that I know work because over the last decade I’ve been every single shade of roja and I’ve taken lots of notes. Here are my top 10 ways that I keep my un-natural (but totally natural) red hair on point…

  1. I have a custom conditioner made. You have to find a Davines salon and get a pro to make you one, but it’s worth it. HERE is a salon locator. So many conditioners out there for redheads are off on their tone. They’re either too pink or too yellow or too translucent. Trust me on this. Find a salon and let them mix your exact shade.
  2. Cool water washing isn’t a myth. In the winter time, I will even knock up the heater temp in the bathroom just so I can handle the cooler water setting. It doesn’t need to be cold, it just shouldn’t be hot. Changing my water temperature did slow the fading and made my hair more reflective in the long run.
  3. Swimming in a chlorinated pool? NO. Hair exposed for long periods of time in the sun? NEVER. Just don’t do it. Not unless you plan on getting your color done within the next couple days. No… just no. I only swim in salt water or fresh water. If I get in a chlorinated pool, I just won’t put my hair in, end of story.
  4. Spray leave-In conditioner is a must. I always use THIS ONE because I’ve tried about a hundred and there’s not another one like it. It seals, protects and shines like the top of the Chrysler Building. If I leave on a trip without it, it’s the first thing I have to locate when I land.
  5. Permanent color, then gloss. So for my own formula, I have someone apply my root color first which is a cream-based permanent color, then I put another cream-based permanent color through the ends. And THEN I go the extra mile and gloss over that while at the shampoo bowl (after my color has been rinsed). It takes about 20-25 minutes and it’s a similar process to a deep conditioning treatment. My hair used to fade like crazy when I didn’t put a gloss over the permanent color. I attribute most of my current vibrance to glossing over the regular cream-based color. You’re definitely going to get charged for that at the salon, but it’s not insanely expensive and it isn’t sold to people without a license. I prefer glossing my hair with Shades EQ which is from Redken. Ask your colorist or find a Redken salon HERE.
  6. Glosses in between colors. Again, it takes the same time as a deep conditioner so prioritize! I do my roots every 2 1/2-3 months, so I find a time right smack in the middle of my color appointments to get glossed. Again, I gloss with the same Shades EQ formula as before.
  7. I definitely keep blowdrying to a minimum. I’m not saying I skip blowdrying because my hair has strong wave/frizz and needs to be blown out, I just wash less (see next tip!). I’ve never done my own scientific study on this, but I know from experience that running hot air into my red locks on the daily is a no.
  8. Invest in a great dry shampoo. My favorites are THIS ($), THIS ($$) but mostly THIS ($$$). Once I became a dry shampoo addict, I started seeing my color fade much less. Obviously the less you’re washing, the less you’re fading.
  9. Every redhaired mermaid needs an ionic dryer. I use the Elchim 2001. I’ve used it forever and it’s my favorite all around. I won’t preach about the benefits of ionic dryers becuase I already did that recently RIGHT HERE.

In case we’ve never met or you’re just starting to follow TBD, I’m a redhead too, thanks to the powers of pigment. I’m also a hairstylist/colorist. As a professional, we have access to so many great things and I just wanted to share my personal favorites. If you have any tips or products that you’re obsessed with, I would LOVE for you to list them down below in the comments. We always love to hear what you’ve been using and how it’s working for you.

My last words of advice are… Always make sure you give red hair color a chance to stick. It took me about 4 rounds before my red stopped fading so much, mostly because I was blonde before. Don’t expect to go from lighter hair colors to red with no fading the first time, or even the second. Be realistic about it. Also, if you’re going red go through types of red (USE THIS POST IF YOU WANT!) with your colorist. It’s best to be on the same page about which red is which. Don’t be embarassed to take pictures with you! We love it.



Sometimes when I’m cruising the ol’ www, I get a major case of texture envy when I see these beautiful blondes with so many swirly colors wearing these braids that look so dimensional. My own hair is solid red and to be honest, I love it and I have no interest in changing it by adding highlights or lowlights. I do, however, want to see more texture when I braid my hair. I’ve tested this method a few times now and I’m so hooked on it and I wanted to share. I’ve been using tape extensions, sometimes called “skin wefts” to get color variation without adding another color permanently.We’ve talked about tape extensions before right HERE. I use them in a temporary way which last about 1-5 days depending on how oily your scalp is. I’ve tried getting color variation with clip-ins, which works, but it’s just not the same. Clip-in extensions can make the hair look bulky and sometimes you can’t get the braid the way you want it because a clip-in is in the way. To find tape extensions, you’ll have to visit your local hair extension store or order online. I always send people to The Hair Shop which you can shop online if you don’t have a store near you.

Okay, so below you see a photo of some tape extensions in-hand. See how they’re all slightly different colors? Pick 2-3 colors and get 4-6 pieces total. They don’t need to match the color of your hair because that’s the whole point! If your hair is warm, go with lighter warm colors. If your hair is neutral or ashy, go with something lighter but stay in that family. To apply them, peel the adhesive off and stick them to the root, I always say: “like a post it”. You’ll still have to work around the place where you stick them, but they’re nowhere near as hard to deal with as clip-ins. I often plan out my braid first and then apply them in a way that works with the braid. For example, I laid them horizontally in the image below to do the fishtail braid. Then when I did the crown braid I laid them vertically so they would be going the same direction as the braid.

To remove them you don’t need the hard core remover that you need when you’re wearing these in a permanent way. I just spray THIS leave in conditioner or THIS one, let it set for 3 min and then they peel right out.

Below I’ve created 2 examples of braids without tape extensions and 2 with tape extensions. And for the record, I still think the ones without extension are beautiful. The extra color just adds so much texture and makes the braid look a bit more fun. If you try it out, I’d love to see a photo! Tag @thebeautydept on your instagram pictures!



in partnership with Vidal Sassoon Pro Series // London Luxe

Adding vibrant, rich colors to your hair is always insane amounts of fun and we’re no strangers to experimenting with pretty colors around here. Not all of us can pull off our favorite shade of purple or blue all-over due to school or work, but there’s always a solution! Recently we reunited with our friends at Vidal Sassoon Pro Series and they’re launching some bold new boxes of at-home that include shades like “Midnight Muse Blue“, “London Lilac” + “Runway Red“. Um, yes please. We took a lil note from the always on-point, Kylie Jenner, and decided to play up the idea of having some hidden hues underneath. We thought it would be fun to do a tutorial on getting that look because let’s face it, while we encourage everyone to be as BOLD as possible, you could hide this at even the most conservative 9 to 5! Here’s how we did it…


  1. Clip all of your hair up into a bun. Put a cape or old (or dark) towel over your shoulders. Add a berrier of petroleum jelly around your lower hairline to keep your skin from staining.
  2. Create a triangle section in the back of your head as you see in photo number 2. It’s easiest if you part the hair down the center from your front hairline all the way to the nape of your neck. Then go back and take a half triangle from each side of the part as you see above.
  3. Always, always, always wear your protective gloves while using hair color! Inside the box you’ll find professional gloves, not those janky cheap ones that fall apart.
  4. Take out all of the Vidal Sassoon Pro Series color contents from the box. There will be containers labeled 1, 2 + 3.
  5. Take the #1 tube and mix it into the #2 bottle. Empty the entire tube into the bottle!
  6. Now shake, shake, shake!
  7. Grab a hand mirror or a compact so that you can see the back (if you’re not having someone help you, which could be both fun AND smart)!
  8. Put some color at the root of your triangle section and start combing it in with a plastic comb. Using a comb makes it easy to get the triangle section right. It doesn’t have to be perfect but the cleaner the better in our opinion.
  9. Once you get the root, pour some of the color on the middle and ends.
  10. Work it through with your fingers.
  11. It was really fun to watch it change from a pinkish/magenta hue to lilac. We have a feeling this will fade very nicely over time and just keep getting prettier! Once it’s ready, shampoo the color out. Lean over the sink and turn your head if possible to avoid getting color elsewhere. That’s what we did and it seemed to work really well. Run the #3 tube through the hair for extra shimmer + major shine.
  12. Blow dry or air dry your hair, as you please. You won’t see the color when your hair is down or in a low pony or bun, but once you put it up high, you get the full effect. We love adding some sweet accessories to this, as you can tell.

If you have darker hair this color looks beautiful. And if you want that extra pop, go into the salon and ask your colorist to have this section subtly pre-lightened. That’s what we did for the photo below. It didn’t need much, and you definitely don’t need to bleach it out to blonde, but for the color to be bold you’ll want to take the extra step.

Overall, we’re in love with the color and we’ve never seen anything like London Lilac on the shelves before. Our favorite thing was that the hair feels glossy + soft. If you try out the Vidal Sassoon Pro Series London Luxe colors, we would LOVE to see it! Tag us in your photo @thebeautydept on instagram, please!

But more importantly, Vidal Sassoon Pro Series is holding an AMAZING color contest for this launch which you should look at right HERE. Wanna go to London? Want $4,000? Um, WE DO TOO.