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Hair hacks: how to tame your mane

An hour on hold and you still didn't bag that hallowed appointment on April 12? Fear not, we've got the do's and don'ts for forlorn locks until you can hand over to the pros

If you haven’t managed to secure your hair appointment for April 12 (because frankly it’s like bagging a Glasto ticket right now), we’ve got some tips for taming those tresses until you can hand over to a professional.

With the help of the finest hairdressers in Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire, we’ve identified the do’s and don’ts of dealing with hair that’s long overdue a once-over. From shaggy fringes to unwanted grey and dark roots, here’s how to style it out till you hit the salon:

Don’t reach for box dye. Sales have soared 1,000% over lockdown for some shades, with champagne blonde and pink among the trending colours. Anne Veck has salons in Bicester and Oxford and is known for sporting vibrant hair in shades of orange and pink, but she doesn’t advise attempting permanent colour at home.

For starters, cheaper at home kits can skip on the protective ingredients that nourish your skin and hair during the process, and the chemicals stay in your hair until it’s cut off.

Secondly, in a salon, colour is applied to the roots, then refreshed rather than applied all over the hair straight away. It means salon colour lasts longer.

Anne says do try semi-permanent colour if you really can’t bear what’s looking back at you in the mirror. The coverage is less good but it fades more softly and is kinder to hair.

Do try a root cover-up such as Colour Wow, which is less messy than colour and covers up regrowth until that hallowed appointment.

Don’t cut your own fringe. Just don’t. Especially not with blunt scissors or huge kitchen shears. It’s not going to end well, trust us.

Do instead tame overgrown fringes or locks with a tactical grip, ribbon or hairband that is so fabulous it will detract from the chaos below. There were some good examples of this at the Biden inauguration (the most notable fashion event of the year so far), with Lady Gaga’s plaits bound in black ribbon and poet Amanda Gordon rocking a padded red Prada headband. Indigo Rye, which has salons in Wallingford and Reading, has some more ideas on its Instagram.

For hair damaged by colour, wintery weather and central heating, do try a hair repair product. This will go some way towards replicating the glossy look that you parade out of the salon after one of their intensive conditioning treatments. Knight & Wilson’s cult Pureplex bond repair treatment is more affordable than similar products, at £12.99, and strengthens hair with proteins and acids in a four stage process that isn’t too fiddly to do at home.

Do have a go at a salon blow dry, starting with a decent product and taking a bit of time with a dryer and brush. Even the most cack-handed attempt will result in a better outcome than the bird’s nest you’re currently sporting (or perhaps that’s just us…). One secret weapon for fine or lank hair is the 24 Hour Minute Volume from A Stylist’s Secret, a volumising spray for thicker and fuller looking hair that leaves it smooth as well as bouffed. Trying a new parting will also go some way to covering roots and give more volume.

Do also experiment with tongs, straighteners and wands. Unit Hair in Long Crendon has a video on its Instagram showing how to create natural waves using tongs. But don’t use heated tools too often – just save them for that glamorous outing to the letterbox… To reduce damage do make sure your hair is completely dry before styling and use a heat protection spray like Bumble & Bumble Hairdresser’s Invisible Oil UV Protective Dry Oil Finishing Spray, which you mist onto damp hair before drying and styling.

More hair hacks..

5 best hair masks

5 root touch-ups

J’adore/J’abhor – whether to embrace a full head of grey

Find more ideas here


2 comments on “Hair hacks: how to tame your mane”

  • Bobby Bucks February 26, 2021

    Hey Muddy, men like me read your posts and we have hair too, you know! How about some suggestions for us?

    • muddystiletto March 18, 2021

      Bobby, I won’t ignore you! Hair for men on the agenda! x


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