Since I've gone blonde, I've been trying a lot of products. This may be the most expensive hair transition in my own personal history.
While my hair didn't break from the bleach (thanks, Olaplex!) it did become very dry and porous. At first it was so porous, it was almost impossible to air dry. Then my hair moved into the frizzy stage (but it still wouldn't really air dry). Then the limp stage (which I'm still battling.) It's now back to air drying fairly well, but not quite nicely enough to wash and go. Here is what has worked for me so far.
Roux Porosity Control Corrector and Conditioner: This "conditioner" doesn't really condition hair--at least not in the way you are used to thinking about conditioner. Instead of making it softer and easier to manage, it balances the pH level in your hair, which is key after bleaching. This goes a long way towards making hair behave like healthier hair. I noticed a huge difference after one use! I still use this weekly and my hair looks and feel incredible. I've gone through the bottle I was sent and have purchased two more on my own. It's great, great stuff.
Coconut Oil: For my thick, dry, porous strands, I can't say enough about the change this has made in my hair. I love it so much, I haven't replaced my Davines Oi when I ran out of it a few days after the change in hair color. It's also great for giving you a bit of beachy texture without the salt. And it's super cheap!
Davines Natural Tech Replumping Treatment and Replumping Hair Filler Superactive: This product magically plumps the hair and compacts it. Seems contrary, right? My guess is that it rehydrates the hair from within and then compacts the cuticle so hair is smooth and shiny. One treatment in the salon lasts for about 8 weeks and the Superactive Spray that you use at home keeps the treatment going. It's almost like getting a keratin treatment, without the straightening benefits. This did way more for my hair when I had highlights to deal with. It didn't help as much on my entire head.
ApHogee Two Step Protein Treatment (Pro use, sold at Sally's): This is a somewhat labor-intensive two-step treatment. You start out by washing your hair with the Aphogee shampoo. Then you blot hair dry, comb out and apply the ApHogee Step One Treatment. It smells like a perm and vinegar had a baby, so just do it. Don't whine about the smell. Then you gently blow dry your hair until it's dry (or you sit under a hooded dryer, whichever is easiest). This means until it's hardened; do not bend your hair! You might break it off! After it's dry, you gently add warm water and rinse. Next, you apply the second step, the ApHogee Balancing Moisturizer, for two minutes. Rinse and style as needed. Your hair will be noticeably more manageable. The company believes you can do this every six weeks. Although I'm tempted to do it once a week until my hair is more manageable, according to the manufacturer you can do this more often, but it will not improve the hair.
Living Proof Instant Repair Repairing Lotion: I use this before styling my hair. It helps protect from humidity, which seems to attack my porous hair so much faster now. It's silicone-free and helps my hair stay strong. It claims to prevent breakage and strengthen hair up to fifteen times its normal strength. I haven't tried any strength tests, but my hair doesn't frizz and feels amazing. It also claims it can mend split ends with its fancy scientific blend of proprietary stuff, but I'm not so sure I believe that is possible. Either way, my hair is behaving like model hair and it has this serum to partially thank.
Bumble & Bumble Hairdresser's Invisible Oil Primer: While similar to the Living Proof product above, this spray focuses on making hair silky, fighting humidity and hydration. Created with a blend of six oils, this creamy spray hydrates hair, makes it very shiny and includes UV protection. It's new to Sephora and is already out of stock online. Clearly, I'm not the only one who loves it after the first use.
It's a 10 Keratin Spray: I've been adding this into the hair cocktail to help give my hair a little extra help. With all of the strengthening and protein additives, you have to be careful not to overdo it. Protein can make your hair break if you over use it. So tread lightly with this spray. I apply it after washing my hair, which is every three days. My hair is starting to act like the Pantene model hair I want, instead of the John Frieda before photos it was when I began.
Obviously, I've also been babying my hair. No sulfates, no brushing hair while wet without conditioner and almost no heat styling. The only true heat styling I've done is after my hair finally air dries, which sometimes takes a little extra help from the dryer. I use hot curlers (that don't go any higher than 250 degrees!). This smooths out the hair with minimal heat and pulling. It adds a touch of wave and makes my hair look much healthier than it is. Just be sure you aren't using ANY heat over 275 degrees!
My hair has gone from straw to flax in a matter of a few weeks!
What do you use to help heal worn out, over-processed hair? Please tell me! I am planning to go blonder still (so I can finally go gray) and am always up for trying something new!
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