Ever watched a hair commercial on television and coveted the luxurious, glossy hair you see swishing from one end to the other of your screen? Perfectly in place, shiny and smooth, television-commercial-hair is undeniably enviable and can seem unattainable. But you can have TV-worthy hair if you know how to care for it properly to ensure that it doesn’t suffer the effects over-styling and heat damage. How? We checked in with two experts to find out: Charles Booth, founder and creator of La Coupe hair care products and salons and Damien Carney, celebrity hairstylist and International Artistic Director for Joico, weigh in with their advice for glossy, healthy hair and the hair care products to get it.
First things first: Why do I have hair damage?
Despite even the most committed regimen to healthy hair, the fact of the matter is, hair gets damaged. Having a love affair with your blow dryer is often the biggest culprit, but flat irons and curling irons do their fair share of harm, too. According to Carney, hair damage is typically caused by a combination of things. “Sun can lighten, fade and dull colour-treated hair,” he says. “It can also dry the hair, add unwanted texture and zap moisture, leaving the hair feeling dull, dry and lacking elasticity and flexibility.” Excessive, over-processed hair colour can also take its toll on your tresses, he says. And then, there’s just the fact that you get the hair you were born with. “Not everyone is born with naturally beautiful hair,” says Carney. “There are certain hair textures – curly, frizzy, coarse – that are naturally dry, dull or lacklustre. This type of hair needs the extra moisturizing and nourishing hair care products that nature has not provided to create shine, flexibility and style ability.”
Continue to the next page for more info about caring for glossy hair and glossy hair products…
Blow-drying your hair
Blow-drying is a necessary hair styling step for most women and one that can’t usually be avoided. And let’s face it, there’s nothing quite like the shiny, glossy hair after a great blow dry. But before you turn on the heat, keep these things in mind to keep your healthy hair: “Always use a styling product that protects and shields the hair,” says Booth. “And do not use a nozzle. It raises the velocity and stress on the hair,” he says. “Also, try to keep distance between the hair and the dryer. There should be no less than six inches in between. For waves and curls, use a diffuser.”
Carney agrees that protection and prevention is the key to glossy hair and you can start with your hair care products. “We need hot tools to style hair but they zap moisture,” Carney says. “Start at the beginning: choose a shampoo and conditioner that will nourish, moisturize and protect your hair when using any heat. Be sure to use styling products based on the following criteria: your hair texture, whether or not it’s colour-treated, long, short and your desired end result,” he says.
If you have to blow dry your hair regularly, Carney says to turn down the temperature on your dryer, which can help minimize heat damage in the long run.
Flat ironing your hair
If you can skip the flat iron from time to time, do it. But if it’s an essential part of your beauty routine, Booth says to be sure to double protect your hair with a light application of a shielding styling product all over the hair before drying. “Then reapply on each section to be flat ironed,” he says. “Keep the iron moving down the length of the section, as smoothly and as quickly as possible.”
Shampoos and conditioners: What to look for
Standing in front of a wall of shampoos and conditioners in your local drugstore or salon can be overwhelming. Where do you begin to find the hair care products that are right for you? Which ones will work to give you healthy hair? Besides the obvious (looking for products that will specifically target your hair colour and type), Carney says to look for products that contain the following ingredients:
• Proteins for strengthening hair
• Vitamins A and E for oils
• Amino acids
• Keratin, a protein which strengthens hair
• Silk amino acids for softness
• Jojoba oil
And what to avoid? Anything that contains Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, he says, as it tends to strip the hair.
Find out about the best hair treatments and dos and donts for glossy hair on the next page…
If lacklustre locks are driving you b-a-n-a-n-a-s, find some time to indulge in an intensive at-home hair treatment that will boost shine and restore your hair. Booth recommends the Orgnx REjuvenate Coconut and Macadamia oil intensive repair treatment. “Leave it on for three to five minutes for lovely luxury,” he says.
Carney recommends the K-PAK Shampoo and Conditioner and K-PAK RevitaLuxe Bio-Advanced Restorative Treatment, which he says will help restore the hair’s amino acids, and target and strengthen weak areas. “The cuticle will become smoother and more compact and colour molecules will stay in the hair longer. Hair will retain more moisture and have improved elasticity with incredible shine.”
And if you’d rather be pampered at the salon, Booth says that any salon color treatment will do the trick. “Whenever hair is freshly coloured, it definitely boosts shine; highlights are particularly effective,” he says.
Dos and don’ts for glossy hair
Ready to tackle your hair and whip it into tip-top shape? Booth offers up these helpful dos and don’ts that’ll make your hair the envy of everyone:
1. Think of your hair as the precious part of you that it is.
2. Treat it gently.
3. Shampoo and condition with good quality products that work for you and make you feel good.
4. Give your hair a deep treatment (one of the best hair care products to get healthy hair) once a week.
5. Rinse in fresh water after swimming in a chlorinated pool.
6. Trim the ends once a month at a minimum.
1. Over-use hot tools.
2. Over-process your hair (For instance: If it’s had one chemical process such as colour treatment, don’t stress it again with chemical straightening or perming).
3. Sunbathe or expose your hair to strong sun without a protectant product ingredient or a scarf or hat
For the latest in fashion, beauty and culture, sign up to receive ELLE's daily newsletter.