My hair obeys no master. It’s fine, prone to split ends and frizzes at the first sign of moisture in the air; so I’ve always been very careful when dealing with it. I only ever blow dried it or straightened it occasionally and was always diligent in my hair care routine- gentle shampooing, conditioning and masking at least twice a week. But as soon as I hit thirty things swiftly went downhill.
I was suddenly blighted with a sprinkling of grey hair that decided to make a very visible appearance along my hairline; which inevitably had me hitting the bottle- of dye that is. Even then, I only ever used ammonia-free options in colours very close to my natural shade as I’ve never entertained the prospect of high maintenance hues. But years of even the safest, most vanilla DIY dye jobs led to an uneven deposit of colour on the ends, which meant they were closer to charcoal black than the brown at the roots.
So when I was approached by a PR agency representing a salon that “specialises” in colour in Dubai, I jumped at the chance of a review. I headed to said salon excited at the prospect of a new ‘do and was even considering going for choppy new look. In all honesty, however long I work in this industry, I will never cease to be amazed by super talented hairdressers and the magical, life-changing transformations they can conjure up. Sadly the pair of “stylists” at this particular DIFC salon left a lot to be desired. I won’t name and shame here but if you really want to know, feel free to reach out on social media and I’ll happily oblige.
I’ll spare you the details but the session basically went something like this: asks for chocolate brown, has hair colour stripped, ends up with yellow straw hair, has hair dyed a bizarre shade of khaki, nearly cries, asks for chocolate brown again, has hair dyed a rusty copper, succumbs to the reality that chocolate brown isn’t going to happen, starts palpitating when hair starts falling out in clumps during the blow dry.
Needless to say my poor scalp was suffering by the time I got home. I woke up the next morning, jumped in the shower to soothe the burning sensation. To my horror, my hair was breaking off by the handful. It was so sensitised and porous, it literally held on to all the water like a sponge and I couldn’t brush it at all without several inches breaking away.
This disastrous state of affairs called for drastic action: absolutely no heat styling whatsoever, no brushing when wet, upping my supplement intake (Omega 3,6,9 and a skin, hair and nails multi-vitamin daily), regular intensive repair treatments at tried and trusted salons (like the amazing Rahua treatment at Be Bar Blowdry Bar) and finally daily home care in the form of a blend of super oils infused with fresh cloves of garlic.
Olive oil– rich in hydrating vitamin E and K, loaded with anti-inflammatory antioxidants.
Almond oil– generous amounts of fatty acids, vitamin E, potassium, proteins, zinc, as well as other vitamins and minerals.
Castor oil– anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, promotes hair growth and strengthens the roots.
Argan oil– rich in micro-nutrients, protects hair from UV rays and environmental damage.
Coconut oil– packed full of essential fatty acids, vitamins and natural moisturizers that nourish the scalp and hydrate the lengths.
Garlic– ok this is a weird one I know, but it’s been proven to fortify the structure of the hair shaft, meaning not only can it help to replenish lost hair, but can strengthen existing hair as well, with the added benefit of vitamins and minerals that naturally strengthen and condition. Don’t worry, it doesn’t smell too terrible once it’s on your hair.
I’ve basically been soaking my hair in this powerhouse combo all day, every day then washing it with sulphate-free shampoo every other day. Whilst my hair repair journey has only just begun, I’m already starting to see results. My locks are definitely less dry and porous and I can already spy a few millimetres of regrowth at the roots. Deep breaths, it’s going to be a long and bumpy ride…