My "Good Hair Day" Secrets
"How Do I get My hair to look like yours?"
...is probably one of the number one questions I get on social media. As a hairdresser I'm always able to answer thoughtfully and with knowledge, knowing that everyone's hair is different and has different capabilities. Unlike women, that can rely on extensions, haircolor, and other magic tricks to get their hair to a place they want men are often at the mercy of their their natural growth pattern, hairline, and texture. I'm probably in the minority in that I dry and smooth out my waves and curls almost daily, but there are a couple tips and tricks I've learned in the years I've done men's grooming that I can pass along. I'll tell you this my friends, it all begins in the shower. A good shampoo and conditioner will go a long way. I challenged myself to use Baxter of California's entire range for a week. Their Fortifying Shampoo and Conditioner left my hair soft and clean without feeling stripped. And my newest obsession? Their Clay Pomade and Clay Effect Style Spray. Keep reading to find out my step by step routine.
Where Do I begin?
The answer is simple. Ditch that two in one (or all in one as some men use) and pick up a good hair cleanser and conditioner. Think it isn't worth it? Trust me when I say it is. Your hair is like a fabric and just like the fabric that is your clothing if you subject it to harsh detergents over and over eventually it starts to lose elasticity, moisture, and shine. Imagine if you washed your favorite tshirt every single day in the cheapest laundry detergent you could find with no fabric softener. Yeah, that same deterioration will happen to your hair. This is especially important as we men today are wearing our hair longer and picking up a blowdryer and sometimes flat iron to style. I became instantly obsessed with Baxter of California's Fortifying Shampoo. Minty fresh, but not overpowering this shampoo got the job done.
This shampoo promotes hair manageability & body. It also contains wheat protein and vitamin E for a hair and scalp treatment that repairs and cleans without drying. Coconut extract delivers natural nutrients essential for healthy hair growth and acts as a remedy for dry scalp. The new & improved formula also features an invigorating mint sensation that not only tingles throughout your routine but leaves your hair smelling fresh and clean.
Conditioner! I'm always surprised to hear how often men either skip this step or think it's not necessary. Shampoo's work by changing the PH level of your hair, conditioner is there to bring it back to it's natural state, smooth the cuticle, and moisturize. I followed up with Baxter of California's Fortifying Conditioner which has the same fragrance as the accompanying shampoo.
The conditioner is a little more lightweight than I'm used to for my thick curly hair but it still left my hair feeling moisturized and smooth. The Coconut extract delivers natural nutrients essential for scalp nourishment and hair hydration. Make sure to use enough conditioner to completely saturate your hair and massage into the scalp before rinsing. I like to always wash my hair and condition first before I do anything else in the shower, that way the conditioner can sit in my hair a little longer for maximum benefits.
What you apply to your hair while it's damp and before your style is super important. I usually reach for a matte finish mousse for fullness but Baxter of California's Clay Effect Spray has completely changed my morning routine. It has the consistency of a spray gel (don't let that scare you) but with the finish of a matte texturizing spray. Added bonus? It's multi-purpose! Any hair type can benefit from this product. Heat protection, full of nutrients that promote hair health, and a perfectly pliable finish- all things that I need from my hair styling routine. I made sure to spray an even amount all over and blowdried my product in. Finer hair types at shorter lengths can spray it in and let it airdry for a non-fussy finish, and curly/wavy hair guys can throw it in their gym bag, spray out of the shower, and run through their hair for a controlled, frizz free finish.
it's all in the wrist
At this point I reach for my blowdryer and round brush. I realize I'm probably in the minority of men that do this daily but it's really good to know for low-maintenance guys whenever they want to spend a little more time in the morning for a special day or just want that extra pep in your step you get from a really good hair day. If you remember my analogy about hair being like fabric, the same applies when drying your hair. If you were to take your favorite t-shirt and stretch it out while it was wet as it dried you're left with a shapeless, limp, piece of fabric. That's what happens to your hair when you apply a lot of tension as you dry your hair with a brush from wet to dry. To combat this I rough dry my hair (meaning just my hands and the air from the blowdryer) until it's about 90% dry. Then I go in with a round brush and gently roll and smooth first horizontally (the end of your brush will be facing the mirror) and then vertically, back and away. (The end of your brush will be facing to either side of you.) Make sure you're using the concentrator on your dryer to better direct the airflow. I love my compact dryer from T3 Micro. It's little bit on the pricier side but because I blow-dry my hair almost daily I want to make sure I'm minimizing any heat damage.
I'm a creature of habit and even though as a hairstylist I've tried everything under the sun I've been known to stick to the same product for years. Recently I've started experimenting with different pomade and finishes; Baxter of California's Clay Pomade is a standout. Firm hold, with a matte finish that's pliable all day. It does exactly what I want it to do and I've noticed it fares better in humidity compared to other pomades I've tried. Super important for a curly /wavy hair guy like me. Instead of falling flat and shapeless it holds and keeps the volume and texture that it gives from morning to night. A little goes a long way with this bad boy and I usually start with a healthy nickel size amount. Make sure to emulsify the product (really warm it up and loosen it in your palms) before working it in. I like to start on the sides and then move to the crown and then hairline. Work the product in by squeezing and twisting your texture into place. I continue until I get the shape I'm looking for. The magic of this product is that because of its holding capability it's also great for really sleek, combed through looks. Try it!
Good hair days ahead
The Clay Effect Spray and Pomade are a magic combo, period. They do everything I want my hair styling products to do. Matte finish, pliable hold, and still good for my hair. The pomade is a favorite of my Barber- Doug, at Persons of Interest, and tells me that its a hit with many of his clients as well. Remember this whole post is linked to shoppable pages and if you have any questions or need more tips for your specific hair type drop me a line below or hit me up on my Instagram. Gentlemen, happy hairstyling!