Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Puppy Pics!

I promise...there will be no words this time, even though I would LOVE to include captions! The images say it all. :)


Friday, May 10, 2013

French Twist Meets Sock Bun

I'm always looking for new fun ways to style my hair into a creative updo.

Similar to my recipe requirements, I have specific criteria a hairstyle must meet before it can become a go-to for me. 

A hairstyle that becomes a standard in my repetiore must:

•not be hard to learn (sometimes the first time takes a few tries, though)
not require me to curl/wave/straighten BEFORE turning into an updo (takes WAY too much time and effort - if I'm going to style it down, I'm not going to put it up!)
•take not more than 10-15 minutes (after blow drying - I have a life!)

I especially love hairstyles that work well for second-day hair. 

Which is why this style is perfect. 

Now unfortunately I do not have fancy photos of me doing each step of this updo since I don't have a tripod or a self-timer, or someone else to take my photos. 

But this is what it will look like when you're done:

Bangs pinned in front, bun on top, and twist in the back!

It's actually very simple. I occasionally do this style with a French braid up the back instead, and I was thinking the other morning, what can I do to make this style faster to do? I sometimes twist my bangs back, so I applied the same idea here. 

French twist meets sock bun!

Step 1:
Start with your hair down. Second day hair is preferable to give it a nice messy texture. 

This is a messy/quick looking style, so you don't want it to look too perfect. 

Start by pinning your bangs back. I have given mine a little pouf. Spray a little hairspray on it as you will want it to stay in place. You will be flipping your head upside down to complete the twist in the back. 

Step 2:
Placing your index fingers right above each ear in your hairline, section off the front section of your hair from the back. 

*How you draw this "line" will determine the height of your bun. The higher the line is on the top of your head, the higher the bun will be. A high bun is ideal so the twist in the back can be seen and can be the focal point. So the line should be drawn by connecting your fingers high above your ears, not back behind your head. 

Leaving the back section of hair down, put the front section in a clip or a ponytail to keep it out of your way. The twist part comes next. 

Make sense? I know a photo would be helpful...

Step 3:
Flip your head upside down. 

Take a small section of your hair above your neck and begin twisting it. Twist it fairly tight a few times around. 

Just like in French braiding, you will gradually add hair. 

So add some more hair and twist tightly a few times.

Continue moving up your head, adding hair and twisting until you have added all the hair you have sectioned off. 

It should look something like this:

See how it's not all perfectly tucked?

That's what you want. Don't worry if it's not all uniform. 

Step 4:
Twist a few more times and release the top section of hair and combine into a ponytail. 

It might look a little goofy where the ponytail is, but your bun will cover that up. So don't worry about that. 

Step 5:
Now you make your bun! There are many  techniques for making a bun. If you have a way that works well for your hair type/texture, then you should do it that way. 

It will look best if this bun has lots of volume, so at this point you can add hairspray and tease your hair if your hair needs some help in the volume department. 

I simply twist the hair and then wrap it around itself and secure it with these babies:

You can tell I use them a lot!

Everybody should own these. They are about $5 and it's the only way I can keep my hair secured in a bun without using a million bobby pins/hair pins that may or may not stay in. These things DO NOT MOVE and I don't need a single other pin!

I twist one into my hair right where the end of my hair needs to be tucked in the bun. Twist it with one hand, and press down on the bun with your palm to help the coil catch as much hair as possible. The second coil will be inserted to make an "X", just like using bobby pins to keep hair pinned back. 

Step 6:
Hairspray all over. And might I recommend this awesome hairspray!

You're done!

Thursday, May 2, 2013

My Review of a Dry Shampoo (and a hairspray, too)

I have been trying really hard not to wash my hair everyday. I have heard this is what is best for your hair so that the natural oils are not stripped from the hair shaft on a daily basis. I have come across some information that says only to wash your hair 2-3 times a week. That seems a little...out me, but the natural oil helps keep your hair soft and healthy.

So...then what do you do between washes?

Put your hair in a ponytail?

Try using just conditioner in the shower?

Put on a hat??

I have tried a couple of dry shampoos, and I have not been impressed. The idea is genius, of course, but they turn my hair white and leave a funny texture in my hair after applying and combing it through my hair.

I went to Beauty Brands and asked one of the ladies what she recommended for a dry shampoo that would not turn my hair white, and she handed me this:

AG's FastFWD dry shampoo. 
I use the AG brand for my regular shampoo and conditioner as well.
I said "I'll take it."

(Pearl is waiting for a drink in the sink.)

Here is a documentation of my experience trying this new product.

So here is a lovely image of my dirty hair. I didn't wash it for about 48 hours.

I sprayed the dry shampoo into my hair, and my first reaction was WHAT THE CRAP?!


I thought it was not supposed to turn my hair white...but after the first and second sprays, it was clear, so I'm not sure if I didn't shake it good enough or what. (Later I sprayed my hair all over to see what was up with the color, and the first couple seconds were always white, then it sprayed clear. So I'm not really sure what that was all about.)

But don't panic. It gets better!
Let the dry shampoo sit in your hair for a bit (30 seconds is plenty) and then run a comb through it. 

A lot.

In all different directions.

It resulted in a lot of volume!
And the white was gone!

This is what my hair looked like after combing the dry shampoo through and re-parting it:

And this is my hair after shampooing my hair in the shower and blow drying it shortly thereafter:

I put them all together for an easier comparison:

The crappy bathroom lighting combined with the fact I was taking my own pictures resulted in different hair colors in my pictures. It's still me, I promise!

So as far as actually making the hair look cleaner, the dry shampoo did its job. It absorbed the oil and mattified my hair. I still had to comb quite a lot to get that darn white to go away. But it did! Other brands I have tried have left a white residue in my hair that I could never fully get out.

As far as how my hair felt, I was really impressed! It added a TON of volume to my hair, something that is pretty hard to do with hair that has been styled, slept on, and possibly styled and slept on again. You could easily get away with running some of this dry shampoo through your hair and styling it down instead of pulling it back into a ponytail, which is what I usually end up doing. My hair was so soft, and I could not even tell there was any product in it at all. Flowy and ready to go!

I would definitely recommend giving AG FastFWD dry shampoo a try.

Now, onto my new favorite hairspray.

Again, I asked the gal at Beauty Brands which hairspray she would recommend. I told her that I need a medium to firm hold, but it has to smell good. My last hairspray make me half-sick each time I used it. I started holding my breath whenever I sprayed it. She led me to this gem:

Bed Head Masterpiece Hairspray.

(Zorro is eyeballing the spray nozzle. He gets concerned with what comes out of all my containers in the bathroom. He hates the way everything smells. Especially toothpaste.)

I used this hairspray on this hairstyle:

I was prepared to use a lot of hairspray on the side to keep my bangs back, but WOW! This hairspray is powerful - both the force at which the hairspray comes out of the nozzle, and the strength of the hold! The force of the spray was literally blowing my hair out of the position that I had placed it in. I've never had a hairspray do that before, so I just did little tiny spurts of spray (does that make any sense?!) where I needed it. 

And you don't need to overdo it - this hairspray can hold extremely well!

Plus, you will smell like a piƱa colada all day! It's delicious.

It's a FABULOUS product! I am in love!

My hair is all done!

Off to work in my lovely maurices dress!
Always great finds there.

After I got home from work and took my hairpins out, the hairspray was STILL holding! My bangs didn't move a centimeter all night!

All in all, I would recommend trying both of these products. You will probably love them just as much as I do!