Monday, 27 October 2014

Hair! And how to do it...

Hai everybody! :D

I did promise I would give some tips on hairdressing once I had learned a sufficient amount, so now that I've been training for 3 months now, I thought the time is ripe to start a super-post on all things hair! In this, I will include the basics: Shampooing, conditioning and the more complicated subjects like cutting and colouring and everything in between!

Just to clarify, I am a trainee hairdresser doing a 9month course in a training centre. We do Hairdressing Science, Hairdressing Theory, Barbering, Colouring, Cutting, Customer Service, Personal Effectiveness and for the fun of it, we have a Health & Safety Module aswell... Currently, we do 2 mornings a week where we take clients and practice on them, Wash & Blowdry's, Set's and Colour's are the services we do thus far, but we're starting to do basic trim's also. Then we do Men's cuts for a few hours in the evening 1 day a week. The men are generally from other courses going on in the area and the ladies are clients who have been going to the training centre salon for years.

Now that that's cleared up, onto what you came here for!
I shall start at the start, what we learned first. 

Shampooing & Conditioning Hair
  • First, when shampooing on a normal day, you only need to shampoo the scalp! The hair itself will be cleaned as you rinse your hair, shampooing the length of your hair only tangles it, meaning when you comb it out later it's harder to do which causes breakages. 
  • Use a small bit of shampoo, you don't need tonnes! The size of a 2euro coin is more than enough, aim more for 1euro. See picture below that I got from Google Images.

  • You only need a second shampoo when your hair is really dirty or greasy, but generally 1 will be enough, 2 will only weigh down your hair and make it greasier. 
  • When conditioning, generally you only need to condition the ends unless you have just coloured your hair or it is in very bad condition. 
  • Shampooing your hair everyday is completely unnecessary. Aim for every second day at most- I know this might sound gross to some people but excessive shampooing is removing the natural oils in your scalp that makes your hair healthy and shiny. And if you feel your hair is always greasy and you think it needs washing everyday, you might be making it worse by doing so! Give it a break some weekend you're not going anywhere- use dry shampoo if you really can't stand it- and your hair will thank you. 
  • When combing your hair after washing- do just that- comb it. DO NOT, EVER, BRUSH WET HAIR!!! Use a wide tooth comb, or a detangling comb- brushing wet hair is one of the worst things you can do, it pulls and tears and destroys your hair causing breakages and split ends and is just so damaging- DO NOT DO IT!!! 
Use one like this one!!! Source:

  • When towel drying your hair, there is absolutely no need to rub it vigorously!! Pat it dry gently- your hair is most vunerable when it's wet so rubbing it like a maniac with a towel is only going to ruin it, opening the cuticles and pushing them up so your hair looks frizzy and feels horrible. It's wrong, again, DON'T DO IT! 
*The cuticles are the outer layer of the hair, they lie overlapping each other like fish scales or the tiles of a roof and when they lie down flat, your hair looks healthy, smooth and shiny. Hot water opens the cuticles to remove dirt and grease from them with the aid of shampoo. Cold water will close them. This is why you point the hairdryer down the shaft of your hair when blow-drying, this closes the cuticles and makes your hair soft and shiny!



I won't lie, I'm struggling with all the colour theory at the moment. There is a lot in it. I will give a quick run down on some tips, and will add more as I learn :)

I'll start by just explaining volume (the American measurement) and percentage (the British and Canadian measurement). 

Hydrogen peroxide is the catalyst that causes permanent haircolour to work. When you mix a haircolour with peroxide, a chemical reaction occurs. (It's very hard to decide what you guys would like to know and what is just science stuff that I need to know, hahaha!) Anyway, here is a quick conversion chart:

3% = 10 Volume (or vol.)                  6% = 20 vol. (used in most cases)
9% = 30 vol.                                  12% = 40 vol.

(An easy tip to remember here is; For every additional 3%, add 10 vol.)

  • As soon as you mix up permanent haircolour with peroxide, it begins to oxidise in the air, meaning, it will start to lose it's strength straightaway. Therefore, the quicker you put the dye on, the more effective it will be. 
  • When putting on dye, section your hair in 4 parts- right in the middle to the bottom of your neck, and across the top from ear to ear. Like a hot cross bun! I did this before I started my training, and it really speeds up the process! 

  • Start at the back with permanent colour. The hair at the front will be slightly more damaged naturally, due to the natural elements- sun, wind etc- hitting it constantly. Therefore, it requires less processing time than the back of your head will. 
  • Using tin foil or cling film (seram wrap?!) when bleaching or putting on permanent colour will help the colour develop and slow down the oxidization in the dye. Meaning it will work better for longer. 
  • When bleaching or using permanent dye, don't wash your hair for at least 24 hours beforehand. Washing removes the Acid Mantle- the scalps natural protective barrier which helps stop that burning sensation you sometimes get when dying your hair. This is essential and applies when getting your hair dyed professionally too.
  • Always apply conditioner after dying your hair, it deserves and needs it!

Well, all I have to say here is, even if you do cut your own hair (as I did for years) it won't be the same as getting it done professionally- or even just getting a friend to do it :P In saying that though, I know you're going to do it anyway and I can see why. Cutting your hair yourself isn't something I can really help with. 

The only tip I have for the actual cutting is to tie your hair in a ponytail at the very bottom of your neck, then tie it in sections lower and lower til you get to the length you want to cut off. Keep your hair straight and even in the ties, and cut the ends off with a sharp scissors. I have used this method so many times! It gives a beautiful straight across cut! In fact, watch the beautiful LilithMoon do it on YouTube! Link here! (Also, Boots have hairdressing scissors for less than €10 and professional one's are acually quite reasonable if you plan on cutting your own hair for years to come! Link here for a Boots scissors!

This is the razor I have. Source:
When using a razor to "feather" or soften your layers, ONLY use this on wet hair! Otherwise, you're only causing more split ends. And be very careful, go slow, you can easily take too much off.

Really, that's all I can say for now on cutting hair :) 


  • Section your hair to make it easier for yourself, use small sections instead of bigger ones.
  • Go over it once, slowly and get it right the first time! There's no need to go over the same section more than once, you're damaging it more and it's unnecessary.
  • If your hair is due a trim but you're not ready to let the ends go just yet, give your hair a tiny turn in at the very ends to help hide the split ends.
  • Use heat protection spray. Seriously. In fact, I watched a video yesterday that explained if you spray a heat protection spray on the back of your hand and hold the blow drier over it, if it's a good spray then you shouldn't feel the heat on your hand! I must give that a go!

Well, I think that's it for now. There will be more, but as I said, it's hard to know what you guys would need to know and whats just too technical if you're not in the field :)

I hope you enjoyed this post, or at the very least I hope you learned something. Let me know if you have any questions or anything you want to know in particular and if I don't know the answer, I will endevour to find out for you! 

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