• Fri
  • Jul 11, 2014
  • Updated: 12:36pm

Ways to avoid bad hair days

PUBLISHED : Friday, 20 April, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 20 April, 2012, 12:00am

You know what it's like: you've washed your hair and styled it nicely before you head out. But an hour later you see yourself in a mirror or shop window and is horrified when a dishevelled person stares back at you. You look like someone who has just been dragged through a hedge.

So what can you do to prevent this scenario from occurring again and again?

Here's a lowdown on the type of styling products you can choose to match your hairstyle and mood.

Hairspray

Good for: Most hairstyles and hair types. There are hairsprays with different strengths. They are suitable for creating straight, structured hairstyles, setting loose curls, adding volume or taming flyaway locks.

Bad for: Drying up. Some hairsprays leave white flakes or feel sticky and crunchy.

How to use it: To tame stray or flyaway hair, spray your palms with a small squirt and run them over the surface of your hair.

If you want a low hold, spray a little hairspray over your hairbrush, then brush through your hair from the roots to the ends.

If you want to add volume, turn your head upside down and spray a small amount all over your hair. If you want to set your hair using foam hair rollers, squirt some hairspray over the curlers once you've rolled your hair into place.

Gel

Good for: Guys and girls. Gels act like cement, keeping any type of hair - wavy, fine, thick, long, short - in place for hours.

Bad for: Drying up. When some gels dry, they create white flakes which could be mistaken for dandruff - not a pretty sight.

If you use a lot of gel, your hair and hands can get pretty sticky, too.

How to use it: Squeeze a coin-size dollop of gel onto the palm of one hand, then rub it together with your other palm to spread it evenly between both hands.

Rub the gel onto towel-dried hair, then style it the way you want. If you like a 'shiny' look, let your hair dry naturally.

Alternatively, you can blow-dry the gel for extra hold after applying it.

What to avoid: Gels that contain alcohol. These can dry out your hair and make it more likely to break. Less is more when applying gel. If you overdo it, your hair will feel and look hard and crunchy.

Mousse

Good for: Applying volume to hair and for creating natural-looking, shiny and easy-to-manage hair. Mousse is not sticky like gel, so even if you have a habit of playing with your hair or need to restyle it throughout the day, it won't leave your hands feeling yucky. Usually girls prefer mousse. Guys often don't like to add volume to their hair.

Bad for: Keeping a structured hairstyle.

How to use it: Shake the bottle well. Squirt a small amount of mousse onto the palm of one hand, spread to both palms and apply to towel-dried hair with both hands. Work the mousse from your scalp to the ends of your hair. If you want a 'shiny and wet' look, let your hair dry naturally.

Blow-dry if you want a better hold.

Wax

Good for: Guys and girls. Wax holds any type of hairstyles from bed-head looks (messy, that is) to sleek, structured styles all day long. It works best on medium-length, thick, straight or wavy hair.

Bad for: Fine hair. Wax tends to be heavy and can weigh down fine tresses. If you use wax on your hair every day, it can build up and leave residues, making your locks look dull and limp. Eventually, your hair may refuse to hold any style you impose on it. To avoid this, use a clarifying shampoo.

How to use it: There are sprays, creams, solid, and gel types of wax. Start off with a pea-size amount and apply it to sections of dry or slightly damp hair for control and definition. Add more if you need it.

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