1. Hair Supplements
Holli Smith, lead NYFW hairstylist for Creatures of the Wind, says that while hair masks and deep conditioners are a must, there’s another important approach to healthy hair that not many seem to know about. “The one thing that all these models do for their hair but don’t necessarily talk much about is their use of the supplement Viviscal,” Smith says. “It strengthens the hair so that it’s not prone to breakage, and it helps the new hair grow back in stronger and healthier.” Nourish follicles with a complete hair growth supplement with marine extracts, biotin, vitamin C and iron.
2. Mix Avocado Oil Into Your Conditioner
“I put avocado oil into my conditioner every day to add extra moisture into my hair to give it an unbelievable shine,” explained one hairstylist backstage at Jason Wu. Not only is avocado oil ultra-moisturizing for your hair, a few Pinterest users swear by its makeup removing powers as well (yes, even in mascara).
3. Do a Dish Soap Rinse
This may sound crazy and we certainly don’t recommend you make a habit out of it (especially for color-treated hair), but one hairstylist backstage at the Tommy Hilfiger show swears by this trick. “Some models get super-greasy hair after fashion week because of all the thick products we use, so I tell them to squirt a nickel-sized amount of dish soap into their hair for a quick, 30-second rinse,” she explained. “It brings the natural oils in your hair back into balance.” Disclaimer: Dish soap will certainly make your hair squeaky clean, but just remember to rinse with your regular shampoo afterwards (and stick to doing this only in emergencies).
4. Only Detangle Hair in the Shower
Lead hairstylist Jeanie Syfu said backstage at Marissa Webb that every model must detangle her hair with extra care. “Take all the elastics and bobby pins out of your hair and hop in the shower without brushing first. Wet your hair, put a deep conditioner on it and wait until the hair is soft enough to run your fingers through — this means the products have disintegrated from your hair. Then, do a full shampoo and a second set of conditioning to fully detox the hair.” This tip works best for girls who use a ton of hair products, especially in those tight, super hair-sprayed hairdos (think wedding hair). Keep in mind that brushing your styled hair before showering can cause major breakage since the hair is dried out and tangled, so simply jumping in the shower first is your best bet.
5. Cleanse With Apple Cider Vinegar
When asked about repairing hair post-NYFW, most hairstylists were focused on re-hydrating damaged strands. However, one hairstylist backstage at Nicole Miller had another issue she wanted to address: “There’s typically a ton of buildup in the models’ hair after all the products they’ve used for each show. So, I always recommend rinsing their hair with apple cider vinegar after the week is finished to remove gunky product residue and restore the hair to its natural pH level.” As a bonus, apple cider vinegar seems to have acne-clearing abilities too, so it’s a skin and hair win-win.
6. Apply Hair Oil With a Hot Towel
“After Fashion Week, a lot of models tend to have dry, damaged hair from all the hot tools we’ve been using,” said hairstylist Ale Bonilla backstage at Christian Siriano. “My best suggestion for them is to first coat your hair with a reparative hair oil, pop a damp towel into the microwave until it’s warm, and then wrap the hair up in the towel for about a half-hour.” After the treatment, Bonilla recommends shampooing the excess oil out and using conditioner as usual.
7. Treat Your Hair Like You do Your Face
Anthony Turner, lead hairstylist at the Prabal Gurung show, is a huge advocate for treating your hair the same way you’d treat your skin. “I tell my model friends all the time that they need to get a decent haircut, a few inches at the very least, after NYFW in order to get rid of all the dead ends. Getting frequent trims is just like regularly using a good face scrub to remove all the dead skin from your face — you need a clean starting point for healthier cells to grow in.”
That’s not all — Anthony says that the outside of your hair can be pumped full of vitamins too. “Hair salons have vitamin-enriched treatments that can strengthen the hair by opening up the hair shaft and pumping proteins into the strand to rebuild it,” he says.
Don’t be turned off at the idea of opening the hair shaft of already-damaged hair. Anthony says that these ingredients will create a smooth, healthy look that will be worth it in the end. Ask your local salon for treatments that specifically boost the look of hair health and skip styling treatments like keratin, which can lead to more damage.
8. Add a Protein Treatment to Your Hair Regimen
When all is said and done post-fashion-week, Anthony Cole at the Christian Siriano show, advises models to set aside a few hours one night to do an entire hair revival treatment. “Always start your hair recovery night with a clarifying shampoo,” says Cole. “You want to get rid of all the residue from products that were used in the hair, then add extreme moisture via a hair mask or deep conditioning product, and then end it with a penetrative protein treatment.”
According to Anthony, the order of these steps is what people typically get wrong at home. And following the steps correctly is almost more important than the steps themselves. “The protein treatment has to be the very last step because it can be drying if the hair hasn’t been sealed with moisture beforehand.”
9. Indulge in the Ultimate DIY Hair Recipe
Yes, there is an ultimate DIY hair recovery recipe. And Davide Marinelli, a hairstylist backstage at Jenny Packham, has shared it. “First, combine a large avocado and five drops of jojoba oil or almond oil into a bowl, mix it until you get a creamy, rich texture, and set it aside,” he explains. “Then, add a tablespoon of baking soda into a color-safe clarifying shampoo that’s sulfate-free and hop in the shower to exfoliate only the scalp — not the hair.” Afterwards, Davide recommends towel-drying your hair to where it’s only slightly damp (not wet) before applying the avocado treatment.
The drier the hair is, the more it’s going to absorb the formula, because wet hair can actually dilute it. “Take an old white t-shirt, dampen it with warm water, and wrap the avocado-covered hair with the t-shirt into a bun,” says Davide. After 15 minutes, you can rinse out the avocado and shampoo your hair as you normally would.
10. Wrap Your Hair Up in Silk
When wearing an overnight hair mask, do not simply put a towel down on your pillow and hope the product won’t make too much of a mess on the clean sheets. According to Kenna, lead hairstylist at Libertine, this is actually one of the biggest mistakes we can make when trying to revive damaged hair.
“An overnight hair mask is the best thing you can do for your hair after it’s been damaged; however, if you sleep on a towel, it’ll simply absorb the moisture right out of your hair,” Kenna explains. Instead of a towel, Kenna recommends wearing a silk scarf on your head to lock the moisture into your hair during the night. Or try Slip Silk, a silk pillowcase that was specially designed to protect hair and skin from overnight damage.