Hair Care

By Dayna Sason

Sweet summer: the season of hazy nights, short skirts, sangria outdoors…and bangs plastered to your forehead. Lovely.

Don’t get me wrong, I love my long hair. But ladies with locks of all lengths can agree that once summer rolls around, all of our normal tactics for making our hair behave go flying out the window. For me, summer means my hair expanding by a minimum of three inches in every direction and my bangs adhering themselves to my face the second I step outdoors. If you, like me, are tired of having to throw your hair up into boring ponytails and haphazard buns to beat the heat, then read on for some helpful summer tips from The Little Hair Shoppe.

A little background: I first discovered The Little Hair Shoppe last fall after a tragic bang incident that left me pinning up my “bangs” for months. When I finally couldn’t take it anymore, I wandered into the adorable shop with the red awning, asked stylist Dane Kalloo for help, and walked out with regulation, Grade A side swept bangs that I was proud to leave down. The bobby pins were banished to the back of my drawers, and I had found my new favorite go-to salon.

So, of course, when the summer heat was making me and my hair desperate, I went running back to Kalloo for some help.

Even Kalloo, who became a stylist at The Little Hair Shoppe three years ago after spending 15 years working as an event planner, admits that this summer in particular has been an incredibly painful, humid one. “Most of the girls are just walking in and cutting it all off!” he said.

But for those who would like to keep their length, Kalloo has some helpful suggestions. First, he swears by Moroccanoil, a line of products based on an Argan oil blend that is rich in vitamins and natural elements such as Vitamin A (to improve elasticity) and Phenols (to protect the hair from natural stressors like too much sun).

Kalloo tells his clients to use the original Moroccanoil oil treatment, which works well for all hair types, twice a week on damp hair to tame frizz, reduce drying time, add shine and hydrate hair. Though no product is an absolute shield against the humidity that makes hair puff upwards and out, this product is a great first line of defense. Moroccanoil also makes products specifically designed to help those with curly hair keep their hair in order all year round.

Since putting your hair up is inevitable in this oppressive heat, Kalloo says we should have a little fun with it. The Little Hair Shoppe believes in styling their clients’ hair in ways that are easy to recreate at home, and Kalloo taught me how to do an easy, summery side chignon instead of the average, run of the mill bun. Start by parting your hair on the side, and then sweep the hair off your face and twist it back along your hairline until you can gather it all to one side of the nape of your neck. Finish by either leaving the hair in a ponytail or twisting it into a bun.

Luckily, the natural, beachy look is perfect for summer, so don’t worry if a few strands or unruly bangs slip out. Kalloo says to get creative through ornamentation. This doesn’t mean necessarily running out and buying every bejeweled clip you can get your hands on, but rather using old earrings or broaches to spice up your do. “If you are worried about your style looking too messy, the ornamentation will distract from that,” he says.

But if you want to keep it all even simpler (because who really wants to expend more energy than necessary when it’s 100 degrees out?), Kallo says you can’t fail with a classic Panama hat to help get the hair out of your face. Throw it on over a low, messy braid, or use it to gather and hold up all of your strands to keep hair off your neck and shoulders.

For those of you who have been sticking to the tried and true side-braid, Kalloo says a little hairspray never hurts to keep the humidity from frizzying up your do. He’s a big fan of Redken’s Workforce 09, a light spray that’s not sticky and is perfect for taming flyaways. This oil-based hairspray keeps hair from getting “crunchy” and helps maintain style despite humidity and heat.

Lastly, since summer in the city is pretty much always this miserable, Kalloo says we might as well work with the season to give our hair a boost. For the readers out there with light hair, Kalloo says to add a new twist to the age-old trick of using lemon juice to lighten locks: beer. “The hops in beer soften hair and give it a great, sun-kissed look,” he says. Brunettes can try this trick too to lighten hair a bit and even help to give it a reddish hue.

So while there’s no 100 percent, fool-proof way to keep the humidity from our hair, pick up some Moroccanoil, master the art of the simple chignon, and don’t forget your Panama hat! Fall is right around the corner, but in the meantime, it’s gonna be a hot one.
And if all else fails, a little sangria can go a long way.

The Little Hair Shoppe
(212) 375 – 1004
54 E. 4th Street (Between 2nd Ave and The Bowery)
http://www.Littlehairshoppe.com

Originally published August 2010
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