For a long time now I have been nothing less than a extension addict, and you can’t blame me, I have worked in a hair extension industry for the last 6 years, seeing women with long gorgeous locks day in day out certainty gives you strong hair envy. So five years ago I wanted to be one of those women with the long flowing gorgeous locks, so I decided to have it done for myself.
Even more to the fact because when I was 16 and had my first ever job as a junior in a salon I thought it was a good idea to have all my own long hair cut off into a extremely short graduated bob ( big mistake!) I hated it more then you’ll ever know, and I’m not making any exaggeration when I say it really never grew back properly it never ever made it past my collar bone and I’ve never forgiven myself.
So as I was saying, five years ago when I first had my full head of extensions done saying I was over the moon was an understatement, it was everything I had envied and wished for ever since the horrid day I cut all my own hair off, I remember going home and spending hours and hours in the mirror trying out styles I hadn’t been able to do in so long and this is where I got hooked.
And a good 5 years later I was still having hair extensions applied, and please don’t get me wrong this post isn’t a bashing of hair extensions I think they are amazing for all different types of reasons, they can give you back confidence if you decided to have a drastic hair cut and regret it just the way I did, I’ve worked in a company for 6 years who’s soul purpose is to make women confident and happy with there hair for all many types of reasons, and I do think they are amazing, but the story for myself is a bit different, this is because one day I decided I wanted to have a few highlights put into my mousy brown hair, summer was just around the corner and I wanted to spice it up a bit, so that is just what I did, and it looked beautiful, I was constantly getting compliments on my hair on how it looked so nice just that tad bit lighter, now I don’t know if anyone else reading this knows what I’m taking about here but if you are someone that’s ever gone blonde gradually you’ll know that once you start going blonde you get addicted, every time I had a few extra highlights in my hair I wanted more I wanted to be as blonde as you could make me, and this is how I started the journey of seriously damaging my hair.
1: THE BLEACHING PROCESS.
After about a year of going blonde gradually the day finaly came when I decided I wanted to go ashy blonde I wanted to be as ashy as you could make me, and of course without thinking twice about the consicounses I had a full head of bleach highlights and bleach inbewteen those highlights, and after all that colour work and a toner later I was completely ash blonde, and this was where my hair started getting bad.
We all know bleaching our hair isn’t good for us at the end of the day its bleach its going to dry your hair out and leave it feeling like bubble gum if not looked after properly, and I knew this, I just wasn’t doing what needed to be done to maintain lovely ashy blonde heathly hair, and don’t ask me why I’m a hairdresser for crying out loud I should of been setting an example of good hair, but I wasn’t.
2: HEAT DAMAGE.
This my friends is what really messes your hair up, I would even go as far as saying that its worse for your hair then the bleach, using strightnes and curlers every single day is a no go, its so damaging especially if you are not using any heat protector its a serious no go.
I was straightening my hair almost every day I was obsessed with having dead straight hair, so every morning before work I wasn’t leaving without my poker straight hair, and this it what really damaged my poor hair, not only had I sent it through hell and back with the constant bleaching prosses but I was also constantly using 200 degrees of heat on it everyday and sometimes even twice.
So about a year later I decided to have my long blonde extensions out, and it wasn’t until that day that I sat there looking in the mirror as I had my removal that I realised how bad my own hair was, it was dry and brittle and I hated it I couldn’t belive it, it was so short and felt like it hadn’t grown at all in the past few months that I had my extensions in, and of course this was because everytime I probably put heat on my ends they would just snap off.
So I made a drastic dession I was so devastated that I was ruining my hair I had to do something, I thought if I went dark again I could save my hair, see at the time I was convinced it was the bleach that was running my hair, I hadn’t even taking the heat damage into consideration at this point.
So about a week later I went dark and had new hair extensions put in , and oh my was I dark, going from being bleached blonde to a dark chocolate brown is defiantly something that takes getting used to.
So after about a month I was still really dark,normally if you dye your hair a dark colour youll know that as time goes on it gets lighter and lighter, well mine didn’t seem to be, probably because I put such a dark colour on such blonde hair, and I hated it I sort of resembled the girl from the ring.
So what did I do? I went red that’s right, as if I hadn’t put my hair through enough I started putting wash in wash out red on my hair once every week and a half, smart I know.
A month after that it was time to have my extentions out, I was planning on having all new ones, until once again I was sat infront of the mirror coming to the realisation all over again that my hair underneath my extensions was awful, it was still dry, it was still damaged and to be honest it looked worse then when it did when I was blonde, and all I wanted to do was cry, I knew I had to do something and I had to do itnow before I completely reunited my hair for good.
3: GETTING MY HAIR BACK ON TRACK.
I decided not to put my extensions back in for the time being just purely because I wanted to keep trimming my hair, as much as I hated having short hair I knew I had to do it, after all my hair would of probably been long if it wasn’t for all the bleach and straightening, but I done it I kept it in a bun for almost about 4 weeks and done treatments regularly, as much as I hated it I knew I had to do it, even on the weekends when I was going out for meals with my boyfriend or for drinks with friends, no fancy hairstyles just plan and simple messy bun.
4: HOLIDAY HAIR.
Just 2 weeks before I was about to go on holiday I was talking to my mum while she was drying her hair and quarter of the way through drying she stopped to put some mousse on and started scrunching her hair and then started to tell me that she used to wear her hair like that in the 80’s and It was just easy when she had the day off work, and that’s when I thought it wouldn’t be a bad holiday look, get a few of the right products and I would have the perfect beach wave, I was just hoping it would still look good after the haircut I had planed, I wanted to have a haircut just before my holiday and even though I hadn’t used heat on it for quite a while a good 3 inches of it was still very damaged fter cutting that much off that would of left my hair just a fraction bellow my chin, but it would have to be done.
Untill a few days later I was on the bus on the way to work and while scrolling through Instagram I came across a picure of Tanya Burrs new hairstyle, I’m already a major fan of Tanya’s and I fell instantly in love with the style and It just happened to be just about the same sort of length I was looking to have, except I was going to need a few extensions around the side of my face to create a graduated look, I didn’t want my short hair cut to be just one length all the way around I wanted it to have a bit of edge, so I thought ill have cut off what needs to be cut and have it short all the way around except for the few extensions at the front and I would have a stylish graduated Lob.
So when the day finally came I had my hair extnsions put in and had my hair cut into the style I had explained, and I cannot begin to tell you how much I’m in love with my new look, its everything I imagined and more, for someone that’s had hair extensions for so much length for so long I hated short hair on myself I truly depised it, but now I a in love with it, I’m nearly at the end of my week holiday in Portugal and the whole time ive had complete hair envy and for once with myself and I am so happy I done it.
I am now on the road to hair recovery and am taking all the steps needed to get my hair back into great condtion and these are a few small steps ive done to get myself there.
1. Weekly treatments: I do a hair treatment at least once a week and make sure I brush It through and I always leave my treatments on for at least 20 minutes, to really make sure my hair is sucking in all the goodness. I was using the Schwarzkopf Bonacure Brazilian oil pulp treatment that I actually got in one of my glossy boxes and it lasted me for about 3 weeks and I thought it was wonderful but another treatment that seems to be doing wonders for my hair is the aussie 3 minute miracle mask, you can get a sachet from superdrug for 99p and the really make my hair feel wonderful and soft after and for 99p you cant go wrong.
2. Heat protection: I haven’t used heat on my hair in a good few months now and I mean nothing except a hairdryer, but now even when drying my hair and especially being on holiday I use heat protection all the time there are two products that I find amazing are the Kerastase nectar thermique which is super nourishing and leaves your hair feeling and smelling amazing after and also protecting your hair, you put a 20p size amount on your hand and work It through your mid lengths and ends and it really leaves your hair feeling lovely, the second product is something ive only recently discovered on the off chance and that’s Style freedoms heat protector spray it protects up to 220 degrees of heat and not only does it smell amazing it leaves my hair feeling soft and shiny for hours after, its been perfect using it by pool or just when out and about in heat. I would defiantly recommend this one.
3. NO MORE COLOUR.
Ive decided not to colour my hair for a while now, as it stands my hair has now eventually faded out a bit into a nice light brown on the ends, I did have a few lighter pieces of extensions around the front just to break it up a bit but Its defiantly getting lighter naturally, 2 inches of my roots are my natural colour the only unfortunate thing is that right in the middle I have quite a dark band of colour around my head, and that’s just purely colour build up so the more I colour it the longer it will take to go away, I just have to get on with it.
So that was my hair journey, and I think my hair can also speak for me when saying I am finally content with my hairstyle and I’m finally happy having it short and even though the journey will be a long one to getting my hair back to the way it once was, you have to start somewhere and I’m proud of myself that I finally took a leap I never thought I would take.