Trimming My Financial Ends: Blog Exclusive with Local Hair Stylist

I am writing this post for one reason only: I have to make sacrifices for my new budget. As much as I love going to True Identity Hair Salon, I have to change my home hair care game. I was even debating with myself as to whether or not, should let this expense go. After all, a girl has to keep her beauty a top priority. But I came to the realization that I need to spend my money wisely these days after reading the September 2012 issue of Essence magazine. One of my favorite reads of the magazine is the Work & Wealth sections. September’s issue included a set of statistics that made my jaw drop. Here’s a picture of the article.

I am still trying to figure out why apparel products and services are ranked higher than healthcare and telephone services. But I digress. The picture prompted me to ask my long-time friend and hair stylist, Lea Byrd- Petersen what I can do to maintain my tresses along with my budget. Here is how the conversation went:

After losing my full-time gig, I had to redo my finances. Unfortunately, I decided to put a hold on my use of your services. My appearance matters to me but I can only afford so much. So I have some questions about transitioning from the salon to self-care at home.

1.  What are some affordable hair care products that one can use at home (i.e. shampoo, conditioner, styling products, tools)?

When caring for your hair at home, don’t buy products based on price. You want to buy quality products that will do what they say they will. VisitTrade Secret, for basic hair care products.  Pick up a bottle of KeraCare Hydrating Detangling Shampoo ($8-$10,) and Humecto Creme Conditioner ($10-14). For dry hair, brittle or damaged hair, Mizani Renew Strength Fortifying Shampoo ($10-13) and Mizani Renew Strength Fortifying Gelee Conditioner ($10-13)  is good to try. For dry, itchy, flaky scalp, Neutrogena T/Gel (or T/Sal), for extreme scalp build up) shampoo is great ($8 each). Got stubborn itchiness, use Neutrogena Stubborn Itch ($8). These are some of my favorites but start with small bottle, use them completely and then determine how it worked on your hair.

2. Well, I bought some products based on price, and coupons! But I had a bunch of BOGO free coupons, and I never let a coupon go to waste if it is something that I need. So I purchased a variety of products for about $45 normally priced at $84. How many times should I use each product to see how it works with my hair?

Use the product at least three times to see how your hair reacts to it. If you begin to have issues with hair breakage or itchy scalp, contact your stylist.

3. How often should one wash their hair?

Wash your hair no more than once a week but try not to go more than two weeks. For dry ,damaged, flaky hair/scalp you’ll see the best results with weekly shampoos (be sure to condition EVERY TIME you wash).

4. I know you don’t recommend it. What are the best and affordable products to use for relaxers and coloring? And how often should these products should be used?

 It is always, always, ALWAYS best to visit a stylist for chemical services because these are prime areas that cause serious damage to your hair if not done correctly or over done. Always visiting the salon (at least at True Identity lol) for your relaxer services means you’ll be getting regular trims which is included)

5. What are some do’s and don’ts that will help women avoid coming to a stylist to fix a hair fiasco?

The best thing you do for your hair is keep it moisturized. And doing so doesnt mean it has to be greasy. Ginseng Wonder 8 Oil Mist is good for normal to thick hair and can be used once a week. Joico Smooth Styling Oil (as well as the entire Smooth line from Joico) is very light weight and good for all hair types. Satin pillowcases, bonnets or scarves should be used every night. For easy maintenance and upkeep wear styles that can be wrapped a night as often as possible. After shampooing /conditioning your hair apply your moisturizer and blow dry with dryer set on warm not hot (or use a hood dryer).

6. Do you have any additional advice or comments?

Hair tips are always being posted on the fb page

As stated before, I tried a variety a products. Below is the list of the products I purchased with all those BOGO coupons. These products are listed in order of my opinion of what works the best.

Suave Professionals Natural Almond and Shea Butter Shampoo and Conditioner ($4 each)

Dove Damage Therapy Shine Boost Shampoo and Intensive Repair Conditioner ($5 each)

Suave Professionals Color Protection Shampoo and Conditioner ($4 each)

TRESemmé Color Revitalize Shampoo and Conditioner ($4 each)