Your hair looked incredible when you left the barbershop chair. But a week in and it's falling flat and you can't get it to look quite right.
The bad news: you're probably making some major grooming mistakes, which is why your hair isn't living up to its post-barber potential. The good news: they're easily fixable.
Adding Product Right After a Shower
Cremes, pastes, pomades, wax – no matter what you use, it's gonna go on a lot better if your hair is dry or only slightly damp. That way, the product can be more evenly distributed to the individual follicles, and you can control your hair's direction since you're not fighting moisture that drags everything down.
If you were to apply right after a shower, your hair will end up looking greasy and won't take the right shape, no matter how much you comb it.
Messing With Your Hair Throughout the Day
Ever noticed white flakes on your hair and shoulders? They could be dandruff (in which case, get yourself some medicated shampoo). But they also could be the hair gel you used this morning. You’ve been touching your hair throughout the day, which then causes the dried gel to flake off and fall all over you.
The solution: quit touching your hair, and switch out the gel for a pomade.
The pomade will be stronger and more waxy, so you'll want to avoid messing with it throughout the day – unless you want to get your hands sticky and your hair screwed up. If you want to retain the freedom to run your fingers through your hair, then opt for a wax instead, which has more flexibility and a less greasy feel.
Using Too Much Product
This varies slightly based on what kind of product you're using, but in general, you only need roughly the size of a dime if you've got thin hair, or a quarter if it's thicker.
Going too far beyond that will make your hair sticky and difficult to style. You’ll also have to spend more time in the shower thoroughly washing out the gunk.
Going Overboard with Shampoo and Conditioner
Your scalp produces natural oil for your hair, which you’re probably washing out by scrubbing with shampoo and conditioner every time you’re in the shower. That's not good, since you can easily dry out your hair and scalp, resulting in a lot of frizz and occasional irritation.
Now obviously, you're going to wash your hair now and then. The amount of dirt in locked in there is obviously dependent on your activities throughout the day. If you work outside, or just had an intense gym session, went swimming, or have any other reason to justify a clean, then by all means, grab the shampoo.
Otherwise, give your hair a break and limit yourself to one or two washes a week.
Putting Product Everywhere
No matter what kind your'e using, your product shouldn’t clump together, nor should it just sit on the top of your hair.
If you’re taking product and just dabbing all over your head, then you aren’t really doing anything at all except weighing down the topmost layer of hair. Instead, rub the product between your palms and then begin at the crown of your head, moving forward.
You want to make sure the product is being massaged into every layer of your hair, and that the front is the last to get touched up.
Using Hairspray Right Off the Bat
Hairspray is a good finishing tool if you really want to keep your desired look in place. But that's only true once you've already added in other product and/or combed your hair into a just-right position.
It's not like other products, where you have to work it into the hair and then adjust Instead, it'll harden your current style into place, so you want to use it as the very last step.
Blow-Drying Every Which Way
So you've made the brave and worthwhile leap to using a hairdryer. Good on you. But if you aren’t using the tool correctly, then you’re just going to make a mess of your hair.
First, decide where you want to part your hair. Then set the dryer to "hot" (hair follicles expand when warmed, making hair more manageable) and blow your hair away from that part.
Once you're dried off, switch to the cool setting and continue blowing to get the hair to firmly stay put – the cool air firms up the follicles, keeping your hair in place.
And if none of that works for you, well, you may just want to switch to a buzz cut.