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        How to wash your hair


                       The bliss you may have forgotten


Offering instructions on how to wash your hair may seem a lot like offering instructions on how to kiss a baby — what's to know? And isn't life complicated enough without some guy coming along and telling you a bunch of things you should and shouldn't do when shampooing? Doesn't he know there are glaciers melting and puppy mills? What next? Newsletters on how to breathe and walk across the street?!


Let's be clear, I'm not trying to put any of the following on the list of “Things All Humans Must Do”. I'm not even trying to squeak it into the terrifying land of “should's”, this is for those of us who love to lounge … with suds … and toes … and candles … and saxophones. This is for those of us who find sweet repose in a big, steaming tub of very warm water. We're connoisseurs; if we could buy wetter water, we would. If we didn't ever have to get out of the bath, we probably wouldn't. So for all of you that put bath-time up there with kissing and hugging, here it is, the bath lovers guide to washing your beloved locks. But I don't want to leave anybody out, much of this will also work for those of us who are in and out of the shower in less time than it takes to make mushy toast.
 

 

First, water. Unless you've just been dragged from a frozen lake or are trying to shake the affects of a truly horrible bottle of wine, not too hot please, especially if your hair is coloured; hot water will fade the colour and dry out the hair.

Shampoo. The noun, not the verb. There is indeed a very significant difference between good salon shampoo and the five dollar a bottle stuff. Those who have heard me rant about this before know how I feel, so I'm going to restrain myself ... a little. Those who think shampoos are all the same likely think all rice is the same — or orange juice — or pasta — or snowflakes. If you're one of them, bless you, but pay attention, will ya?! Cheap shampoo is like being kissed on the cheek by a scruffy old man when you're a 16 year old female. Good shampoo is like kissing a 16 year old female on the cheek when your a scruffy old man.


If you have short hair, scrub til you're pink, if that's what moves you; but if your hair stretches out to below your beautiful chin, please remember that only the scalp needs scrubbing, not the hair. Nobody likes to be roughed up, so leave the long hair down, don't bring it up on top and rub it all into a big, soapy, tangled ball. Apply the shampoo, scrub gently with your fingers somewhat underneath the hair, then, once you've got suds, simply squish them down through the rest of the hair. A sound coming from your hair that's somewhere between a growl and a purr means you did it right. If you suddenly hear the TV go on, you might want to re-think things.


Get the shampoo off as soon as it's done its job — which isn't long. The longer it stays in, the more it strips out colour and natural oils. I know there are people who claim shampoo actually helps the condition of the hair. If you could see the expression on my face right now, you'd know how I feel about that.
I know it may seem a little silly to get all excited about shampooing when you're supposed to make sure it's over with in two minutes, but think of it this way: great kisses are like that. You're daydreaming about it, getting a little excited, getting your pucker all warmed up — and in less than a minute, it's done! There's a lot of beautiful experiences in life that last only a moment, and that's just fine, so long as you're fully there for them and make the getting ready part just as juicy.

Conditioner. Ahhh, the sweetness, the luxury, the decadence. Like covering yourself with squished avocados, Captain Crunch and week-old bananas, then having your lover … well, anyway, it's good. 
I suggest you become aware of how you put in your conditioner; where it goes and where it doesn't. When your hair is in a big, wet, beautiful heap, it's very easy to miss large areas of it, especially if it's long. So pay attention, where is the conditioner in all that mayhem? Is it getting to the ends? Where exactly are the ends? Are you getting some of that miraculous goo around the front hairline, on those weaker hairs? Or on those kinda-dry highlights? Figure it out, then, once you know, it'll be easy, just keep doing that each time you condition.
Remember how I so annoyingly asked you not to leave the shampoo in for more than a moment? Here is where you can indulge. The longer the conditioner stays in the better. So, shampoo in, and out; conditioner in, and left in until your hair moans with pleasure. Comb the conditioner through with a large comb if you feel like it. Once in while, let it sink in for an hour or two.
 

There are those of us who want to put a lawn chair in the shower and just sit there in that warm, wondrous water as it dissolves whatever yucky happened that day. I'm one of them, so I won't tell you to get the heck out of there, but for your hair's sake, direct the hot water away from it. Stream it onto your shoulders or your back. All that hot water will fade the colour quickly and dry out the hair, especially if you have finer, more porous hair.


When you can delay the inevitable no longer, take a big, beautiful, fluff-ball of a towel and squish it through the hair. Pat it, squeeze it, but please, don't rub, rubbing is for bellies, not hair. Be nice, be delicate.


Tangles galore? Take up your big, wide-toothed comb or a vent brush and begin at the ends. Work your way up. If you did all the nice things I've suggested so far, you probably won't have a lot in the way of tangles. Go slowly, especially if you have fine hair; wet, fine hair sometimes breaks easily.


Can you remember a time in your life when washing your hair was something quite delightful? Have you forgotten the sweet bliss of warm, fragrant suds, drifting down your neck? It's all still there, waiting, with open, squishy arms. Go and find it again, you deserve it. Not because you've done anything Gandhi-like (although I know you have), just because it feels so good. And besides, Nature graciously supplied you with all the parts: the hair, the water, the suds, and the capacity to tingle — how can you pass up a gift like that?


Jay Lamb is a Calgary hairstylist with over 30 years experience, a visual artist and a budding writer. For more information on Jay's hair salon in the Marda Loop area, please visit:

www.flowhairsalon.com     403 281 1704

Please "Like" my Facebook page:  

https://www.facebook.com/Flow-Hair-Salon-169322186858238/

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If you're an art lover, Jay's art can be seen at:

www.twolambs.ca

jayromalambart@gmail.com

 

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Solace in Umber. Glass and Acrylic. Approx. 55 by 30 inches. $2200.00  www.twolambs.ca
An Evening With Khamsin. Glass and Acrylic. Approx. 55 by 30 inches. $2200.00
Infusions of Nootaikok.  Glass and Acrylic. Approx. 55 by 30 inches. Sold.
Copyright 2015 Jay Lamb, All rights reserved.

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Jay Roma Lamb Art · 34 Lissington Dr. SW · Calgary, Ab T3E5E1 · Canada

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