About DIYing... your hair!

Oops--I just read it aloud.  No, I'm not talking about dyeing hair.  Just a thought on how, despite my DIY attitude for sewing, decor, outfits, food, and anything else I feel like, I don't get too creative on the DIY hair front.

(This post was born from two sources--your emails and questions, as well as a product I had a chance to review. Just FYI!)

I get emails from some of you sometimes asking how I do my hair.  I don't have much wisdom to pass on, sorry.  I prefer to spend about three minutes per day on my hair.  So, sometimes six minutes and then I do nothing to it the next day.  You get the idea.

My hair is naturally slightly curly, and is also pretty thick/frizzy.  So normally I just add a little curl to it and it looks like this.

Sometimes I try a little less and it goes even crazier, like this.

And sometimes, when I get really wild, I put actual effort into it and I can straighten it, so it looks like this.

And other times, I give up and put it up in a big top bun, which can be really fun and glam but doesn't go with every outfit.  And I don't always want it up, so this isn't as common.

I should also say that I discovered hair tools pretty late in the game, and have blow-dried my hair exactly once in my lifetime.  Well, I tried blow-drying it, but it didn't get dry fast enough so I gave up.  This stuff is thick, I tell you!  And I'm impatient.

I started playing around with curling my hair and straightening it in college (I went to a small high school. We were not glam. We were alternative art kids and didn't pick up on some of the trends as fast as the cool kids at a big school!).  I began to collect hair tools like curling irons in different barrel sizes, a straightener, etc., but had very little budget and so not one single one of those pieces cost more than $9.99.  So you can imagine what fantastic quality they were!

I never upgraded, really, until this year.  I got a nice curling iron before my wedding (my talented friend did my hair), and then, lucky me, Hana Air offered me one of their flat irons to try out!!  Now, until this point I had been using my $10 Ross straightener, which got caught on my hair here and there and pulled, and was really wide rather than the 1.5" or so wide kinds, so I couldn't really do much close to my head... but, it straightened, if slowly and sort of painfully.  I think it had like, a few temperature settings.

So I felt quite pampered when Hana sent me their super nice ceramic flat iron to review!


Lots of great stuff that came with the straightener--serum, brush, several cases.  My favorite accessory has got to be the hot mat.  See it there, rolled up in the righthand corner, with the white ribbon around it?  What a brilliant idea, right??!  A hot mat to put on your counter so you don't burn anything or hurt the iron.  Totally useful.

Anyway, I tried out the Hana straightener and, I must say, it is vastly better than my old one!  (Duh!!)  It didn't get caught on my hair anywhere, and it heated up super fast and there were plenty of temp settings to choose from.  I followed the guide in the pamphlet for my type of hair and started at the lowest temp it thought would work--worked great, and straightened so fast!  It seriously took me not even 10 minutes.  And I have a lot of hair!


Wanna see??

The results...

(I should say that I got a haircut like, less than 24 hours after taking these pictures, so if you see scraggliness, it's just my hair being ready for a trim.)

I got compliments on my straight hair from my friend I used to work with (she's seen my hair all kinds of ways, including straightened with the old straightener) and my mom, who is always a big fan of my hair curly.  So I guess the nicer tools gave me a nicer straightness!

Feeling very lucky to have such a nice flat iron at my disposal!  =)

P.S. I'm always looking for easy-to-follow hair tutorials for everyday hairstyles, so if you have any recommendations, I'd love to hear them!

19 comments

  1. So pretty! I know all about the thick-and-heavy hair issue...I haven't been able to grow it very far past my shoulders since middle school just because of the headaches I get. I'm giving it another try now that I found someone who can properly take the weight out for me!

    Also, I've been researching like mad to learn all sorts of hair styling techniques since my wedding, so I have a few recommendations!

    mostly short-to-medium styles, but probably translate well to longer hair: http://www.thesmallthingsblog.com/p/hair-style-tutorials.html

    Longer hair tutorials: http://www.lovemaegan.com/search/label/hair%20tutorials

    Hair video tutorials (she makes it look WAY too easy, but has a great range of styles): http://www.youtube.com/user/lilithedarkmoon

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    1. So crazy that you get headaches just from the weight of your hair! =( Thanks for the tutorial links!!

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  2. oh it looks so pretty!!! i think we are hair twins. mine is also long, thick, curly. on humid and rainy days its like i can actually feel it getting bigger and bigger!!! its a good thing that natural hair looks....natural, bc mine is always messy, even a slick style is messy!! but ive always liked your hair messy, curly, un-ruly, wild!! after my daughter got a croc flat iron for xmas 2 yrs ago, i was hooked and decided to combine mothers day and my birthday presents and get one for myself! love it!!! i follow you on pinterest, ive got a lot of easy hair ideas on my 'girly' page. if u wanna check them out!!
    ira lee henson

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    1. Ooh, sounds great, thanks, I'll def check our your Pinterest board! Yep, my hair freaks out in the humidity... luckily Oregon is pretty dry in the summers!

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  3. It turned out really nice - also, I really like your subtle make-up in those shots. Brings out your blue eyes!

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    1. Thanks, I THINK I can remember what eye shadow that was... haha... that's another thing I don't know much about--makeup!

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  4. Anonymous2/03/2012

    Hooray for you getting freebies, and thanks for sharing the peanut sauce recipe yesterday. :)
    And thanks to YellowRose for her first link, these are all about the length of my hair.

    I like a bunch of the hairstyles on http://thebeautydepartment.com/ Not that I've done that many, but I keep thinking I should, especially when my hair gets a little longer. I like the braid in a braid she has up on top now. :)

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    1. Thanks! Glad you liked the recipe too =)

      That blog is GORGE! Totally remembering that one for beauty inspiration... thanks!

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  5. I am pretty much your hair opposite: fine, above-shoulder length, and pin straight (except where it curves to the right on both sides at the bottom. Ugh.) And it refuses to hold a style!

    However, my sister, who has thick, long, curly hair, recently introduced me to these:
    http://www.goody.com/#/grid/simple_styles/products/simple_styles_spin_pin

    They're like little corkscrews for your hair! They come in three packs and there are two sizes and a few different colours to match different hair. I got the small ones and my thick-haired sister has the big ones, and they work great for both of us! You just stick your hair in a bun (or a more elaborate knot) and twist them in. It holds WAY better than a million bobby pins ever could. I only need the three (not enough hair for more!) but with your length, you might need more.

    They're so easy, and you can quickly make a sleek and polished or messy look.

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    1. Hi! Thanks for the reminder--I actually have a pack of those but have been scared/unsure how to use them!! I'm gonna try now, though... I have smallish ones so I hope they work... thanks!

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  6. My hair is like yours only it curls into coils. If I leave it natural, it is a huge mop of springy curls. It's thick, course and gets larger when it's sticky outside. (I'm going to mexico on holiday next month, it won't be pretty) I wear it straightened mostly. IT takes forever to straighten but then I'm good for days.

    Your title had me thinking you were going to talk about natural hair dyes. I've been using only natural pigments on my hair for years and I get compliments all the time. I know you like less chemicals in your life too. To get my hair color which is a dark brown with auburn sheen, I use henna leaves and indigo leaves. It's super permanent and easy and good for your hair and beautiful. hennaforhair.com is a neat site to learn about it. ( I am not associated with them in any way)

    PS I use those spin pins all the time. I need the large ones and they really hold. :)

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    1. Natural dyes, wow, interesting! I don't dye my hair but a natural rinse would be fun to try sometime... although I'd have no idea how it would turn out, so a little risky!

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  7. I think it looks really pretty curly!

    xo Jennifer

    http://seekingstyleblog.wordpress.com

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  8. I am a big fan of curls and I really like your's - they are so natural and don't seem fizzy or tangling. My hair is really sleek and straight naturally and I always try to make them look a little wavy at least, but usually after two hours I still end up with completely straight hair. Fourtunately I have finally made peace with the fact that it's almost impossible for me to get nice curls in my hair and instead I have started to look for cool and easy hairdos, that may only need a little bit braiding, but look awesome. I even made a board on pinterest about everyday hairdos, you can check it out if you like: http://pinterest.com/aveli/everyday-hairdos/
    Actually, I've always been a bit of a "hair freek" cause for me the hair is usually the main thing I notice about general apearence and I especially like long hair, so growing and keeping mine nice, is always an issue for me, but for some reson I hadn't thought of simple hairdos before and used to wear my hair just loose, braided or in a ponytail, but during the past few months I've rediscovered the world of hairdos entirely.

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    1. Fun, thanks for sharing your Pinterest board! Checking it out now =)

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  9. Thanks for the lovely ideas. I plan to do my own hair and I have recently bought an electric hair straightener. I think straight and sleek long blonde hair would go great with my red Venus cut designer blouse.love your blog...

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  10. you're so adorable! I'm totally the same way - I started WAYYYY late in the game of hair products too. I love the bun on you - too cute!

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    1. Aaw, thanks! Loved your pouf-ey pony on Saturday, would love to see a tutorial or something! Cuz I have no idea how to do new things to my hair, haha... =)

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  11. Delurking to post a comment for the first time, I think! I just recently chopped off all my hair, and then came across this tutorial: http://aspottedpony.com/for-moms/curly-hair-without-heat-video-how-to-put-a-sock-bun-in-your-hair/1663/

    It seems so simple! Wish I still had long hair to try it with. Of course, your hair is already naturally wavy, but if you google for "sock bun," it looks like most people actually just use the technique for the bun style itself, not the waviness it produces. Anyway, just thought I'd share, since I can't try it out myself!

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