Salon work puts a lot of stress on bones and joints, so we asked the members of our Healthy Hairdresser Advisory Council for tips on protecting and nourishing your very important framework and connectors. Our experts came back with some great ideas.
In this case an ounce of prevention truly is worth more than a pound of the cure. Even though what we do is physical, it’s not the same as being active. If getting on a treadmill is the farthest thing from your mind after a long day, try to incorporate some yoga poses into your day to keep your body agile. Nourish yourself! Calcium and Vitamin D are both essential for bone health and should be taken together, since our bodies need vitamin D to be able to absorb calcium. Also, inflammation can be brutal on joint health and is a common factor in many diseases. It’s something I've personally struggled with and now swear by a concoction I’ve named “RAW elixir,” since it really looks like a Biolage R.A.W. display: Combine turmeric, ginger, lemon, honey, a dash of cayenne pepper and coconut oil with hot water, and blend to a thick smoothie consistency. Refrigerate for up to two weeks, and add a few teaspoons in a cup of hot water daily to drink as an anti-inflammatory tea. True miracle worker!—Anna Manukyan, Assistant VP Education, Matrix and Biolage
Regular physical activity not only burns calories to help keep weight within a healthy range; it also builds muscle to help your bones and joints stay strong. Exercise that increases your heart rate will also help to reduce joint pain. Outside of the salon, try activities like hiking, biking, yoga or Pilates. Inside the salon, alternate standing with sitting, changing positions frequently and doing hamstring, calf and toe stretches. Stretching is important, because stiff tendons and ligaments will be pulled at the weakest point. It’s important throughout a salon pro’s career to wear comfortable shoes—there a lot of stylish shoes out there that look great and are comfortable and supportive!—Larry Silvestri, President, America’s Beauty Show by Cosmetologists Chicago
Standing with your arms actively moving about creating the perfect blowout, hunching over while you achieve that perfect detail around the face, working that foil-comb as you create the finest weave for the subtlest highlight—sounds exciting, doesn’t it? But it’s important to be mindful of your body as you are working. Don’t forget to stretch those wrists and raise the chair to avoid stooping over. Bad habits are hard to break, which is why Pivot Point encourages schools to start teaching best practices within the first two weeks of school.—Paul Suttles, Sr. Director, Education Implementation North America, Pivot Point International, Inc.
Strength training is important to maintain healthy bone density, especially for women; that’s why I practice yoga 3-4 times per week in addition to eating a balanced diet. Keeping healthy snacks on hand such as roasted almonds or protein powders can help you survive a busy day without compromising your health. Supplements such as calcium and vitamin D are also super beneficial to add to your daily routine. Even if you’re tired at work, walk it out in between clients. I wear a Fit Bit and make sure to get at least 10,000 steps a day. And remember, it’s ok to take a break once in a while!—Jennie Wolff, Vice President of Marketing and Education, Sola Salon Studios.