7 top tips for shiny hair

July 10, 2011 | 10:11 AM

1) Don't Break the Shine Line -- Shine is perceived in two parts: the Chroma-Band, which reveals the color within the hair shaft, and its complement the Shine-Band, which is a pure reflection of light off of the hair's protective coating. In order to maximize the shine created by these two components, the cuticle layer must be smooth and aligned. For maximum bands of color and shine, recommend a style of uniform length that is more conducive to showing off shine than heavily layered looks.

2) Nurture by Nature -- Recommend that clients trade any harsh, plastic brushes for a natural boar bristle or at least a softer synthetic bristle brush. The natural brush fibers are less likely to break the hair shaft.

3) Give Heat the Cold Shoulder -- Most damage stylists see on a daily basis comes from overuse of heat styling tools including curling and flat irons. Heat breaks down the hair's natural barriers which can result in a dull appearance. Teach clients how to dry and style their hair naturally for two to three days each week and how to make your good salon blowout last. This way, they can boost hair shine, cut back on heat damage and get even more versatility out of the fabulous cut you've given them in the salon. Also recommend that your clients check their blow dryers to see if they are too hot. Old hair dryers often have blocked vents that raise heat too high.

4) Bottoms Up to Fatty Alcohols -- No, we're not talking about calorie laden White Russian cocktails! Fatty alcohols are found in many of today's moisturizers and conditioners and are good for hair, debunking the myth that all products containing alcohol are bad for hair. Fatty alcohols in conditioners (look for cetyl alcohol or stearyl alcohol on the ingredient listing) are critical as they help create a "lubricious film" over the surface of the hair. This creates smooth cuticles for easier combing, protects the cuticle surface from damage and generates high-watt shine.

5) Don't Sleep On It -- Hair breakage is a seriously rude awakening for hair-health conscious clients. Many women go to sleep with their hair in ponytails or braids but this practice leads to sub-par beauty rest. The pressure and tension on some of the hair strands may be enough to create breakage in those areas (especially the area around the band) and thus disrupt shine on the hair's surface.

6) Rembrandt to the Rescue -- You undoubtedly have clients who have damaged their hair to a point that makes natural shine tough to revive in the short-term. Help them out with inspiration from the Dutch masters who used a highlighting technique to create the illusion of shine when painting the satin of a lady's dress or a glass in her hand. This artist's technique is the origin of our hair color highlights and easily translates into additional service business for you. A few well-placed color highlights will provide necessary dimension to otherwise dull hair.

7) Salute to Silicones --  Silicones are important conditioning ingredients that make hair smooth, soft, and shiny. However, not all silicones are created equal. The newer Amino Silicones (Amodimethicone) have an amine group at the end of the silicone chain that allows it to better adhere to damaged hair. Some are able to provide conditioning benefits that last through several shampoos and work well as a weekly treatment for color treated hair.

Tips courtesy of P&G Beauty.

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