OK-Here’s me trying (and probably failing) to keep this concise and to the point while spilling my guts. Sorry in advance for breaking my 500 word limit…
Occasionally there’s a big, fat, gaping hole between the facts I have tucked away in my brain and the realities that I choose to believe. My hair is a super example. See, I know that if you treat your hair badly and you treat your body very badly, there are consequences. Yet I had to reach the extreme before I actually put the two together. And let me tell you, I reached all the way to rock friggin’ bottom.
And so it began
An innocent question from my dear, dear mother. “Tizzilich, (my nickname) your hair looks thin. Are you eating enough protein?” I brushed it off, no pun intended, and assured her I was fine. Typical nitpicking mom, right? I love her nitpicking, angel heart with all of my being so don’t misinterpret. But it stuck with me. This tiny, budding seed in the back of my mind that maybe these tresses weren’t quite as full and lustrous as they once were. So what did I do about it? Not a DAMN thing, that’s what. Even though I had this thought seed growing in my brain, I couldn’t reconcile the idea that a healthy, vigilant, vitamin popping vegetarian nutritionist could possibly have a nutrient related problem.
Can anyone say denial?
Fast forward a few years; an abundance of breakups and make-ups, working at stress central station, a grossly inadequate vegan and then vegetarian diet, plus countless at-home bleach jobs. My hair was wrecked. Thin to the touch. Even the strands themselves felt weak and brittle. Oh yeah, and it was falling out like Brittney circa 2007. Yeah. So for me it wasn’t just one thing. It was a whole laundry list of “stuff” that I’m sure wayyyy more ladies are experiencing but never talk about it because, let’s face it, it is uncomfortable to talk about female hair loss.
As my stomach turns with anxiety…I’m about to share The Photo. A private reminder that skinny is not always healthy, eating “healthy” is not always healthy, and torturing your hair has consequences.
Taking control of my body
When it hits (reality, that is) it hits hard. I decided I had no choice but to overhaul my diet and get my hair chopped off immediately, so I did. At 11 am on a snowy Tuesday, I walked into The Salon at Ulta and met my hair goddess/ magician/miracle worker, Lauren. I owe her all of my hair. She taught me #2-5….I was aware of #1 but if you recall, I was in denial.
And now, what you’ve all been patiently waiting for…
My Tips for Healthy(er) Hair
1. Take a Vitamin and EAT- There is SO MUCH MORE to come on this subject in a later post, but the main idea is this:
-Not all proteins are created equal. Variety is vital. Plant based proteins are not necessarily complete proteins so eating a variety of foods is essential.
-Actually EATING enough calories. I don’t care how clean your foods are, if you aren’t eating enough kcals your body suffers.
-A supplement may help in times when you’ve eaten plenty but didn’t quite get your million a day F&V servings. Look for one with at least 100 mcg of added Biotin, especially if you are vegetarian and don’t consume eggs. I like THIS brand.
2. Stop “at home” bleaching, Liz! I slowly destroyed my brittle hair by haphazardly painting on highlights with no regard for maintenance or products used. No more store bought boxes for me. Now I gladly fork over the cash for a professional hair color sesh. If you are a knowledgeable hair color specialist and wanna do it at home, go for it. If you are me, go see Lauren at Ulta.
3. Play Nice. No more going to bed with a top knot in. Gone are the days that I lie down without combing out my teased mane or tear through my wet hair fresh out of the shower. I’m more gentle now. My scalp thanks me. I thank Lauren, my hair goddess.
4. Satin Pillowcase. Traditional cotton pillowcases can do two things: cause friction among strands contributing to breakage and possibly absorb vital moisture leaving your hair vulnerable. Protect your strands. Sleep like a queen. Win win.
5. Protect it! There are loads of products out there to shield your shiny locks from heat damage, air pollution, sun exposure etc. Looking for some product to try? I looked HERE and HERE for the goods.
Sorry for the length but I could seriously talk (or type) all day. Someone needs to cut me off. Unplug my laptop. Hide all power sources!