Styling Mistakes You’re Making With Your Hair

The new year is always a good to for wiping clean your slate and starting afresh. We see a lot of this happening in our beauty routines too: one of the simplest ways to get out of a beauty rut is by heading out to our favorite salons to give our hair a new lease of life, like wiping the slate clean. But hold on to your horses, don’t book that salon appointment just yet.

I hung out with L’Oreal Professionnel’s Education Manager, Indra Tanudarma, and asked him what were some of the more common styling mistakes that Indonesian women are making with their hair. Read on to make sure so you can avoid these mistakes as well!

1. Going with the flow.

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Something that Indra wants more women to be aware of is that not all en vogue hairstyles are going to be tidy, slicked-back affairs. Plenty of looks on the runway involve artfully messy looks. “Too many women are scared of the looking grungy and edgy — many still prefer the sweet kawaii look,” he laughs.

He admits that it does get boring to see many women wear their long hair in loose waves. Don’t be afraid to eschew the norm by trying out a different haircut. “There’s more to life than layering,” he says with a grin. Try something new, like short bobs and pixie cuts. “A lot of Indonesian women are attached to long hair, but women in Hong Kong and Malaysia are already much more adventurous.”

2. Not styling it enough.

Indra says not enough women are using styling products and styling their hair at home. “You can’t go to the salon and ask for a Marilyn Monroe haircut without styling it every day,” Indra says. “In the end, it’s about the way you style your hair, not the way you cut it.” The way you style your hair is a complement to the rest of your look; what’s the point of meticulously picking out your outfit and applying makeup if your hair doesn’t add anything to your overall look?

A lot of people will say that they don’t have enough time to style their hair, but there are already so many time-saving styling products on the market that will get the job done in no time. It’s important to know what type of hair you have and what look you want to achieve before you go out to buy the right products.

3. Not having enough fun with color.

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While he does not expect too much from the hair dyeing department, Indra also wants more women try to take baby steps to dye their hair. “Black is beautiful,” he says, “but fashion is always now.” He’s clearly a proponent of having fun with your hair and treating it as an accessory to your present sartorial preferences!

For first timers, he suggests acclimating to the hair-coloring bandwagon by trying something mild at first, and then go bolder from there. Start with a color that is one shade lighter than your real hair color, and keep kicking it up to lighter shades. But remember that treated hair needs extra care. “Not enough women give their chemically treated hair the right type of care,” he warns. Give yourself a hair mask at home at least once a month to keep your tresses hydrated, and go for shampoo formulated specifically for color treated hair.

4. Not getting proper styling consultations.

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Indra openly admits that people simply do not spend enough time getting a solid consultation in with their stylist. It’s important for you, as a client, to know what you want and discuss it with your hairdresser. If you’re the type of person who gives their hairdresser free rein with your mane, you may often end up not having your expectations met. Worse still, the hairdresser may end up defaulting by giving you a cut and color combination s/he is already familiar and comfortable with; while that look might look good on other people, it may not necessary be the ideal look for you.

A good style consultation is the difference between wearing your hair loud and proud, and tying it back in a regretful bun for the next three months. Don’t be afraid to take speak up if you’re not jiving with your stylist’s ideas, it’s your head after all. Remember to take into consideration the following:

  • the texture and thickness of your hair. For example, it is easier for people with medium/thick hair to maintain a long-lasting perm when compared to people with finer hair.
  • your lifestyle. If you are someone who is always on the move, a high-maintenance look that requires some time to style may not be the most ideal option for you. Will you have time for post-treatment hair care too? Are you up to the task of giving bleached hair a nourishing mask twice a month?
  • your budget. For instance, don’t be fooled by the seemingly low-maintenance look of a pixie cut: it requires regular trimming to keep its shape. Even when you do try to grow it out, you still need to visit a stylist once in a while if you want it grow out in a neat and orderly way.

So don’t forget to keep all that advice in mind the next time you head out to your salon. Try something new with your hair while we are still in the early throes of 2014: whether you end up dying your hair going for an undercut, go all in. It’s a new year, after all — time for new things!