Thursday, November 14, 2013

Family trick

Gents, unless you are of the ponytail-wearing variety (one of my very favorite varieties!), then this post won't be terribly relevant to you. But if you like to keep your hair long and wild, then read on. And if your name is Colin Farrell, then feel free to contact me.

Here I am on a hike in Julian, California.

I am laughing with my dear friend, Tiffany. I am wearing three-too-many layers on a rather warm evening. I have not washed my hair in five days. But you can't tell, can you?!

I don't love washing my hair. It's quite thick, and takes ages to dry. It's also very fine, which means it's easily damaged by regular washing and blow-drying. So I try not to wash it more than 1-3 times a week.

The thing is, I'm not one of those glorious people with an eternally dry scalp. My hair starts to get greasy after about 2-3 days. Luckily, there's an old family trick that's saved me the hassle and hair-damage of regular washings and dryings:

Plain ol', nothin' fancy cornstarch.

I think cornstarch is actually the main ingredient in dry shampoo. I don't use dry shampoo, though, because: a) it's smells too strongly of perfume for my liking (and allergies), and b) it's much more expensive than cornstarch.

Instead, I just dip my fingers in a can of cornstarch and rub the cornstarch into my roots, along my part. If my hair is greasy all over, then I rub cornstarch all over my scalp.

The blending of corn starch into the hair does require some patience and skill. Because my hair has darkened as I've aged, I have to spend more time massaging the cornstarch into my roots; otherwise, I'd look like I was wearing a powdered wig. Brushing my hair after I put the cornstarch in also helps it to blend nicely.

If you have really dark hair, then it may be difficult for you to avoid the powdered wig look. But hey, you never know what you can do with some patient, careful massaging. I'm not sure, but I believe my dark-haired cousin has used cornstarch with great success. You'll have to try it and let me know.

The key is blend, blend, blend that powder so it eliminates grease and isn't noticeable.

If you have fine, slippery hair, this will give your hair more texture, allowing you to style it with greater success.

It really is a gem of a family trick.

© by scj


  1. I'm the same way! I can't shower after noon or my hair will still be wet at bedtime (it isn't anywhere near as long as it used to be, so I have been able to shower as late as 2 and have it dry).

    I'm going to have to try the cornstarch trick. Have you thought about going no 'poo? I have in the past. I really should get back to that. It works really well for my hair-type.

    1. Yes try it! I heard from a friend that it does work with darker hair, you just may need to vacuum your roots. Yes, literally vacuum them to suck up excess corn starch.

      Do you mean no shampoo? Like just get the hair wet? Do enlighten me!

  2. Cool--

    Yes--no shampoo, frequently just water, but use natural stuff to clean it:
    Baking soda can get harsh after a while (alkaline pH, so use caution), but the apple cider vinegar (diluted in water--get the organic stuff with the sediment in the bottom--that's the real thing) and honey shampoo are *awesome*!

    There's a FB support group that has great advice for all kids of hair and scalp types. I'm looking into the honey shampoo one. :-)

    1. Interesting! So I suspect the goal with these shampoos is hair health — less damage etc. I'll have to check out the Facebook group! I'm still working on de-toxifying my life. Ugh. It's quite an enormous task. Shampoo is next on my list. So thanks for the tips!