By Chinwe of Hair and Health
Have you ever been just too busy to do your wash routine? too busy to deep condition? too busy to style your hair?
Many of us have been just too busy at one time or another. Whether school has gotten us bogged down in homework OR our career has consumed our schedule, life has gotten hectic to the point where our hair might have begun to suffer. Factor in stress and sleep deficiency and … “Whoa”!
So what can you do prevent your hair from suffering during your tight schedule? Here are a few tricks and tips that I use:
1. Protective style to save time
This tip is my number one time saver when life just gets too busy. Styles such as twists, braids, or wigs over cornrows allow for me to go weeks without fiddling with my hair, a task for which I don’t have time. I can direct my focus to work or school while my strands stay protected and knot-free.
2. Do a dry shampoo or co-wash instead of a full-on wash
It is good hygiene to wash regularly, but postponing the task a few days isn’t going to destroy my hair. If I don’t have time for the entire wash day routine (i.e., pre-poo, wash, condition, re-twist my edges OR detangle), then I just co-wash or use a “dry” shampoo method (such as witch hazel and a towel to cleanse the scalp). Whichever route I take, I simply postpone my complete wash routine for when I do have time … rather than doing it hurried and half-hearted.
3. Sleep with a silk pillowcase
Sometimes, after a long and tiring day the last thing I want or even remember to do is to put on a silk scarf or bonnet. For that reason, I sometimes get into the habit of using a silk pillowcase; that way all I need to do when I get home is hit the bed.
4. Moisturizing is a must
No matter how busy I am, I make the time to moisturize my hair. This step takes less than 5 minutes, so there is really no excuse to avoid it. Without adequate moisture, my hair will definitely suffer.
5. Postpone detangling but not for too long
If I know I am not going to have time to detangle, then I don’t bother touching my hair; I don’t tangle it any further. Ideally, my hair is already in a set of twists or braids, so I just leave it in that set until I am ready to detangle. What if my hair is loose? Well, if it’s time to detangle then I force myself to make the time to do so soon. Until then though, manipulating my tangled hair is bound to cause knots and more tangles, so I just don’t touch it. (It may be otherwise in your case, so definitely learn your “own” hair.)
6. Eat well regardless of time
If I am too busy to get sufficient sleep or if my stress level is up, then I try to have my diet in check at the very least. In my opinion, sleep deprivation + stress + eating healthy is less detrimental than sleep deprivation + stress + eating crap. Certain nutrients that help us deal better with stress are just not found in junk foods or fast foods. Thus, on busy days, I attempt to choose the deli sandwich over the greasy burger. Aside from that, I try to work on getting more sleep and decreasing my stress, since lack of sleep and stress are conducive to hair loss.
Overall, time management is a factor of arranging your priority list well and efficiently. Is it more important that you watch the “Real Housewives of Atlanta” tonight or that you catch up on some necessary sleep? How about responding to emails while your hair is sitting in deep conditioner? Your healthy hair does not have to suffer.
Do you have any efficient hair care tips you want to share?