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How to Treat Your Hair Right

Ruth Crilly

Here’s a brief rundown on how I look after my highlighted, oft-blowdried hair. I’d like to point out that it’s not “oft blowdried” out of choice – every time I go on a modeling shoot it just gets tonged and backcombed to within an inch of its life! I can almost hear it screaming every time a heated appliance comes near it. Due to this frequently suffered Barnet Torture I have a few hard rules when it comes to my hair maintenance and they are as follows:

1) Don’t highlight it the whole way through, just through the top and front sections. I keep my natural colour through more than 50% of my hair – it keeps the condition better and it gives a bit of “depth” when my hair moves. My hair angel is the one and only John Spanton from Trevor Sorbie in Covent Garden. He just gets my colour spot-on every single time. Last week I asked him to “take it down a bit for the autumn” and he just knew exactly what I was talking about. Glorious man that he is.

2) Don’t wash it every day. OK, I’ll admit that some people may have to, but I often think that people just get into the habit of washing daily and then feel dirty if they don’t. I’m not entirely convinced that most people need to wash it daily… Give it a try – leave it a day and see how it feels. Can you get away with dry shampoo? Slicking it back? It’s not so much the washing that I don’t like, it’s the consequent hair-drying. If you can halve the number of blowdries you have in a lifetime, then that’s a wonderful thing in my books!

3) Avoid harsh, stripping shampoos. You know in the gym when you have the wall dispenser of free shampoo and it makes your skin turn inside out with dryness? Yeah, avoid that. And anything that is coloured bright green and smells amazingly of apples, or costs £1 for eight bottles in poundland. Chances are that you’re buying glorified washing-up liquid that will literally make your hair start to cry. I’ve talked about my favourites in the video below – they could be a nice place to start if you’re looking for gentle, effective shampoos.

4) Condition, condition, condition! Highlighted, chemically-treated or coarse hair needs to be deep-conditioned a couple of times a week. It makes so much difference to manageability and shine – your run-of-the-mill quick conditioner stays on the hair for what? Twenty seconds before you rinse it off? You can’t expect that to do more than detangle. I love some of these pre-shampoo treatments that have started popping up more frequently – again, see the video below.

5) Ask yourself: do you really need to straighten it today? Because if you don’t, put those flat-irons away! Have a little experiment with a natural, wavy style or a sleek ponytail or something completely new. If it’s the weekend, give your hair a break – the people in the Tesco’s queue won’t appreciate your poker-straight locks as much as your hair will appreciate a little holiday from being slow-fried inside two metal plates.

Feel free to ignore all of the above, they are just the rules that I myself follow. If you want to hear me chatting away about them, with a few extra tips thrown in for good measure, then click the play button on the video below! If you can’t see the video below then click HERE, and if you can’t be bothered to watch the video at all then scroll down to have a look at my hair product arsenal.

Makeup: Sam from Pixiwoo did my makeup, I talk about it in this video: http://youtu.be/7UXAozJjDvk

Videos mentioned:

In the Shower Video: http://youtu.be/GaNxwvnX0ng

Babyliss Big Hair Video: http://youtu.be/e_pf-NstqkE

Products Mentioned:

Charles Worthington Shine Booster Treatment: http://tidd.ly/6923a423

Phyto Subtil Elixir: http://tidd.ly/9ffe5a46

Liz Earle Shampoo: http://goo.gl/CC291

Paul Mitchell Awapuhi Moisturizing Lather Shampoo:http://awapuhi.paulmitchell.com/shampoo.html

John Frieda Sheer Blonde Mask: http://tidd.ly/10bb717

Goldwell Rich Repair Mask: http://tidd.ly/267f824

SEAH Cashmere Mask: http://tidd.ly/8d30b548

Moroccanoil: http://tidd.ly/a6f0041f

Gielly Green Argan Rescue: http://tidd.ly/af18b3af

Sebastian Potion 9: http://tidd.ly/27dcb548

Babyliss Big Hair: http://tidd.ly/205a694e

Tangle Teezer: http://tidd.ly/26bfcb83


  1. hi Ruth thanks for your advice.

  2. hi Ruth, i wondered what you would advise to use on my thin straight hair to give it a bit more shape and texture? thanks, love your videos!

  3. Hi Ruth, I know it’s an old post, but I’ve just come across Moroccanoil treatment and I would like to share what I learned. First three ingredients are silicone polymers (cyclopentasiloxane, dimethicone, cyclomethicone) and even if they give you an instant shiny effect, on the long run they dry and ruin your hair. Only natural oils can really nurish your hair, so i vividly recommend you using a natural organic argan or flax oil. I’ve been using one (mixed organic hair oil, bought here in italy) for months now and my hair is great, no split ends, and i use it instead of conditioner on damp hair. best wishes form Italy!

  4. Do you use a pre wash treatment and a hair mask in the same wash or do you use it on different days?

  5. Hi Ruth, I wash my hair every other day and find that’s plenty for me. I also swap up my shampoo and conditioner ever few washes and I deep condition at least once a week. My hair is chemically straightened ( I have RA and this helps me with my hair care a huge amount), because of this it takes 5 minutes with the dryer and 5 with the GHD’s which I don’t use every day. If I’m not going out I tend to put my hair up.

  6. I need to wash my scalp daily cos of the humidity in my country. Lowest humidity is more than 90%. O_O” If I don’t wash once every 24 hours, I get eczema! Just sharing…

  7. I wash them everyday but every other day only with a conditionner. Hair is clean and perfumed without any agression.

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