No matter what the time or current craze, straight, smooth and shiny hair is never far from fashion. Here’s the DIY from Lather, a Raleigh hair salon:

1 – Start with clean hair. Then ring out the excess water and gently towel dry — blot your hair, don’t rub or pull. This is not the time to work out your frustration over the SUV that cut in front of you on the drive home. You’ll damage your hair.

2 – If your hair resembles the Sahara — dry as the desert — condition it  from root to tip. At Lather Hair Salon, we prefer Sebastian’s Drench Line.

3 – If your hair is very fine or tends to be slick as an oil rig,  stick to a light conditioner and apply only at the ends. Our preference: Sebastian’s Light Line.

4 – Don’t be shy about product purchases. Hair products are a good thing — a very good thing — so take the time to find your match. (Products are like the perfect husband: they’re there to complement your hair no matter what the type.) They can add body to fine hair or smooth out frizzy and dry hair. We love, love, absolutely love Sebastian’s Potion 9 for dry hair and Potion 9 Light for finer hair.

5 – Get acquainted with your blow dryer. Get in touch with your inner kindergartner and play with your hands. This is part of the key to a perfect blow-out. Pull your fingers through your hair, starting at the roots , while shooting the blow dryer’s air down at the crown. Continue this throughout the rest of your hair, holding it out a few inches. This will remove excess water and get in where a brush can’t to dry the roots.

4 – Separate. This is the best tip Lather Hair Salon can give you. Divide your hair into sections and secure with a clip. This will allow you to work with one section at a time. Four sections will work for most of us, one on each side and two in the back. For thicker hair, you may want to divide these sections further.

5 – Time for reinforcements. If you’re not sure what kind of brush to use, consult our earlier blog entry, “Davinci Had the Right Tools and So Can You.” Once you have the proper brush for your hair,  practice makes perfect. The objective is to pull the hair as tight as possible while you pull the brush through your hair with one hand and aim the heat of the blow dryer on the moving brush with the other. Think of this is as a game of cat and mouse. You want to follow the brush with the blow dryer.

6 – Keep your cool. Think of the “cool” button on your blow dryer as the blast of cool air that “freezes” your style into place. This is the last step for each section of your hair.

7 – Continue this process until your hair is dry. Finish with a shine serum to weigh down fly-aways and get that “salon finish.”

If you’ve followed these steps, your hard work will pay off and you should be able to keep your look for several days. Good job!

posted by Lather, a Raleigh hair salon