March 5, 2010 (RALEIGH NC) –Children get themselves into all kinds of sticky situations – including situations that involve their hair. The stylists at Lather Hair Salon in Raleigh offer the following strategies for dealing with some typical kid’s hair crises:
Hair Nest: Lots of children come into the salon with a nest of knotted hair at the nape of the neck. The cause of this tangled mess can be extremely curly hair, hair brushing up against a coat, or skipping the morning brushing session. To avoid running into tangles that might pull when they brush, Children will often brush over the top layer only. To avoid the “nest,” be sure to use conditioner when you wash your child’s hair, or encourage them to do so, then comb their hair out as soon as they come out of the bath. A detangler spray also helps children comb their hair without pulling.
Greasy Buildup: Whether they admit it or not, children will often just wet their hair in the shower rather than actually use shampoo and conditioner. Greasy buildup is the result, especially for adolescents. One way to speed up the showering process is to have them use a leave-in-conditioner. This way, they can just shampoo, spray some conditioner in their wet hair and they’re done.
For boys who love the spikey-hair look – which requires lots of gel — a clarifying shampoo such as Graham Webb Visibility is ideal. This eliminates the extra product build-up. Actually, clarifying shampoos are great for anyone who uses a lot of hair care products (gels, sprays, etc.)
To cut down on daily hair washing, try a dry shampoo, like KMS Makeover Spray, in your child’s hair. This amazing product will take the oil out without forcing your child to shampoo every day.
Do It Yourself Disasters: When children decide to give themselves a haircut – and you’d be surprised how often this happens — the result can be dreadful! Depending on what style the child has “created,” the cut is usually salvageable. Worse case scenario for boys: they can always get a “buzz” cut and start over. When girls snip their own hair, a professional stylist can usually blend the “snips” with the rest of style. Fortunately, layers are very stylish now and can be created to hide a lot of DIY mistakes. But the best defense is offence: Avoid home cuts by making trips to the salon an exciting event. Take boys out for ice cream afterwards and let girls get their nails polished.
Painted Hair: It happens. Kids get paint in their hair, either by accident or by deciding blue “highlights” would be fun. The best way to get the paint out is to use a clarifying shampoo (the same kind that eliminates greasy buildup out). If there is an excessive amount of paint, use a combination of detangler and conditioner and work it through with a fine-toothed comb. This will help the paint slip out of the child’s hair. This takes patience and time, so you may want to pop in his or her favorite DVD before you begin the process.
Foreign Objects: Let’s say you’re your child gets a toy car entwined in his or her hair – somehow. Be patient and slowly unwind the hair, strand by strand, from around the wheels or whatever foreign object is stuck in there. If you absolutely cannot free the object, do not cut it out at home! Take your child to a professional salon where the stylists will know the best ways to cut and save the integrity of the child’s hair.
For sticky objects such as gum, it’s true: peanut butter works wonders. Massage a scoop of peanut butter through the gum and use your fingers to help slide it out.
Bugs: It is inevitable that children will share things at school, such as toys, snacks, pencils – even head lice. Once a lice breakout at school has occurred, your child is likely to contract them. Don’t panic. A good anti-lice shampoo will take care of the problem. Help to avoid the transfer of lice by sending your child to school with his or her own nap-mat or any other objects that may touch their heads, including sports equipment. Send a hairbrush with your daughter. Little girls tend to play with each other’s hair. Make sure your daughter knows that she should only use her brush on her hair, even if a friend wants to do the brushing.
It is very important to teach children the correct way to maintain their own hair. Give them fun bottles in which to keep their shampoo and conditioner. Teach them that a quarter amount of product is enough and show them how to lather it up. Some parents also train their children to wash their hair long enough to get it clean by giving them a song to sing. When the song is over, they can rinse. Brushing their hair, especially for girls, is also very important, both in the morning and at night. Make sure they know how to get all the way down to the underneath part to avoid knots and “nests.”
Above all, teach your children that maintaining healthy hair is a lot easier than trying to repair damaged hair.