If you're pregnant or a new mum you might be despairing at the changing state of your hair! Hairdresser to the stars Jamie Stevens takes a break from his busy schedule to give us some expert hair care tips.
Hi Jamie, why do some women have problems with their hair post pregnancy?
Pregnancy affects hair differently from individual to individual; you might find that hair is thick and lustrous, or it might become thinner and dryer. It usually becomes thicker, because the growth cycle enters the resting stage so the hair isn’t shed, which is why women often think they’re losing lots of hair after they’ve had their baby – in fact this is just because the growth cycle restarts and shedding begins again, so you lose what’s effectively been storing up. This can happen one month, five months or even longer after the pregnancy so expect to see changes for up to a year or longer.
Should pregnant women change their hair care routine?
The hair’s texture can also change during pregnancy, and again afterwards, so you might need to change your products – re-assess as you go. Don’t thin hair out drastically as it will thin post-pregnancy naturally.
How should they take care of their hair if it's dull and thinning?
Avoiding heat styling as much as possible will mean your hair is in better condition and you will have less breakage. To get some volume in your hair, use a volumising shampoo and conditioner, and then apply either a volume mousse or spray or lotion to your hair when wet. Use a big round brush for lifting the roots when you are blow-drying to get as much air into the roots as possible.
Jamie Stevens, Celebrity Hairdresser of the year 2010
Many women are encouraged get their hair cut when they have children — isn't it easier to keep it long and put it up?
If you’ve got long hair, it’s often better to keep it at a length you can tie back – short hair is great but it does still need styling so longer hair can be better when you’re going to want something manageable.
Is it safe to have your hair coloured when you're pregnant?
There’s nothing to say you can’t colour your hair when pregnant, but always do a skin test – hormonal changes can mean you’re hypersensitive even if you’ve always been fine before. If you test, you’ve got nothing to worry about! You could also just have highlights, or colour that doesn’t touch the scalp.
Could you give us some tips for achieving glamorous hair when there's not much time?
Up-dos are a great, low-maintenance solution to unruly hair. Clients can take inspiration from celebrities and catwalk trends. There are lots of ponytails, buns and top-knots in the public eye at the moment which can easily be recreated at home. Another great way to manage out of control hair is to accessorise hair with bands and clips, which are low cost but can look very professional. They are an instant quick fix, but leave you with a great result.
Can you recommend any products that would be good for post pregnancy hair?
The best shortcut to looking gorgeous is to eat well and use a good quality shampoo and conditioner, and don’t overuse heat stylers. Make sure you use the right shampoo and conditioner for your hair type. Pick a combo for fine, greasy, dry or coloured hair, and stick to it! There’s a specialist product made to care especially for you.