The majority of my clients request low-maintenance cuts and color. While I strive to achieve this, they and others need to understand a cut and color that is considered low or no maintenance still needs some product and TLC by the client.

You have likely heard the saying that we are “beauticians, not magicians.” You are in our chair for only a short time. I will definitely show you how to maintain your color and cut between visits, but you must put forth a little effort.

Now a quick lesson on products. Rule No. 1: Less is best. Rule No. 2: You get what you pay for.

All products range in price based on the quality of the ingredients in the product. Less expensive products are less expensive because they scrimp on the quality ingredients and use waxes and oils as fillers. These waxes and oils will build up on the hair and weigh it down – especially shampoo and conditioner. 

Just because it says “for color treated or damaged hair,” that doesn’t mean it won’t eventually strip your color or that it will miraculously fix your dry, damaged hair. It might have an ingredient or two that will help, but not when the majority of what’s in the bottle is useless additives.

It is counterproductive to spend money for a professional cut and color and then use drugstore products. Use less of better stuff. It will make your color and style last longer and look better, therefore saving you money.

The function of mousse or root volumizer is for volume. It is to be applied on the roots in wet hair and then dried, pushing the hair in opposite direction of the way it falls, in order to set the roots in a lifted manner.

Styling gel is for hold. Apply this sparingly to wet hair and dry. It will help keep the style in place. It might leave the hair crunchy when too much is used.

Styling cream or pomade are both used on hair that tends to get fuzzy when drying. The cream will make hair softer and shiny while drying. It can be used on both wet and dry hair. Pomade is greasier and should only be used in dry, thick, coarse hair to prevent frizzies by putting a barrier on the hair, protecting it from the moisture in the air.

Salt spray when sprayed on curly or wavy hair when wet or dry will help curl to tighten. It should be combed through and left alone.

Wax and putty can be used on dry hair sparingly to piece out texture.

Texture powder can be sprinkled on the roots of totally dry hair to give hair texture and lift. Dry shampoo can be used for this outcome as well, but both will feel tacky and are hard to shampoo out of the hair.

Oils, like Moroccan and argon, are wonderful in this climate for naturally curly, wavy or frizzy hair to tame the halo of fuzz and contain curl pattern. These also should be used sparingly.

I hope this brief list will help in your decision in what products to choose and use. It will make your great cut and color stay better and look amazing.

Joy Ross is owner of Style It Salon in Old Town Bluffton.