Growing up as the only girl and in a different country from my cousins, I didn’t have an older sister or family member who taught me how to do my hair. My mom didn’t exactly teach me how to do my hair either – I learned from YouTube and trial and error – but my mom did teach me something important that I’ve now incorporated into my hair routine: going to the salon as a form of self-care.
Back in the day when both my mom and I rocked a relaxer, she would go to her hairdresser, Stella, every few weeks for a wash and set and sometimes a touchup. I often ended up with her, and every once in a while if I was going to be in a wedding (I was a flower girl quite often actually!) or it was picture day, I also got my hair done, but most of the time I just sat and read books. We could be in that salon for HOURS. And I’m sure my mom could have washed and styled her hair on her own but going to the salon was something she did for herself, in the midst of all her other work, wife, and mom responsibilities. The hair salon was her own beauty routine.
Going to the hair salon as a form of self-care is something that I took to heart as soon as I became pregnant. I very quickly abandoned the thought of washing, detangling, deep conditioning, and styling my hair on my own as my belly grew bigger, so in the middle of last year, I started making monthly salon appointments for a wash, deep condition, and protective style. And my hair thrived!
Now that we’re spending more time at home, I have to admit, my self-care strategies have fallen off a bit. Washing and styling my hair definitely wasn’t my idea of self-care, it was more on the category of chore that I put off for as long as possible.
But recently, I decided to channel the hair salon routine that my mom instilled in me by setting up a hair drying station in a corner at home and telling the boys not to bother me for an hour while I deep conditioned with Pantene Nutrient Blends Fortifying Damage Repair Conditioner and read. Just like I saw my mom doing at the salon when I was a little girl.
The Pantene Fortifying Damage Repair line, which includes a sulfate-free shampoo, conditioner, and a serum, is made with castor oil, and made without parabens, dyes, and mineral oil. All my fellow moms and anyone who’s ever been victimized by a set of too tight braids knows that one of the benefits of castor oil is that it strengthens hair, especially weak edges. While I’ve been applying castor oil to my edges since noticing I was experiencing postpartum shedding, it feels reassuring that more steps of my wash day process now include the powerhouse ingredient.
By remembering why I loved going to the salon to get my hair done, and reminiscing on how my mom didn’t compromise her salon visits, I now look forward to the next time I get to wash my hair and sit under the dryer to deep condition, getting lost in a book for as long as the boys will let me.