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Need to Ditch the Combover? 4 Ways to Improve the Appearance of Your Hair


The 80s had the mullet with its business in the front and party in the back style. The 90s saw frosted tips have their time to shine. Decades later, there’s no shortage of hair trends and styles to choose from. But if you’re stuck in your old ways and want to ditch your combover, it can be hard to know where to start.

Don’t worry, though, there are solutions to get on the right track with your mane. The good news? They don’t have to require a lot of time or effort. Or they can, if you’re willing to invest. Either way, here are a few steps to take to improve the overall look of your hair.

1. Know What You’re Working With

It may sound obvious to assess your hair health before deciding on a new style, but it’s often overlooked. Plus, knowing what you want to improve upon will influence the products and treatments you invest in. From there, you can create the right plan of action for you and your needs.

Start by taking a look at your hair in person and in photos. See if anything stands out — like dullness, a flaky scalp, or hair loss — and make a note. After you’ve written out all of the good, bad, and ugly about your hair, you have a pointed list of what to focus on.

Over-the-counter products or at-home treatments can tackle some of your concerns, while others may require medical professionals. However, having more information about your hair, concerns, and what could be improved upon is immensely helpful. Even tackling one of the not-so-great aspects of your hair at a time will give you better locks than before.

2. Focus on Scalp Health

A house with foundation problems is a recipe for disaster. It’s unstable and, despite how well-built the home is, could deteriorate at any minute. The same can be said about your hair and its foundation — your scalp. You see, an unhealthy scalp that’s too dry or too oily can wreak havoc on your hair and its growth.

The result? An unruly mane that leaves much to be desired. So, it’s important to focus on your scalp’s health to set yourself and your hair up for success. If your scalp is dry and flaky, pick up dandruff shampoo. It’s specially formulated to prevent dandruff-forming yeast from growing and irritating your scalp. If you’re dealing with an oily scalp, try tea tree shampoo to help reduce oil production.

Remember to keep track of how often you wash your hair, too. Overwashing could get rid of the natural oils you need for a healthy scalp. Underwashing could leave you with greasy hair that’s unsightly. Resolving scalp issues will give you the best chance for a head of hair you feel confident in.

3. Invest in Products for Your Hair Type

Curly, wavy, and straight hair all have different routines that are best suited to make them shine. The same goes for thick or thin hair, different textures, and the level of oil or dryness you deal with. So, it’s important to know what kind of hair you have.

Start by thinking through your hair’s appearance and feel right out of the shower. When it dries, do you see a subtle wave or full-on curls? Or is it stick straight and pencil-thin? This quick assessment can help you know what type of hair you have and buy products that will make it look its best.

Curly or wavy hair often needs a lot of moisture to avoid frizz and improve definition. A leave-in conditioner can be a great option to start with. Straight hair, however, may not need as much product. Don’t be afraid to test out different options, too. You may find your hair responds to a product you thought wouldn’t work and end up with your best-looking hair yet.

4. Commit to Styling and Self Care

You’ve done the work to know your hair type and the look you’re going for. You tested out different products formulated to help remedy your concerns. You’ve crafted a haircare routine that works for you. Now, it’s all about sticking with it.

Some days, it will be harder than others. This is especially true if your routine is many steps and requires focus, so keep that in mind. If you notice you’re unwilling or unable to do it all, take another look at your routine. There’s probably an opportunity to cut out one or two steps that are nice to have rather than necessary.

You can also think about making two separate routines to follow. One is for days when you want or need to get the best-looking hair possible. Maybe you have a big presentation or life event that justifies the extra effort of a fully fleshed-out process. The other is for your typical day — you’re simply running errands or lounging at home. These two routines together can maintain your hair’s health and give you your desired look, but they also fit your lifestyle.

Headed in the Right Direction

While there isn’t a magical cure for all hair problems, these steps are a great place to begin. Give it a few months to see a difference — hair health improvement isn’t instant — and you’ll be glad you started. Before you know it, you’ll be feeling more confident in your mane than ever.

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