15 Ways to Manage your Long Quarantine Hair in Style
It is easier than you think to style your long hair in quarantine. Photo: Hairstyle Camp Hairstyle Camp

Due to social distancing and the sporadic closures of salons, your hair is longer and possibly more damage than you’re used to — all the brushing, heat styling, and at-home dye jobs can take their toll. But you can make your quarantine hair look like it hasn’t gone months without a haircut by trimming, smoothing, or hiding your split ends. Here's how to get the job done.

1. Give Yourself a Tiny Trim

The first step in resolving messy quarantine hair? “Cutting off-dry split ends will bring life back to your strands,” says hairstylist Nunzio Saviano, a Shape Brain Trust member and the owner of Nunzio Saviano Salon in New York. It doesn’t have to be as dramatic as those DIY quarantine cuts went wrong. In fact, it shouldn’t be. In this case, a trim means taking just about a quarter of an inch to an inch off the ends, according to Shape.

2. Hair Ties

15 Ways to Manage your Long Quarantine Hair in Style
Photo: PureWow

If you've ever used hair ties—or dated someone who does—you know that these indestructible things have a way of spreading into every nook and cranny and surface. The odds are reasonably high that there is a hair tie in the room with you right now. Wearing one doesn't take a ton of effort: Simply root around until you find one, then loop it around a section of your hair, tightening the loop by making a figure-8 shape until it fits snug around your new ponytail, GQ cites. (Or buy a pack, if you must!)

3. Dial-Up the Nourishment

If your hair is curly, cut down on the number of times you shampoo each week to avoid stripping your quarantine hair of moisture. When you do shampoo, opt for a sulfate-free formula that boosts hydration, like Dove Amplified Textures Hydrating Cleanse Shampoo (Buy It, $7, target.com).

“Hydrating hair is always a good idea, but it’s even more important if you’re going longer between cuts,” says Stephen. Saviano recommends weekly deep-conditioning treatments for all hair types.

If you have fine, straight hair: Try a lightweight formula like Kérastase Paris Nutritive Masquintense for Dry Fine Hair.

If you're curly and oily: You need a rich, creamy treatment like Bread Hair-Mask.

4. A Fancy Barette

15 Ways to Manage your Long Quarantine Hair in Style
Photo: Pinterest

The barrette—a catch-all term for a hair clip or clasp—has entered the fashion designer’s imagination, and the resulting affair continues to produce fancy, cool-looking hair clips (and subsequent fast-fashion cheap-os). I think it’s particularly interesting when a jewelry designer like Sophie Buhai accepts the challenge.

5. Camouflage the Damage You Do Have

If you want to hold out for a proper cut, you can temporarily hide dry, frayed ends by applying products formulated with coconut oil or macadamia oil to your quarantine hair, like Macadamia Professional Weightless Repair Leave-In Conditioning Mist. “These natural ingredients seal each strand and hold the lifted cuticle down, making your hair appear smooth and polished,” says Saviano.

You can also use a curling iron to add a few waves or curls to your quarantine hair. “Curling the ends inward blends split ends into the rest of your hair’s texture,” he says. Be sure to apply a heat protectant, like Nuele Hair Serum, to your strands before you reach for the iron. Or try tucking your ends into a top knot: Secure it with a hair tie, then use a few bobby pins to hide the ends. No one will blame you: After all, the topknot is like the unofficial style of 2020, anyway.

6. A Chip Clip

What? Why not? There is virtually no difference in engineering between a purpose-built hair clip and the clips designed to keep potato chip bags closed. Please don’t buy one that’s obviously labeled QuikSave or something; look around for something fun. This one oink!

7. A Silk Scarf

15 Ways to Manage your Long Quarantine Hair in Style
Photo: GOXIP

Fold a silk scarf into a triangle, place the hypotenuse against your forehead, and tie the opposite corners together at the nape of your neck: This will protect the delicate texture of your hair while keeping it out of your face. (Unless you're dressing up as David Foster Wallace for Halloween, don't be tempted by a cotton bandana! They'll suck the moisture out of your hair.) Hermès is obviously the big classic, but vintage Moschino is easier to find on the relatively cheap.

8. Chemicals

Hair accessories are difficult to wield. Those who master them are considered, as a result, some of the most stylish people alive.

Hair product is a lot easier to use and is also less obvious if you pick the right stuff. There's a whole world of creams and pastes that will keep your hair brushed away, out of your eyes. One that's worth a special mention, particularly for curly or coarse styles, is Pantene’s Gold Series. It is stocked in almost every corner of America, and the styling suite they launched last year—including an argan oil-infused curl spray and braid cream—works to hydrate hair into malleability. I have found that the more moisture you give your hair, the more likely it is to surprise you by looking effortlessly good at random times.

9. Say Goodbye to the Heating Tools

Again, you don’t have to go out anywhere. Use this as an opportunity to give your hair a break from all the heating and styling tools you usually use. Quit using a dryer and let your hair air dry. Don’t blow-dry, straighten, or curl. If you have to use a heating tool, don’t forget to use a heat-protectant product so that your hair doesn’t get damaged from overheating. Simple hair care during quarantine will help you get the shine, smoothness, and strength back to your hair, notes Edwards and Co.

10. Deep Condition your Hair

15 Ways to Manage your Long Quarantine Hair in Style
Photo: The List

A great way to treat your hair is deep conditioning. Simply take any conditioner you use and apply it to the ends of your hair. Wear a shower cap and keep the conditioner in your hair for around 45 minutes. Rinse with water and don’t shampoo. You will get extra shine and your hair will be much smoother and more manageable. If you don’t have a conditioner, check out our online store for highly recommended products.

11. Time to Try New Styles

Spending a lot of time at home gives us the chance to focus on the health of our hair, but it also provides us with the time to try out styles that we always wanted to try. Curl your hair the way you want it, search online for trendy new hairstyles or try out one of our hair tutorials. If it goes well, snap a photo for your Instagram, and if it doesn’t go as planned you can just keep it to yourself and no one will ever know.

COVID-19 Quarantine and sheltering at home is tough. From figuring out a new schedule to becoming teachers to being separated from friends and family, it’s a lot to handle! But one thing that doesn’t have to be overwhelming is taking proper care of your hair during this time. Even if your favorite salon is closed and you haven’t had a touch-up in weeks, you can still maintain healthy, vibrant hair that will be ready for your stylist the minute the doors open. Caring for your hair at home comes down to a few simple things: what products you use and how you use them, says Ottalous.

Taking care of your hair at home involves a lot less work than you might think. In addition to using quality products, take this time to let your hair rest. If you usually style your hair with heat, give it a break. Nourish your hair with our recommended products and let it repair itself from your typical hairstyling routine. Now is a perfect time to try out new, natural hairstyles, too! While you’re giving your hair a heat break, considering washing it less as well. If you’re an everyday washer, go longer between shampoos. If you’re an infrequent washer who’s been dedicated to dry shampoo, give your hair a break from that, too. Take this time to use deep, restorative products that you usually don’t have the time for.

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