While we love the feeling of freshly-cut hair and a good catchup with our stylist, finding the time (and money) for a salon appointment every four to six weeks isn’t always easy. So what’s a girl to do if she has to skip a haircut? We asked George Rylander, Master Artist at Dop Dop Salon, for his expert tips on how to prolong the time between cuts while still having fantastic hair.
Tip #1: Be strategic with your length.
How often you need a trim or full-on cut is all dependent on your haircut. While short hair requires a lot of maintenance, longer hair doesn’t. According to Rylander, the longer you grow your hair the less often you need to go in for a trim. With simple face framing long layers (or even lobs), “this length and shape tends to hold up well.”
Tip #2: Go less blunt.
If you want a trendier, shorter cut, Rylander recommends being less dramatic with it. The softer the cut, the more naturally it will transition into longer hair—and the less maintenance it will need. “If it is a moderate asymmetrical cut, it will probably look great for a while. If the look is edgier with undercuts and disconnections, more frequent trims may be needed.”
Tip #3: Choose the right bangs,
If you’re partial to bangs, consider side bangs over the more high-maintenance blunt bangs. “Sometimes having side swept bangs can frame the face nicely as the overall look grows, creating softness and a flirty, fresh feel.” And above all, never trim your bangs yourself, says Rylander. “That road can only lead to disaster.” (Baby bangs are not for everyone…)
Tip #4: Prevent damage in between.
The main reason hairstylists recommend trims so often is because hair becomes damaged pretty quickly. While it may not be easy to let go of bad habits, adding nourishing treatments, such as Kerastase Resistance Fibre Architecte ($43) to your routine is. A dose of this lightweight serum fills the gaps in the hair’s fiber, making it stronger and temporarily sealing split ends to prevent future breakage.
Tip #5: Style less frequently.
“If your hair is fine or thinning, it may have a tendency to be negatively impacted by everyday styling, blow drying, flat ironing and curling,” says Rylander. Constant use of these tools is responsible for a majority of the hair’s damage. Cutting down usage to two times a week will hold off damage significantly as well as prepping with a heat protectant, such as Living Proof Restore Instant Protection ($26).
Read more: 7 Things to Know Before You Get a Bob