Beauty Editor Picks: Hair Care to Save and Splurge On

MORE's beauty editor, Genevieve Monsuma, fills us in on hair care (including brows and body): when to save, and when it's worth the splurge

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Shampoo

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Truly, this comes down to personal preference. Some women like to have their stylists or colorists recommend a regimen, which will usually consist of pricier, salon shampoos. But there are plenty of great drugstore options. Be sure, if you’re coloring your hair (and who isn’t these days?), to look for something sulfate-free that’s specifically labeled “for color-treated hair.”
 

 

 

Photo courtesy of Valua Vitaly/Shutterstock.com

Genevieve Recommends

Clairol Professional Shimmer Lights Shampoo ($6.65, get it here)

I can’t live without it. My grandmother used it to tone down brassiness in her silver strands and it does the same for my salon blonde.
 

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Conditioner

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As with shampoo, there are fantastic luxury brands and very effective drugstore options. For a daily conditioner, I do tend to use the companion product to my shampoo. I believe they’ve been formulated to work together so why wouldn’t I take the guesswork out of what I’m using?
 

 

 

Photo courtesy of Valua Vitaly / Shutterstock.com

Genevieve Recommends

L’Oreal EverPure Moisture Shampoo and Conditioner ($6.99 each, get it here)

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Deep Conditioner

Splurge
I think it’s worth investing in a good deep conditioner for your damaged or dry hair. Try using it twice a month.
 

 

 

Photo courtesy of DMK / Shutterstock.com

Genevieve Recommends

Oribe Signature Moisture Masque ($59, get it here)

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Hair Color

Splurge
If you’re going for something much darker or lighter than what naturally grows out of your head, you probably want to visit a salon. For something multi-tonal—highlights and/or lowlights—see a professional for sure.

Most pros have told me that if you’re only altering your hair a level or two, you will probably be happy enough with at-home results. However, I’ve attempted this myself to disastrous ends. For those who do try to color their hair at home, the new foam formulas make the process easier and less messy.
 

 

Photo courtesy of CandyBox Images/ Shutterstock.com

Genevieve Recommends

John Frieda Precision Foam Colour ($12.99, get it here)
The shade range seems especially modern, and they have some gorgeous new reds.
 

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Razor

Splurge
Although I am guilty of buying the cheapie disposables on occasion (especially on vacation when I‘ve forgotten to pack my razor), I believe you do get what you pay for. Inevitably the single blade, low-budget razor nicks me and I end up with itchy razor burn. And I skip shaving cream; I love it in theory but can’t be bothered to take the time in the morning. Soap or shower gel works just as well.

 

 

 

Photo courtesy of Danijel Micka / Shutterstock.com
 

Genevieve Recommends

Gilette Venus Embrace Razor (with five blades) ($9.50, get it here)

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Body waxing

Splurge
Unless you have pain tolerance that’s off the charts, I would leave this to professionals. I have tried to wax myself in the past with at-home kits and it’s proven to be messy and painful. If you suffer from ingrowns too—it’s better to go to a professional. You might also consider hair removal lasers or electrolysis, which are pricey in the near-term but make your long-term hair removal far easier—and ultimately, cheaper.

 

 

 

Photo courtesy of vicki2win / Shutterstock.com
 

Brow shaping

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If you’re fine-haired like me, you can probably get away with going to a professional brow shaper once or twice a year, then following the lines at home. Fuller-browed women may want to increase that to seasonally or even every six weeks if they’re fine with spending the time and money.
 

 

 

Photo courtesy of Kalin / Shutterstock.com

Genevieve Recommends

For easier at-home arch grooming, try Anastasia Brow Stencils ($20, get it here)

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Face waxing

Splurge
DIY face waxing? No way, José. There is just too much risk of irritation, tearing—or on dark skin, triggering hyperpigmentation. Leave this to the professionals and, if you’re in a scrape, there are facial depilatories that will help you out. On occasion, I have even used my razor.
 

 

 

 

Photo courtesy of altafulla / Shutterstock.com

Genevieve Recommends

Olay Smooth Finish Facial Hair Removal Duo ($29.99, get it here)

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Blowout

Splurge
I’ve been covering the beauty market for more than fifteen years and I still can’t blow out my own hair the way they can in the salon. I believe that if you find someone who blow-dries your hair in a way you love, it is one of the most justifiable splurges on the planet. Just think about how confident you feel on your best hair day. Worth it, right?
 

 

 

 

Photo courtesy of Christo / Shutterstock.com

Genevieve Recommends

When I do have to blow out my own hair, I swear by John Frieda Frizz-Ease 3-Day Straight Semi-Permanent Styling Spray ($5.62, get it here). It does seem to fight frizz better than anything else I’ve tried—but doesn’t make my very fine hair too flat.

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Flat Iron

Splurge
Cheaper irons don’t smooth as well and, in general, they lack the technology—e.g. ceramic plates and adjustable temperature dial—that allow you to minimize damage inflicted on your strands.
 

 

 

 

Photo courtesy of Claudio Bravo / Shutterstock.com

Genevieve Recommends

Try the T3 SinglePass Professional Straightening & Styling Iron ($160, get it here). It has ceramic plates, an adjustable temperature dial and ionic technology that is said to keep hair smoother for longer.

Curling Iron

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You want to steer clear of professional curling irons as they tend to get very hot and you risk burning your neck, forehead or fingers (all three have happened to me). Inexpensive irons work just as well.
 

 

 

Photo courtesy of David Mzareulyan / Shutterstock.com

Genevieve Recommends

Conair Instant Heat Styling Iron ($11.99, get it here)

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Hot Rollers

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Ditto the curling iron. Conair or Remington work just fine. A top stylist also just told me that steam rollers (all the rage, in like, 1977) are great for creating softer, less princessy curls.

 

 

 

Photo courtesy of Zina Seletskaya / Shutterstock.com

Genevieve Recommends

Caruso SalonPro Molecular Steam Hairsetter ($36, get it here)

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Keratin Treatment

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I tried it on my naturally wavy, fine hair and was underwhelmed. It left my hair limp for almost six weeks. But friends and colleagues with curlier or coarser hair say it’s a life changer. Most are even willing to breathe in the questionable-for-your-health fumes (that contain formaldehyde in varying amounts), released during the treatment.
 

 

 

 

Photo courtesy of Rob van Esch/ Shutterstock.com

Genevieve Recommends

Personally, the best hair smoother I’ve found is Alterna Caviar 3 Minute Shine Boost ($26, get it here). I think it’s miraculous.

 

 

 

 

For more of Genevieve's beauty secrets CLICK HERE

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First Published Thu, 2011-12-22 14:29

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