7 Ways I Learned to Love the Hair that Pregnancy Left Behind

Casey MullinsCasey MullinsI have really good hair, I mean, assuming you don't compare it to the hair I used to have. You know, the hair I used to have thinned out on purpose because it was so full and voluminous? The hair I had before two pregnancies, PCOS and a wicked hormone treatment? Yeah, as long as you don't compare my current hair to that hair, I have really good hair. Unfortunately good hair and easy-to-care-for hair have absolutely nothing in common. My hair is good when it is properly cared for, and over the last several years I've learned to do just that. Curious how to do the same with your own hair? READ ON, DEAR FRIEND!

1. Get regular trims with the same stylist
I used to go to whatever salon was closest, take whoever was available and I was never loyal to any stylist. That is until I met Kristine. Kristine knows my hair almost as well as I know my husband. I've been seeing her every 6-8 weeks for almost two years and, y'all, regular trims from the same stylist make a big fat difference. She knows where I poof, where I curl funny, where I'm a little bald and just how short she can go with my layers before I have a funny looking ponytail.

Related: 9 summer hairstyles that defy humidity

2. Use dry shampoo
We all know about dry shampoo and how wonderful it is for "morning after hair". Dry shampoo was doing wonders for me on days two and three of not washing my hair until I learned that I could apply dry shampoo to freshly washed hair and IT WILL STOPS THE GREASE BEFORE IT STARTS! I can get up to four days out of my hair now and not feel like an oily dishrag by the end.

Casey MullinsCasey Mullins3. Learn to braid
I never knew how to do any sort of fancy braid until this year. I saw all these braids on Pinterest and thought "Gosh, I wish I knew someone who knew how to braid, or someone who could teach me how to braid." Then I just decided to practice. Turns out I can braid my own hair pretty well. Know what's better than a boring ponytail? A ponytail with a braid. The sock bun is also a valuable skill to learn if you have at least shoulder length hair.

4. Realize your hair is getting old
My hair has thinned by at least half, and it's just not capable of the same curls and bounce it was 15 years ago. There came a point where I had to realize that long thick hair is not in the cards for me, but fun layers with great colors? Totally possible. I'm fully prepared for the day I lose my mind and chop it all off just like my grandmothers and mothers before me, but until then I will work within the parameters of what my hair is actually capable of producing.

Related: 5 ways to look well rested when you haven't slept

5. Get blown
I had my first blowout in 2010 and it changed my life. I never thought there was a difference between what a stylist did at the end of a haircut and what they did during a blowout. THERE'S TOTALLY A DIFFERENCE! Blowouts remind you of just how good your hair can be and how such a simple little thing can put a major spring in your step.

6. Pay attention to your eyebrows
Good eyebrow grooming has changed my entire outlook on life. Invest in it, believe in it, amen.

Casey MullinsCasey Mullins7. Realize that hair is not everything
I have had several friends lose their hair to cancer and a couple of others that keep their hair covered for religious or spiritual reasons. If I were to lose my hair tomorrow it would not be the end of me, not even close. I had amazing hair back in the day, but I had rotten insides, and no amount of styling product could have ever made me into who I am today.

Related: 8 steps to a professional manicure...at home

I joked last week that a benchmark of aging seems to be when you wake up looking rough and puffy, but after a good shower and a few good minutes of moisturizing you look familiar again. But rather than fighting and screaming about how beauty is wasted on the young (because, seriously, it is) I've learned to find my own definition and way to achieve a new kind of beauty. Hopefully I'll be able to keep it up even when I'm old and gray (speaking of gray, I've found two) and as long as Kristine never retires? I'll be in good hands.

- By Casey Mullins
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Casey Mullins is a writer, photographer and nice person living with her husband and two little ladies in the corn fields of Indiana. Read more on her personal blog, moosh in indy.

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