Six Steps to Your Shiniest Hair Yet
If there's anyone that knows how to transform lifeless strands into the swishy hair of your dreams, it's Sam McKnight. Thankfully, he has plenty of at-home tips and tricks to share
Picture this. You step out of the salon with glossy, high-shine hair worthy of a billboard campaign. But then, a few days later, the shine has dulled, the tangles are back and the hair advertisers have stopped ringing. As the tolls of everyday life can often render it more lacklustre than luxe, we all want to know one thing: how to get shiny hair.
If you colour or hair or use a lot of heat styling tools then you’ll likely be familiar with the dry, brittle texture that can ensue in the weeks post-appointment. And even if not, factors like pollution and hard water can play havoc with hair health, texture and how easily it reflects light (i.e. the things that make it sing). “Shiny hair is mostly down to your cuticle sitting flat,” says celebrity hairstylist Sam McKnight, who counts glossy-haired women including Alexa Chung, Kendall Jenner and both Bella and Gigi Hadid as clients. “If your hair is damaged or parched, your cuticle won’t be smooth and it won’t reflect the light.”
The solution? Short of carrying a ring light everywhere you go, there are things you can do to achieve shinier hair. Read on for Mcknight’s top tips for salon-standard shine, at home.
1. Use a Hair Mask
The first step to achieving strong, healthy and shiny hair is to use a treatment mask regularly, such as Deeper Love, £48. All hair types can use a mask but you can tailor it to suit your hair needs; maybe you don’t need it all over but just on the ends. Once a week is a great routine, but if you feel your hair needs some extra love, don’t be shy.
2. Invest in a Great Hairbrush
Regular brushing will not just detangle your hair, it also helps to smooth the hair cuticle and distribute its natural oils down the hair length which will, in turn, boost shine. But you need the right tools. For a high quality hairbrush that makes light work of tangles, reach for La Bonne Brosse All Purpose Hair Brush, £128.
3. Sleep on a Silk Pillowcase
Not just a fancy addition to your bed, silk pillowcases will aid your shine-boosting routine, especially if you have curls, textured hair or hair that tangles easily. The soft silk fibres cause less friction between the pillow and hair, minimising frizz. Or you could go the extra mile with a silk hair wrap or turban, which will also protect your hair whilst you sleep.
4. Turn the Water Temperature Down
Very hot water can dissolve and remove natural hair oils. Instead, make sure the water is warm when shampooing as it helps lift the cuticle to cleanse the hair well. But when it comes to conditioning, cooler water is the way to go. A cool water rinse won't dissolve the lipids (natural fats) and strip away the benefits from your conditioner. It will close down the cuticle ensuring it lays down flat which essentially means shinier, glossy hair.
5. Use Filtered Water
For extra shine, an easy rinse to do at home, especially in hard water areas, is to do a final rinse with filtered water. It will remove most contaminants that could potentially be damaging and aggressive, so hair is smoother and more shiny.
6. Blow Dry Like a Pro
- Blowdry your hair in sections. It's easier to get a more uniform smoothness.
- Point the nozzle down the hair when blowdrying, it will help smooth the cuticle and enhance shine.
- Use a heat protecting, humidity protecting, blow dry mist. Hair by Sam McKnight's Save the Do, £26 creates a protective shield whilst helping to smooth the cuticle and adding light hold for beautifully glossy and healthy-looking hair.