5 stylish ways to survive the horrible growing-out phase

5 stylish ways to survive the horrible growing-out phase

Let’s face it – we girls are never 100% satisfied with what we have. Often, my friend and I lament about not having each other’s features. She wants my straight hair, and I wish I could have thick waves like hers. But that’s also one of the best things about being a girl. We can change our look as often as we like. That’s why I colour my hair.


I have a number of friends who still have virgin hair, but personally I like the freedom of having one more thing to decide once every few months. It’s an exciting feeling to know that for two to three months, I’ll sport a different hair colour that may or may not work for me. If it does, I congratulate myself and thank my hairstylist for an awesome dye job. If it doesn’t, well, better luck next time.


But it’s often the growing-out phase that sucks big time. Especially if I bleach my hair. So when my roots start showing, it’s a yucky, nasty affair that tells people that I’m either: a) too poor to re-colour my hair; or b) too lazy to give a damn.


For me, it’s often a combination of both. I’m a scrooge, and I only do my hair up real nice like twice a year. So my hairstylist knows that I like to stretch my haircut and colour for as long as possible. I’m thankful he has other customers – anyone who wants to make a living doing my hair can’t possibly survive proper.


So, here are 5 tried-and-true ways to make the growing-out phase more bearable (meaning less fugly), approved by yours truly:


Double French braid


The thing about dark roots and lighter lengths/ends is that no matter how clean your hair is, it still looks like crap. So sometimes I don’t even bother with shampooing every day because shampoo or no shampoo, I still look like a hobo. So I just create an off-center parting, and French braid each side, taking small strands from just the side nearer to my face, so that the other side of the braid (the one that’s facing the back) still appears like a normal braid. So in theory it’s a half-French braid. I stop at the tops of my ears, and continue braiding that section in a normal 3-strand braid until the end. After securing the ends, I gently loosen the braid so that it doesn’t look stuck to my scalp. Then I just secure both braids at the back of my head. If your hair’s longer you can even do a messy bun or tie it into a ponytail.


Side braid


This is great for when I don’t even feel like turning on my hair iron. It gives me leeway to leave my ends sticking out like mad because I can argue artistic license with a single braid down the side, along the parting where there’s more hair (because I have a side part). I just do a normal 3-strand braid – usually it’s 1 to 1.5 inches in width and braid it all the way down. This keeps my baby hair out of my face, and hides the ugly roots when I look at my hair from the front.


Half topknot


The saviour of all bad hair days. But the condition is that you need a long fringe to pull off this look. Or it should at least be long enough to be tied up. This one works best on day-old unwashed hair. Just grab the top half section of the hair and bring everything up top as high as you can go without hurting your scalp. Then tie it as how you would a ponytail, only with the last loop, you leave your hair in halfway instead of pulling it all out the other side. My half topknot deflates on me some time during the day, but no biggie – I’ll just re-do in in seconds.


Scarf in hair


I really envy women who look good rocking the pixie cut with a scarf-bandanna thing going on. I could never, ever look remotely sane trying to pull it off (although I have tried it before and unfortunately lived to tell the tale). I think I have too little hair because the scarf always slips off. To try this look, fold a square scarf diagonally so it forms a triangle. Roll it up like a popiah. Tie it around your head and double-knot it on top. Done.


Headband-ponytail combo


Back when I had long hair, this worked wonders for work days because it took less time for me to get ready, and yet I still looked like I spent a considerable amount of effort on my hair. Actually, I didn’t. I just grabbed my hair into a high ponytail, secured it in place with a brown elastic band (comes in a set of like 15, from H&M) and slipped on a headband. With some trial and error, I realised it’s more comfortable on my scalp to put the headband on last because it drags my hair less.


What’s your favourite growing-out hair hack? Pray tell!



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