Medusa. The Salon

Jessica Offenbaker

Hair Tips


Posted by jessica offenbaker on June 2, 2011 at 11:15 AM Comments comments (3)


How VERY HARD water affects Bleaching/Highlights

Blonde or bleached hair or highlights that are regularly exposed to the Very Hard Water in San Antonio will show some distinct characteristics that you will readily recognize. Among these are:


  • Difficulty getting sucessful results from color services 
  • Dullness 
  • Brassiness
  • Dusty/chalky tones
  • Rusty Orange discoloration (iron buildup) 
  • Green discoloration (copper buildup) 
  • Poor texture
  • Lack of movement in the hair
  • Hot, smoking foils when highlighting your hair due to iron in the water


You might be surprised to learn how what’s hiding in your water affects your hair, scalp and skin and can sabotage your services! The problems shown above occur because Very Hard Water Over-Oxidizes hair while coating it with heavy mineral particles that do not wash away. Very Hard Water contains high levels of these calcium and magnesium “rocks.” Chances are, you are washing your hair in Very Hard Water several times a week, creating a massive buildup of minerals that will prevent color from adhering to the hair itself resulting in fading, ashy ends and lots of reformulating and rebleaching on my part. The only way I can combat these water-borne elements and give you healthy hair with great color and style is if I know what’s in the water and what to do about it. Tap water also affects the texture, brilliance and manageability of natural blonde hair, as does pool water. The good news is, I can offer a solution for this as well! 

There’s a Wellness Solution to Very Hard Water on Bleached and Highlighted hair

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When I see hair that shows the symptoms of exposure to Very Hard Water, I send clients home with a box of Malibu Wellness Actives Blondes Weekly Brightener to keep blondes (both natural and colored) bright, shiny and fresh, and to prevent minerals from building up again or chemicals from oxidizing the hair and ruining the color, texture and pliability. 

How VERY HARD water affects Haircolor

Hair that is regularly exposed to the Very Hard Water in San Antonio will show some distinct characteristics when I attempt to apply color that I will readily recognize. Among these are:


  • Difficulty getting successful, accurate results from color service 
  • Uneven color 
  • Constant reformulation 
  • Color not true to swatch 
  • Color fades within weeks or even days 
  • Lack of vibrancy 
  • Flat opaque reds and browns 
  • Chalky blondes with no sparkle 


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Malibu Wellness Actives Color PrepareMalibu Wellness Actives Color Correction

There’s a Wellness Solution to Very Hard Water when Coloring hair. When I see hair that shows the symptoms of exposure to Very Hard Water, I can start your Color service Malibu Wellness Actives Color Prepare before you color. This will help to clear much of the buildup from the hair and prepare it to receive the color service. If you are doing a touch up, I can substitute Malibu Wellness Actives Color Correction to gently normalize the color without lifting. Sometimes this is the only step I need to do to correct color that has gone dull or opaque. If your hair doesn’t show any problems or adverse conditions, I can send you home with a packet of Malibu Wellness Actives Color Prepare for you to use within a day or two of their your color service to remove minerals and oxidizers prior to coming in for their appointment. 

How VERY HARD water affects Scalp/Dandruff/Eczema

Hair and scalp that are regularly exposed to the Very Hard Water in San Antonio will show some distinct characteristics that you will readily recognize. Among these are:


  • Flaking 
  • Itching 
  • Redness or inflammation 
  • Irritation or sensitivity 
  • Dryness 
  • Flare-up of scalp conditions 
  • Abnormal Exfoliation 


Most of the products you use for dandruff and/or eczema are either tar based, which can suppress scalp exfoliation, or contain Zinc Pyrithion, a chemical which, when released into the environment has been shown to poison fish and other water-dwellers.

Malibu Wellness Actives Hard Water Weekly Demineralizer

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There’s a Wellness Solution to Very Hard Water on Dandruff and Eczema of the Scalp. When I see hair and scalp that shows the symptoms of exposure to Very Hard Water, I recommend the Malibu Wellness Scalp Wellness System -- a gentle, earth-friendly and highly effective shampoo, conditioning and treatment program. I also send you home with a box of Malibu Wellness Actives Dandruff/Eczema Weekly Scalp Massage to demineralize and normalize the skin of the scalp while helping to prevent buildup and soothing the symptoms of irritating scalp conditions. 

How VERY HARD water affects Haircuts & Styles

Hair that is regularly exposed to the Very Hard Water in San Antonio will show some distinct characteristics which you will readily recognize. Among these are:


  • Difficulty getting proper angle on cut 
  • Lack of flow and movement in hair 
  • Hair that lacks shine and natural translucence 
  • Precision cuts that don't behave when styled or require excess product to hold style 

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Malibu Wellness Actives<br/> Hard Water Weekly Demineralizer


There’s a Wellness Solution to Very Hard Water Damage on Cuts & Styles. When I see hair that shows severe symptoms of exposure to Very Hard Water, I recommend an in-salon Malibu MakeOver Crystal Gel Treatment with Power Protein Builder. This time-tested treatment gently removes mineral buildup and stops oxidation, replaces proteins in the damaged hair shaft and normalizes the hair and scalp. It is also critical to prepare hair to respond properly to chemical services. I send clients home with a box of Malibu Wellness Actives Hard Water Weekly Demineralizer to prevent minerals and oxidizers from building up again and to keep the results of your service looking good longer.


The Dangers of Oxidation from Chlorine in Your Water

The water in San Antonio comes from: Edwards and Trinity Aquifers (Ground source)

Dangerous Oxidation from the Chlorine in Your Water

Your water contains up to 1 ppm of chlorine. Treated water – from city plants – contains chlorine to kill bacteria and make the water safe to drink, but washing hair and skin in chlorine is the same as washing hair and skin in bleach: Hair proteins and hard water minerals become oxidized causing dryness, loss of color and dullness as well as scalp and skin problems.

The pH of Your Local Water and Its Potential for Problems

Your water’s pH is as high as 7. You already know that pH means the potential for hydrogen which leads to the potential for hair, scalp and skin issues! Higher pH immediately causes hair to lose shine and smooth texture, but an even more dangerous effect of a high pH level is that it induces the hair cuticle to open which can allow minerals to penetrate and damage hair proteins. Additionally, an excessively low or high pH can cause corrosion of copper pipes releasing tiny particles of copper that can attach to hair and cause discoloration. While the table above shows you the pH level reported by our local water plant, you should still test the water at home for its pH level so you can adjust your needs accordingly. Here's how:

Clients Who Use Well Water

Did you know that as many as 21,839 in Bexar county get their water from private wells? Even if you have Soft Water, many of you could be using much harder water at home from a private well. Private wells contain iron and a slew of heavy metals that discolor, add weight, cause breakage and hair loss and otherwise wreak havoc on your hair and skin. Well Water can cause many of the same problems as Hard Water. Symptoms include:


  • Dull, limp hair 
  • Brassiness 
  • Rusty orange discoloration (iron buildup) 
  • Poor texture 
  • Lack of movement 
  • Difficulty getting successful results from chemical services 
  • Dry skin or signs of premature aging


In addition to helping me better guarantee your in-salon services, knowing that well water is a factor can guide me in recommending products for use at home on hair, scalp and skin. The first step, if possible, is to have you bring in a sample of your water so I can test it. Knowing the content of your water is critical to the success of your hair, scalp and skin services.

You can get that information in one of two easy ways:

Request Water Quality Report or Test Your Water

Request a Water Quality Report

If you reside in an area serviced by a local water department, your water department is required by law to mail your Water Quality Report to you annually. If you do not have a copy of your most recent Water Quality Report, simply call your local water department and ask them to mail it to you.

Once you have your Water Quality Report, fax it to Malibu Wellness at 317.375.3175. Click here to print a cover page to accompany your faxed Water Quality Report. Once we receive your faxed Water Quality Report, we will analyze your water data and email you a customized analysis of how your water is affecting your clients’ hair, scalp and skin and your services!

Test Your Own Water:

If there is no local water department serving your area (which means your water comes from a private well), you can test your water with a water hardness test strip (available at your local pool supply store).

After you’ve tested your water and you know if your water is soft, hard or very hard, email your results to Malibu Wellness at and we’ll email you a customized analysis telling you how your water is affecting your hair, scalp and skin.

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Protect Your Haircolor This Summer

Posted by jessica offenbaker on June 7, 2010 at 12:53 PM Comments comments (4)

Tracey Cunningham and Rodney Cutler’s Advice on Protecting Haircolor

Summer is officially here and clients are beach bound and lounging by the pool soaking up the rays and enjoying some fun in the sun. While being outdoors translates into sun-kissed skin and natural highlights, the UV rays and other environmental aggressors can damage hair and skin. As beauty pros, we need to provide our clients with the utmost care and protection for when they come in contact with sun, salt and chlorine. We turned to Rodney Cutler, owner of Cutler/Redken Salons and Tracey Cunningham, Redken's Creative Consultant for Color and co-owner of Byron & Tracey salon in Beverly Hills for some solid advice. Here’s what they had to say:


“At our salon in Miami, we often see clients with damaged hair from being out in the sun or water,” says Rodney Cutler, owner of Cutler/Redken Salons. ”Many of them are not aware that they can protect and correct existing damage with the right products! It’s essential to protect your hair while out in the sun!”

As advised by Cutler, ultimate protection for hair is a must when under the sun, in water or all year-round when living in warmer climates. Damage to hair includes: stripping away of the hair cuticle by UV rays causing hair to become dull, rough and prone to frizz and flyaways, as well as color fading in both colored and virgin hair. In addition, pool chemicals and sea salts strip away healthy oils and bind to hair increasing vulnerability to the sun – this results in haircolor becoming brassy, grayish or even green and hair texture drying out.


“While our clients are not always on the beach or in the pool, they are constantly in the California sun,” says Tracey Cunningham, Redken's Creative Consultant for Color and co-owner of Byron & Tracey salon in Beverly Hills. “This daily exposure affects their haircolor and the quality of hair causing much dryness and brassiness. We always try to stress daily UV protection for hair, and now we can recommend specific products for our clients to use.”

What are Cutler and Cunningham’s go-to-products? Redken, but of course! Redken’s new Color Extend Sun solar screen SPF 12 offers patented UV protection for hair against the sun and environmental aggressors, while helping to correct and repair existing damage. The scalp is particularly vulnerable to both UVA and UVB rays, and sunburned scalp is often painful and can result in peeling of the scalp skin and the appearance of dandruff-like flakes in the hair. To prevent clients from saying “ouch” they recommend their clients apply Redken Color Extend Sun’s Solar Screen SPF 12 at least 30 minutes before sun exposure for optimum protection against the effects of damaging UV rays.


Did you know pool chemicals and sea salts can strip away hair’s healthy oils and bind to the hair intensifying the damaging effects of the sun? Yup—no joke. Encourage clients to apply Redken’s Color Extend Sun Sparkling Shield prior to swimming to preserve the integrity of the hair fiber and create a barrier that helps prevent chemicals and minerals from adhering to the hair’s surface.

UV rays are present year-round, even in the winter and on cloudy days and UVA rays can pass through windows to attack haircolor when your clients least expects it. Show them how to apply Redken Color Extend Sun’s Shimmering Defense before applying styling products as a lightweight leave-in conditioner to help protect hair from the damaging effects of the sun while also preventing dryness and replenishing moisture.


Pool chemicals and sea minerals can turn haircolor brassy, grayish or even green, and can penetrate the cuticle to accelerate haircolor degradation. Since you don’t want your clients singing, “It’s Not Easy Being Green,” get her to use Redken’s Color Extend Sun’s After-Sun Shampoo to remove salt, chlorine and minerals and keep her haircolor looking healthy and vibrant. The patented UV filter Mexoryl S.O continues to protect the hair even after the product is rinsed out, so using the shampoo prior to sun exposure will also help prevent UV damage

UVA/UVB rays strip away the cuticle causing hair to become dull, rough and prone to frizz and fly-aways. Before you know it, hair is left dry and brittle. To help reverse existing damage and resurface sun-stressed strands, get client’s to use the After-Sun Mask in place of a regular conditioner whenever hair has been exposed to damaging UV rays or drying pool chemicals and sea minerals. Just apply using a wide-tooth comb and leave in for 5-15 minutes depending on the condition of the hair. Yes, it is that easy!


Cutler loves the long-lasting effects of the products and the feel of hair after several uses: “It’s as if sun, salt or chlorine, hasn’t even touched the hair. Our Miami salon clients love the Sparkling Shield, since they can apply it throughout the day leaving their hair soft to the touch and shiny even while out in the sun everyday!”


All of Redken’s Color Extend Sun products are formulated with Hydra-Shield Complex and provide long-lasting broad-spectrum protection against UV rays while rebalancing moisture in sun-stressed tresses leaving hair shiny, silky and smooth. New patented UV filter, Soplexyl™ is responsible for giving hair substantive UV protection and remains effective even when formula is rinsed out. Mango Oil prevents dryness and offers intense replenishment and softness, while Ceramide penetrates the hair fiber to strengthen and repair damaged areas. In addition, Color Extend Sun is a perfect compliment to the Color Extend collection.


Posted by JessicaOffenbaker on April 26, 2008 at 11:48 PM Comments comments (4)

1 Heat Tools & Sun

2 Flat Iron Addiction

Yes, yes, technically hair is already dead.  Hair is dead skin.  I know, sounds gross, but that is why "you are what you eat".  With that being said, it's understandable why heat is the number one KILLER of hair. Unfortunately, it's also the most common. Heat opens up the top layer of your hair, called your cuticle, which lets moisture and color slip away and in turn, lets the environment in. This creates dull, frizzy hair and potentially leads to split ends and premature hair loss. Preventing this is quit simple. Don't over style your hair. Try letting it dry naturally, then go through with a blow dryer to smooth it out if you must blow dry your hair. After you're finished, hit it with a COOL shot(the button does have a purpose after all). Go a couple of days without washing your hair. This allows the natural oils to distribute all the way to your ends. If you must wash your hair everyday, Use moisturizing shampoos and conditioners and always RINSE WITH COOL WATER! The colder the better. Your hair is like your skin. Hair Cuticle=Skin Pore.  Oh Flat Irons!!!  Hair Homicide.  These things are around 450 degrees, you know.  Imagine what that type of heat does to your hair after awhile.  Better yet, let me show you:

Here we start off with a normal, undamaged, healthy strand of hair

Here we end up with an unhealthy, damaged, broken strand of hair due to heat.  More often then none, this ends up as premature hair loss.  Your hair becomes so weak it splits all the way up to the follicle.  Especially the tiny hairs around your hair line called lanugo, you know the ones you go over and over with the flat iron cause they're too fine to straighten.  Please, Please, for the sake of your hair, DON'T GET BURNED!  No pun intended.  Here are some tips if you absolutely must style your hair.


Good cut- A good professional haircut really does make a difference. If you have a good cut, it should make the styling process a lot easier.

Good blow dryer- There are many of them out there. My 2 favorites are Ceramic/Tourmaline and Ionic. The difference speaks for itself. Regular blow dryers run heat around coils(like the ones on a stove) potentially damaging your hair. Ceramic/Tourmaline dryers run the heat around ceramic/tourmaline plates so it heats up faster therefore dries your hair faster so you don?t have to apply as much heat to your hair. Ionic dryers actually break the water molecule clusters into micro-fine particles and penetrate into the hair shaft to maintain moisture. HOWEVER, don?t be fooled by the Wal-Mart dryers. Revlon, Conair, etc. Think about it. Hairdressers use professional dryers sometimes up to 10 times or more per day. Our dryers last about 5 years. By that time you could have used about 5 or more cheapy blow dryers, damaged your hair, and spent about the same if not more than a professional dryer.

Shampoo- Most shampoos strip your natural oils away while cleansing your hair. Professional Shampoos are designed to attract dirt without removing your hairs moisture. This is imperative to your blow dry so your hair maintains its sheen and doesn?t look dull and frizzy.

Condition ends only- The reason we wash our hair is because the scalp tends to look ?greasy.? This is because our natural oils need to distribute to the ends of our hair. That is why I recommend conditioning only the ends of your hair to prevent oil buildup at the root. For extremely dehydrated or unruly hair, use a deep treatment once a month.  If you feel you need more, go to your salon for a Hair Recovery Treatment.  While your conditioner is in, comb through with a wide tooth comb to distribute your conditioner evenly, otherwise there's no point in conditioning.  When you start to feel the conditioner slipping away while rinsing, start cooling the water temperature down and rinse with cool water, the coldest you can handle.  This is also great to close the pores in you skin, and keep the moisture locked into both your skin and hair.

Towel dry- Try to get most of the moisture out of your hair by blotting or twisting with a towel. DO NOT RUB. That will only create tangles and cause breakage.

Product- The right products are important. They are they foundation of your style. First apply a leave-in conditioner suitable for your hair. This will even out your porosity and help whatever product you use after to go on evenly. Then choose the right styling product, usually silicone based for unruly, frizzy hair, and hydrolyzed wheat protein for fine textures.

Power dry 80%- This means blow drying utilizing your fingers not a brush. Make sure the airflow is facing down the hair shaft to prevent fly-aways. For sleeker styles blow dry your hair flat to your head while running your fingers through it. If you are desiring a fuller style, either blow the roots in the opposite direction in which you want them to fall, or blow dry your hair upside down still with the airflow headed down the hair shaft. Make sure to get the moisture out of the hair. When your hair is wet is when it is most fragile. Creating tension with a brush before power drying would cause breakage.

Choose Brush- You want to choose a brush that compliments your style. The bigger the brush, The straighter the hair. The smaller the brush, the wavier the hair. I like to use ceramic-ion thermal brushes from Olivia Garden(picture below). They help straighten or curl the hair without so much heat if used properly.  Boar hair or natural bristles tend to add more fly-aways and get stuck in the hair easily if not used correctly.  Paddle brushes are great if your hair is already perfect.  Just make sure the bristles aren't too close together.  That creates too much tension and is hard to run the brush through your hair.  If the bristles are too far apart, there's not enough tension to smooth your hair.

Section- The sections you take are important. Make sure your brush is able to fit all the hair in each section. I like to take 4 to 5 easy sections. First from recession to recession(those are the points where your hair recedes a bit from your forehead). Second section from temple to temple. Third from ear to ear. Fourth section crosses over the top of your occipital bone(the bump in the back of your head).  If necassary Fifth on inch into your bottom hairline.

Air Flow Nozzle- After your hair is sectioned, put the airflow nozzle attatchment on the front of your blow dryer. This directs the airflow to your hair instead of directing your hair in all directions of which you don?t want it to go. The nozzle enables you to smooth your hair faster and more efficiently.

Smooth- Starting in the back most section, each section you take, you will now wrap around your brush, keeping the airflow down the hair shaft, run the brush from roots to ends. Make sure you ARE following through all the way to the ends of your hair. For straighter styles, do not curl the ends with a brush. Keep the ends as straight as possible. For more wave or curl, after you?ve followed through to the ends, wrap the ends up like your brush is a curling iron, still blowing heat on the hair. Let your hair stay in the brush awhile without heat, then slowly unravel your hair. DON?T PULL THE BRUSH OUT. As you work up the sections remember, the closer your keep the brush to your head, the flatter your hair will be. The more you pull the brush out form the direction of fall, the more body you will have. If you have problems when you are trying to flatten the ?bump? in the back of your head, imagine a part down the middle of your head, and blow dry each side straight forward instead of straight down

Front Area- I like to take the whole front section, even if you don?t have bangs, and blow dry it all forward and straight down. This removes any cowlicks and/or bumps that occur when you blow dry a part into your style.

Switch Hands- If you find that you style one side better than the other, try switching the hand you are using to blow dry on the side that is not working for you.

Finishing product- Once your style is complete, a finishing product is used to either add shine or keep humidity out. This product will usually have some type of silicone in it.

Cool shot- THE MOST IMPORTANT STEP. Turn your blow dryer on to it?s coldest air setting and power dry your hair once again. If you skip this last step, all the work you just did will be in vain. The cold air not only locks the products in, it closes your hair cuticle back down and seals your style locking the humidity out.


If you?re going to be in the sun, use your sunscreen and protect your hair too with a thermal protectant. Anything containing quaternium(not-15 though, that's Formaldehyde), benzophenone-3 or -4, zinc oxide, titanium dioxide, avobenzone (which may also be listed as Parsol 1789 or butyl methoxydibenzoylmethane) in the ingredients will do. However please be careful in your choice of sunscreens if your going to be near a coral reef. Right now there isn?t enough information to tell whether sunscreens are really killing coral reefs, but there is proof that some ingredients can harm them. Avoid sunscreens that contain the following:

Benzophenone-3 or -4
methylbenzylidene camphor

Instead, consider using products that contain zinc oxide or titanium dioxide.


Posted by JessicaOffenbaker on April 20, 2008 at 9:38 AM Comments comments (4)

3 Boxed Hair Color

4 Overlapping Bleach/Heating Bleach

Pre-lightening, or Bleaching hair, is a process in which chemicals remove the pigment, or melanin, inside your hair that determines its colour. This also strips your hairs natural moisture out as well. This weakens your hair. Sometimes to the point of breakage. Most bleaches are only meant to lift, or lighten, the hair up to 4 or 5 levels.  Highlights, in my opinion, look best when they are two shades lighter than your base color.  Your ideal color is usually what colour you were at the age of 12.  I hate(and yes that is a strong word) when women with dark hair want to be blonde. It?s hard to lift through the undertones of dark hair. That?s why they end up with red, orange, and yellow highlights.


It?s also extremely damaging the lighter you try to go. Most hairdressers don?t have the proper training or just don?t care and stick you under the dryer with foils of bleach on your head. That?s a huge NO-NO in my book. Heat opens your cuticle which help speed the process of removing pigment. With that much heat applied, Your cuticle only has the capability of closing back down 20%-80% at most. This allows all moisture to slip out.  Even if you sit for an hour at room temperature with those foils on your head, it still wouldn't be as damaging as sitting under a dryer.  Imagine if some of that hair was already bleached.  BREAKAGE! Stars like Gwen Stefani who have platinum hair, or the ones that constantly change their color, they pay a ton of money and more then likely have hairdressers following them around. Not to mention, I?ve done Gwen?s hair before. But, I?ve never met her. She has hair pieces and extensions. Half of them do. Their real hair is is so messed up because of all those processes. Gwen?s is quit short because of all the bleaching that needs to be done to keep her hair that light. But that?s why they get paid the big bucks!

Notice the ends of Cameron's hair won't hold the same colour.

Notice how Lindsey's Hair colour looks splotchy and uneven.

Hilary's hair just looks plain dull and dehydrated.  Her ends also won't hold colour.


First Picture isn't even her hair and boy can you tell.  Sorry, Ken Paves!  Those are bad.  Notice her ends, too.  Brassier than the top.  Speaking of Jessica Simpson, here's a laugh:

Who's she trying to fool with her fried hair and those synthetic hair pieces?

Box color. Don?t do it! Do you think the girls on the box did? NO they got their hair done professionally. Just like the store bought products blog, lower grade ingredients.  Metallics to be precise.  Metallic dyes coat your hair in splotches and do'n do much for gray hair.  Any worthy Coor you must let process for at least 30 minutes.  45 minutes if your'e covering gray hair.  What is the 20 minutes they recommend going to do?  Not much.  Most colors lift through pigment for the first half of processing time and then deposit your color the last half.  No wonder these box colors fade right out.  Besides, being a hairdresser is like being a chemist. You have to understand all the different levels of hair. What is the target color? What is the underlying tone of the target color? What are the underlying tones if you use such and such developer? How many levels of ift is that? What base color do you need to neutralize the undertones that will come up? Get my drift?

As for Organic Hair color! No such thing what these companies do is add a soy based ingredient to the ingredients that are in every other at home color, and try to pass that off for being organic. Closest Thing is Henna which is derived from a plant, BUT all the shades it comes in are RED!!! Henna only ?stains? the cuticle of your hair so it is not considered permanent(it won?t lighten your hair either). However, depending on the porosity of you hair, ANYTHING can be permanent. If you hair is extremely porous, it will soak anything up, like a sponge.  So I would suggest you leave the hard work to us hairdressers. 


Posted by JessicaOffenbaker on April 5, 2008 at 8:25 PM Comments comments (3)

5 Crash dieting

6 Anorexia/Bulimia

DIETS DON'T WORK! Neither does starving yourself. Eliminating protein and nourishment is not the way to healthy hair! You need protein in your diet. Food and a balanced diet is imperative for your hair to grow and re-grow, you must understand fully how the cycles work in order for you to see how absolutely necessary it is to eat correctly. I talk about this in other entries:

The food you eat and what goes into your body, shows through you hair. When you change your food intake, it can take weeks or months for results to be apparent, many give up feeling as though the change didn?t help. Hang in there, the change will come. Remember ?you are what you eat? a terrific rule of thumb. Forensics can use a one strand hair analysis to disclose just about everything on a person and it is extremely accurate - your hair is a reflection of your health. All foods you eat are eventually converted to simple compounds the body is able to utilize, glucose being the one that supplies the energy for all cellular reproduction ? including the cells in the hair follicles. So keeping the body nourished is imperative for healthy hair and for hair regrowth, Starving yourself will shut down cell reproduction which in turn shuts down the hair RE-GROWING.

The number one mistake that just about every person with hair problems makes is . . .lack of protein. Hair is made up protein and thrives on protein, listening to women over the years recite their diet choices, leaves the same conclusion, their diets are what started their hair problems. Vegetarians have a very hard time having luxurious hair, they must put protein back in their daily diet, making sure to have it at breakfast, which is the most important meal of the day for your hair; DON'T SKIP IT! Lunch is next in importance, again making sure that you include as much protein as you possibly can. Fruits and vegetables added to the daily diet are a necessity as well.

Eggs; they have protein, which promotes collagen growth, which in turn promotes resilience in your skin. Nuts; Self recommends walnuts and pistachios in particular, as they are rich in skin-friendly omega-3 fatty acids. Nuts can be high in fat, though, so don't overindulge! Dark chocolate; cocoa has antioxidants, and the more antioxidants you ingest, the better your skin will look Strawberries and blueberries; these are great for your skin because they have vitamin C, which is a big antioxidant. They also help fight skin cancer. Sweet potatoes are rich in vitamin A, which helps your skin shed old cells and keeps you fresh and glowing.

Posted by JessicaOffenbaker on March 29, 2008 at 8:37 PM Comments comments (2)

7 Stressful daily living

8 No exercise

Believe it or not, these two go hand in hand. Research has shown that physical exercise is the best tension reliever and is a very important remedy for stress. Exercise improves your cardiovascular functions by strengthening and enlarging the heart, causing greater elasticity of the blood vessels, increasing oxygen throughout your body, and lowering your blood levels of fats such as cholesterol and triglycerides. This mean less chance of developing heart conditions, strokes, or high blood pressure. Mentally, exercise provides an outlet for negative emotions such as frustration, anger, and irritability, promoting a more positive mood by producing positive biochemical changes in the body and brain. Your body releases greater amounts of endorphins, the powerful, pain-relieving, mood-elevating chemicals in the brain. Depressed people often lack these neurochemicals. Exercise will keep your body functioning properly and will keep you feeling both relaxed, refreshed and promote deep, restful sleep. Statistically speaking, women who get five hours of sleep or fewer a night are more likely to become obese than women who get seven hours of sleep. They don?t call it BEAUTY SLEEP for nothing.

While everyone knows that stress can take a toll on a person physically and psychologically, it also can lead to dermatologic problems, such as acne, brittle nails or even hair loss.


When a person becomes stressed, the level of the body?s stress hormone (cortisol) rises. This in turn causes an increase in oil production, which can lead to oily skin, acne and other related skin problems. Stress also has a negative effect on the barrier function of the skin, resulting in water loss that inhibits the skin?s ability to repair itself after an injury.  Heres an inside look:


When someone is under stress, hair can go into the telogen (fall-out) phase. Telogen effluvium is a very common hair loss problem that can occur up to three months after a stressful event. After the initial hair loss, hair usually grows back in six to nine months. I often get confronted with the issue of hair loss. It is completely normal to lose at least one hundred strands per day. Take into consideration the length of your hair and how long you have gone without washing it. Longer hair appears to be more then it seems and if you haven?t washed your hair in a couple days then some hairs that have fallen become attached to others seeming like more hair is falling out. The picture below explains a normal hair growth cycle.


Have you ever noticed that when you are happy you feel more beautiful? And what makes a person happy? It can be a combination of factors but some of those is being stress-free, being rested, and being at peace. Our busy lives don't help, but there is a way to achieve that sense of inner peace and therefore increase our outer beauty. Yoga. There are actual internal health benefits to yoga that goes beyond the beautiful toning of your muscles. Doing yoga regularly can be as effective as downing a prescription drug for hypertension (high blood pressure). Heart disease is still one of the leading causes of death for men and women, so why not take preventive measures to combat that?

No matter what path you chose, even if it isn?t Yoga, you don?t have to over do anything. At least 20 minutes, three times a day is a good start. It's hard to get into a workout routine, especially if you work all day, have a family to take care of at night, and then you have to start all over again the next day. Find a wall in your office and do some standing push-ups. Sit against a wall in a squat for one minute. Do a set of 25 jumping jacks.  Here are some cute tips: Instead of finding the closest parking spot, find the furthest. When you get home, close the curtains and turn on your favorite dance song, dance like a rock star, have some fun and burn some calories! Instead of flipping channels during commercial breaks, do a set of sit-ups. It?s easy to have excuses not to but it is just as easy to find little ways to get you body going. You don?t have to go to the gym you can do these things at home. 


SMOKING The Statistics Speak for Themselves

Posted by JessicaOffenbaker on March 26, 2008 at 9:07 PM Comments comments (2)

9 Smoking Cigarettes and

10 Smoking Marijuana

Smoking robs your body of oxygen which in turn robs your hair of oxygen filled blood whose job it is to nourish the hair follicle. What would you do if someone cut off your oxygen intake? You would slowly suffocate. That?s what smoking does to your hair. Check out this diagram:


It shows you the human skalp and how a hair and hair follicle gets its nourishment and how smoking affects your hair.

Smokers may notice that the top layers of their hair are quite brittle. This causes them to break off before they are fully grown and is most likely because they are malnourished. Cigarettes contain 4,000 different chemicals and gases, some of them deadly. When you smoke, your blood carries around poisonous carbon monoxide gas which hijacks the red blood cells. This prevents the cells from carrying the right amounts of oxygen around your body. Ultimately, this will affect things like your hair as it is not being supplied with enough nutrients or fresh oxygen from the blood stream.

Haven?t you ever wondered why a drug test can be done on a strand of hair? It works because any drug that is ingested will circulate in the bloodstream. The bloodstream then circulates through an individual?s entire body, including the scalp where hair follicles are nourished. Subsequently, trace amounts of the ingested drug become trapped in the cortex of the hair follicle and remain there as the hair grows out. As it does, the hair strands also pick up traces of these drugs. The lab analyzes the root and shaft of a strand of hair for any drug residue. Your hair retains a history of drug use for a long time. A strand of hair grows an average of 1/4" per month, so just a 4" length can show drug use as far back as 8 months. What makes matters more difficult, is that second hand marijuana smoke and vapor from heroin or cocaine smoking can penetrate the hair. The laboratory test can have difficulty differentiating between hair contaminated by second hand smoke or hair from an actual user. WOW!


Smoking is a significant risk factor for strokes- around 11 per cent of all strokes are linked to smoking. If you smoke more than 20 cigarettes a day, your risk of having a stroke is two to four times higher than non-smokers. Passive smoking also increases the risk. A stroke occurs when a blood clot forms in the brain, blocking the blood supply, or when a blood vessel in the brain bursts. This deprives the brain cells of oxygen and other nutrients causing them permanent damage or killing them off. The effects of a stroke can leave sufferers permanently disabled and one third of all stroke victims die within a year of the attack.


ASH, the anti-smoking group, say smoking affects your skin in two ways. Firstly, tobacco smoke released into the atmosphere has a drying effect on the skin and secondly, smoking restricts blood vessels, reducing the amount of blood flowing to the skin. This deprives the skin of oxygen and essential nutrients making it drier and can give it a grey, wasted appearance. Studies also show that smoking may lead to an increased production of an enzyme that breaks down collagen in the skin. Collagen is the main structural protein of the skin which helps it stay firm. So the more you smoke, the greater your risk of developing wrinkles. The study found that smokers in their 40s had as many wrinkles as non-smokers in their 60s. Smokers were also more likely to develop hollow cheeks through repeated sucking on the cigarettes. Smokers are also two to three times more likely to develop psoriasis, a skin condition that causes the skin cells to constantly renew themselves leaving scaly pink patches on the body. Studies say smoking appears to be more strongly associated with psoriasis in women than men.

Now back to the question of smoking and hair loss. What effect does smoking have on the blood supply and the circulatory system?

Here is a short list:

.Nicotine causes an increase in adrenaline which in turn increases blood pressure and suddenly makes the heart beat faster.

.Nicotine causes blood vessels to constrict which in turn makes it harder for the heart to pump blood through the arteries which in turn impacts the blood circulatory system.

.Smoking produces carbon monoxide which inhibits the blood's capacity to carry oxygen.

Seeing a healthy scalp and healthy hair follicles are so dependent on a rich supply of oxygenated blood which can deliver all the proteins and nutrients needed for new hair growth, it is only reasonable to conclude smoking and hair loss can be connected.

Of course, every individual is different and will respond in a different way to foods, substances, drugs and medications. However, as a general rule, smoking can be seen to have a negative effect on hair growth.

Bad Habits=Bad Hair

Posted by JessicaOffenbaker on March 15, 2008 at 10:25 PM Comments comments (2)

12 Habits that DAMAGE your hair:  

12 Store bought products (Shampoos/Conditioners/Styling)

Yes, even the ones that would typically get sold in a salon. It's called DIVERSION and many consumers fall for it. Although not all of the products are knock offs(most of them are), some of them are actually just old products that have been lying around in a warehouse somewhere and when that company goes out of business, the products get sold at your local grocery store, or online.

GROCERY STORE: a dealer in staple foodstuffs, meats, produce, and dairy products.

I don't see Hair care on that list do you? I wouldn't want old products on my hair. Who knows what the side effects are. I've had clients break out in rashes before, I know that much.

There are companies in China, Taiwan, the Philippines, etc. that have gone to the trouble of duplicating the bottle and packaging of your favorite products, fill it with some random concoction of ingredients, and sell it for the real thing, then sell them to you for as much as 15% higher than they should be. Please don't buy them in those stores, for your own good.

Bottom Line, diverted products could be a health hazard. They are often counterfeit, diluted formulas, or old, expired formulas that may not be safe to use. Irritation or even infection can result from the use of diverted products. It should be illegal to divert products.  If you are interested in the statistics, go to the websites:


Redken Logo

As for the products the are cheaper like Pantene, Garnier Fructis, Herbal Essence, etc. you get what you pay for. They make their products with what they pay for, lower grade ingredients. Sure, they might contain panthenol for instance, which is pantothenic acid (vitamin B5). Panthenol is an humectant, emollient, and moisturizer that coats the hair and seals its surface, lubricating the hair follicles and making strands appear shiny. Sounds great right? Panthenol does not "nourish" hair. It coats it to make it slippery.

The grade of panthenol used in Pantene is also used in FLOOR WAX! That is why for the first couple of months your hair feels great. Then after a while. The wax coats and coats and coats and your hair feels heavy, greasy, and just plain unclean. So, next time you think about picking one of these bottles up, turn the bottle around and see what you?re about to put on your hair! I will say, though, when summer rolls around and you are going to be outside a lot and in the water, I will condone the use of these lower grade conditioners to coat your hair so chlorine and other environmental hazards don?t seep into your hair. Apply a pretty good amount of the conditioner to damp hair and jump in the pool or whatever you?re doing, but still use your higher end products to wash and condition your hair in the shower.

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