Freshman year of high school, a rumor went around that I didn’t shower. I confronted my friend (yes, friend) who started this falsehood in the stairwell on the way to English class. She tried to defend herself with this explanation: I rocked straight hair for a good week back in eighth grade. I guess some 14-year-old minds can’t grasp the versatility of a shower and the possibility that I could’ve taken (and definitely did) what my family calls “body showers.”
We live in a post-rumor world now. Society has vindicated me. These days, unwashed hair is embraced with open arms. People like Kim Kardashian openly talk about skipping a day (or five) of the good ole shampoo and conditioner routine without the risk of everyone thinking this is the worst thing she’s ever done and declaring that she should be shunned from society. (That didn’t happen to me, but for young Dev, it sure felt that way.) Instead, we accept the variety of benefits that dirty hair offers, like longer lasting hair color, less breakage, and more hydration and shine, because you’re letting the natural oils do their thing.
As for dry shampoo, I tend to stay away from it because my curly hair has a complex ecosystem that doesn’t accept it. Plus it’s not really that great for your hair in the long
run—it builds up easily, weighing down your precious locks and making them look lackluster. Instead, I rely on half-up styles, braids, and high ponytails to disguise greasiness, no products necessary. The following styles are my go-tos. Not only does no one notice how many days I’ve avoided a full shower, but they’re also easy to do and pair well with this quick makeup look.
For a while, I was trying to make mini half-up buns the same way I do my everyday top knot. The process turned out to be pretty difficult. Then one day, as I flounced through Williamsburg to get my favorite chai tea concentrate, I noticed the way the dudes did theirs. I never thought I would have a beauty epiphany at the hands (heads?) of men, but here we are. The best part about this little loop is you don’t have to have super long hair to get on the mini-bun bandwagon.
1. Create a section of your hair, using the middle of your eyebrows where they arch as your guide for how wide it should be. The thickness of your hair will dictate how far back towards the crown of your head you should go. I have pretty thick hair, so I only go about two inches back, and it creates a square-like area. If you have fine hair, you’ll want more of a rectangle.
2. Tie off the section with a thin hairband. When you get to the last possible loop around your hair, only pull it through a little bit to create the loop. Then secure the tail to the back of your head with a bobby pin.
My best friend Celina taught me how to do this twist action so it stays in place after I made her do my hair so it looks like Omarion’s in “You Got Served.” I gave it a
“Beyonce at the 2015 MET Gala” spin because everyone needs a good high ponytail moment in her life at some point. Maybe yours just happens to fall on a day you didn’t wash your hair. No one has to know with this style.
1. Put your hair into a high ponytail. Then, split it into two sections—with one in each hand.
2. Twist both sections in the same direction simultaneously. (This is the beauty version of the tapping-your-head-and-rubbing-your-stomach gimmick.) I usually go right.
3. Once each section is fully twisted, twist the sections around each other in the opposite direction. If you took my route, go left.
4. Secure ends with a hair tie.
Optional: You can also turn the ponytail into a fun rope-looking bun. Just wrap it around on the top of your head, and keep it in place with a bobby pin.
No-Skill Boxer Braids
I don’t know how to French braid, and I don’t think I ever will. I have baby hands and the wingspan of a large parrot, so I just don’t see all that reaching happening for me. Boxer braids are super appealing to me though. They keep my hair right and tight without looking too athletic (because let’s be real, nothing about me screams #fitfam). I’ve devised a method that uses the standard braiding technique and bobby pins.
1. Brush your hair out well because you want the braids to look smooth and sleek.
2. Part your hair down the middle, so you have two sections.
3. Create a mini braid along your hairline with a 1-by-1 inch section next to the part.
4. Pin the braid back, so it looks like this:
5. Braid the rest of your hair as you usually would, incorporating the mini front braid as you go along. Then repeat on the other side.
This braid situation is my go-to style during inclement weather. It keeps my hair out of my face, off my neck, and in check. Don’t be intimidated by these braids! If you can do a normal braid, trust and believe you’ll be able to do this.
1. Put your head down and brush all your hair forward like you’re pretending to be Cousin It.
2. With you head still down, part your hair down the middle, starting at the back of your neck so you have two sections. Then tie off one side to make your life easier.
3. Braid the section you left free. Then untie the other and braid that section too. You’re basically just braiding your hair upside down.
4. Put your head up, then wrap each section around your head like so:
5. Gather the tails of each braid together into one hair tie.
6. Tuck that new uni-tail behind one of the braids then pin it in place.
Optional: If you want more of a carefree, boho look, you can pull at some sections, so it looks more tousled and wispy.