If your hair doesn’t hold a curl, slips out of buns, and refuses to tousle, the problem may be that it needs some more damage. Many of the current hair trends—natural texture, low-sudsing shampoos, temporary color—have little to no impact on your strands. The result is shiny, healthy, and very stubborn hair, referred to by professionals as “resistant.” Until recently, most people were coloring, perming and heat styling their strands, and these services roughed up the cuticle, making for hair that absorbed product and held texture better. Of course, plenty of people went too far and ended up with dull, damaged locks, but for those who hit the sweet spot a bit of processing improved volume, movement and hold. How do you get pliable, easy-to-style strands without frying your tresses? Click the notes to find out. –Laura Martin
Enhance your shade with some highlights or a single process. If you don’t color your hair you probably don’t want roots growing in every few weeks, but even a few highlights or a gloss of demi-permanent color can subtly shift your hue, won’t require regular maintenance, and will give your cuticles a gentle ruffling.
Heat style on weekends. Using hot tools every day can take a serious toll on your strands, but making it an occasional treat will add a bit of oomph without causing serious stress. Use thermal protectant and an appropriate setting.
Try permanent texture. If you’re struggling with styling a permanent texture service like American Wave will give your hair more movement and loosen tight cuticles for more responsive strands.