I remember very clearly the first time I saw a post on Hair Talk from Cher, as she prefers to be called. It was in March of 1998 and she was searching for answers on how to recover her hair from terrible mineral damage that laid claim to her beautiful (close to thigh length) hair. Can you imagine watching as water literally ate away your hair? My heart went out to her. I realized that Cher was a lady of determination, great wisdom and a wonderful sense of humor.
Cher gives so much of herself to Hair Talk. She is always willing to help in any way she can. She is also a true pioneer willing to try new hair products and to share her experiences with everyone. Cher is not afraid to get on the phone and call up the hair care companies and ask them pointed questions. I remember that she called the Aussie 800 number to quiz them about their use of silicones in their products. I admire her spirit.
When Cher decided to try Aveda, she was great about passing on her new found tips of using a hot towel with Curessence conditioner.
I admire Cher's willingness at age 39 to embrace her hair "as is". She has reported that she has beautiful gray hair that she inherited from her dad. One thing that really comes across with Cher is her great love of her family. Cher has been married for over 20 years and has reported that her husband not only loves long hair but enjoys seeing her hair done up in Victorian style buns. She has also mentioned that her wonderful husband has trimmed her hair in the past and did a great job.
Cher has graciously sent photos that she is sharing with us. You can see from the photos what a beautiful lady she is and that she has pretty thick hair.
As part of her recent hair experiments, Cher has tried Aussie Moist shampoo, Aussie Natural Gel and Nature's Gate. She is also using Aveda with very good results. I am hoping we can get her to write about her Aveda experiences in the future. I remember how much Cher loved the wonderful aroma of the Aveda. She reported that she loved pulling her hair around to her face so she could take a sniff. She also reported that it made her hair feel very soft.
Cher is one of those lucky ladies who has hair that grows fast. She has mentioned in some of her posts that her goal is to grow her hair back to her knees.
She has great "hair genes" and reports that "her mom can grow hair like no one else". Cher has an aunt with hair below her backside and a cousin with beautiful thick honey blonde hair to her knees.
Besides great hair tips and research Cher brings a special ingredient to Hair Talk. Her big heart, great sense of humour and gentleness are instantly evident from her posts.
Hair Talk would not be the same without Cher. Thank you doesn't seem like enough to say to Cher for her ongoing support and assistance with making Hair Talk a warm, supportive and loving place to visit.
For Cher's Photos CLICK HERE
For most of my life I had gone through it with no hair horror stories. Mainly because I had never done anything major to my hair like colorings or far out haircuts. When I was pregnant with my first son 20 years ago, I cut my waist length hair off to top of shoulder length. It was a rounded style with feathered bangs. About 18 mos. later I let it grow out again. I usually let my hair grow long to my waist or longer then after awhile would cut it to my bra strap then let it grow back again. I did this numerous times throughout my life. As a teenager I had thigh length hair. When I was married in 1977 it was waist length. So, I varied in my lengths of hair.
In the late 80's we built a home near the mountains that had well water. My hair was about waist length. I noticed more split ends, something I never dealt with, when we had city water. I started using Bain de Terre and also Aussie products which helped alot. I also used to use Wella Kolestral with a heating cap. My hair was in pretty good shape as long as I did trims.
In 1993 we built another home, again with well water. During the time we were building, we lived in a home with city water. My hair was in fabulous shape.
When we moved into our home and I started to use the water, I noticed it drying out immediately. I started to use heavy conditioners but the problem just worsened. We were very busy with getting the house straightened out, doing the wallpapering and painting. I tried not to notice at first that my hair was getting in rough shape.
Then it started to break off..first the front part. That went from waist length to shoulder length. Then the sides started to break off. I stopped using the water and started to haul water in jugs from my Mom's who had city water. Well, you can imagine how much water it takes to wash thick waist length hair.. to both wash and rinse it!! It was awful.
I started to wash it with our well water then rinse it with city water. It just slowed down the problem but it did continue to break off. We finally got a water conditioner installed in the house (not cheap). We had iron and manganese in our water. These were the culprits.
I went for a perm first off to make my uneven hair look better. I have a cousin who always used Bain de terre perms. They are much easier on your hair. I decided to use one to help the looks of my hair. The poor stylist spent about 3 hours perming my hair because of the length. About 3 weeks later I cut it off to my bra strap. She probably thought I was nuts. But the perm did not hide the uneven look to my hair.
I had water damage mostly in the front of my hair and on the top and some on the sides where it stopped. It was very dry and brittle in those areas but the back was pretty normal looking. I tried everything. It seemed even though we had the water conditioner, I was still getting some further damage. I finally ran into a stylist who knew about water damage this past year. She said the water conditioners remove alot of minerals but not all of it. She is the one who recommended the use of a final rinse of distilled water.
During this time, I kept my hair about shoulder length. Slowly with cuts and conditioning, it got better looking. Then in 1996, I laid out in sun for the 4th of July holiday. It was a very hot day..about 98 degrees and I was out the entire day. Keeping cooled by the water I didn't notice the heat as much as I should have. Being olive skinned I could always take the sun without alot of burning. To my horror when I came in and took my hair down from a twist on my head, I realized I had bleached the whole outer layer of my hair almost strawberry blonde.(my mom and her side of the family are redheads) I now had 3 colors of hair..dark brown, reddish/blonde and gray. I was so disgusted. My dad visited me and said to do something... put some color on it.
The next time the kids and I were in the store, they talked me into buying a box of Natural Instincts. Well.. the box said it is supposed to wash out in 12-24 shampoos. NOT! The gray and blondish areas of my hair took the color permanently. I then got caught up in the round of coloring my hair every few weeks to cover the roots. I continued coloring for about 6 months then got fed up with being a slave to a box of color.
Short of shaving my head and starting over, I couldn't have been more discouraged at this point of my life over my hair. I started going to the salons regularly and getting cuts. I would go twice a month and get inches cut off. I also had bangs cut since my front seemed to be stuck at not growing any longer than enough to pull back with a barrette.
In February, the stylist talked me into layers. What a mistake. She chopped my hair up. I immediately hated the layers. I am a no nonsense type of person with hairdo's. I like to wash, let air dry and go on. Mostly I like a bun, braid or a little mousse at the most to get the wavy look. I am not into styling my hair. The layers laid in clumps around my head. I went back a couple of days later and told her to cut half my hair off to get rid of the longer layers. I am now dealing with the last half of that mistake.
About spring I found the Long Hair Site and the Hair Boutique site. I learned of the Aveda line of products and didn't waste too much time going out to buy some Shampure and Curessence. The Curessence was just what the doctor ordered. It started right away to correct the dryness. My hair got silky again and with body. For the first few weeks I put the Curessence on my hair and a hot towel and let it just soak for hours. It was like a miracle cure.
I started to rinse my hair with jugs of distilled water also, which I still do. I am now in the process of letting my silver grow back in. That's about chin length now. I went for 4 months without going to a salon and my hair was on it's way down my back again but just recently went to a salon for a good trim. (about 2")
My hair is below shoulder length now. I intend on going every month now for a trim to get the color and layers cut off. I have about 2 inches of layers left and about 6" of color to trim off. I am hoping my streak of bad luck with my hair is over with!! I do not intend on doing anymore hairdo's or perms or colorings anymore. I hope I never wash my hair in water with minerals anymore!!
We added a filter system onto the conditioning system. We change the filters every month. With this set up,we are getting a very low amount of minerals in our water that we use.
I love the Aveda line. It's well worth it's money to me. I hope to always have a few bottles handy. I hope to test the Artec smoothing line soon if I can find it. I am very careful to cover my hair with a scarf if I am in the sun for any length of time.
I put Aveda's beautifying oil on my hair a few times a month. I leave it on for a whole day before washing it out. Sometimes I rub it through and put my hair up in a bun. The silver in my hair seems to soak up the oil and relish in it. Recently I tried using Aura and Aussie products which neither agreed with my hair. I used to use Aussie quite often but after using Aveda, I think I am spoiled. It seems to be an inferior product to me now. It tangled my hair.
I had thought of letting my hair grow to my knees. I have always wanted it that length but never achieved it. Whenever it got to be thigh length I would chop it off to my bra strap and start over. I am kind of leery now with all this silver growing in to let it grow to a super long length. I am waiting for Karen's pictures of the "silver foxes" to see what it would look like. ;-)
At any rate, I am enjoying having my hair in good shape again. Thanks to the Hair Boutique site, I learned about Aveda which I feel saved my hair. I intend on continuing my regime that I have landed on with using Aveda and the distilled water. I hope to find a comparable product to switch on and off, with Aveda for a change. I have tried practically every product on the market. I have used most everything on the store shelf and most upper priced products in both beauty supply stores and salons.
I have never come upon a product quite like Aveda. If you have any type of damage, give Curessence a try to correct it before going through all what I did, with cuts and perms. And if anyone moves into a home with well water.. beware!!
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- Revised Publication Date: 10/19/10