Mountain Chic

Reflections and observations on culture, food, style and travel


I have very fine, very blonde hair, which I didn’t start coloring until I was in my 30s.  My hair was so white when I was in high school that one time this boy named Bryan told me, while we were totally not paying attention in computer class, that I would be a lot hotter if only my hair were darker (jerk!).  My hair is so light that instead of being proud of it for most of my life it actually made me self-conscious.  Now I’m grateful for it, of course.  In fact, I still don’t do highlights – when I get my hair colored, I get lowlights and an allover glaze to brighten my natural hue.  Sometimes stylists ask me why I do anything to my hair at all, but the thing is, color makes your hair shinier and fatter and easier to work with – especially when it’s as delicate as mine.


{Me with our son and the white hair he inherited from mom}

The problem is that the older I get, the more sensitive my skin and my hair have become.  I also notice that in winter, my hair becomes less bright – not dark, but a bit more dull.  I used to use only volumizing products, and never had a problem with split ends or fried hair or any of that.  But in the past few months, I think I overdosed on the topknot trend, because lately I noticed my hair breaking at the point where I’d normally wrap a rubber band to pile my hair on top of my head before a run or Pilates class.  When you are as vain as I, hair breakage strikes the fear of God into the depths of your heart.  So I immediately took action – I needed to repair, strengthen, and brighten.


It’s a good thing, anyway, because as winter approaches, especially in the uber-dry, high-altitude climate where I live, reparative hair products are a really good idea.


{My 3-year-old – with my Oribe – who wants to be part of every blog shoot but, in true 3-year-old fashion, makes this face every single time I ask him to pose for me.}

Oribe Bright Blonde Shampoo for Beautiful ColorOribe products, for the most part, offer unparalleled performance and the most heavenly, exceptional scents of any haircare line available.  This purple shampoo gently cleanses and brightens my hair, but also gives it good volume and manageability – sometimes, these color-specific shampoos do a bit to clarify color but then leave my hair flat or staticky, and this shampoo ticks every box of my hair wants and needs.  I wouldn’t use it every day because it is, after all, purple, and designed to neutralize yellowish tones in blonde hair.  Let me just say that while living in the mountains is cool and everything, the water here makes my hair a weird yellowy color I’ve never before dealt with in my life.  Or maybe I’m getting older.  Either way, Oribe to the rescue.  If you’re not a blonde, the Oribe Shampoo for Beautiful Color seems to be the ticket for other shades, too.


Pureology Highlight Stylist Bodifying Luminator: I bought a sample size of this stuff at Ulta, and it sat in my bathroom unused for a few months.  I thought the name of it sounded too good to be true, like some gimmick appealing to all of my insecurities about my hair, and therefore I didn’t trust it, even though I bought it on impulse.  But I finally tried it one night.  And I LOVE it.  It gives just enough body, not too poufy, and even better, it really does provide texture, which is the perennial desire of my basically baby hair.  My hair feels stronger and less brittle after I use this mousse as opposed to other products.  Also, this mousse delivers shine instead of a matte finish, which I really adore.  Even though “highlight stylist” is in the title, I think those of you with dark hair would love this stuff, too – nothing about it is blonde-centric.  Just perfect control, shine, weight and hold.


Living Proof Restore Instant Repair: I have my darling friend Theresa to thank for introducing me to this product.  I would never buy something like this if left to my own devices, but sometimes Theresa and I exchange our winning beauty products with one another because we love each other that much that we will willingly divulge beauty secrets to one another.  I would assume this stuff would make my hair greasy, and also, with the exception of their dry shampoo, I haven’t had much luck with the Living Proof line.  Oh, but except.  You put on a bit of this potion when your hair is wet after washing and conditioning but before any styling product, and you focus on the ends.  It heals and repairs hair without weighing it down (and if it’s going to weigh any hair down, it would be mine).  This isn’t scientifically proven, but I feel like it coats my hair with extra oomph too.  Thank God for girlfriends who look out for your well-being.  This stuff is gold, and the bottle Theresa gave me has lasted over a year, but I’ll definitely spring for my own bottle when I need it, as I wouldn’t be caught without it in the future.

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