Hair health

by Carrie Pokrefke

When I was in Seattle in the Summer of 2010, I despartely needed a hair cut. I walked into Duque Salon and Spa in Ballard and Giovanna Duque led me to a chair so she could work her magic. Giovanna uses the Sahag method of dry-cutting hair in which she uses a flat iron as she trims it. I wasn’t sure of it at first, but I was willing to try it. As she cut my hair, she talked to me about hair and even showed me some serious hair breakage. I walked out with a fabulous hair cut and felt more educated about my hair in that one appointment than I had in all my previous appointments put together. I was able to go back to her a few more times, but getting my hair cut in Seattle while living in Atlanta was not going to work for long.

Giovanna helped me track down a stylist here in Atlanta that uses the same Sahag method – Toni Ruff who is at Grow Salon. Toni is just as helpful and educates me at every visit. And, every hair cut from her is fabulous!! During my last hair cut, I was telling Toni about how I was juicing, trying to eat more organic fruits and veggies, and avoiding processed foods. We also got on the subject of coloring my hair and some options that were organic instead of using chemicals. As I was paying, I approached her with the subject of moving towards a more natural shampoo and conditioner.

Over the years, every hair stylist I have had fusses at me for using Pantene shampoo and conditioner. I felt guilty everytime I got in trouble, but…well, if you use Pantene products you know…they don’t cost a lot of money. I fessed up to Toni that I was using Pantene and, just as I expected, she cringed. Instead of getting on to me, she simply walked me back to the chair and SHOWED me what Pantene was doing to my hair.

She took a pair of scissors, showed me that the blades were clean and gently scraped the surface of my hair – not even an inch-long scrap. Then she showed me what was on the blade. A white residue.

I’ve been using Pantene for fine hair that is supposed to provide “Volume” to my hair. This residue, which felt waxy and creamy when rubbed between my fingers, has been sitting on my hair. And, let’s be realistic here – this stuff HAS to have been weighing down. Now, there’s a ton of hits on Pantene and myths, etc, on google, so I am not going to spend time researching the chemcials they use in their products and whether or not they are “good” or “bad” chemcials. A lay person could easily see that with so much gunk on each strand of my hair, there’s no way that my hair wasn’t getting weighed down!

I recreated Toni’s experiment so you could see the results for yourself. I hate to waste products, so I am using up the last of my Pantene Shampoo and Conditioner before I change to a more natural shampoo and conditioner. I am hopeful that once I change over, I won’t have any more residue on it.

Clean blade

Here is a snapshot of the clean blade

Blade after I scraped my hair

Blade after I scraped my hair

My finger after I wiped the blade clean

My finger after I wiped the blade clean