Ever come back from travelling and realise your hair is a tangled, knotty, dry mess? That was my LIFE during my years abroad. Luckily, with lots of trial and error, I’ve figured out some low ways to ensure my hair isn’t fried by the time I’m returning home.
It may seem a little extra and over the top to bring a bunch of hair products on the road with you, especially if you’re a backpacker. A girl (or guy) has to take care of their hair though, right? I’ve got some super low maintenance ways to keep your hair soft and healthy.
If you’re travelling for a short while, I’d recommend bringing a good conditioner with you. Turns out, the shampoo we use really doesn’t matter, but the conditioner does. Use whatever shampoo you can find abroad, but bring your conditioner. You can buy some pretty good ones while on the road, so I wouldn’t stress.
If you’re going to be on the road long-term, do a hair mask once in a while. I like to take advantage of the local products. In South Asia, I found a huge tub of coconut oil for about $2 USD and I would do a mask on my hair every week. This definitely helped it stay healthy. It’s also good to bring in local produce… it sounds weird, but banana is super good for your hair, and generally a cheap fruit. Avocado is another good one. In some parts of the world, you can buy prepackaged hair masks for about $1.
This takes a little bit of training, but there’s something called cowashing that I do. You essentially only wash your hair with conditioner. I have dry hair and I’ve found that this keeps it pretty manageable. I’ll shampoo every week or so, but other than that, it’s just conditioner. When you first start, you may have some greasy hair, but it gets better!
If trekking in high altitudes, bring some hair oil and keep the ends of your hair moisturised! Scarves are a good way to keep your hair nice and tidy if you’re up for that, but I couldn’t be bothered.
When it comes to hair ties, I love using the hair ties that look like old phone cords. My descriptions suck. Here’s a photo:
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