Whether you want super sleek strands, pretty playful waves or ultrarich color, the latest, healthier treatments help you make peace with your style without any sacrifice.
If You Want Beachy Waves
Old way: Unless you’re blessed with the ideal amount of tousle, a perm can be your easiest (though not healthiest) answer. A stylist will put your hair in big curlers, then apply a smelly solution containing ammonium thioglycolate (aka thio) to break down the natural structure of your hair. Besides leaving strands dry and prone to breakage, the chemical has been linked to allergic reactions such as eczema.
If You Want Beachy Waves at-home alternative
Believe it or not, most of us have some form of a natural wave but don’t know how to play it up, says Lana Lennox, a stylist at Royal Care Spa in LA, California. Coax out your kinks by raking a curl-defining mousse through damp hair, then cupping the ends with your palm as you with a diffuser.
If You Want Vibrant, Lasting Color
Old way: Whether applied to a bottle-born blonde or a colorist-created brunette, traditional allover hair dye uses a combo of ammonia and peroxide to open hair’s cuticle layer, remove natural color pigment and deposit synthetic pigments in its place. This may not be the healthiest option for hair. That said, there isn’t definitive proof that the chemicals in hair dye are carcinogenic. But p-phenylenediamine (PPD), a dye found in dark shades, could cause skin rashes and asthma, the Environmental Protection Agency reports.