Suddenly it’s all about root lift. (Aussies – settle. Root root root root. OK? Can you stop snickering now? Root. Ha ha snort. Nice root lift… Sorry.) It’s the latest development in a life of gadget-tastic hair obsessions.
I spent the mid 70s wishing I had wavy hair and the late 70s trying to make it stand on end dead straight.
Farrah ruled the waves.
Siouxsie Sioux queen of girl punk hair.
The 80s were all about big hair and high hair, in particular a monstrous quiff arrangement at the front.
Madonna dressed as me in the 1980s.
Meg's perfect ruffled bob.
In the early 90s I wanted to look charmingly tousled (Meg Ryan) and then I spent the second half of that decade trying to make it cling to my head in perfect straight smoothness (Jennifer Anniston).
We really wanted Jennifer's hair. We did.
At some point in the Noughties it came to be all about looking professionally groomed and that has now segued into an obsession with root lift.
I want my hair to spring bouffily from my head before falling into bouncy glossy flips. It’s so flattering and uplifting for a face which is headed in the opposite direction.
But how to achieve it without the professional blow dry I can longer afford/access/be bothered with?
All of my earlier hair fixations required specialist equipment and product, in the following timeline:
hairspray (Nuclear Fission hold)
fine-toothed back-combing comb and more hairspray
mousse and gummy hair wax caca
professional hairdresser, twice a week.
And now I have found the gadget that enables me to achieve the newly all-important root lift in my own home. Praise the Lord!
It all started when India Knight posted about the Babyliss Big Hair on Twitter and then on her blog. http://indiaknight.posterous.com/
My best friend V., who knows a good thing when she sees it, immediately bought one and after the first try out sent me a text ordering me to do the same.
‘Don’t argue, just buy it,’ she said and she was so right.
This gadget is a miracle. It’s a hairdryer with an integrated rotating brush, that enables you to give yourself an almost professional looking blow dry. You get shine, you get bounce, you get that fabulous curve. And without needing three arms to do it.
(I’ve always felt the lack of that third one when trying to dry my own hair with a separate brush and dryer, which is why I never used to do it.)
It took me a couple of goes to get the hang of it and now it’s second nature. The only props you’ll need is some good protecting blow dry lotion (I use John Frieda Luxurious Volume) and a couple of those hair sectioning clips, which make me feel very professional.
My other tip is to let the hair get nearly dry before you start. If you’re in a rush, turn your head upside down and blast it with a normal hairdryer for a bit first.
But although I loved my glossy bouncing home-made hair something was missing from my Big Hair do: root lift.
The rolling brushing pulling down on the hair shaft was making it cling to the head in the Anniston stylee of yesteryear, even when I did that thing of holding it by my scalp for extended brain baking periods.
So imagine my delight when browsing in my local branch of Boots I discovered the clever folk at Babyliss have already thought of this. Enter, Root Boost. (Settle…)
This gadget is like a hair straightener, except the heated ceramic plate has ridges on it. These create crinkly sections of hair right at the roots, which lift up the smooth top layer – which you have fastened carefully out of the way with your sectioning clips.
It does take a bit of getting used to but – yes – it works. I’ve used it twice now and it passed a before and after test with my mum, who is known for telling it how she sees it. She said there was definitely a difference after I root boosted and I hadn’t told her what I was up to.
You do have to be a bit careful near your hairline, where I currently have a section which looks as though I’ve got too close to a packet of crinkle cut chips, but I’ll get more confident with use.
With a quick spritz of my adored Elnett hairspray, I reckon I look like I’ve had a professional blow job. I mean root lift. Oh you know what I mean.