Tabatha Coffey Solves 7 Common Hair Emergencies

While bad hair is rarely a life or death situation, the truth is that hair emergencies do happen — and always at the worst possible time. Luckily for us all, most of these urgent matters don’t require professional attention and have quick fixes that can temporarily get you out of a beauty jam until your next salon appointment.

Emergency: Oily Roots

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Quick fix: Dry shampoo can be really helpful in this situation, but it doesn’t work for everyone. I like to take an oil blotting sheet and work it along the hairline and part — the areas where most people get oily. Blotting sheets are great because you can easily carry them in your purse and they absorb scalp oils without leaving the powdery residue that dry shampoo can.

Emergency: Smelly Hair

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Quick fix: When hair isn’t necessarily dirty but has a not so sweet-smelling odor — due to smoking, an exotic dinner, or something as simple as scalp oils — spray on a hair freshener (available at salons everywhere) or spritz your favorite fragrance (I prefer something fresh and clean-smelling) on a tissue and run it through your hair.

Emergency: Gray or Dark Roots With No Time For a Salon Retouch

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Quick fix: For gray roots, I recommend taking a plain waterproof mascara from the drugstore — nothing fancy or expensive — in a shade that’s similar to your hair color, and applying to gray where it’s showing most (usually at the hairline and/or part).Read more inside for other emergencies.

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For dark roots on light hair, use plain baby powder or a light colored hair powder (Bumble and Bumble make good ones) that matches your particular shade of blond.

Emergency: Flyaways and Staticy Hair


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Quick fix: To tame flyaways and baby hairs at the hairline, spray a little hair spray on a toothbrush (that’s designated as your hair toothbrush) and brush the out-of-control hairs into place. For staticy hair, take a cue from your laundry routine and run a fabric softening sheet through your hair.

Emergency: Too Much Hair Spray

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Quick fix: The only solution — other than reshampooing — is to take a natural bristle brush (like a Mason Pearson brush) and brush and rebrush hair until you break up the stiff mess.

Emergency: Too Much Shine/Smoothing Serum

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Quick fix: This is a common mistake, as most people forget how concentrated hair serums are — a little really goes a long way. If you get heavy-handed, reach for a volumizing spray. The alcohol in it will help absorb some of the serum and put a little traction in your hair. Do not apply dry shampoo; this will just make hair feel heavier and even a little gross.

Emergency: Dry, Frizzy Hair With No Hair Product Within Reach

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Quick fix: Warm a bit of body lotion or hand cream in your palms and apply to ends or anywhere hair needs a little smoothing. Of course a proper smoothing product works best, but in a pinch, plain Lubriderm works great.
That’s all for now. Check back next week for more tips from me.

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