The mom haircut. I don’t even need to describe it ― you already know what it is. For decades ― maybe for centuries ― women have relied on the mom haircut to keep their luscious locks safe from the sticky, grabby hands of their kids, keep their showers short, and keep their styling less than mindless. The mom haircut works. It’s easy.
However, once your kids are in school, you no longer truly need the mom haircut. You can spend the extra three minutes in the shower properly conditioning; you can warm up the curling iron without fear of yanking toddler arms and tiny burnt fingers. You have more time and energy to devote to yourself ― but if you are like most moms, you will keep getting the mom haircut. It has become familiar. It’s easy.
Unfortunately, moms will often choose what is fast and straightforward over what they want and need, especially in areas related to self-love and -care. For your own positive self-image and sanity, it’s time for you to get rid of your mom haircut. Don’t worry ― it’s easy.
Step One: Start Growing
The single defining feature of the mom haircut is: short. Thus, the fastest route to non-mom styles is length. Instead of scheduling a cut every couple months, you should let your locks grow out. Contrary to popular belief, frequent trims don’t actually help your hair grow fast. Instead, you should be patient and have a good cleaning and conditioning routine.
The danger in growing out your hair is allowing the ends to dry out and split. To prevent this, you should only shampoo a few times a week, but every time your hair gets wet, you should condition the ends. Plus, it doesn’t hurt to apply a hair oil treatment once a week; you can lock the kids and partner out and use it as your “mommy” time.
Step Two: Fill Patches
Motherhood is tough on hair. Even setting aside root-wrenching toddlers, the rampaging hormones you endure during pregnancy and early motherhood wreaks havoc on your lovely locks. Many women experience some receding of the hairline, and some even have entire patches of hair fall out in chunks. In fact, some stylists suspect this is a major reason many women gravitate toward the mom haircut to begin with.
Eventually, your patches will grow in naturally, but until then, you can cover up any thin spots with cheap hair extensions.
Extensions are easy to install and remove, so you can use them to become accustomed to different ‘dos while you wait for your real hair to grow long and thick.
Step Three: Dye, Dye, Dye
Many hair dyes are toxic, relying on dangerous chemicals like ammonia and lead acetate that can cause lasting health problems. As a result, most doctors caution women against hair coloring while carrying and nursing. By now, your mom hair is probably back to its natural shade.
However, as women age ― and spend less time outdoors ― their hair can become dull and monotone. Now that you don’t need to worry about poisoning your little ones, you can spend a day dying your hair. Bright, eye-catching colors are extremely trendy right now, but for a more natural look, you should find a dye that has the same tones as your usual hair, just one or two shades darker or lighter.
Step Four: Relearn Style
Perhaps the hardest thing about changing your hair is relearning how to style it. The mom haircut is designed to be wash-and-go, so your styling tool skills are likely well out of practice. Fortunately, you aren’t alone, and there are millions of resources online to help you practice working with your new tresses.
In fact, you might make learning about hairstyles an activity for the whole family. Even if your kids are too young to use the curling iron or wear make-up, they will probably love watching you get ready. You can use their little hands to hold braids or pass (non-heated) tools, and you can even practice styles on any head with hair similar to yours. Maybe your kids will get inspired to become cosmetologists ― or maybe they’ll just feel closer to you.
Step Five: Eat Healthy and Live Well
Finally, it doesn’t matter how good your hair looks if you are unhappy and unhealthy. Even when you aren’t elaborately styling your locks, you should commit to a healthful diet full of good fats and protein ― which will naturally improve the look of your skin, nails, and hair. You should also have a regular exercise regimen, spending at least 30 minutes every day moving your muscles and working your heart. Both your diet and your activity will reduce your stress, helping your hair grow strong and shiny. Ultimately, feeling good and looking good will help you become the best mom you can be.