Gleaming hair is a sign of youth and vitality, so I cringe when I see a woman with lackluster hair—it ages her. Pollution, harsh chemicals, and heat styling can all turn hair dull, but a few extra steps will ensure your head shines.
• Start in the shower. Look for shine-enhancing shampoo and conditioner with ingredients like olive oil, jojoba, and rice proteins. Alternate these with your regular formulas to prevent buildup. Be wary of clarifying shampoos; they can deprive hair of much-needed moisture and even strip the dye off color-treated hair. After you shampoo, apply a conditioner evenly through the ends and rinse thoroughly. If your hair is color-treated, use a hair mask weekly to replenish moisture.
• Prep work. After towel-drying, apply either a glossing cream or shine serum with high levels of panthenol (provitamin B5). Glossing creams are lighter and have less silicone, so they're more appropriate for women with fine to medium hair. Use a shine serum if you have frizzy or coarse hair or unruly curls. (Avoid saltwater sprays; they tend to leave a matte finish.) Massage a quarter-size dollop of the product evenly through your hair.
• Dry the right way. Place a round, natural-bristle brush under a three-inch section of hair. Start at the roots, and hold the dryer so the nozzle aims downward—never up against the shaft. Slide the brush down without twisting it, to seal the cuticle.
• Add a spritz. While your hair is still warm from the dryer, flip it upside down and mist the ends with a shine spray. This ensures you won't get too much product near the roots. If you need a touch-up during the day, spritz some shine spray on your hands and run them lightly through your hair. Again, you don't want to overdo it.