Ladies (and gentlemen, if you also suffer from the horrible affliction of greasy hair), I have big news.
For years, I’ve had a secret shame. Despite frequently being told by friends, family, hairdressers and strangers on the street that it was very bad, I’ve washed my hair every day.
I heard their arguments about the damage it was doing to my poor little follicles, and the importance of teaching your hair to clean itself, and I blatantly ignored them. The alternative was unacceptable: my hair was so greasy 24 hours after a wash that no amount of dry shampoo, second-day-ponytails or brightly-coloured hats could save it.
I’d pretty much resigned myself to the fact that this was my life now. I was an every-day-hair-washer. I wasn’t proud of it (well, okay, I was a little proud of it, in the way that you might be defiantly proud of a weirdly shaped mole), but I was just doing what had to be done.
Then last week, I went to my hairdresser to get my roots done (very important, since dark roots have a rude habit of emphasising dirty hair). Because I was about to get my hair professionally washed and blow-dried, I’d done the inexcusable – let my hair go 48 hours without a wash.
“Is it…” My hairdresser was momentarily lost for words. “Is it always like this?”
Yes, I told him proudly. It is always like this when I don’t wash it. What can you do, hey? It’s just the way I am.
At the end of my appointment, he suggested I try a new conditioning treatment. It's called Niophlex Maintainer 03, and it claims to strengthen hair follicles from within. Naturally, as a vain sucker who'd just had a blowdry, and is also very bad at saying no to someone who's just spent three hours touching my head, I agreed.
Then I found out it cost $50 (FIFTY ACTUAL DOLLARS) for a bottle. By then, I was locked in and too afraid to back out - see above re: bad at saying no - so bought it anyway.
I left the hairdresser in a huff. This bloody conditioner, I thought, better be made of solid gold. It better sing to me in the shower like a chorus of angels. It better give me the best hair I've ever had in my life.
Listen: How mothers can develop a morning routine (hair-washing included).
Don't ask me how it works, or why, but from the day I started putting that stuff on my head, I've become a hugely smug every-second-day-er. Although my morning routine has a hair wash built-in, I've started skipping it on alternate days and having a cup of tea instead.
A cup of tea! In the morning! My life has LITERALLY CHANGED!
No dry shampoo. No colourful hats. No voodoo magic.* Just... put Niophlex all over your hair twice a week, leave on for five minutes, wash out, then condition as normal.
I'm totally sold.
* To be honest, I don't know how it works. It could be voodoo magic. We probably shouldn't rule it out.
If you're interested in trying Niophlex Maintainer, you can check it out here. (That bottle is half the size of the one I got - it's possible the big bottles are exclusive to the hairdresser).