Get some top hair care tips and an insight into the world of film hair stylist Charlotte Hayward just in time for ‘back to school’. Charlotte has been part of the behind the scenes team on blockbuster films including Harry Potter, Captain Phillips and X-men.  With over 11 years’ experience in hairstyling within the fast-paced film industry, Charlotte knows what it’s like dealing with tight time pressures and challenging environments to create easy to manage hair styles that look great as well as keeping hair healthy-looking! We asked her some questions around easy hair styles, hair hacks and style secrets to help give parents one less thing to worry about this back to school.

How can I get my kids’ hair ready quickly in the morning?

If you can spare a little time the night before, this will help to make the school run that little bit easier. Brush through any tangles before bed, and if it’s a hair wash day, wash and dry their hair before they go to bed. Using a 2 in 1 shampoo can help to reduce the stressful process too by keeping hair washing time a minimum whilst also easing any tangles! A spin bun is a fun, yet easy style for a weekday. Simply hold your child’s hair in a ponytail and ask them to twirl around to create a twist in the hair. Keep spinning until it creates a bun and simply secure with an additional bobby pin for a style which is neat, simple and tidy – it’ll add a little fun to both your mornings!

Childrens tangled hair care

What’s an easy but simple style for long hair?

I like to use plaits a lot as they keep long hair in check which can be very helpful for school, but they can also be both pretty and glamourous. They don’t need to be complicated! Plus the more you use them the quicker you’ll become and even the simplest plaits are classic go-to hair styles.

My child has cut their own fringe over the holidays and now it’s wonky – how can I make it look less of a hair disaster?

Almost a quarter of children experience a wonky fringe so you’re not alone! If it’s long enough you could simply try pinning it back, though the following trick might help to even it out. Using a triangular shaped piece of paper, comb the dry hair forward and fold it against the fringe, using it as a guide. Use a pair of scissors to cut up into the paper, to soften and even out the line a little. Always trim fringes when they are dry, wet hair will bounce up shorter once dry. Watch my easy hair hack tutorial for managing a DIY disaster.

Working on a film set, what is the worst hair mishap you have had to deal with?

The problem we have to deal with all the time is people suddenly dyeing their hair or cutting in a fringe. A fringe is a nightmare for continuity – it’s so hard to hide it and make it look like it’s not there. We use fine hair pieces to try and disguise the length and try and cheat some of it back off the face to hide it. We also have to deal with colour issues and have had to use coloured sprays to disguise crazy colours!

Do you have a secret for healthy looking hair?

Children tend to be too busy having fun to want to take care of their ends so a serum or leave-in conditioner or even just a conditioner on the ends is a great tip to keep the hair healthy and shiny. You can also use this when on holiday to protect the ends from getting dry in the sun. During school term time try not to tie hair up too high in a ponytail as this can causes breakages in the front of the hair. Instead let hair fall naturally and choose soft hair bands to avoid breaking the hair when putting it up.Childrens blow drying hair care

Is it better to use a comb or a brush with wet hair?

It really depends on the hair type. It is gentler to use a bristle brush like a Mason Pearson, but if you use a wide toothed comb you can gently get rid of any knots first. It’s best to start at the bottom and only move up towards the roots once the knots have gone.

How can I help to manage my child’s frizz?

When blow drying your child’s hair, begin using the hot setting, but finish on a cooler setting in order to set the style and help to keep any frizz at bay. Also make sure to keep their head upright whilst blow drying since this will ensure their hair falls, and dries, in its natural direction.

It’s sometimes a struggle to get my kids to the hairdressers – how can I make it more appealing?

Try chatting to your children about their impending haircut in the days leading up to the event – treating a haircut as a grown-up treat can help to get children excited about the experience. It can be worthwhile to spend a few minutes in the salon with your child before their appointment – allowing them some time to watch other children in the salon chair can help them to feel more comfortable. A little snack often works wonders for keeping little ones still in the salon chair, and small rewards such as a lollipop or a play in the park on the way home can help to make their experience a positive one. If your child finds the salon environment particularly stressful it might be worthwhile looking into a mobile hairdresser, since your child is much more likely to feel at ease in familiar surroundings.

My children love swimming and the new school term brings weekly lessons but how can I help to reduce chlorine damage from the swimming pool?

Firstly, show them how to brush through their hair to remove any tangles before they jump in the pool. If they have to wear a swim cap, sprinkle the inside with a little talcum powder before packing to reduce the cap pulling on their hair. Include an after swim hair and body product to use once they’re out of the pool and ask them to wash twice (if they have time!) – the first time will help to remove any impurities and the second time will help to remove the strong smell of chlorine.

Hair care for children swimming

We have a family wedding coming up – what’s an easy special hair style I could use?

There are lots of simple styles that even dads can help with! If your daughter has static hair, before diving right in with a bucket of product, he can lightly spray a hairbrush with some low strength hairspray and brush through to tame any fly-aways. Plaits can be a little tricky so unless he sees himself as a secret hair wizard, try gathering two pieces of hair at the front, twisting them individually to the back of your child’s head. Secure the twists with a couple of bobby pins (if you put them wobbly side down, they’ll grip better). Spraying a clean toothbrush to deal with any tricky flyaways can also help. If you are feeling adventurous you can create some additional twists using the remainder of the hair, and remember – cute accessories can cover all manner of sins so don’t be afraid to keep things simple and let a couple of nice clips or matching ribbons do the talking.

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