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Rachael’s Ultimate Guide to Growing Healthy Long Hair (Part 2)

January 22, 2012


I hope you’ve all had success so far in your endeavor for those lush, rapunzel locks! I’m here with a few more tips to help you along 🙂


There ain’t no doubt about it. Braided hair is hot. Alexander Wang,  Emilio Pucci, Miu Miu and Prada are all unanimous, styling their models with braids season after season – milkmaid, fishtail, messy  –  you name it, they’ve done it.

The simplicity of this trend has caused it to leap off the catwalks in a heartbeat, with on-trend girls donning braids all over the world. But there are a few things to keep in mind when styling your hair with braids.

1. When your hair is braided, make sure it isn’t tied too tight – or else it could cause breakage or hair loss (ouch!). So if you like to braid your hair on a daily basis, it is best to stick with a messy braid that’s a bit loose.

2. Use metal-free hair bands to prevent snags and breakage of your hair. These can be bought easily in all pharmacies and even most supermarkets (and can be super cheap if you buy a large pack  – you can even go halves with a friend if you don’t think you need hundreds). In the same vein, try limit your use of clips, bows and other accesories that can tangle and snag your hair.

MYTH: The more often you cut your hair, the faster it will grow.

I’ve heard this one so many times. This statement does hold some truth to it, but it’s just over-simplified and really badly worded. It is important to have regular trims at the hairdresser, even if you are trying to grow out your hair. Like health check-ups at the doctor – but for your hair.

I know many of us doubt the expertise of hairdressers  – since the majority seem to like to experiment cuts and colours on themselves (and thus tend to look a little wack). And then there’s their shocking inability to understand the phrase “don’t cut it too short”; but all that aside, hairdressers do know their haircare better than we do. They only cut as much as they need to in order to nix our split ends. Otherwise, split ends can cause your hair to break off – which really isn’t good for your hair; and after awhile your hair will start to look dull and unhealthy.

TRUE STORY: I had a friend with ridiculously long hair, who hadn’t had it trimmed in years. By the time she did go, the hairdresser said that a lot of her hair was really, well, “dead”. She ended up having to have it cut to shoulder length to get rid of all the unhealthy hair. It was pretty depressing for her.

Yeah, yeah. I get it, “Cool story Hansel” and whatever – but hey! Don’t say I didn’t warn you…

HOWEVER, it’s important that you don’t take this to the extreme – the problem with this myth is that it suggests that if you cut your hair every hour, your hair will start growing at super speed. Which, come on – just logically isn’t true. If you’re aiming to maintain or grow your length, have a trim once every 4 weeks. If you cut it any more frquently than that, the only thing you’re doing is making your hair shorter. Duh.


No matter your weapon of choice – curler, straightener, hair dryer or crimper – I’m willing to bet that all of us have heat damaged our hair at some point in our life. And I’m pretty sure you can tell from the term ‘heat damage’ that it ain’t good for your hair – no matter what “ionic”, “floating ceramic plates”, “frizz smoothing” crap they tell you on the box. Long term heat damage will make your hair drier, more brittle and lose that natural healthy shine.

Now, I know a lot of you, like most of my friends are the “OMG NO I COULD NEVER LIVE WITHOUT MY STRAIGHTENER WHAT ARE YOU TRYING TO SAY RACHAEL NO I REFUSE YOU CAN’T MAKE ME” types, and I get it. But it’s important to remember that those sprays your hairdresser recommended for you to buy weren’t just part of a shameless profit scheme (surprising I know XD) – it really is important to always apply product before you heat treat it. Most hairdressers will agree that if you’re a straightener junkie, it’s in your hair’s best interest to invest in a heat protectant product (usually in the form of a spray). But really, any product is better than none – so if your budget is tight, just run some leave-in conditioner through your hair before you curl, straighten or blow-dry.

Personally, I would recommend that if you can, next time you’re buying your shampoo andconditioner, choose products specifically for heat damaged hair – TRESemmĂ© has a thermal recovery range that would do the trick. Also, try to let your hair dry naturally as often as you can, instead of always resorting to your dryer.

So that’s all from me for now, folks 🙂



Rachael’s Ultimate Guide to Growing Healthy Long Hair (Part 1)

December 31, 2011


So another year has passed, as many of us stay up til the wee hours of morn and party hard to celebrate the new year. And like many of you, when I awake groggily (some more than others) on the 1st of January 2012, I will resolve that this will be the year that I learn Italian, stop spending so much, start saving and go to the gym everyday (and not just to check out the hot guys). A new year for a new and improved me. I don’t know about you guys – but for me, it’s really not all that different to what I said I would do on January 1st last year…and possibly the one before. For all said above, I can only hope I fare better this year. However, if your new year’s resolution is to grow some seriously enviable, lusciously long locks OR to grow out those (let’s be honest) completely unflattering home-cut bangs; that far-too-short, spur-of-the-moment bob; or that Emma-Watson-esque pixie cut you thought you could pull off… then I am here to help, with some tips and tricks on how to care better for your hair, and encourage it to grow healthily.


FACT: on average, hair grows ½ inch each month – so that’s 6 inches in a year.

Although this figure varies from person to person (based on factors such as genetics, age and health), for most, it is generous, if anything. This is the natural growth rate of your hair, and it is not possible to naturally make your hair grow any faster. Sadly, we can’t do anything to change our genes or age. So our job is to ensure our bodies and our locks are in optimum health to make sure by the 1st January 2013, we have that extra 6 inches!

General Health

Cliché, I know, but incontestably true: if you’re healthy on the inside, your healthy glow will be reflected on the outside (hello glossy locks!).

So, this year, resolve to start drinking plenty of water. You may have doubted your biology teacher’s knowledge and competency, but they weren’t actually kidding when they said water makes up about 60% of your body weight. Every system in your body depends on water, so it is essential for good health. It is recommended that we try to drink about 2 litres a day – that’s 8-9 glasses of water.

Try to establish a healthy, regular sleeping cycle (minimise those all-nighters) to ensure you get at least 8 hours of sleep a day; and incorporate a variety of colourful fresh fruits and vegetables. You could also start eating a “hair, skin and nails” supplement, which can be found in the multivitamin and supplements sections of most pharmacies. Whichever you choose, the idea is to give your body the nutrients it needs to support healthy hair growth.

How to Properly Care for Your Hair

I know. You’ve been washing your hair all on your own since the age of 3, but think of these tips as a refresher course to check you’re caring for your hair as best as you can.

Using warm water for shampooing your hair is best – it helps to open up the hair cuticle so that you can clean out all the trapped dirt and oil. But not too hot, otherwise you might also risk stripping away all the natural oils of your hair, leaving your scalp dry and prone to dandruff. Another tip to avoid drying out your scalp is to only wash your hair every second day.

When lathering your hair, be gentle, you already naturally shed hair each day, but you don’t want to lose any more than necessary! When conditioning, take the time to comb the conditioner through your hair to ensure your hair is conditioned thoroughly from root to tip, and massage it into your scalp. This will not only help to moisturise your scalp, but the massaging action will also stimulate blood flow to your scalp, and therefore encourage hair growth. Leave the conditioner in for up to 5 minutes if possible. But, I know we’re busy people and not everyone (I know I can’t) can always afford to wait 5 minutes before rinsing your hair; so just leave it in for as long as you can. I suggest shampooing and applying conditioner first when you hop into the shower. Then after you’ve applied conditioner, twist your hair and pile it on top of your head to keep it out of the way while you wash the rest of yourself. Then, rinse out the conditioner lastly, just before you get out.

Conversely, it is better to rinse out conditioner with cool water – this will rinse out excess product without completely stripping all the moisture from your freshly-conditioned hair. It will also help to close the hair cuticle – giving you nice shiny hair (score!).

Well, I can’t give all my secrets away all at once! So that’s it for Part 1 of my new hair care series; look out for Part 2 in about a week. Until then, I wish you all the best for the year ahead, and good luck especially with your hair 🙂



WHAT ROSIE LIKES: An Ode to Bill Cunningham…

December 16, 2011

‎”Fashion is the armour to survive the reality of everyday life. I don’t think you could do away with it. It would be like doing away with civilization.”  

-Bill Cunningham, in the documentary Bill Cunningham New York 

As an often fashion-deprived poor soul living in Wellington, New Zealand, the number of people wearing puffer jackets constantly depresses me. They belong in the same category as ugg-boots, ie. not to be worn outside the house unless your dog has just died and you are incapable of doing anything other than clutching the bag of dog food and bawling your eyes out. After seeing the movie, Bill Cunningham New York, (which I highly recommend by the way) about an on-the-street fashion photographer who takes photos of anyone who catches his eye, I was even sadder at the contrast between your average New-Yorker and your average Wellingtonian:


While puffer jackets may be warm, convenient, and comfortable, they are not in any way flattering, fashionable or interesting. I just wish people would try a little harder! Is that too much to ask?

BUT: that doesn’t mean to say that I am going to give up on fashion and become a puffer-jacketed, Supré-wearing clone. In fact, it’s quite the opposite – hearing Bill’s story I’ve realised that you never know who might be watching…

…And that is WHAT ROSIE LIKES. 




WHAT ROSIE LIKES: An introduction of sorts.

December 16, 2011

Hellooo everyone! I am ever-so-sorry that it has been far too long since anything was published on Perdu Dans L’armoire so to reward your faithfulness I would like introduce you to my friend and thrifty fashionista Rosie.

The following post was penned by the affable Rosie Marsland… Welcome to a new series on the blog: WHAT ROSIE LIKES. 

Hey anyone who’s out there, I’m Rosie, a 17-year-old Wellingtonian with a fetish for op-shops and Darren Criss.  Forced into a floor-length hideous uniform Monday to Friday, my fashion sense is ready to explode by the weekend.  I always try to be creative with my outfits, because you never know who’s watching…

Dress, scarf, belt, boots: Opportunity for Animals. Hat: Harry J White. Socks: Glassons. Bracelet: Gold Ore Silver Mine.

I spend every Saturday volunteering at the secondhand shop, Opportunity for Animals. Admittedly, this involves working all day in a mothball-y, dingy shop, wading through sacks of pilled Supré cast-offs and dealing with occasionally creepy customers…

BUT the rewards are great. Namely, bags and bags of vintage, preloved clothes. Oh, and I get to spend all day with one of my best friends, talking about general life and laughing at aforementioned creepy customers. At 3pm, Lucy and I close the doors, pull in the sign and bring out our pile of garments that have “potential”, collected throughout the day. What ensues is like a speeded up shopping spree that takes place in just one shop, Lucy and I pull clothes on and off at high speed, making ruthless and brutal comments about the other like, “you look middle-aged” and “way too Big Fat Gypsy Wedding”.

(Not a look either of us wants.)

By 4pm, we’ve each created a “yes” and a “no” pile, which then get hauled home in plastic bags (Lucy generally goes for a rubbish bag while I have a supermarket bag or two).  And while admittedly a fair amount of the garments get taken back the next week upon reconsideration and our mothers’ opinions (often even crueller than our own), it’s not like we had to pay for them, right?

This weekly process allows me to keep my outfits fresh, steer clear of same-dress-chain-store dilemmas and have an ever-expanding wardrobe, at no cost at all. I can’t believe how lucky I am sometimes, and I’m pretty sure my situation is once-in-a-lifetime. But even if you don’t work there, your local op shop is always a good place to drop by every now and then, because you never know what you might find. Some of my finds need a bit of DIY-ing (the dress I’m wearing above was originally floor length) and I supplement my wardrobe with accessories and such from mainstream stores, but even so, 99% of my wardrobe is proudly op-shopped (testified by the above outfit, 5 out of 7 items are preloved). Anyway, welcome to my series on Perdu Dans L’Amoire: WHAT ROSIE LIKES.

5(00) Days of Sydney: Strayed Sightseeing

September 24, 2011

Rachael and I arrived in Sydney yesterday so I decided to compile a list of my top 3 highlights of the day. Enjoy!

1. Getting Lost: Okay, so most people *coughrachaelcough* don’t enjoy getting lost, I on the other hand relish the opportunity to discover hidden parts of a city. On our way to Circular Quay we somehow ended up near The Rocks causing us to suffer enjoy a lengthy walk to our desired destination. However, positives of this included walking under the Sydney Harbour Bridge and having a fantastic photo opportunity of the Sydney Opera House


2. Shopping: What would a trip to Sydney be with0ut hitting the shops? Rather depressing. After our “lengthy walk” Rachael and I decided to do some retail therapy to sooth our aching feet. And yes, posing with mannequins is an essential part of the sydney shopping experience. I love the quotes on the stairs in the first photograph… “anyone who thinks sunshine is pure happiness, has never gone shopping.” 

3. The Cupcake Bakery: If you ever visit Sydney The Cupcake Bakery is most definitely a “must visit” eatery, the bakery has a small and homy feel, is easy to locate (it’s in the city centre – George Street!) and has millions of different cupcakes to choose from (well almost :P) Rachael brought a Sticky Date Cupcake for her mum (which she lost at a later point, that girl never ceases to amaze me :P) and I purchased a Vanilla Vanilla Cupcake for myself my dad of course. Unfortunately due to transportation issues I had to do the nobel deed and eat the cupcake. After getting large amounts of Vanilla icing in my hair I can attest that “the devil tastes like vanilla”.


And that concludes my highlights from yesterday. 🙂


Top, Country Road. Jumper, Survival. Shorts, Valleygirl. Beret, Sportsgirl. Shoes, Converse.

I hope everyone is having amazing holidays!

With Love,



The face of 1966

September 20, 2011

“At sixteen, I was a funny, skinny little thing, all eyelashes and legs. And then, suddenly people told me it was gorgeous. I thought they had gone mad.” – Twiggy

Yesterday was the birthday of Lesley Lawson nĂ©e Hornby, more popularly known as ‘Twiggy’. This style icon, famous for her pixie haircut, large eyes, long eyelashes and slight physique, has graced the covers of famous magazines such as Vogue. Her modelling career lasted four years, when she retired in 1970 she was quoted as saying, “You can’t be a clothes hanger for your entire life!” After Twiggy retired she went on to become an actress and started her series, Twiggy’s people where she interviewed various celebrities. She is currently a judge on the popular reality tv show America’s Next Top Model. 

The following pictures show Twiggy during the height of the her modelling career, she was most definitely the epitome of mod fashion:


Personally I love the 60’s mod look and if you’re keen to give Twiggy’s look ago here is a fantastic tutorial on how to do Twiggy-esque makeup:

In terms of clothing you need not look past the clothes in shops around town for elements of mod fashion.

With love,



2011 Emmys

September 20, 2011

Just wanted to share with you the Top 3s on my Jaw-Droppingly-Gorgeous and Most Tragically Dressed  lists. Let’s begin!

Best Dressed

Red hot: Vampire Diaries star Nina Dobrev Red hot: Vampire Diaries star Nina Dobrev

LOCK UP YOUR HUSBANDS – and heck – LOCK UP YOUR WIVES. Nina Dobrev is red hot in a Donna Karan gown and Brian Atwood pumps, with a simple (yet glamourous) smokey eye and nude lip – not that you can look past that dangerously hot dress, that fits her amazing physique like a glove.  That’s it. It’s official. My boyfriend is banned from watching The Vampire Diaries.

Elegant: TV personality Kelly Osbourne was among the first to arrive at the 63rd Annual Primetime Emmy Awards held at Nokia Theatre Los Angeles today

We all know that Kelly Osbourne has had her share of fashion mishaps, and body woes – but she looked breathtaking in a spectacular floor-length gown by J Mendel, with an elegant French roll to flatter her gorgeous drop earrings. Bravo Kells – you look amazing.

High note: Glee's Lea Michele in Marchesa

Another girl who embraced the red frock was Glee‘s Lea Michele, in a  fitted Marchesa gown, cutting a striking silhouette. The rosette sleeves are darling, as is the entire ensemble – if not a tad simple and safe.

Worst Dressed

Dark side: Big Bang Theory's Kaley Cuoco in Romona Keveza, Gwyneth Paltrow in Pucci and Evan Rachel Wood in Elie Saab

You know, it’s a special type of skill to be able to fake a muffin top. We all know health-freak  Gwyneth Paltrow has one of the fittest bodies in Hollywood, but this Pucci gown just isn’t working for me. The phrase ‘deranged belly dancer’ comes to mind. I’m sorry Gwyn.

What a frill: Heidi Klum and her husband seal

With a face and body like Heidi Klum‘s, it’s true – you can pull of anything. But that’s no reason why you SHOULD. Wearing a Christian Siriano dress, it’s good to see her supporting the past Project Runway winner… but critics agree that they miss the days when she used to grace the red carpet in exquisitely divine floor-length gowns. And for goodness sake, make your man button up his shirt! Please!

Mad about the girl: Christina Hendricks wore a dazzling gown by Johanna Johansson

Oh Christina. There is no doubt that busty redhead of Mad Menfame, has a great figure, with va-va-voom curves – which she flauts in a custom Johanna Johnson gown. But really, just once – I’d love to see Miss Christina Hendricks on the red carpet with something not V-necked. With her look-me-in-the-eye cleavage on display, you can hardly notice the amazing beadwork of that gown. Such a shame.

Honourable Mentions

Just because they’re awesome 🙂

Taking the plunge: Emily Blunt in Elie Saab, Julie Bowen in Oscar de la Renta and Glee's Heather Morris Dark side: Big Bang Theory's Kaley Cuoco in Romona Keveza, Gwyneth Paltrow in Pucci and Evan Rachel Wood in Elie Saab Dark side: Big Bang Theory's Kaley Cuoco in Romona Keveza, Gwyneth Paltrow in Pucci and Evan Rachel Wood in Elie Saab