With 50 cans of Strongbow, two litres of vodka, a litre of gin, a litre of amaretto, a lot of mixer, three 65 litre backpacks and two 6 man tents packed into the car, now seemed like a kind of appropriate time to get around to writing about Glastonbury. Or more importantly coping with sleeping in a field for five nights without washing your hair. Festivals are certainly not for the fussy. Yeah sure, you can pay someone to do it for you. But really wouldn’t you rather use that money for an extra few pints of cider when the sun is beating down on you and you’re having a great time with all your mates? Before I’d been to Glastonbury most people tried to reassure me that festivals are nothing like real life. And it’s true. There are a lot of odd people, strange sartorial choices, almost everyone is filthy, and probably most importantly no one cares. Hair is one of the key things I stressed about before my first festival. How quickly would it look greasy? Does dry shampoo really turn into clay if you use too much for a prolonged period of time? I was full of all the usual questions. Then when I actually got there, I realised I didn’t really care what my hair looked like because I was having a great time! Now I’m not saying that your hair will look amazing for the full week. Let’s be honest, it probably won’t. But here’s my top tips for festival hair…
1. Plaits and tying up your hair can hide a multitude of sins
Let’s face it clean hair is only really going to last for about 48 hours if you’re lucky. If you’re super lucky you might get a few days, but really most of us are starting to feel a bit gross after two. The easiest thing to do (if you’re holding out from using dry shampoo too soon), is to scoop it up! If you’re feeling lazy or a little too hungover, then a high ponytail will be enough to disguise any greasy locks. Or if you’re feeling a bit more creative, then braiding or plaiting your hair is actually a really good way of hiding the fact it needs a wash. Plus plaits lend themselves to dirty hair since your tresses are easier to style and will hold in place for a longer period of time.
2. Experiment and get creative with your hairstyles
Ok, so when you’re at a festival you can pretty much get away with whatever you like. Sure, you’d look like a bit of a twat walking down Northumberland Street in a flower crown. But you’re in a field with a load of drunk and muddy people. If you want to embellish yourself with flowers and ribbons then go for it. You can quite easily create a braid with coloured cotton thread (if you have the time and patiences to keep winding it around your hair) or probably pay someone to do it for you. As for floral garnishes, anything with a long(ish), firm stem will be pretty easy to slot into your plait or clip into your hair. Remember this isn’t real life. Embrace your inner flower child.
3. Use a pretty headscarf to hide greasy roots
If you’re not one to tie your hair up, or you’ve had your hair up a couple of days, then head scarves can be a great alternative way of hiding greasy roots. Either tied loosely or clipped to your hair, you can turn any little strip of silk or cloth into a handy little hairband. Great for holding back any pesky fringes once they’ve lost their shape. They’re also great if you want to try and push your hair back to get more sun on your face. Or if you’ve maybe had a bit too much sun and you’ve accidentally burnt your parting then they can be great for hiding your burnt bits…
4. Don’t overdo it with products
While it’s tempting to fill your bag with a load of miracle haircare products, don’t. It’s a waste of weight and a waste of time. Everyone knows that the more product you put on, the quicker it’ll get greasier too. So try to leave washing your hair right up until the last minute and hold off using any products for as long as possible. Once you do, I’d stick to using the bare minimum. I only use three products: sea salt or texturising spray, hairspray and dry shampoo.
This year the folks at Bumble and bumble have kitted me out with my festival hair care survival kit, so I’m taking Surf Infusion with is similar to the Surf spray I’m so obsessed with. Since the infusion contains oil though, it’s a bit more nourishing for your hair and you get a slightly glossier curl. I figure the oil will give my hair a bit of a treat after too many nights in a tent and bit too much dry shampoo. As for hair spray, I usually go for something texturising to build body for my fine hair. I hate when you get that awful crispiness, so I like one which doesn’t leave too much residue. Bumble and Bumble Dry Spun Thickening Spray is great because it gives good hold and texture but doesn’t make me feel like my hair is stuck to my head. Sure, you can feel the layer a little if you use it heavily, but it allows your hair to still have a fairly natural movement, so it’s not lacquered to your face. As for dry shampoo, I’m usually a firm believer in Batiste but after a few issues (we’ll talk about that some other time), I’ve been avoiding using any sort of dry shampoo. I figured that with needing to spend five nights in a field, I’ll probably not be able to get away without it, so this year I’m taking Bumble and Bumble’s Brown Hair powder. Unlike other dry shampoos, the powder is a lot finer and is coloured brown, so I shouldn’t get that awful dandruffy finish you sometimes find with too much dry shampoo! I’ve had a couple of spritzes and it seems to do the trick. But honestly, I’ll let you know after I’ve spent a week living in mood with dirty roots and tatty hair. And we can see how it really fairs. For now, I’ll leave you with these.. and I should probably go get some sleep before we head off tomorrow! If you want to keep up to date, I’m sure I’ll be sharing plenty while I’m at Glastonbury on instagram and snapchat – just search hannahlayford!