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Taming Wild Horses and Flyaway Hair

By Amalah

Hi Amy,

I would really appreciate your help with a problem for which I can find no solution. I have long blond hair which is generally in pretty good condition, it’s not dyed and I never do anything more stressful to it than a blow dry. But I always have all these little flyaway hairs all over the top of my head, and they drive me crazy! Attached is a picture of me doing a totally cheesy pose to illustrate the problem (I don’t mind if you post the picture, btw). See all those crazy little hairs? I’m wearing a scarf in my hair in that picture, but the little flyaway hairs are there whatever I do – ponytail, loose hair, whatever. What causes them? How do I stop causing more? And is there a product you can recommend that will make them lie down flat without weighing all my hair down horribly?

Hope you can help! I love my hair, but this irks me everytime I look in a mirror.

Thanks so much

OK, I think I can help! I think I know this one! (You have no idea how good that feels some days…after reading half a dozen questions that go directly into the NO EARTHLY IDEA, NEED MORE “RESEARCH” AKA SHOPPY SHOPPY pile.)

I’m going to give you a three-prong attack plan for taming those flyaway hairs.

1) No towel turbans. I mentioned these in this post, and your hair halo is exactly the sort of thing I was talking about. Hair is about a frillion times more delicate when it’s wet, and a tightly-wrapped towel turban puts a ton of stress on your hairline and roots. After awhile your hair just gives up and breaks, leaving short wispy/frizzy THINGS flying all around your face.
pd_detangling_comb_rpk.jpgInstead of wrapping your hair in a towel, gently comb your hair out while it’s sopping wet — before you step out of the shower, even, to keep from dripping water everywhere. This wooden detangling comb from the Body Shop is pretty much my all-time favorite for combing out wet hair. Start at your ends and slowly (AND GENTLY) work your way up to your roots. Then toss a towel (or an old cotton t-shirt) over your shoulders and squeeze off any excess moisture.

2) Use a leave-in conditioner. If your hair is very tangly, spray or smooth it on before you comb, when your hair is still super-wet. (You’ll lock in more natural moisture that way and the conditioner will really penetrate your hair shaft.) (Dirty!) I don’t really care which leave-in conditioner you use — if you’re happy with your current shampoo and conditioner and the brand makes a leave-in, go for that. (You are using a moisturizing shampoo, yes? I believe that would be your best choice as well.) Or try , which really helps control flyaways. Pump a small amount into your palms and smooth it over the top of your head.

3) Choose the correct products! I have two recommendations, both from the Bed Head line. I once had a very shaggy trendy sort of cut that required stick-straight hair. Poker-straight, straight-straight hair. Which of course meant that my pretty-straight hair decided to rebel EVERY SINGLE DAY and would bend and frizz and refused to lie flat for anything. Until I discovered these products. You may only need one of them, or you might want to have both of them on hand for awhile — at least until you get the hang of the combing routine and start seeing the benefits of the extra conditioner.
afterparty.jpg. This is mostly a frizz-control product and might be kind of redundant if you end up using the Ego Boost as your leave-in conditioner, but I figured I should mention it. It can be used on wet or dry hair (in my experience, it works best on damp hair, before you blowdry). It’s very light and not greasy, which is definitely what you want, since you’ll be using it close to your roots.

. This one I definitely want you to try, no matter what. It’s a finishing product, to be used when your hair is dry. Smooth the tiniest bit over those flyaway things and it’ll make your hair silky and shiny…and smooth! And flat! It’s really awesome, even if the packaging is a tad unfortunate-looking. And if your flyaways have a tendency to make a second appearance mid-day, you can use this to re-tame them. The only caveat is that I think it can be a little greasy if you over-apply. Use a light touch, though, and I think you’ll be very pleased.

About the Author

Amy Corbett Storch


Amalah is a pseudonym of Amy Corbett Storch. She is the author of the Advice Smackdown and Bounce Back. You can follow Amy’s daily mothering adventures at Ama...

Amalah is a pseudonym of Amy Corbett Storch. She is the author of the Advice Smackdown and Bounce Back. You can follow Amy’s daily mothering adventures at Amalah. Also, it’s pronounced AIM-ah-lah.

If there is a question you would like answered on the Advice Smackdown, please submit it to [email protected].

Amy also documented her second pregnancy (with Ezra) in our wildly popular Weekly Pregnancy Calendar, Zero to Forty.

Amy is mother to rising first-grader Noah, preschooler Ezra, and toddler Ike.

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I will admit that my Mason Pearson brush helped this issue tremendously.


I second the towel turban thing. I was extremely skeptical when Amy first wrote that post but have converted to the No Towel Turban Religion completely. my routine is spray on pantene leave-in conditioner on ends while wet + comb out gently + squeeze with towel then leave towel around shoulders while getting ready.


I’ve had those silly things around the front of my face my whole life- like little devil horns.
My mom calls them “baby hairs” because they took forever to come in even though now I have enough hair for several people.
I have resigned to those. But other split ends have gone away now that I take better care of my hair- using thermal care products and a wide tooth comb.

Lizzie Platt
Lizzie Platt

Thankyou so much for this Amy! I am going shopping the minute I get out of work to pick up everything you recommended….


“…even if the packaging is a tad unfortunate-looking.”
ha! you weren’t kidding that this is an unfortunate-looking piece of packaging for hair products!
thanks for the heads-up on the towel-turban…I missed that original post…maybe my hair will start looking better soon! 🙂