No More Black Shirt Fear

Highlights of 2016: Motherhood


I grew up in northern Illinois, just outside of Chicago. My family is mostly all still around that area, and I hate living so far away from them. The main reason I moved south, however, was to escape the brutal winters.

In fact, I just returned to Raleigh after a week-long trip to Illinois earlier this month, and the high temperature on one of the days was 0. Yes, ZERO.

The dry air and seemingly endless battles with static electricity led to a lot of frustration with my hair. And I had serious dryness all over my scalp that led to lots of flakes that would sprinkle onto my shoulders whenever I would even so much as put my hair behind my ear. It seemed like the edges of my hairline, near my face, had it the worst.


So I never wore black. And you can even see evidence of that on years of early blog posts right here on this site. I always wore grey, and that’s about as dark as it got. I was really insecure about the dryness and flaking that it led me to avoid black tops altogether for a long time.

So the shampoo I used when I lived in Illinois was Head & Shoulders Instant Relief Shampoo. It was the only thing that would keep my scalp from flaking off terribly. And while the climate here in Raleigh is generally warm and humid, we do experience some very cold and very dry days throughout the winter. And if my scalp takes a turn for the worse, I’ll incorporate Head & Shoulders Instant Relief Shampoo to curb the dryness and flaking!


Did you know that you should leave the product, all suds up in your hair for 3.5-6 minutes? That was news to me. It makes total sense, and now I’m wishing I had actually read the bottle to learn that because it would have provided even more relief, I’m sure.

Head & Shoulders Instant Relief Shampoo also isn’t drying, damaging, and it’s safe for color-treated hair. If you think about it, it’d kind of be counterintuitive for a shampoo intended to gently care for your scalp to end up being drying to the hair, right?

The introduction of black tops into my wardrobe opened up this whole new world. It was like I finally had access to clothes that I always thought looked great on other women, and I didn’t have to worry about being embarrassed by dry scalp issues. And black became my go-to choice when I need something to wear that makes me feel beautiful and confident.

You can find Head & Shoulders Instant Relief shampoo and the full product line on Amazon!

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Head & Shoulders. The opinions and text are all mine.


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Gina colella says · 12.28.16

You should try Clear shampoo and conditioner!

Lauren says · 12.28.16

I have the same problem but I love using Biolage Scalp Sync- it’s not quite as heavy as I found Head and Shoulders to be and I still can get the same volume and number of days between washing. 👍🏼

Melissa G says · 12.28.16

I keep hearing Tea Tree! I bought the Lavender Mint Paul Mitchell Tea Tree for my kids. I did just buy it for myself, even though I have also heard it strips your color. I am desparate. The area above my ears is so flaky!!! I have never tried Biolage Scalp Sync though.

Dea Andriany says · 12.28.16

I used to suffer from the same problem back when I was a little, glad that you have found the solution because I knew how frustrating it could be, especially if your wardrobe is made out of black/grey clothes. The shampoo is so nostalgic, I remember using it a lot before I switch over to L’oreal.

pam says · 12.28.16

some people clearly disagree, but i often steal my boyfriend’s head and shoulders in the winter when my head starts to get dry and itchy, using it randomly in between really helps for me

Sarah says · 12.28.16

What’s wrong with Head and Shoulders? Just because it comes from a pharmacy, doesn’t mean it’s a lesser product. I suffer from eczema and have tried all sorts of high end shampoos and conditioners. None of them worked. When I tried Head and Shoulders though? The dryness and itchiness I was suffering from went away. Just because it’s cheap, and just because it’s a sponsored post, doesn’t mean it doesn’t work for some people. Come on now.

S wall says · 12.28.16

Actually it does mean it is a lesser product. Most drug store brands do not use high quality ingredients, and if they do it is a very small amount. They use fillers and chemicals that dilute the product and strip your hairs natural oils. So you hair might feel super soft, and smell amazing but it isn’t getting what it needs as far as moisture goes within. I have first hand seen the damage these shampoos do when I watched a stylist literally take her shears and shave a wax coating off a clients hair. All I am saying is pick products with higher quality ingredients, your hair will thank you even if your wallet doesn’t.

Sarah says · 12.28.16

So, that’s not what I was saying at all. It’s not a lesser product if it works. I used those high end products and they left my hair feeling waxy and my scalp breaking out in hives and straight up peeling. I went to dermatologists and even tried prescription level shampoos and conditioners. Nothing worked. Head and Shoulders does. Don’t knock a product just because you don’t agree with the ingredients. Just don’t use it yourself.

Mandy O says · 01.05.17

This is a great product! I’ve tried Paul Mitchell and Biolage and had no success. Head & Shoulders worked for me after the first wash! I finally had relief from my dry itchy scalp!

Elizabeth says · 12.28.16

In case anyone is interested and hasn’t heard of this special secret… I use Head and Shoulders for cystic bacne. I’ve had a terrible case of it for years. A dermatologist of 33 years told me once it was the worst case he had ever seen. I took Accutane and it cleared me up for about two years until it returned.

I read somewhere that people were washing their backs and shoulder area with Head and Shoulders to help their acne. I tried it and to my surprised it worked BEAUTIFULLY! I’m finally clear and have been for nearly a year. However, I only use Classic Clean (that is what is generally recommended).

Kait says · 12.28.16

Our pediatrician recommended head and shoulders for our little guy’s baby acne. We washed his cheeks and back once a day, very careful to avoid his eyes and mouth. After about a week his face cleared up. We still use it on a sporadic basis if we notice acne returning.

Erin Skeen says · 12.28.16

What brand/color lipstick do you have on here? It’s a beautiful color!

Camille Haley says · 12.28.16

I need those earrings! 🙂 Do you mind sharing where they are from? Thanks!

Pam Holzworth says · 12.28.16

I was recently diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis after developing a horrible case of scalp psoriasis..Now I have to wash my hair everyday alternaing with head and shoulders, and T-fal and also a shampoo with tar in it, and yes I was told to let it sit on my head from 10-15 mins…Ugh!! It is tearing my hair up!!

Kelli says · 01.05.17

Hi Pam, I’ve had psoriasis since I was about two. I just use a regular shampoo for the most part because the recommended shampoos were making my hair so dry (I tried a free & clear shampoo for a while). One shampoo I like is Phyto and will be trying their anti-dandruff shampoo from sephora once it is back in stock. I’ve tried their other shampoos though and they don’t irritate my scalp as much as others have. I’ve also had good results with pureology. Try to stay away from shampoo with sulfates (I tried biolage recently and my scalp was so angry). If you have psoriasis in other areas than your scalp make sure you’re staying away from scented products as much as you can (detergents, soaps, lotions, etc.). I feel your pain girl!

Cindy says · 12.28.16

What about static hair? It is terrible and drives me crazy. Any help is appreciated.

Dorothy says · 12.29.16

I found that using a great moisturizing conditioner and keeping yourself hydrated is the best way to combat this. I currently live in Arizona which has very little humidity. I use a humidifier at night… A very moisturizing conditioner… I’ve also heard that you can spray static guard on your brush before brushing. I’ve done that a few times and it does also seem to help.

Tiffanie says · 12.28.16

Does it affect your color?

Mel says · 12.28.16

You makeup and whole look is FLAWLESS! Wow I’m obsessed!!

Mel |

Katherine says · 01.03.17

I just recently started having my hair colored by a salon professional. The first time I had it done I started using a color safe shampoo that I had purchased at Target. Over twelve weeks the color faded four shades and looked horrible. The stylist was honestly a bit surprised by the fade out that I had. She said it could have been because I had never had my hair colored before or it could have been the shampoo. After she colored my hair again she helped me pick out a shampoo at the salon. It was three times as much as what I spent at Target and three weeks later I’m still noticing color washing away when I take a shower. I personally am not convinced that it was the shampoo. I know you mentioned that Head & Shoulders is color safe, but what I was using before was also labeled as color safe. In your expert opinion are drug store shampoos (purchased from Target, Walmart, CVS, etc.) just as good as those purchased in salons?

Julie says · 01.04.17

What is the polish on your nails? Great Wintertime color!

sonja owen says · 04.20.17

Yeah No More Black Shirt Fear…Taper Barbershop

Graham says · 05.08.17

Surface Awaken is a fantastic line too.