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Three Steps to Healthier Hair

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Do you like your hair?

Even though I receive a lot of compliments, I still complain about mine!

My strands are stick-straight, don’t hold a curl, and are nowhere near as thick as my sister’s hair.

Then again, her hair takes 45 minutes to blow dry, while I can do mine in 3 minutes flat. And regardless of how straight my hair is, it does have one thing going for it: shine! It also grows super-fast:


I credit my healthy, shiny hair to three things: shampoo, babying, and diet.

How to get Shiny, Healthy Hair

1. Use a high-quality shampoo. I can’t say enough good things about Desert Essence coconut shampoo and conditioner.


Initially, I bought this because—well, hello! It’s coconut! But it truly is the best shampoo I’ve ever used. Prior to trying this, I would buy the cheapest shampoo (of the brands that don’t engage in animal testing). I have “normal” hair (not too dry, not too oily), so I wasn’t picky about brands.

This shampoo normally sells for about $8, but I buy in bulk at a grocery store called Sprouts, when they have a 20%-off-all-vitamins sale. That helps. Plus, sometimes quality products are well-worth the extra cost.


2. Don’t over-process your hair.

I only wash my hair on days I run (4-5 days a week), and my hair-care routine is pretty minimal (basically because I am lazy and don’t want to spend the time with a curling iron or round brush!) After washing, I spray in a detangler. (Long hair can get knotty!) Then I comb the knots out, blow dry it for three minutes (or less), and I’m done.

In the past, I’ve done highlights a few times, and I’ve had three perms (only one of which actually worked; the other two fell out!). But the last time I did anything chemical-y to my hair was in high school. I like my natural color, so why dry it out by adding highlights? (I’m not ruling out another perm, though. Being a curly-top is fun!)

3. Make sure you’re getting enough healthy fats in your diet. Low-fat diets might be good for calorie control, but they wreak havoc on hair and skin! I prescribe large doses of the following:


Raw Chocolate-Fudge Cake

Ok, maybe not large doses… but seriously, if your hair and skin are super-dry, consider adding healthy vegetable-based fats (nuts, nut butters, olive oil, coconut, etc.) to your diet. Even in the dead of winter, my skin is still soft.

Step Four: Embrace your hair, whether curly or straight! (I need to remember to take my own advice on this one. Do as I say, not as I do!)


Do you like your hair?
And what’s your hair-care routine?

P.S. Click the link for a picture of me with permed hair.


Katie is the baker, photographer, and author of the popular blog Chocolate-Covered Katie. Her favorite food is chocolate, and she believes in eating a balanced diet that includes dessert every single day. More about Katie—> 

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  1. I like my hair… sometimes. Your hair is gorgeous, Katie!!! 😀 I go to great extremes to get my hair as straight as possible, you are so lucky to have it that way naturally! Of course, if I had it naturally, I’d probably want a little curl. We always want what we can’t or don’t have, right? :)

  2. I love the Desert Essence Coconut Conditioner! It smells like heaven! I like to use a biotin-infused shampoo, though, for some extra oomph :)

  3. VeggieGirl says:

    Totally JUST used that Desert Essence coconut shampoo 😀

  4. i LOVE your hair, always have. my hairs always been quite thin and frizzy, but after my eatind disorder there want much left at all so now I have some weaves. I want to ‘wean’off of them though because it costs me around €75 a month! geez, money well wasted. but I am a bit scared to stop using them in my hair. I eat a pretty high fat diet, all healthy fats, so I hope thatwith time itll get better :)

    1. Shannon says:

      I used to have super thin hair, too, that was only made worse by my ed. I would recommend trying Nioxin. It’s treatment system with a shampoo, conditioner, and a spray that you put in after you get out of the shower. My hair stylist recommended it to me. Of course I can’t necessarily say that it was all thanks to the Nioxin that I actually have thick hair now (it definitely also had to do with me eating again), but it’s definitely helped! It is pretty expensive, but it really helps!

  5. Stefanie says:

    I need to check out that coconut shampoo. I have been looking for a new brand to try. After years of hating my curly/poofy hair, I have finally started to like it. :)

  6. Amy says:

    I’ve actually gone the no shampoo route and just scrub my scalp every day in the shower. When I shampoo I use a vegan, no sulfate shampoo, maybe once a week. I have naturally curly hair and just within the past 6 months or so, have really started to love that I have curly hair. I haven’t colored it for some time now, about 1 1/2 years. The grays are starting to show, but I am trying to embrace it, who knows though I may end up coloring it. My issue is being happy with the length of my hair. I love that i have curls when its long, but I sometimes miss the fun and funky style of short haircuts. I had short hair for years, probably 5+ years and have now been growing it for 1 1/2 years and and now wanting to go back to the pixie cut I had when I was married!

  7. I’ve been getting Jason to eat more healthy fats (now he eats an avocado a day!) — and ever since then, whenever he gets his haircut the stylist compliments how soft and nice his hair is! That never happened before. I totally credit the healthy fats!

    Katie you do have beautiful hair — when I grow mine past my shoulders it gets all scraggly. :(

  8. Hela says:

    I would love to have super-fast growing hair! Mine is, like, super SLOW growing… But I still love it, because my hair is red, curly and just special, as nobody else has the same hair colour 😀 Despite the fact that I consume a lot of healthy fats (I had Chocolate Chip Boatmeal for breakfast and added coconut oil- what a bliss!!! It was so yummi), my hair is VERY dry, but this is due to our hard water, that kinda dries my hair out… I was at the hairdresser 2 weeks ago and he actually had to wet my hair during the cut, as I went super dry after washing.
    My hair routine includes washing my hair and using conditioner every 1 or 2 days and some leave-in conditioner or, special treatments for my tips about 3 times a week.. I am like you, my hair is really fine and I blow dry it for only about 2 minutes, that´s it :) I would rather sleep longer in the morning than get up early to blow dry and straighten my hair, like friends of mine do…

    1. Haha I’m with you! I’d rather sleep ;).

  9. Awesome! I have fine, relatively dry hair and cannot wait to try out this shampoo. I already have it in my iHerb shopping cart (they have it for $6 so it isn’t too terrible).

  10. McKella says:

    Like you, I have very stick straight hair that won’t hold curl for anything. I don’t dyenor heat style it, mostly I just wash it every other day (with cheap shampoo) and blow it dry. Done.

  11. Rachel says:

    OMG, the timing of this post is too funny. Just last week I showed my husband your blog and (stalker-style) clicked back through previous photos of your hair. “How does she get her hair to grow this fast?” I whined to him. I think I need to get some coconut oil and start using it in recipes like she does. Maybe that’s her secret as otherwise our diet is very similar, I mused to him. Backstory: I used to have hair long enough to sit on. Then I cut it off to about your length now. Without putting scissors to head, my hair now in just two or three inches below my shoulders (due to breakage)!! I could cry. I want my long hair back so badly. I feel so guilty, but I recently just switched back to Pantene (I know, I feel terrible) because thats what I used when I had my butt-length hair. The breakage has stopped and my texture has improved. Don’t think me a copycat, but I am going to try your recommendations and see if I can’t get my hair back and get off of this evil Pantene. Thank you!

    1. Aw Rachel, I hope it works! I knew a girl once who had hair that long (in frst grade). At the time, my hair was in a pixie cut, and I wanted her hair sooooo badly!

  12. Gen says:

    Your hair is gorgeous! Thanks for all of the tips! 😀 oh and my sister says thanks for the happy birthday and that she LOVED the cake!

  13. Anonymous says:

    when is the larabar raffle drawing?

  14. LOVE that you posted this! I have been looking for a new shampoo! :) Thanks Katie!!

  15. I bet that shampoo and conditioner smell amazing!! :) I really like my hair (color and texture). The key to taming my long hair is TONS of conditioner in the shower and leave-in conditioner/detangler :)

  16. Jess says:

    i hate my natural color, so i always dye it and get highlights. i follow the cg method, and that has worked for me. i try to use organics primarily, but sometimes they can be quite expensive.
    no cones, no sulfates, etc, just gentle shampoo wash, rinse, condition, detangle, rinse, apply acid, leave-in, brush out, and gel. in the morning it should be controlled and fuller, not too stiff.

  17. Your hair is lovely Katie! Great hair care tips though, that shampoo sounds great!

  18. You have such beautiful hair! I used to before I permed it a million times in grade and middle school…and then of course the highlights in high school…so now I am really trying to focus on my natural color and taking days off of washing and even blow drying…

  19. Katie you are so gorg. I know you didnt ask (but I always like to know) – but I ADORE your hair when it is super long (aka below boobs) or super short (around your shoulders). You rock both so well. And the curly is super cute too!

    1. Wow, you really know how to make a girl’s day! (And for the record, I think you are super-beautiful as well!!) Also, I’m glad you said you like it short… because I’m thinking about cutting it off for the summer. Long hair is just such a pain to comb out sometimes!

  20. Debra says:

    Thanks for the tip- I will look for the shampoo. The cake looks amazing!!
    Blessings, Debra
    Raw Vegan Diet

  21. Paula says:

    I was using Jason (not so happy with it) but switched to Wen (shampoo & conditioner in one) for a couple of months and I really like it. I am 57 yrs old and thought I lost my once mane-like mop, and thought my hair was thinning, but this product, combined with my letting my hair grow out from a short hair-cut, is working out well.

    Does the Desert Essence have laureth sulfate in it (a surfactant in most shampoos that dries your hair out)?

    1. From their website: All of the Desert Essence Organics products are free of parabens, sodium lauryl/laureth sulfates, phthalates, artificial colors, silicones, EDTA, glycol, and petroleum-based ingredients.

  22. My hair is so thin, and straight….but I think it is ok. I don’t mess with it much and just let it go. I will probably never have amazing hair, but I don’t really care 😛 One thing I do like about it, though, is that it bleaches out really easily. I’m always in the sun, so I have awesome natural highlights! I’ve never died it before, or had a perm, or anything really…I also cut it only twice a year! hehe…

  23. Kim says:

    Mmmm…coconut shampoo??? I’m going to have to look for that! At the moment I use JASON brand shampoo and conditioners but I still haven’t found the product that works best with my hair. It’s so incredibly thick that it’s hard to rinse completely clean and because I don’t like to use a hair dryer on it I typically end up waiting at least 12 hours for it to dry. That’s pretty much my hair care routine; wash and wear!

    My mane is a strange mixture of everything from fine blond hairs to thick, wiry black ones. It’s hard to handle, won’t hold a style for long, takes too long to dry, and it’s too heavy for most elastics and clips to hold it but I love it for its strangeness. People have asked me in the past if I dyed my hair because even in the winter I have blond streaks. For some reason, they’re on the underside and are only really visible when I put my hair up!

    Now for breakfast…I wonder if there’s any coconut in the house…

    1. The coconut shampoo smells so good I sometimes want to eat it. And now I understand why it actually says on the bottle, “Vegan and gluten-free”!

    2. Holly says:

      Your hair sounds like mine! I have super thick hair. It takes too long to dry and style (I use a straightener some of the time- not necessarily for straighteness but to take out the frizz.) My hair is neither curly or straight, just in the middle. I’ve been searching for a good organic s/c for a LONG time. Most of them don’t even come close to being enough moisture or they won’t rinse properly. Definitely going to try this stuff!
      (all those s/c’s that don’t work- my poor husband has to use them up. :)

  24. Leashieloo says:

    You have great hair, thanks for the tips! My only complaint is that my hair is TOO FINE. Hello volume? Where are you?!

    1. I ask my hair that too! It never answers. (Except sometimes it says, “Your sister stole it!” lol)

  25. Shannon says:

    I definitely follow number 3, but I do like having fun with my hair so I do tend to process it slightly. Although my stylist is always amazed at how healthy my hair is (last time, because I had absolutely no split ends, we didn’t have to lose any length.) I’m all like “whole avocados baby!”

    Definitely going to try out that shampoo if I can find it though!

  26. Veronica says:

    Great tips! I need to work on #3 and #4. I’ve been eating more fats lately and hope to keep that up, despite the temptation to nix them for calorie-reducing purposes. I made a Masoor Dal with Cauliflower and Kale ( and added two tablespoons of olive oil to the recipe, despite my tempatation to either only use a tiny teaspoon or not at all. It was still reasonable in the calorie department, though. Your hair is gorgeous and def gives us a reason to follow your advice! I like you much better with the longer, straight (or slightly curled) hair, BTW. My routine is very simple. Wash, condition, rinse, comb, air dry.

    1. Ooh thanks for the link. I love finding new ways to eat kale!

  27. I know how you feel — my hair is straighter than sin (does that make sense? my mom always says that about my hair, but I’ve never figured out what it means). I can’t do much at all with it. I don’t even bother to blow dry it — just let it air dry and see what happens. I tried to get a perm once, but it had no effect on my hair. I’m just destined to be straight-haired.

    1. Oh my gosh, I thought I was the only one!!! I got two perms that didn’t “take” before finally having success with the third. Actually, my first perm was very unfortunate… the hairs broke off! Never get a perm at a cheap salon :(.

  28. Stella says:

    Found this interesting article about not using any shampoo but rather baking soda, and apple cider vinegar for conditioner. I tried it for three months and when I switched back to regular shampoo tons of my hair fell out, so I think I will switch back! (or check out your stuff)

  29. Lisa says:

    hahaha i ACCEPT your perscription for healthy fats in the form of Raw Chocolate-Fudge Cake. it’s for my hair, right? 😛

  30. Lisa says:

    *prescription. oops!!

  31. Lauren says:

    Great tips! I love my thick, wavy hair. I used to blow-dry it & straighten it all the time, but it took way too long. Now, I just throw in a little mousse, and it’s ready to go in 5 minutes.

  32. Great tips, Katie! I couldn’t agree more with #3 – SO important! I have course hair that is naturally a little wavy. I’m not really into hair products, but I have to rave about one – BioSilk Hair Serum by Silk Therapy. It protects my hair against blowdrying and straightening, and it helps tame the frizzes and makes my hair super smooth. LOVE IT!

  33. Sometimes I like my hair, some days I hate it… Isn’t every girl like that though? haha

    I definitely try to shampoo less, but it’s so hard bc I’m such a clean/neat freak. I was the girl that would shower twice a day– whether or not I sweat or was active. I’ve gotten better about shampooing less though… and trying to get in enough fats every day

    Have a great day,

    1. haha yea! Boys have it so easy! (Of course, then they hit 30 and start to go bald, so I guess they get their comeuppance!)

  34. You have such beautiful, full hair, Katie. I’m always jealous when you post pictures :)

    Maybe I just need some more fudgies in my diet…

  35. Serena says:

    We use the SAME shampoo! How funny. 😛
    I’ve purchased the coconut shampoo + condish combo twice already & it really does make my hair super shiny & silky smooth. Really love it.

    My hair care routine is basic…just wash with shampoo + condish every day (or every other in the coldest of cold winter months…or twice a day in the hottest of hot summer months…), dry naturally, brush & voila. 😛 I’m pretty lucky with my hair…it is very low maintenance.

    I recently had it cut (and thinned which I hadn’t realized was going to happen! eek!) and it’s gotten *less* shiny than before…we’ll see..

  36. Vegyogini says:

    I use Desert Essence shampoo and conditioner, too…the green apple volumizing kind. I do have curly hair, but it’s a little fine.

  37. I like my hair! It has natural highlights from the sun since I run alot outside, so everyone thinks I get it highlighted!

  38. I used to have hair just like yours! It’s funny how we always seem to want what we don’t have. I wanted dreadlocks for a long time so I finally let me hair dread up, but now when ever I see pictures of my long, straight hair I miss it! Oh well :-) Dreads are fun too. And nothing is permanent. Someday I’ll cut my dreads off and have super short pixie hair and then I’ll let it grow long again! I think it’s important to just be content with what you have :-)

    I know a lot of people who use that coconut shampoo and conditioner. It’s good stuff!

  39. Kiersten says:

    My hair is super thick, super curly, and can be a super pain in the ass. I get a lot of compliments on it though. Some days I love it, other days I don’t. I used to try straightening it when I was a kid, which just turned into a big frizzy mess. I embrace the curls now, even though they drive me nuts sometimes.

  40. This so serendipitous — I totally posted on hair today too! Ha :) Although, my title is a little less inviting than yours… 😉

  41. Lyza says:

    Aww you look so cute with the curls!! :)

    I definitely can agree with you about the low-fat diet thing from personal experience. I thought fat was unhealthy last spring, back when I knew nothing about nutrition, and made it a goal to have less than 10 grams of fat a day. By July, I lost…LOST half my hair. It is very thick and luscious so luckily it actually wasn’t very noticable, but it was definitely a loss. Thankfully, after maybe a little too much nut-eating (a lot of it following your very own recipes–they really helped!), my hair is now almost back to normal. :)

    I use a tiny dab coconut oil as a leave in conditioner if my hair is feeling dry. :) I wash it once every other day or two because it dries so easily. This leaves it very soft and shiny without oil or dandruff. I also use natural shampoos and conditioners from whole foods with no animal testing and very few chemical ingredients, and those actually are keeping my hair in better condition than any cheap thing I used from Target. I love my rose chamomile shampoo/conditioner right now. :) I’d love to try something more environmentally friendly though, so I could use less packaging. I think it’d be fun to make my own wonderful smelling shampoo/conditioner :)

    1. Ten grams per day?! Oh my gosh, I think there’s more than that in ONE slice of my fudge cake. LOL no wonder your hair was mad at you ;).

      1. Lyza says:

        Oh yeah lol. It certainly punished me alright!! 😛

  42. I’m not going to lie, I’ve always loved my hair. It has always done what I’ve wanted it to do. Straight, curly – you name it, it will do it. I’ve come ot appreciate it over the years!

    1. Gah! You lucky girl! Seriously, do you know how lucky you are???!

  43. daisychain says:

    you ONLY wash your hair 4-5 times a week? Oh man, mine gets done twice if it’s lucky!

  44. I’m with you on the coconut shampoo! It makes such a difference, even when using an inexpensive kind. Coconut lotion works wonders for skin too.

  45. oo i love this hair post! umm can i please say how JEALOUS i am that you can blow dry your hair in 3 minutes! im like your sister.. it TAKES AGES!! and i defs only wash on days when i do hard workouts.. if i just do strength and dont sweat- then i dont wash it!! although i am a culprit of using the straightener almost everyday………YOU SO LUCKY THAT YOUR HAIR IS FLAT!! like for real.. coming from a thick haired gal’s point of view.. having all that hair in yo face makes you feel like a lion
    although.. thinking about it.. lions are pretty cool

    1. Give me 1/4 of your hair and we can both be happy ;).

  46. I try not to be an infomercial victim, but the “cleansing condition” Wen really interested me. I recently bought a generic version at Sally Beauty supply and can tell the difference after two washes. It has no detergents (it doesn’t foam), and leaves my hair super soft. It feels healthier already! I do color it though, which I know is so bad for your hair.

  47. Renée says:

    I can relate, I can’t hold a curl either!
    For like the first time in my life I can say I’m totally happy with my hair!
    I mean, it’s dyed, hairsprayed, and backcombed to high hell, but I’ll take what I can get 😀

  48. I have super thick, curly, usually-frizzy hair. It’s terrible to deal with in the summer, but in the winter I like it…mostly because I straighten it all the time. Straightening damages my hair so much, but I like it so much! I try to reduce the damage by using a heat protectant and conditioning.

    I love your hair Katie! It always looks so soft and shiny! I agree about healthy fats 110%! 😀

  49. Ive done tons of posts lately about hair! I love the brand of shampoo and conditioner called Unite. It’s sulfate free, it’s certified vegan, gluten free, free from just about anything. It’s the only “natural” shampoo ive ever used that smells great and WORKS. Some natural shampoos dont really leave my hair or scalp feeling truly clean, this one does. And it’s super gentle on my hair…

    Which is processed. Color/highlights AND a Brazilian Blowout treatment. Be grateful for those stick straight uniform locks. Some of my hair is wavy, straight, kinky, frizzy, a real mishmash. The BB helps to make it all uniform.

    I will try your shampoo/cond based on your recommendation! Thanks Katie and your hair IS gorgeous!

    1. Just saw you on foodgawker! Looooooved your little toffee balls!

  50. Tricia says:

    Haha, I wish I had your hair. I have super thick long curly hair that I spend half the morning straightening. But I guess I’m slowly learning to love it lol.

  51. I love your hair SO much. Everytime you post a photo of yourself I want to reach out and stroke it on my computer screen. Sometimes I do, because I am a weirdo and your stalker 😉

    I have a love/hate relationship with my hair. Probably if I washed it more and actually used a hairbrush every day then the relationship would be more loving! 😛

    1. Honestly, could you get any cuter/more hilarious? I jut don’t think it’s possible!

  52. Charissa says:

    Thanks for the fun tips…I’m a big fan of organic hair care too! And you do have bee-uuuu-tif-fuul hair! :)
    Love your site so much, I’ve finally subscribed. Dude, I should’ve subscribed ages ago. :)

    1. Aw Charissa, thank you so much for not only the sweet comment but also the sweet twitter shake photo today. It really made me smile! :)

  53. My hair is ridiculously thick, wavy, and bushy- I would kill for straight hair! It takes an hour and a half to blow dry and straighten it :( I think we all want what we can’t have though :)

  54. Disturbed says:

    Just thought I would let you know that I made a boatmeal yesterday (cinnamon one) and it was amazing! I am going to make these for a while for an afternoon snack :)

    1. Aww Katherine, I am so excited you tried it!! :)

  55. Meg says:

    Katie you have beautiful hair. You have beautiful EVERYTHING, let’s be real 😉

    I have a love-hate relationship with my locks and I adore coconut oil for my hair! Also healthy fats – in large doses 😀 haha!


    1. Coming from you, sweet Meg, that’s a huge compliment… ’cause if I remember correctly, you were in 17!!!! I still think that’s so cool! Oh, and also, I saw a tweet from someone the other day that led to some sorta contest you’re in? Anyways, I voted for ya :).

  56. I wish I had straight hair! Mine’s half-wavy, not-quite-curly… and pretty rubbish really :-)
    You look really cute with curly hair; but it’s lovely as it is and so shiny!

  57. i do like my hair, it’s wavy/curly :) i only wash it 1x a week, 2x at most and this grosses people out but hey i like dry shampoo! i eat a ton of healthy fat and use organic shampoo/conditioner. i try to let it air dry instead of blowing it dry which works out much better in the summer since it isn’t so cold but hey i only have to do it 1-2x weekly so i suck it up!

  58. Namaste Gurl says:

    Great tips and advice regarding healthy hair– everything you touched on is so true. People don’t realize diet plays a large factor on healthy hair. It’s made of protein and other vitamins and minerals, so it’s definitely a record of how your diet is!

    Great, love it, Katie!

  59. Emma says:

    Your hair is beautiful. I’ve grown to embrace my locks over the years. They used to be poker straight and I wanted them curly….then they went wavy and I wanted them straight!! These days I just settle for the “just got out of bed frizz-bomb” look. It works well for me as this haircare regimen actually gives users a whole half an hour extra in bed each morning :-)

  60. Lee says:

    I have curly hair. I generally like it but I feel like I can’t do many styles with it. I condition it every day but only wash with shampoo maybe twice a week.

  61. Zo says:

    I like my curly hair and I’ve learned to accept that sometimes, it just needs to do its own thing. I only shampoo it once a week, but use conditioner every time I wash. I definitely envy how straight haired women can just pull their hair back or up and it looks neat, but I like how my curls allow me to be a little more wild.

  62. BroccoliHut says:

    I attribute my hair health completely to my diet–my love of nut butters and avocado has made my hair so much shinier than it was before I started eating those things. I also don’t dye or flat iron my hair, which probably helps.

  63. I do like my hair because it’s versatile. I can wear it straight or curly. I like it much better when I have time to fix it, though. I wish I had wash-and-go hair but definitely do not.

  64. Ohmygosh girl! I love this post!!!! I wash my hair, condition it (which makes my hair soo smooth!), and blow dry it with my round brush and some root boost. :)

    Katie, you hair is absolutely gorgeous!!! And you are so right about the fats! When I used to restrict my fats, my hair and skin really struggled. Now, my skin and hair couldn’t be smoother! 😀


  65. Sarah says:

    I will have to try out that shampoo i’m almost out of mine!
    My hair is pretty thin and oddly flat yet wavy… I can also blow dry it in 3 minutes flat haha

  66. Jillian says:

    Your hair looks great both straight and with curl! I don’t know tons of people who’ve looked good with perms but your curly hair was so cute! Thanks for posting this, I am looking forward to trying this shampoo! Vegan AND gluten free?! YAY!

    1. Oooh you shoulda seen my first perm… no, really you should be glad you didn’t ;). It didn’t “take” and pieces of hair started breaking off! Never get a perm at a cheap salon!!

  67. Char Vicki says:

    Aww you look so young and cute with permed hair! You have lovely hair, I wish mine was like yours. You’d probably wish you had mine though, it has a natural ripple to it and looked like waves when it was long! I am definitely going to follow your tips :)


    1. Haha yup! I’d love some of your waves ;).

  68. Miriam says:

    I wish I could only wash my hair on days I work out… I know its better not to wash every day, but having thin blonde hair means when its not washed it starts looking brown at the top and is noticeable!

  69. Emma says:

    p.s – chocolate covered haircare products!! Now I’d buy summa those! :-)

  70. Claire says:

    Wow, it’s been ages! This post reminded me to make your fudge cake so glad I did, it’s waiting in the fridge for after tomorrows study session. I often get compliments on my hair but can’t say I pay it too much attention to it as it’s really low maintenance and I generally just throw it up in a loose bun or pony tail. When I saw your coconut shampoo and conditioner I laughed, coconut really does wiggle it’s way into all aspects of your life 😛 Good thing too as it’s so good!
    Hope you’ve been well lovely :)

    1. Aw Claire! So good to hear from you :). Yes, I am a little (a lot?) obsessed with coconut.

  71. Adding more fat to my diet made a huge difference in the texture of my hair. I’ve always had thick hair, but it’s much softer and shinier when I eat more fat.

    I keep it pretty simple too. I only wash my hair 2 or 3 times a week. Use cheap shampoo and conditioner and then comb Giovanni’s leave-in conditioner through it while still wet. Scrunch with Kiss My Face grapefruit syling gel and allow to air dry. Drying and straightening takes an hour, and so as much as I love my hair straight, I rarely take the time to do it. When I scrunch and go curly, life is so much easier. Don’t even brush or comb it until the next time I wash it.

    1. I’ve always thought your hair was so beautiful! :)

  72. Great post and lovely pics! You and your sis both have gorgeous hair! I also maintain that getting enough fat in your diet is essential to having nice hair. I’m really not a fan of low-fat diets!

    I used to wash my hair every day but it was losing it’s condition as well as getting limp and oily too quickly, so I slowly got myself down to once every three days, and now it’s in way better condition than before (I still sometimes rinse my hair just with water on non-wash days) and doesn’t get greasy. I find that if I don’t use conditioner my hair goes curly (kinda like your sister’s) and if I do use conditioner it goes wavy. Ironically, I’ve found that using conditioner doesn’t actually have much effect on the condition of my hair, only on whether it’s curly or straight!

    I used to hate my hair and straighten it every day, but now I’ve learnt to embrace what I have and generally love leaving my hair as natural as possible!

  73. Albizia says:

    I may be a little late but I must write a comment here :) . I have always been a fan of your healthy shiny hair and now that I know it grows super fast too, I can only say I am jealous! In a good way, of course 😉 .

    I like what my hair is supposed to be – thick and curly. At the moment it is only curly and very far from thick but it’s still not bad. I am trying to compensate the high levels of stress in my lifestyle with good hair care products and no blow drying or styling at all. Brushing happens once or twice a week… It is for this reason that it looacks like a nest under construction sometimes, especially if I go to bed with wet hair 😀 .

    By the way, your permed hair reminds me of the times when I was kid with very straight hair and slept with pigtails to make it curlier :) .

    1. Oh but I want your thick hair! lol we all want what we don’t have, right?

  74. It made me happy to see you feature this shampoo. I’ve used the lotion before and recently, frustrated with my recent shampoo and conditioner choices, was thinking of trying this! Actually, I’m hoping to try several new ones over the next few months and maybe make some of my own :)

    I have a dry scalp, so extra moisture is always desired!

  75. Paula says:

    I have a question for everybody … I know this is a little off-topic, but maybe not since we’re talking about hair.

    Have any of your doctors ever said, or insinuated, that the condition of your hair is due to your vegan diet? Or anything else that is negative toward your being vegan?

    1. I know way more about nutrition than my doctor lol. By now, she knows better than to try and give me advice ;). But I do remember working a blood drive once, and one of the girls I shadowed was a vegetarian. She told me, “They said I probably wouldn’t be able to give blood because they assumed I’d have low iron levels… but when I took the blood test, my levels were some of the highest they’d seen all day!” Ha! :)

      1. Paula says:

        What foods or supplement do you take that gives you the good iron reading?

  76. Paula says:

    PS Katie — I totally see you doing a cooking show (like a vegan Rachael Ray … who I won’t watch) on mainstream tv. If I were a tv producer I’d scarf you up!

      1. Paula says:

        Maybe you could start with public access cable tv in your area … (anyone can get a show.) And see how it goes …

        If you’re serious about it, well I can tell you are very smart and resourceful to get there… but if ya need any other ideas, let us all know.

        I’m so happy to have found your website and just started to scratch the surface with your Kozy Shack Oatmeal. My next adventure is your vegan whipped cream, and vegan greek yogurt!

      2. Hehe well I’m working on a book, so maybe someday tv will be a go… but I’m actually shy!

        As for iron… maybe my comment was confusing. What I meant was the other girl (who was giving blood) had high iron levels. But mine are always normal too :).

      3. Paula says:

        “Shy” is refreshing. People respond to it. And it takes ALOT of confidence to do your own webpage. Hay, I’m 57 … I have a feeling most of your viewers are much younger. I can tell from the way you write (and from your pictures) that you have something very special about you. If anyone can “sell” veganism through culinary advocacy, it’s you.

        The book is a great idea, glad to hear it. While I’ve stopped accumulating books and usually only use the library, I would not hesitate to have a copy of yours.

  77. nadia says:

    You have gorgeous healthy hair!! I had super long hair like yours and shaved my head this summer!! (UH OH!) and have kept it short since. now i m trying to grow it out cos i miss my long hair. its taking for – -ever :( and wearing lots of hats!! XO

    1. Gosh, a shaved head sounds so freeing!!! If I were brave enough, I’d totally wanna try it!

  78. Brandie says:

    Ya know what I use on my hair? Burt’s Bees Pomegrante & Soy shampoo and conditioner AND… for flyaways, or a little extra moisturizing on the ends.. coconut oil! I also use coc. oil on my skin, it’s AWESOME, but yeah I add it to my hair a SCANT amount on the ends anf SOMETIMES just ever so lightly on the top to control those fine lil flyaways. Awesome huh?

    Love love love love the coconut 😉 *giggle* I thought you’d be able to appreciate that too, fellow coconut lover :)

    AND I also only wash my hair every other day. And since I blow dry also, and usually add a little flat iron, the lovely dried, flat hair lasts 2 days! SOMEtimes I wash it the 3rd day, depends on what I do… I don’t EVER wash my hair two days in a row, it gets so dry!

    And darlin… maybe it’s diff. in person, but your hair LOOKS so beautiful and thick in the pics you post! It’s beautiful :) (Just like the rest of you!) :oD

    1. Ooo pomegranate shampoo sounds almost good enough to eat. Almost ;).

  79. I haven’t read all the comments but I’m sure its been said, you are so beautiful!

    1. Awww thank you! Seriously, thank you :) :).

  80. shannonmarie says:

    You do have gorgeous hair. It suits you :-)

  81. Damjana says:

    When I read you wash your hair 4-5 times a week, I thought oh that’s so often. I’m a runner too and I often run daily or almost daily and I only wash my hair about 3 times in 14 days. Yikes! So I realised my hair needs washing today since I last washed it 4 days ago and went running twice inbetween – and yes I just didn’t come to the idea I should wash my hair more often. Not that it’ll look awfull but aften washing it feels so much nicer! And I watched the clock – I needed about 5 min to dry and have very similar hair to yours. Btw. I love your hair (and mine too) 😉
    I sent you a friends request on FB – so that you know which Damjana wishes to be your friend :)

    1. LOL well it’s less in the winter… but in the heat, you gotta wash your hair after every run. I think I sweat as soon as I get outside in the Tx summers!

      And lol silly girl, we already ARE friends on facebook :).

  82. i just bought that coconut shampoo! i was out and loved the idea of coconut smelling shamp/conditioner! and it was on sale at whole foods yay! it smells awesome i love it

  83. sara says:

    What detangler do you recommend? I am looking for something that really works and does not have tons of bad ingredients.


    1. I use a volumizing one by “Big Sexy Hair.” I dunno about the ingredients, but I do know the company has a “no animal testing” policy.

  84. I need to take care of my hair more. right now, I just try to get it out of my way… pony tail daily!

  85. LaVrie E. Lee says:

    You have beautiful hair, a lovely natural honey blond shade too. I will try this shampoo based on what your hair looks like alone.

  86. Be says:

    I know this is an old post but I just discovered your site a couple weeks ago. Hallelujah! I have been soaking up each post since!

    First of all, your hair looks, as many have already commented, beautiful and super healthy! Secondly, since having my two babies, my hair has become quite similar to straw and dull as can be. So, I just purchased some of the shampoo and conditioner you suggested and I’m anxiously awaiting their arrival in the mail!
    Due to my hair’s incredible dryness, I only wash it every other day and sometimes less but have to use dry shampoo on the roots for in between days. I was wondering if you use dry shampoo and if you had any recommendations. Lately, I’ve been too cheap to actually buy any and just using baby powder but I feel like it contributes even more to the straw-like consistency. :p

    1. Oh I hope the shampoo works for you! I try not to wash my hair every day either… I wish I could (because it feels healthier on days I wash it), but I’m afraid it would just dry it out too much!

  87. Joanna says:

    I love how you mention how important it is to eat healthy fats. Many people get the misconception that if they eat dietary fat then they will have body fat. Wrong! I can’t live without peanut butter, coconut milk, and many other nuts!

  88. Misty says:

    You inspired me to try the coconut shampoo/conditioner. Did you know has lots of Desert Essence products for cheap? Around $4 each for the shampoo and conditioner right now with shipping about $5.

    1. Oh wow, thanks for letting me know!

      1. Misty says:


        I received my order of the Desert Essence shampoo/conditioner, and so far I love it! The shampoo lathered very well, so I did not have to use very much (not typical with natural products), so this makes up for the cost. I love the coconut scent too! When I got out of shower, I applied my usual dab of jojoba oil, and when my hair dried my waves were bouncy and soft!

        Usually my hair dries frizzy and my waves do not fully curl so I have to straighten my hair to make it decent, even with the jojoba oil. Now I don’t have to use as much jojoba either! I have tried many different (and more expensive) natural shampoos and conditioners, the no ‘poo method for a while, and the conditioner wash method, and this is quite amazing.

        So thanks a bunch for the recommendation!

  89. Cara says:

    I think you’re right Katie … diet is key 😉 No matter what product you use. If your health and diet is not up to par your hair and skin will definitely be reflective of that. I love the poo and cond you recommended. I also like Giovanni products and switch around. I have super frizzy curly hair so I have had an extremely hard time finding the right products. I have to use a gel with my curls and the only one that works for me has been Ouidad Climate Control (not organic but oh well). My 9 yr old daughter has beautiful long straight brown hair (she got most of the straight hair genes from her dad and not me, lol). She gets the greasies pretty easy so I can’t use the coconut stuff on her. She gets her hair washed once or twice a week with a tea tree based shampoo/cond … I’m using Giovanni’s lately with good results. Her hair could be a little smoother and shinier but her metabolism and nutrient absorption is off due to her autism.
    Love your blog and how you incorporate gluten free and dairy free ideas in there too 😉

  90. Gina says:

    Katie, you look GORGEOUS! Seriously, I should start making your chocolate desserts JUST to look half as fabulous as you do. Starting with the brownies. Yum!

    1. Aww Gina, thank you so so much!

  91. phyllis says:

    this may seem like a joke to some but i find eating jell-o any flavor but i use the sugar free.delish!!
    my hair grows better and looks shiny, i am 67 with red hair.

    1. Laur says:

      Jello is not vegan.

  92. Holly says:

    You should list your sister’s “routine” btw. :)

  93. Anonymous says:

    Katie, I read your blog almost everyday and lately whenever I see a photo of you, I can picture you with a short bob. Like Katie Holmes had for a while. Your hair is so shiny and full of life I’m sure you’d make that haircut look gorgeous!

    1. I’ve thought about it! Maybe someday…

      1. Anonymous says:

        The great thing about having hair that grows really fast (yes I’m in that club too) is that it allows you to experiment! I’m sure that if you do try out that style, you’ll make a very entertaining post to tell your readers about it :-)

  94. Marjorie says:

    Katie, how is it that your Sprouts has 40% off sales?? The one’s around here only do 20% off vitamin sale! :(

  95. K says:

    SOO pretty!!
    Personally my favorite shampoo is Nexxus Color Assure Shampoo and Sleek Matrix Conditioner. I got it because that’s what my salon would use to wash my hair and it came out so nice every time I finally called up and asked them. Its simply the best…

  96. Laur says:

    Wow, by this point you have so many replies to this post, that I am too lazy to read them all before I comment, so forgive me for that.
    1.) I can see why you posted about this, as it is something I’m sure many people have noticed and asked about you!
    2.) Have you ever donated hair to Locks of Love? especially such gorgeous hair, they would love, and since your hair grows fast, maybe it would not be such a hardship for you, since it will grow back quickly to your desired length. I donated 3 times, 2 years between each, because my hair grows so slowly, and they asked for at least 10 inches.
    3.) My shampoo is running out, and I have put off buying something new, because I did not know what to buy, so now with your suggestion, I do!

    1. I haven’t… I was going to at one point, but I chickened out of cutting off so much hair! I’d still love to do it some day.

  97. shruti says:

    I love oiling my hair at least an hour before i wash it! Even better if i oil it the night before! I usually warm the oil in the microwave so it’s warm to touch and apply it liberally all over and give myself an awesome scalp massage! Olive oil is my favourite for conditioning these days but coconut is amazing for shine and growth! To wash it out I just shampoo the excess out and don’t add extra conditioner!

  98. Candace says:

    So… question.. because of health reasons.. I can no longer eat – nuts, seeds, berries.. and no fat… I have found that coconut oil does not bother me… but at this point I am not willing to do the seeds or nuts… so do you have any other suggestions for the chocolate cake???

  99. Carolyn says:

    I actually put olive oil in my hair or coconut if i have any :) It might sound like it would get oily but it really doesn’t. I have thick curly hair and it used to be sooo dry and frizzy. For the past few months i only wash my hair with conditioner and after my shower i towel dry, and aply a quarter size amount of olive oil in the palm of my hand, kinda get it all over my hands and apply in my hair, then i put mousse. That’s it, and my hair has never felt or looked better in ….well never!

  100. Maya says:

    I am super low maintenance with my hair! I don’t even own a blow drier. I wash it 3 or 4 times a week, run a comb through it, and go. Sometimes I don’t even remember to brush it after it dries…

  101. Marina says:

    I know you love coconut everything– SO DO I. (This is putting it lightly.) So one day I decided, why not put it in my hair! Well it worked miracles. I loved the shine so I made a habit of it, and my ends are so much less dry! <– Do ittt everyone :)

  102. Ala says:

    I’m (very) late on that one!
    The beginning of your post made me laugh because it’s the exact same situation with my sister and I: she as the volume and curls, I got the straight, fine, flat yet super shiny hair. Except that I can’t seem to grow it … until recently. I started using Lush solid shampoo bars and it’s grown 2 inches per month, and wash it only once a week, despite working out every day.

  103. Shanna says:

    Hey Katie,

    Where do you archive your personal-ish blogs? I just came across this blog post Three Steps to Healthier Hair and I really like it cause I have heard really good things about Desert Essence. And then reading this basically convinced me to try it. But I only even saw this post when I scrolled to the bottom of your mini chocolate chip muffins post and it was next to the “you might also like:…” I don’t think I’ve ever seen one of your posts that wasn’t solely based around a recipe. Do you keep them somewhere secret on your blog? lol

  104. Shanna says:

    You and your sister both have BEAUTIFUL hair!