Kendall Hamilton: The Hollywood Hair Therapist's 6 Ways To End Bad Hair Days

Kendall Hamilton, “The Hollywood Hair-apist” gets to the root of the problem, with his vast knowledge of how hair can be effected by the environment, climate, water, nutrition and even medication. He has the answers to all of your bad hair day issues. Check out his hair therapy below.


Where did the name, The Hollywood Hair-apist come from?

A. It came from my approach to hair. I take a holistic view of the whole person, inside and out. I don’t play on someone’s vanity. I work to get the hair in the healthiest state and to heal the hair naturally. Also, as a hairstylist, people tell me a lot of stuff in the salon so I’m always giving people advice. I’m very intuitive about hair and what will work or not work for a person by asking them lots of questions. A lot of energy can be carried or trapped in the hair. Sometimes you do need a change. Sometimes that’s the wrong thing to do when things are going poorly or even going well personally.

What’s the best way to make hair color last?

A. The first thing to remember is, the color you leave the salon with won’t stay exactly the same. Color as it wears, oxidizes no matter what. The best ways to protect it from oxidizing quickly is to use:

Shower Filter: Calcium, Chlorine and Copper contained in hard water strips the color. A shower filter removes those elements. L.A. has very hard water. New York, on the other hand, is very soft water and it’s not as much of an issue. Aquasana is my favorite water filter. I feel like I’m showering in a Hawaiian waterfall.

Hair Sunscreen: Use a leave-in spray with a sunscreen. My favorite is “It’s A 10 for Blondes.” It’s a multi-tasker. Sun will fade color making it brassy; sunscreen will prevent “global warming” of the hair.

What are the rules of coloring hair? We’ve heard things like never go two shades either way of one’s natural color.

A. The rules are more about the health of the hair when it comes to color. If you have fine, fragile hair, you need to chill. At a certain mature older age, go lighter. Go as light as you were when you were a teenager, when you were 15 years old. It will soften the person as they age.

Another very important tip regarding hair color is: Tell your stylist if you have started taking any new medication – birth control, estrogen for menopause etc.

“Medication can change the chemistry of the hair, which can affect the final color result adversely. Your hair can take the same exact color formula completely differently. If you start new medication, ask your stylist to do a test strand first.”

What are your top 6 ways to improve the health of one’s hair?

A. There are a lot of great things you can do to improve the health:

  1. A silk pillow case to sleep on because tossing and turning on a regular pillow case can cause breakage. I like the silk one they sell at Bed, Bath & Beyond.
  2. A good brush with board bristles is essential. The Marilyn Brush is the best.
  3. As for washing hair, the less often the better. Some of my clients wash with water and use conditioner, using shampoo only once a week. People with fine hair can’t do that though, it will weigh down the hair. Also, make sure you are leaving your regular conditioner in for 3 to 4 minutes each time. It needs that amount of time to really do its job.
  4. The health of the scalp is very important to the health of the hair. I’m very particular about using bleach on the scalp. I add an oil to my bleach to protect the scalp. A good scalp massage is something you can do yourself. I do it to myself everyday. For a dry scalp, use Nioxin Scalp Therapy. To treat an oily scalp, add a couple drops of Tea Tree Oil to your shampoo and use that to wash your scalp. Just be careful not to use the Tea Tree Oil on the rest of your hair because it can be drying.
  5. Avoid wearing a ponytail all the time if you have color treated hair. Breakage will start to occur right where the band is tied around the hair.
  6. I believe in supplements. I even sell them in my salon. If one month your funds are low and you have to choose between buying a fancy conditioner and your Omega Fish or Flaxseed vitamins – get the vitamins! It’s more important than what you are using on the outside. The supplements I recommend for healthy hair are: Omega 3, Biotin, and my favorite secret – MSM. It’s a sulfur that will make your nails and hair GROW! As well as make the hair growing from the root stronger and healthier. MSM is a serious secret of mine.

With coloring, blow drying and styling, women are always trying to put moisture back in their hair. How often should a woman use a deep conditioner?

A. There are actually people who don’t ever need a deep conditioner. The people who do are the ones who have “multi-porosity” hair.

“Picture your hair as a road: the new growth is very smooth, the middle is kind of bumpy, and the ends of the hair are like a country road from hell.”

A deep conditioner will take that kind of hair and make the hair texture more consistent and smooth.

Make sure to differentiate between two deep treatments on the market. A deep conditioner provides heavy moisture to dry hair that isn’t heavily damaged. One I like is RUSK Deepshine Oil Moisturizing Conditioner.

A hair reconstructor provides protein and moisture to repair hair from the inside out. A hair reconstructor is for damaged and dry hair. Joico K-Pak Reconstructor is a great reconstructor.

Prior to blow drying or curling hair, should a person always use a styling protector?

A. Yes! Always use a thermal protector, always! “It’s A 10,” (the blue bottle version), works for that. It does everything, so it saves time and money.

How often should a woman get her hair cut?

A. It depends on the hair. Heavily processed long blonde hair should be cut every four weeks. I offer something at my salon called a “Dusting,” it costs less than a haircut and just takes care of the ends.

“Hair is like a rope. Once the end of the hair unravels it has to be cut. If it isn’t cut, it continues to unravel up the head.”

You end up with two inches of tattered hair that has to be cut off. To prevent that, you need a “Dusting” every few weeks.

You gave us some advice about using plant-based products in certain climates. Can you explain a bit more about that?

A. Hair products that use all-natural, plant-only ingredients tend to dry hair in arid climates like L.A., Arizona, New Mexico, Vegas. But these same hair products are great in humid climates like Texas, Florida, even New York. You can still use all-natural products in drier climates, but you have to make sure the ingredients have some hydrating oils like macadamia nut oil or argan oil.

What are your tips to find a great hair stylist if people can’t come to you?


“Don’t use the Internet; the internet is the devil when it comes to finding a stylist!”

Referrals are best to go on. If you see someone with hair you like, ask them for their stylist’s information. Many of my clients have been referrals and most of them have been with me for 10 years. Talk to your stylist before committing to a color or cut.

“I let them know if a certain color process will make their hair feel different or change the texture. I’m the Hollywood Hairapist, I know these things. I break it down.”

The hair should not be the crowning glory of a woman. The hair should work with the whole person. Ask about the cost of the upkeep, if you will need new products with a new style or color. I’m honest with people. I find out about their lifestyle, how much time and money they want to spend on their hair. 

Kendall Hamilton is known around Tinseltown as “The Hollywood Hair-apist.” Kendall has worked and trained with many of the beauty industry’s heavy hitters: Sebastian, Tigi, Rusk, and Graham Webb, to name a few.