Simple Hair Care: Tips from Stylist Emi Agio

Emi Agio is a hairstylist based in New York City who has worked extensively in the world of fashion, at various photoshoots and backstage at Fashion Week.  However, she excels in everyday cuts and colors that wear well without a lot of fuss (and look deceptively simple).  We ask for her favorite tips and techniques for hair care (and what to request from your stylist): 

Q:  Thank you Emi!  Can you let us know what you think our biggest hair care mistake is – and what we can do to correct it?  

A: I think the biggest mistake is not shampooing correctly. Before using shampoo, you should brush your hair gently, then rinse your hair and scalp thoroughly with warm (not hot) water for at least two minutes. This will wash out most of the dirt and help the shampoo foam and prevent too much hair rubbing, which is damaging. 

Next you want to apply shampoo while reducing friction between the hair strands, here are the steps below: 

  • Before applying it to your hair, make the shampoo foam up in your palm. 
  • Apply it to the scalp in several areas. 
  • Try to focus on washing the scalp, not your hair. 
  • As you rinse, avoid excessive rubbing. Instead, let the shampoo’s foam and bubbles reach the tip of your hair to naturally wash out any remaining dirt and unwanted particles.  

It is also important to choose the shampoo with the proper pH balance for your hair and scalp. If the shampoo you are currently using makes your roots too oily, consider switching to a cleansing shampoo. 

For conditioner, do not apply on the scalp.  Apply it to dry areas, comb gently and rinse thoroughly. 

Properly cleaned hair dries faster, has more volume and maintains a style longer. 

Q:  A lot of us don’t have time to even blow dry our hair in the morning (especially busy moms).  Are there cuts you would recommend that would grow out nicely and air dry well?  

A: Bob styles and long layers work for both straight and wavy hair. It is easy to maintain and lasts longer. As a busy mom myself, I also often have to tie up my hair. To avoid damage, I use scrunchies or ties made of silk. Speaking of this, silk pillowcases can also reduce friction and help both hair and skin’s moisture retention. Check out Byrdie for some great air drying hair do’s: 

Q:  In terms of color, how can we best maintain our hair’s health? 

A: To maintain color longer, use color-safe or sulfate-free shampoos that can cleanse hair without stripping the color. 

  • Achieving the correct pH balance and rinsing with cold water will help seal hair cuticles, which is key to preventing color spillage, strengthening your scalp and keeping your hair shiny and healthy. 
  • Hot water can cause the hair’s cuticle to swell and open, making it easier for color molecules to get rinsed down the drain. So be sure to keep the water at a cool temperature! 
  • The current trend leans toward warm colors (such as coral copper, chocolate brown, espresso brown or beige), although it evidently varies based on each individual’s base hair color and skin tone.  

Q:  How do you think a good haircut affects over our overall confidence and look?  

A: Hair shape very much defines your face. A good haircut accentuates your beauty. It can be a statement or simply help you feel more beautiful and look more professional which will boost your confidence and fill you with positive energy.  

On the more practical side, a good haircut is easier to maintain, saving you time every morning, and will last longer before the next visit to your favorite salon!   

With Thanks to Emi, 


Photography credits: Toa Heftiba, cottonbro, Engin Akyurt 

Bio: Michelle is a former beauty executive who loves being part of the Care Skincare Team. She’s married with two young children who have more energy than all the drinks on a Starbucks menu.