memories of the ’80s – scrunchie

With all those big hairstyles, one needed big accessories, and during the 1980s, one of the items of choice was the scrunchie.

This fabric-covered hair elastic was the perfect way to make a ponytail, a top knot or add a bit of sassy style to longer hair.

Since it was an easy twist to tighten, it was a styling aid that could be used by anyone and used anywhere, so everyone kept one in their purse, just in case.

From stripes to plaid, from velvet to satin, the scrunchie could be used for all occasions – weekends, daywear, evening wear and at the gym.

From young girls to 30 somethings, everyone had a selection of scrunchies.

So I did wear scrunchies. I had them in several colours – basic neutrals, a few bright neon colours and a few shiny ones. But ok, I was young and thought that was the thing to use to style my hair. And then I got older and knew better. The decade had passed, and so the scrunchie should be in the past.

But what makes me wonder now is why anyone would think they were something to wear on a daily basis. No no no! No more scrunchies – it’s not stylish or necessary, despite what American Apparel tries to tell us:

So I hope the scrunchie stays in the past, because there really is no reason for it to come back, unless you’re under the age of 12.

memories of the ’80s – hair mousse

When I think of the 1980s, one of the dominant images is always hair. Big hair. Bold and curly, defined and dynamic, women wanted to kick their hair into the stratosphere. Natural looks were quickly forgotten – it was all about creating a hair style that had presence.

L’Oreal Paris saw the niche in the creation of hair mousse for the masses. First introduced by Breck in the late 1970s, Breck Salon Finishing Formula was not welcomed by consumers and was discontinued. But in the early 1980s, L’Oreal saw a marketing niche and the encouraged stylists to start using a styling foam to add body, curl, texture and height without the side effects of stiffness or hardness.

L’Oreal Valence styling mousse debuted on shelves in 1983 (above: image from the Valence ad) and L’Oreal Free Hold was introduced in 1984, adding another item to the bathroom shelf for on-trend girls and women. At first, consumers were confused, trying to use the styling aid the same as hairspray, not knowing what to do with the creamy foam instead of the sticky spray. 

The key to the mousse success was polymers – the combination of positive and negative charged polymers allowed chemists to create a hair styling product that was still able to be brushed and combed, and maintain style.

The power of this new building block caught on, and everyone became mousse-crazy. As hair got lifted and blown up and out, mousse was the secret weapon, absorbing into the strands and helping lift tresses inches above the scalp. From music videos to prime time tv, mousse was used to insure hairstyles were teased to the max, creating a challenge for many women to see how high their own hair could go.

My long hair loved the mousse – adding wave and bounce to my curly hair. Girls with shorter hair adored mousse even more – and together we made it the number one styling product bought in 1984. 

From highschool bathroom to salon, the mousse was de rigeur on the shelf, a must-have that was used to insure the coiffure was always perfectly teased into a legal airspace that surrounded one’s body. Flat hair? Never!

L&F Beauty – Pureology AntiFade Complex

Pureology Anti-Fade Complex shampoo and conditioner

It’s summer, and although you know how to protect skin from the sun, what about hair? Your crowning glory needs protection from the sun and hydration from Mother Nature, especially if your hair has been coloured. Pureology prides itself on having formulations that don’t have sulfates, are 100 per cent vegan and use organic botanicals. And it protects the colour you’ve put in your hair.

The AntiFade Complex, part of the Essential Repair collection, uses soymilk, biotin, olive oil and chamomile to calm and hydrate hair, includes antioxidants to keep your colour from fading as well as broad spectrum UVA/UVB to protect locks from the sun. As a professional brand, Pureology will cost more, but with its concentrated formulas, use less, and know your tresses are protected with the combination of hair expertise and Mother Nature.

Pureology gains more points for using 25 per cent post-consumer waste plastic and insuring its bottles are recyclable where possible.

Pureology Antifade Complex – shampoo, conditioner and four styling products

New and made in Canada

Who doesn’t love to find a new beauty product – especially if its Canadian? We’ve seen MAC skyrocket into a world-recognized brand and Cake Beauty become a coast-to-coast fave, but what’s around the corner to add to your beauty cache? With niche or “indie” brands now a bigger trend than ever, Best Health zeroed in on five up and coming Canadian companies that we think represent the new wave. Some focus on locally-sourced ingredients, other on the exotic or the natural – and all may just be the next big thing.


OJON hair and body collection



Who’s Behind It? Denis Simioni, who left his career in advertising to create Burlington, On based Ojon Corporation, a beauty company that creates products with sustainable, hand-harvested ingredients from the Central American rainforest.


What’s the appeal? The Tawira Indians, a Honduran aboriginal group, have used ojon nut oil for hundreds of years as a superb hair moisturizer, and in Honduras this tribe is known as “the people of beautiful hair”. Hair easily absorbs the oil without leaving a film or greasy feeling. All ojon nut oil in Ojon hair products is wild-sourced (not cultivated or farmed) as well as sustainably harvested. With the help of the a Honduran non-governmental organization, an exclusive agreement for ojon nut oil has been established between the Tawira people and Ojon.


Our Pick – Restorative Hair Treatment, a leave-in conditioner, has the highest concentration of ojon nut oil of all the products; it combats dryness from overprocessing and can also be used as a body moisturizer. ($65, 150mL, includes comb)


Where You’ll Find It –, Sephora (, The Shopping Channel (


Excerpt from New, and made in Canada, Best Health Magazine March/April 2009