Walk out of the house wear­ing this?

Shower caps ap­pear on some who’d rather be wacky with the good hair than a vic­tim of hu­mid­ity

Honolulu Star-Advertiser - - TODAY - By An­drea Arter­bery

Aly Walan­sky does not care how ridicu­lous she might look.

When she is run­ning er­rands or head­ing to meet­ings and it be­gins to rain, she will reach into her purse, pull out her shower cap and place it over what she de­scribes as her “coarse, Jewish Eastern Euro­pean, curly” hair.

Walan­sky spends about $30 a week on blowouts and $400 a year on treat­ments that keep her hair sleek and smooth. So, even if it is just really hu­mid out, she will wear a shower cap.

“I’d much rather em­bar­rass whomever I’m with than ar­rive where I’m go­ing with bad hair,” said Walan­sky, a 35-year-old writer who lives in Brook­lyn. “Blowouts are ex­pen­sive.”

Hair-straight­en­ing pro­cess­ing like ker­atin treat­ments and blow-dry sa­lons are highly pop­u­lar among women with all types of hair, and this is a sum­mer that at least feels even hot­ter and more hu­mid than usual. So shower caps and other im­per­me­able head cov­er­ings that shield fol­li­cles from frizz-in­duc­ing el­e­ments are

com­ing out of the shower, ap­pear­ing in so­cial-me­dia self­ies and some­times even on the streets.

On Snapchat a few weeks ago, the model Joan Smalls showed off hers.

In late May, Ka­ley Cuoco, a star of the sit­com “The Big Bang The­ory,” posted a shower cap selfie on In­sta­gram (the image ended up be­ing shown on “En­ter­tain­ment Tonight” and in Star Mag).

Feli­cia Sul­li­van, a for­mer New Yorker who lives in Los An­ge­les, has tex­tured curly hair that she straight­ens two or three times a month by pay­ing $65 for 90-minute blow-dry-and-flat-iron treat­ments. She too is tak­ing ac­tion against the rain, and not just by mov­ing out West.

“Um­brel­las never work be­cause, based on wind, you can eas­ily get sprayed, so I’ve been known to carry a shower cap in my hand­bag,” said Sul­li­van, an au­thor who also works as a mar­keter. “There’s no way I’m ru­in­ing my blowout should it start to down­pour. No mat­ter where I go, my hair is guar­an­teed to be cov­ered.”

The urge to pro­tect her own thick hair from hu­mid­ity and mois­ture is what led Jacque­lyn De Jesu, 30, to cre­ate Sh­h­hower Cap, a line of tur­ban-shaped shower caps.

She knew she could make bet­ter-look­ing caps than what was cur­rently on the mar­ket, but she won­dered whether there were other in­no­va­tions that could be added to an age-old prod­uct. She said she in­ter­viewed many women and learned that for younger women the func­tion of caps was as much an is­sue as the lack of style.

“Once I started learn­ing about all of the ad­vance­ments and con­struc­tions of ac­tive wear and per­for­mance wear, I de­cided that all of this stuff are things that could be ap­plied to this space that had zero in­no­va­tion,” said De Jesu, who lives in Brook­lyn. Her Sh­h­how­er­caps, like the one Smalls mod­eled on so­cial me­dia, have a stay-put rub­ber grip and a breath­able an­tibac­te­rial coat­ing to keep hu­mid­ity from build­ing up.

In de­sign­ing the prod­ucts for the Lou­velle Lux­ury Show­er­wear line of tur­bans, Si­mone Tay­lor, 33, took in­spi­ra­tion from stars wear­ing tur­bans and head­scarves, like Bey­once and Eva Men­des, as well as run­way looks cre­ated by Mis­soni and Marc Ja­cobs.

“I cre­ated Lou­velle be­cause, like most women, I don’t have time to wash my hair ev­ery day, and my hus­band would al­ways make fun of me when I wore my shower cap,” she said. “I wanted to cre­ate some­thing that you could look at in the mir­ror and not feel unattrac­tive in.” To be sure, there are plenty of peo­ple not buy­ing into the idea of wear­ing any­thing that looks re­motely like a shower cap out of the house. “There are bet­ter ways to pub­licly pre­serve a blowout,” said David Lopez, a hair­styl­ist who works with celebri­ties in­clud­ing Chrissy Teigen, like “loose pony­tails, soft braids, hair tucked into a hat.” But Me­gan Driscoll, 36, of New York said noth­ing could come be­tween her and her Dry­bar Morn­ing Af­ter shower cap. “I have seen a few peo­ple laugh at me oc­ca­sion­ally as I’m walk­ing home with my shower cap on, but it doesn’t bother me at all,” said Driscoll, a mar­ket­ing and pub­lic re­la­tions con­sul­tant. “The tem­po­rary mock­ing is well worth a week of good hair.”

The Morn­ing Af­ter shower cap by Dry­bar ($16) is terry cloth-lined and made to shield blowouts.

SHHHOWERCAP / NEW YORK TIMES

Shhhowercap’s Not Ba­sic shower cap, $43.

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