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Answer Angel: How to use a scarf to hide your bad hair day

By Ellen Warren, Chicago Tribune on

Published in Fashion Daily News

Dear Answer Angel Ellen: I have often wanted to hide under a beautifully tied scarf on a "bad hair day" but every time I try to artfully tie one, it's not tight enough or I look like I'm getting ready to scrub the bathroom floor instead of looking stylish and put together. Are there any tricks to making this look work?

- Catherine L.

Dear Catherine: Call it a turban, a head wrap, a headscarf - whatever - this is what it takes:

1. The right scarf

2. Practice

3. Practice


4. Practice

Take it from me, you're not going to be able to do this with one-try-and-out-the-door. Bad hair days are a constant for those of us with curly hair - depending on climate, humidity and who knows what else. So I've got a lot of experience with your dilemma. For women with thinning hair or hair loss due to chemo, a cute scarf is a great solution. It is easier to show how to tie a scarf than to describe it, which is why I am sending you to the internet, where there's an abundance of videos to help. But there's not much help there on how to choose the right scarf to begin with. Big is better. Rectangular is the best starting shape. Silk or poly is slippery and makes it harder to keep it in place. Cotton or a fabric with texture (but not too thick) is easier to work with. My favorite scarf for this purpose is all-cotton (made in India), rectangular, 6 feet by 3 1/2 feet wide. The ample width enables me to fold it in half lengthwise, which makes it stay on better and cover more. I bought it at a thrift store for a few dollars but I've seen them in stores for $10 to $15. Above all, stick with it. Don't be discouraged. This will take some time to get it right, but with or without some interesting earrings, you'll be a standout and no one will know about the uncooperative hair beneath!

Dear Answer Angel Ellen: I love shopping at resale shops, but over the past few years I've noticed that my finds have been sprayed with some sort of product that is supposed to make them smell good. I understand that shops want to eliminate musty smells in clothing that has been packed away, but this perfume smell aggravates my allergies and is difficult to wash out. Any tips for making these clothes smell fresh without having to wash numerous times and hang outside?

- Cindy M.S.


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