Meet the Woman Who Didn't Wash Her Own Hair for Years

10/24/2013 at 06:52 PM ET

Blow dry addictionGMA/ABC News

Everyone likes the way their hair looks when they leave the salon, but Sandra Ballantine took that to an extreme — she stopped washing her hair at home, having it blown out in a salon up to three times a week instead.

The N.Y.C. resident admitted to Good Morning America that she was spending up to $250 a week on her addiction, but only realized that she might have a problem when a friend, an editor at W magazine, noticed there wasn’t any shampoo in her house.

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Her pal issued her a challenge: Forgo the salon and skip the dryers, flat irons and hot rollers for three months, and then write about it for the magazine. “I didn’t think I could do it,” she said. “And then I kind of got over myself. I was like, ‘Come on, who cares that much?'”

Ballantine admits she didn’t accept the challenge straight away and found it hard to go cold turkey.”The first time I lathered up and air-dried, I looked like an extra from Game of Thrones,” she writes.

But with some advice from her stylist and some inspiration from the queen of wash-and-wear hair, Kate Moss, she jumped in. “I began experimenting with all manner of shampoo, conditioner, balm, oil, cream, mousse, spray and serum,” she admits. (Her current fave is Living Proof’s Perfect Hair Day.)

And while that led to some mishaps — like a wet-look ponytail that looked more like a rat tail and a boyfriend who didn’t recognize her — Ballantine says she’s embraced her new look, going as far as to change up her makeup and wardrobe to match her more natural style. “I’ve discovered that softer hair is the perfect foil for stronger makeup,” she writes.

But the biggest payoff of all might be in her wallet: She’s now putting the money she’s saved towards the property taxes on her newly purchased home.

Thoughts? Do you have any beauty addictions of your own?

–K.C. Blumm

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Showing 67 comments

Deni on

Wow – it must be nice to have an extra $1000-$1250 a month to spend on getting your hair done 3 times a week. That’s a mortgage payment for many people. I wonder what she does for a living that she can afford that AND is able to live in NYC.

Guest on

I’m honestly surprised at how normal this sounds for so many people. I don’t know a single person who does this! lol. Weird! Maybe it’s a regional thing or something, but where I live we take care of our own hygiene, black women, old women, young white women, everyone. I suppose if you have a ton of extra income and nothing better to do with it, yeah, go for it. But it just seems like such a waste of money…and I don’t live in a “poor” area either. This story just struck me as funny! lol

Peachy on

Moron

desperada57 on

Is that what her hair looks like AFTER a blow dry? WTH? Mine looks like that if I do absolutely nothing to it. Of course, I have to use mousse, hair spray and a blow dryer to get mine to look fuller – lol!!

desperada57 on

Oh, I forgot to add – I do it all myself. And I don’t do it every day.

Robynnn on

WOW!! WHAT AN INSPIRING TALE OF PERSONAL TURMOIL AND TRIUMPH!! THIS LADY IS AN EXAMPLE OF A TRUE HERO!!

Morning Coffee on

I guess I was expecting that this woman would have beautiful hair, but this isn’t the case at all. With her hair, looks like she spent a lot of money for nothing.

Ashlie on

I havent washed my own hair in years either. It dries straight and so I wash it once a week at a salon and leave it be.

Dawn on

Must be a slow news day! and I read it!

Me on

What a waste of frickin’ money! I can understand the elderly and certain people having to go to a salon on weekly basis. But, NOT someone who is quite able to do her own hair! What’s so hard about shampooing and blowing it dry yourself? Or going naturall y curly like I do? Going in for a haircut and or color job, that’s different. But not going in a weekly basis.. waste of money, but of course the hairdresser loves you and isn’t going to encourage you to do it on your own.

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