Kate Allen
Updated Jul 25, 2014 @ 9:20 am

I’m on vacation this week in Vancouver and of course, I’m thinking all about keeping my hair styled, shiny and healthy. And perhaps most importantly, low maintenance! Because my vacations usually have me on the beach, at my favorite restaurants and walking around exploring, I also need to have quite a few tricks up my sleeve, er, in my bag to keep my hair stunning all week long. Here are my packing secrets:

1. Detox Shampoo

When the sand is built up in your hair, the sun has dried out your scalp, and the salt has given every piece of hair that sticky, heavy texture, a good detox shampoo is necessary to exfoliate and refresh. I recommend Maxi.Wash from Kevin Murphy, which uses grapefruit extract and thyme to exfoliate the scalp, dissolve dead skin cells that can build up from a sunburn or dryness and to just generally prep your hair for your regular shampoo’s benefits. Think of it as a pre-cleanse similar to washing your face.

2. Dry Shampoo

This is my essential—no matter where my travel plans are. With just a quick spritz of something like Kevin Murphy’s Fresh.Hair, my hair can go from limp and oily to voluminous and refreshed. This product soaks up the oil to lift your roots and give them a great second day look and it gives your hair a lot of hold to keep your styles looking great through sweat, dirt and sun. For a pumped up ponytail, sleek updo or beach waves, start with day-old hair and some dry shampoo for a refreshing look.

3. Pin Clips

Pin clips are always my bff, on vacation or at home: they are essential for setting looks and sectioning hair when styling. But when I’m on vacation especially (and I have ten minutes to get ready), these are great. I use them to section out my hair before styling, to hold curls in place while they cool or even to tuck my bangs out of the way when I’m styling the rest of my hair and applying makeup. And for an added bonus, they can also be handy for general vacation needs like keeping your hat in place on a windy day or pinning back a skirt that keeps flying up in the wind.

4. Wave Clips/Curlers

On vacation, a five-minute hairstyle is key to a great day. No fuss, no extras and a cute ‘do is all you need! Wave clips are so perfect because you can place them in the hair very easily, throw a net over them to keep the frizz to a minimum, heat them up with a blowdryer and voila: perfect beach waves! I basically live in these for the entirety of any beach vacation because after a swim in the ocean, these wave clips really don’t need a lot of help to give you hold and style. And the curlers are always perfect on the go because on day one of washing, you can set your hair in these babies and get smooth volume for a more formal affair.

5. Summer Hats

I practically live in hats in the summertime. Now that I’ve become very conscious of my skin and hair in the sun, I always try to stay protected when I can and for that, hats are amazing! What’s even better than that is the way a chic, trendy hat can offset a messy hairstyle that hasn’t been refreshed or re-styled. Pair your fedora with some day old beach waves or your big, floppy beach hat with some cutesy pigtails; you really can’t go wrong with a lightweight, summer hat.

Always remember that on vacation, keeping your hair as healthy and low maintenance as possible is key. Load up on your favorite shampoos and styling aids in travel sizes, remember your favorite brush and combs and try to use your own blowdryer as opposed to the hotel’s dryer. I also love bringing my shower caps to make showering easy without having to re-style my hair and a great conditioner to cover my tresses with before jumping in the ocean to ensure moisture, softness and no change in my hair color. And of course, remember not to spend your whole vacation styling your hair! When in doubt, a great ponytail always does the trick!