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Lindsay Strum, 24, is an artistic design stylist at Walk In Salon by Robert Cromeans in San Diego, Calif. When Lindsay isn’t working with her own clients, she trains new stylists to help them improve their skills and work through any challenges they are facing. We got to know Lindsay more and ask her expert advice to help answer some our hair woes.

How did you get started doing hair?

I started experimenting on my own hair and friend's hair when I was in 9th or 10th grade.

Did you know you always wanted to do it?

I knew I wanted to pursue it from a young age. I was always able to understand the geometry involved with cutting and the chemistry involved with color. I was first drawn to the profession because of the obvious freedom of the career — meaning you can look how you want and make your own schedule — without sitting behind a desk until I retire.

What is your favorite thing about doing hair?

I honestly love everything about it — from the color to cut and putting it all together. I know exactly what every foil will look like and the result of every cut that I make.

Is it true if I cut my hair my hair will go longer faster? Why?

It's not exactly true that your hair will grow faster if you cut it. Hair grows an average of 1/2 an inch a month no matter what. What is true, though, is the fact that if you stay on a hair cutting schedule your hair will grow out much healthier and not break off giving the illusion of it growing.

What kind of shampoo and conditioner would you recommend?

It always depends on the person. I love Paul Mitchell products, so I always recommend one of those. But I also would recommend buying your hair product from a professional salon. A stylist will be able to feel and see your hair in order to make sure you go home with the right products for you and your life style.

Is buying products at grocery or convenient stores bad?

Yes it is. If you are buying OTC (over the counter) products, a lot of them are either very watered down or have much harsher ingredients in them so you are never going to see the same result as a professional product would give. You shouldn’t get professional hair care products from drug stores either. It is actually illegal for them to be selling them. It's called diversion (Check out this video to learn more) and it takes away millions of dollars from salons every year. Not only that, but we as professionals can’t guarantee them either because a lot of times they are either very old products of they have been stolen and tampered with before being put on the shelves.

What can I use to protect my hair against heat styling?

There are many different products out there to protect your hair from heat. One of my favorites is Paul Mitchell's Hot Off the Press. It is a light weight spray that acts as a barrier for your hair and it also will hold your style longer.

What kind of hair trends are you seeing a lot in and out of the salon?

I see a ton of the ombre style. With that being said, I think it’s an entire trend of a more natural look. The look of, "I know it looks messy but it took a while". A lot of people are leaning more toward curly hair, also. Whether they are letting their own curls show through or creating curlier looks if they don’t have it naturally. EMBRACE YOUR CURLS!

How do I get out of my hair rut?

Start looking around for little things you like about people's hair. It doesn’t have to be an entire look. You could like the face framing of one cut, the fringe of another and the golden highlights of a completely different look. You should always go to your stylists. They know all the little tricks to get you out of your rut. It could be something small like shorter layers for more movement or something as big as changing the entire color of your hair. Hair is our own expression of self; don’t be scared of change or evolving your look. The perfect cut and color is waiting for everyone, you just have to be willing to give it a shot.