Rachel Sobel didn’t have to look far for inspiration when she created Whine and Cheez(its). It was right in front of her in the form of her family, which includes her daughters (13 and 5), husband, and Labradoodle, Biggie Smalls. Both brutally honest and side-splittingly funny, Rachel is modern motherhood—ice cream for dinner (if necessary), lack of privacy in the bathroom, and all. Her candor (and unwavering sense of humor) has garnered 116K followers on Instagram, she just launched a podcast called “Friends Without Benefits,” and she regularly writes about parenting for The Today Show, Scary Mommy, PopSugar, and Mommy Nearest.
With Mother’s Day upon us, we sat down with Rachel to talk about her hair history, how being a mom has changed her hair-care approach, and the best advice she’s ever received from her own mom.
SEEN: Everyone has a hair story, whether cutting bangs, straightening compulsively, a bad Sun-In experience, or getting a perm. What’s yours?
Rachel Sobel: The only thing I haven’t done on that list was get a perm. I cut bangs once, which was a terrible decision because I have a cowlick—they were like curtains open in the middle. It was terrible. I did the Sun-In and lemon juice and it turned my hair orange.
I have always had long hair, except for one unfortunate time when an ex convinced me to cut it super-short. Short hair looks great on so many women, but I looked like a television character gone wrong. It just didn’t work for me. My hair’s length is really the only consistent thing about it—I’ve cut layers, experimented with color, and done a lot of different stuff. No perms though. Thankfully I never went that route.
SEEN: How has being a mom impacted your hair?
RS: My God. Being a mom has given me significantly more grays. I never had to color my hair as an adult, but the minute I had children it was like the grays came out in full force. Coloring has made my hair’s texture more coarse, and like most women, I experienced post-baby hair loss. My hair has gone through its own little evolution thanks to motherhood.
SEEN: How has your styling routine changed?
RS: I’ve always done my hair regularly, even during the day if I was running errands. If I don’t blow my hair, I'm not ready to do anything—and once I do I feel like a new woman. I cherish those moments when I have the time to do it without a child hanging on me.
One thing that has definitely changed is the quality of the hair-care products I use now. I used to buy cheap drugstore products because I didn't want to spend money on hair care. You’d think I’d still take this route since everything is so expensive with children, but I eventually became more vigilant about taking care of myself, and this includes higher quality products for my hair.
SEEN: Do you have any specific hair issues you struggle with?
RS: Oh, the frizz. I live in Florida, and I feel like the F in Florida stands for frizz. When I blow-dry my hair, no matter how sleek it is, it instantly becomes frizzy if I walk out the door into the humidity unless I've used a good serum. I also sweat a lot and my hair gets greasy, so I have to wash every day. I see all these people benefiting from dry shampoo, but I still haven't figured out how to use it and haven’t had any luck.
SEEN: What was your first impression of SEEN?
RS: I loved the smell! It has a super-fresh scent, which I love because I don't like “perfumey” hair products. It also makes my hair feel very soft and very clean. A lot of products I’ve tried leave my hair with residue or buildup. With SEEN, my hair feels physically cleaner as compared to other products that I've used in the past.
SEEN: What's your favorite SEEN product?
RS: The Magic Serum is everything. I use it on wet hair before styling, and use it when my hair is dry. When I use a few drops after styling, I can sleep on it and not look like the crazy bus driver from South Park when I wake up in the morning. Since I started using the Magic Serum, my hair is almost completely intact from how I styled it the day before. I've never really had that before.
SEEN: When do you feel most “seen?”
RS: I feel “seen” when all the stars align. For me, this means having a good hair day, my makeup's on point, my kids aren't whining, and I didn't spill coffee all over my car. Those good days without hiccups, when I feel like I have it together a little bit more versus the days where it everything feels like a complete mess.
My mother always used to tell me, “Put lipstick on. It changes your mood. Do your hair. It changes your mood.” I totally get it now, and I feel like when I take the extra 20 minutes to put myself together, including blowing-out my hair, flat-ironing it, or even putting it in a cute ponytail, I feel better about myself—and that’s when I definitely feel seen.