One of these is to dry it before a fire, but this is rather a long and tedious process. Various ways have been discovered for rapidly drying the hair. A method of quickly drying the hair by the fumes of benzoin has been introduced. The lady whose hair is to be dried reclines upon a lounge or sofa with her hair hanging over the end. A pan, properly protected by a cage and containing two or three pieces of ignited charcoal, is then placed in close proximity to it, and a little powdered benzoin is sprinkled upon the lighted fuel. The thick smoke which rises, and is strongly impregnated with benzoic acid, combined with carbonic acid, rapidly absorbs the moisture in the hair, which should have been previously well wiped with towels, so as to be as free from wet as possible. In a few seconds the hair is perfectly dry, beautifully perfumed, and ready for the operation of the brush.
An effective method is the use of the hot water comb-a thick metal comb with hollow teeth which are filled with hot water. The hair is combed with this until quite dry. It is sometimes inadvisable to wash the heads of very delicate or aged people with water. What are known as " dry shampoos" may then be used. These are highly spirituous solutions. The drawback to them is that they have sometimes a very drying effect upon the scalp. Here are two recipes for dry shampoos:
Sapo. castil. alb.......
Macerate for a day or two; filter and add:
Mix. Rub well into the hair and scalp, then sponge with warm water and rub dry with a soft towel. As the alcoholic ammonia is inflammable, it should on no account be used near a fire or light.
When the hair is in a very greasy condition and cannot be washed, much of the grease may be removed by spraying on the hair and scalp pulverised orris root, and, after allowing the powder to remain for a few minutes, brushing it thoroughly out of the hair with a perfectly clean brush.