The cheapest way to take care of your own hair is to avoid using dyes and styling tools, ask a family member to give you a haircut, and use the cheapest store-brand shampoo possible.
Under such circumstances, hair care would be very cheap. But many people -- myself included -- aren't willing to go to this frugal extreme.
The other extreme, however, is equally unappealing. A woman's haircut and full highlights can cost $100 to $150, and it needs to be repeated every two months.
Keratin deep-conditioning treatment costs $400 or more. High-end shampoos can cost more than $30 per bottle, and high-end styling tools require an outlay of several hundred dollars.
All told, you could easily spend $1,000 per year or more on hair care.
Here are four ways to save money on hair care without sacrificing the basic quality of care.
1. Search for the 'cheapest of the best'
Ultracheap shampoos might be filled with chemicals that strip your hair of its nutrients and leave it dry. But that does not mean you need to buy a top-end brand name. Read online user reviews to find the "cheapest of the best" shampoos and conditioners, many of which can be purchased for less than $10 per bottle.
2. Shop online for hair products
Shop on websites such as Amazon.com or Overstock.com for higher-end styling tools or hair products. You will often find these marked down from their cost at brick-and-mortar stores. Alternately, use Froogle.com, a service offered by Google, to compare the price of a particular item across multiple websites and local stores.
3. Space out your treatments
Many salons advise returning for haircuts and color treatments every two months. If you can stretch that out to three months, you will only need to make four trips to the salon each year, rather than six. That will cut the cost of your treatments by one-third.
4. Scour daily deal sites
Groupon, Scoutmob, LivingSocial and other daily deal websites often offer salon care treatments at steep discounts. Save money by breaking your loyalty to a particular stylist, and instead using the websites to find the best deal as you hop around from salon to salon. Who knows? You might find a new stylist you like better than your former favorite.
Paula Pant blogs at AffordAnything.com about building wealth and living life on your own terms. She's traveled to nearly 30 countries, owns six rental units that produce thousands in passive income, and runs her own digital marketing company. Follow Paula on Twitter @AffordAnything.