Where can I find scarves?
EVERYWHERE! Most of my favourite scarves I found at thrift stores, consignment stores etc. I have lots of advice about thrift shopping, so let me know if you’d like to hear more about it! Bottom line: make sure that you wash the scarves (or anything else that you get) as soon as you buy them. Thrift stores are amazing for finding incredibly inexpensive (but high quality!), unique scarves and accessories. I can’t even count how many gorgeous silk scarves, pashminas etc I’ve gotten for a few dollars each (or less!) Many of my scarves were gifts from friends. Make sure to donate your unused ones to a gemach, or host a tichel swapping night! I also have bought and received many of my scarves in Jerusalem, where they are sold everywhere. If you are there, make sure to check out the shuk (market) and the Ben Yehuda/Yafo area. As well, take a look in your current closet! Experiment with what you already have; a simple pashmina scarf can be used for any of the rectangular scarf ties that I’ve posted. A ripped skirt can easily be turned into a tichel! I’ve also noticed that many stores here in the USA have lots of scarves… H&M, Forever21 etc. In Canada, I’ve seen great scarves sold at Ardene. Most art boutiques (with jewelry, small trinkets) have gorgeous handmade scarves. Dollar stores have them too. There are also many online options. Just search “tichel”, “mitpachat”, “head covering” “hair wrapping” and/or “scarf” and you will find lots.
How do I prevent my scarf from slipping back during the day?
This used to be a big problem for me, as I am quite an active person and don’t have time to be sneaking off to the bathroom to rewrap my scarf 24/7. At first I thought that tying it tighter would help. Wrong. It just gave me headaches and slipped back more. Then I tried loose tying. This helped somewhat because I could shift the scarf forward when I needed to but it didn’t prevent slippage. Then one day my friend insisted (thank you!) that I try something called a “Grip Comfort Band” and… wow. I haven’t gone without one since! This thing is an adjustable headband made of stretch velvet. You wear it with the ridged side of the velvet facing forward, so the scarf is met with friction if it tries to move back. It works. It REALLY works. I’ve had days where I haven’t been home from morning til night… removing layers, putting a hood on and off, etc. My scarf didn’t budge! These things tend to be over priced (about $15-20 for one, plus shipping) but they are totally worth it. I wear mine every day. So just search “Grip Comfort Band” and you should be able to find one quite easily. I also suppose that if you’re crafty, you could simply buy some stretch velvet and make one yourself! Also, try to avoid using a lot of hair conditioner on your roots, because this can make things slippery. (Personally, I just use it on the ends of my hair.) See recommended fabrics for more anti-slippage advice.
Don’t headwraps give you headaches? Don’t the tips of your ears hurt?
As a migrane sufferer, I know how awful this can be. Yes, using lots of knots and tying your scarf too tightly can give you a bad headache. Since I’ve been using the velvet headband (see above), I haven’t had a problem with headaches because you don’t have to tie your scarves tightly. I would highly recommend the “Regal Wrap” tie, because it doesn’t require you to make any knots. As for ears, I tend to keep my ears under my scarf, and then sometimes I’ll let them out if the scarf is making it hard to hear. I’ve only found that they hurt if the material is too rough, or the scarf is tied too tightly. Bottom line: DO NOT tie your scarf tightly! This does not prevent slipping and will only give you headaches and hurt your ears.
How do I accessorize?
Stretch headbands, sashes, ribbons, pins, skinny scarves, and even necklaces can all be used to accessorize your scarf. Have fun and experiment. Some of the things that can look gaudy otherwise can look great pinned on your head! Check out craft stores for stretch lace and ribbons. Look to thrift stores for antique pins, and colourful sashes. Breathe new life into your old stretch headbands For necklaces, just pin them in and tuck the ends underneath.
You will find that covering your hair with a scarf gives you a very regal look. Like a ballerina or royalty. Our sages weren’t kidding when they refer to a married woman as a queen! Your posture will improve (mine did!) and your face will glow. I find that covering my hair with a scarf brings more attention to my eyes and face… so if you enjoy makeup, go for it! Also, earrings are a must for me, because they really add to your glow and frame your face nicely.
How do you wash tichels?
Since I often wear a simple cotton scarf or headband underneath the scarf that is showing, I don’t have to wash the fancy ones often. When in doubt, hand wash. I’ve found that pashminas and pre-shrunk cotton scarves do well in the washer. Israeli tichels tend to pull a bit, so I would use a delicate cycle or hand wash. Since your scarves are on your head, they tend to get less dirty/sweaty than your clothes, so you really don’t need to wash them as often. Be careful with intense dyes because they can bleed…
What fabrics do you recommend?
One thing that I love about wearing tichels is how much they help when dealing with extreme weather. When it’s sweltering outside, they keep the hair off of your face and neck and prevent your scalp from getting burned. Keep in mind that light, breathable fabrics are best for hot weather… and avoid over-layering! When it’s cold outside, scarves can do wonders for keeping you warm! I find that I can cover my ears much better with a scarf than with a hat… and if you layer them, even warmer! Of course, I recommend seeking out environmentally friendly fabrics (such as bamboo) and supporting local designers. Keep in mind that slippery fabrics are… slippery. Using a grip comfort band (see above) helps a lot. Adding a pretty pin can help keep the wrap in place and prevent slipping (super helpful when dancing at weddings!) Cotton slips the least, but in my experience tends to wear out faster. Silk is great, simple, and looks super fancy… but make sure you tie it well or it will slip! Human-made materials can work well, but don’t allow your scalp to breathe as much. Pashminas are great for the winter and don’t slip if you tie them well.
Happy Wrapping! Love, Andrea