October 25, 2013
Bringing your damaged hair back to life can seem difficult, but with work and patience, you can have healthy tresses again. Damaged hair can stem from many causes, but all of them can be combated, prevented or fixed with the right methods and products.
Stop the bad habits
Before you break out the hair rejuvenation products, take a look at your daily routine to figure out if you're causing unnecessary harm. Your hair can become delicate and even fragile if you don't care for it properly. Bad practices range from towel-drying your hair too vigorously to over exposing it to UV rays.
Washing your hair daily
Though daily showers are certainly recommended, washing your hair daily is not. When hair gets wet, the shaft of each strand swells and becomes more elastic. This makes your hair more prone to breakage, especially if you run a comb or brush through it. Shampoos are great for oily hair, but the chemicals used to fight oil can sometimes cause damage to your hair. According to Allure Magazine, New Orleans dermatologist Mary Lupo suggests focusing product on the two inches at the scalp, where most of the oil accumulates.
Drying your hair
Drying sounds simple, but it's possible that you aren't using the healthiest methods. The first step in drying is always with a towel. According to Allure, it is better to blot than rub your hair dry. They even suggest a microfiber towel rather than the rougher textured traditional terry-cloth.
Some people prefer to air dry their hair rather than use a blow-dryer. However, if you prefer blow-drying, Ranella Hirsch, a dermatologist from Boston, suggests either towel-drying your hair first or waiting, in a statement made to Allure.
Keep an eye on the temperature you're subjecting your hair to.Women's Health Magazine notes that if your hair-styling practices reach temperatures of 212 degrees, the water inside each strand will boil and form blisters. These blisters eventually break and result in split ends or breakage. Women's Health Magazine also points out that split ends can only be be fixed with a trim every six to eight weeks.
Tone down your combing
Be careful with when, how often and with what you're combing your hair with. One of the worst times you can comb your hair is while it is wet. As mentioned above, wet hair is more elastic, and combing your hair before it dries stretches the strands and makes them more prone to breakage. SELF Magazine suggests using wide toothed combs if you must brush your hair while it's wet.
Frequently combing and brushing your hair can also cause damage. The more friction you subject your hair to, the more weak it becomes. Consider getting rid of your tougher bristled brushes and investing in a more forgiving one.
Watch that artificial coloring
Hair dyes range anywhere from temporary and semi-permanent to permanent. None of these treatments are healthy for your hair. Hair dyes contain peroxide, which break down your hair's protective layer, which then causes tears. If you enjoy having a different hair color, consider shampoos and conditioners designed for colored hair. Women's Health Magazine suggests using a small dab of silicone serum mid-shaft to the ends to keep the cuticles moisturized.
Shaping your hair
Whether you're looking to straighten or curl your hair, use caution. According to Women's Health, straightening and perming your hair can alter the structure, drying out the strands, which then causes the hair to soak up any moisture. Then you're stuck with frizzy hair.
SELF points out that the type of damage your hair sustains from ironing can depend on when you do it. If done while hair is dry, it can fry your strands. If done while your strands are wet, it can have the same effect as blow-drying wet hair, rapidly forming blisters within each strand.
Exposing your hair to too much sun
According to U.S. News, too much sun can be bad for your hair as well because the prolonged heat can dry out your strands. Additionally, for those with dyed hair, it can cause the color to fade more rapidly.
Using hair rejuvenation products
There are loads of hair products on the market that will moisturize and protect your hair. The Phytojoba Intense Hydrating Shampoo promises to not only bring rehydrate your hair, but also to care for it. After you shampoo, use an equally hydrating conditioner. The Steiner Thirst Quencher Moisturizing Conditioner 1000ml is specially formulated for damaged tresses and works for chemically treated hair as well.
In addition, there are plenty of products to use between hair washing, ranging from leave-in treatments to serums, that you can apply before blow-drying your hair. Whatever products you may choose to use, remember to be mindful your daily routines and try your best to avoid harmful practices. Your coif will be healthy and lustrous, and you may never have a bad hair day again.