Maintaining your hair is relatively easy with the right kind of steps. Hair is made of protein, so keeping a healthy diet and good hygiene is an essential part of maintaining luscious locks. At the same time, here are some other tips about hair care, and what you can do at home to get unbelievably beautiful hair.
Washing Hair Properly
Wash hair sparingly and use a good-quality shampoo. Washing hair too often can leave hair dried out, leached of its natural oils, and may damage your hair. Aim to shampoo your hair at most every other day or only twice a week.
Try shampoos that do not contain sulfates or parabens. Sulfates are the chemicals that make shampoos lather up. Parabens are preservatives that cause irritation and eye problems after prolonged use. Both of these chemicals aren’t healthy for you or the environment so try to use shampoos with natural cleansers.
- Choose a shampoo that suits your hair type. Don’t just go for any old shampoo; go for the shampoo that works for your hair type. Typical types include (but are not limited to):
- Curly or coarse hair probably wants frizz-minimizing and softening shampoo.
- Straight or oily hair probably wants a gentle shampoo designed for daily washing.
- Coloured or treated hair probably needs a shampoo that’s fortified with extracts or amino acids, because treating your hair is essentially damaging it.
- Dry hair probably needs shampoos with glycerin and collagen to help restore some moisture into the hair.
Use conditioner that matches your hair type, length, and treatment damage. A good rule of thumb is to condition every time you shampoo your hair, although very processed or dyed hair probably needs a little more love than natural hair.
- Deep condition once a week. Use a store-bought hair care product, or venture out on your own and try a homemade solution. Deep conditioning is very good for your hair. It keeps hair soft, healthy and moisturized.
Condition your hair properly based on hair type:
- For fine hair: If you have very limp hair, try a botanical oil treatment before you shampoo. Use lavender or tea-tree oil, for example, and work it under your cuticles before shampooing. Wash shampoo away and apply conditioner from the mid-shaft down to the end. Leave in for a minute before washing.
- For medium to thick hair, use a moisturizer with natural hydrators. Keep your conditioner light. Apply conditioner all over your head and let stay for 2-3 minutes.
Be careful about using hair care products with too much protein. Too much protein can leave your hair feeling desiccated and brittle. While protein is the building block of healthy hair, use conditioners that come with balanced ingredients.
- Frizz-control serum can be used in small quantities to tame frizzes. Make sure you do not use too much, and wash once a week with a deep-cleanse shampoo to avoid build-up, which will leave hair looking dull and flaky.
Rinse your hair with vinegar before shampooing, twice a year. Doing this helps to make your hair look shinier and cleaner; plus, it treats dandruff. Use 1 part vinegar (preferably organic apple cider vinegar) to 3 parts warm water, then rinse and wash your hair as normal.
Moisturize your hair. Use five oils: almond, castor, olive, coconut and lavender oils. Mix together equal proportions of each. Alternately, use egg oil. Apply to the hair and leave in for four hours prior to showering out. Repeat twice a week.
Drying Your Hair
Let hair dry naturally. After you get out of the shower, wrap your hair in a cotton T-Shirt. Towels are made of fabric that is very rough and damaging to your hair, causing frizziness and split ends. Avoid brushing hair while wet, as it makes the hair brittle and weak. Only use a wide tooth comb to brush out tangles while hair is wet.
- Try not to use a blow-dryer. Healthy hair does not respond well to heat. Hair can sustain heat damage easily, especially from blow-dryers. If you have to use a blow-dryer, dry your hair using the lowest-temperature setting and limit usage to once a week.
- If you shower before you sleep overnight, put your hair up in a bun and let it air-dry overnight. Your hair should be dry in the morning.
Brushing Your Hair
Don’t brush your hair too much. Brushing your hair stimulates the follicles which promotes growth, but brushing too much too often, will cause damage to your hair strands that results in frizz and split ends.
After you shower, try using a wide toothed comb. Or, use your fingers, rather than a brush.
Styling and Dying Your Hair
Trim your hair regularly. The best way to get rid of split ends is to do it yourself. Take some hair shears and attack the split ends about 1⁄4 inch (0.6 cm) above the splitting. Many women with perfect hair never have split ends because they make it a priority to get their hair trimmed, or trim it themselves, every 6-8 weeks.
Style your hair naturally, minimizing styling damage. Styling by itself won’t overly damage your hair, but repeated stylings multiple times per week put some serious strain on hair.
- Avoid perming, crimping, straightening, curling, and bleaching or repeatedly coloring hair if at all possible. So you want to go out on Saturday night and need your hair straightened. That’s fine. Just make it an occasional treat, not a permanent thing.
- Don’t use rubber bands to pull back or otherwise style hair. Rubber bands will encourage your hair to get snagged, ripping it out of the follicle.
- Try not to use hairstyles that tightly pin or pull the hair back. Styles such as cornrows or tight ponytails can cause damage at the roots, or put stress on the follicles.
- Instead, experiment with up-dos: a simple ponytail or chignon looks clean and requires very few hair products. You could also just keep your hair down and wear a headband.
Treat or dye your hair sparingly, if at all. Dyeing and treating your hair can take a lot out of it. People who opt for au naturel often don’t experience the same problem with dry, damaged, or over-processed hair.
- If you do dye your hair, try it every once in a while. Take a break from dyeing and give your hair a little breather. It should respond favorably.
Maintaining Your General Health
Eat healthily. Give your hair the right amount of vitamins. Since hair is made of proteins, eat a balanced diet rich in lean protein, whole grains, fruits and vegetables. A healthy diet will ensure hair that looks and feels better.
- Make sure you get plenty of vitamin C. This vitamin strengthens hair.In addition, iron helps transport oxygen to blood vessels, zinc grows and repairs tissue, and omega-3 fatty acids grow healthy hair.
- Give your hair some time to show new brilliance. What you eat will not have an immediate difference on the hair you already have, but it will help with hair that is newly growing.
Remove stress from your life. Physical and mental stressors will keep your hair from realizing its full potential. Stress can cause hair loss, so try not to let stress overcome you. This means finding healthy emotional outlets for your stress: yoga, biking, meditation, or other forms of exercise all work well.