Tips for Bringing Damaged Hair Back to Health

July 26, 2019

We tend to always want what we don’t have. This is certainly true when it comes to our hair. Those with curly hair wish they had straight locks, dark-haired beauties want to go blond, and those with thin hair long for thick full-bodied tresses.

Advancements in hair science and technology have made it possible for us to have whatever style, colour, length, and type of hair we want. During the process, without realising, we can actually end up damaging our hair making it dry, brittle, and dull. Worst of all, some can even end up with hair loss!

Let’s explore a number of harmful things that could cause damage to our hair and what we could do to help restore it back to good health.

    Photo by Štefan Štefančík on Unsplash

1. Blow drying and use of curling or straightening irons

Applying heat to our hair is literally like cooking it! Excessive heat causes hair breakage, split ends, and loss of moisture. Avoid using heating tools as much as you can. If you do need to use a blow dryer, make sure you pick the lowest heat setting and keep it a few inches away from your hair. Use hair protectant sprays, creams or serums before styling your hair with a curling/straightening iron to protect it from heat damage and to keep its shine.

2. Bleaching, perming and relaxing hair

According to Hairfinder®, bleach and perming solutions are strong chemicals that make the hair cuticle (outermost covering of the inner hair cortex) rise up and swell, making your hair appear rough and frizzy. As much as possible, have only one service at a time and give your hair at least two weeks or up to a month before bleaching or colouring it. Use specially formulated shampoo and conditioner for chemically treated hair to keep your hair looking healthy.

3. Rubbing and brushing wet hair

Vigorously rubbing hair with a towel and brushing it while wet can cause hair breakage. Wet hair is weak and fragile, so wrap it with a towel to keep the moisture in and air-dry hair naturally before brushing it gently with a wide-tooth comb.

4. Braiding, ponytails, tight buns, and hair extensions

Wearing tightly pulled back hair for long periods can break hair from the roots, resulting to splitting, hair weakness, follicle damage, and yes, even hair loss. Keep your hair lightly braided or pulled back. Hang it loose from time to time and use hair ties that hold hair in place but don’t cause damage. Also avoid hair extensions that use weaves, clips, or glue that can pull your hair. Opt instead for non-invasive hair extensions that give your hair a natural look without damaging your own.

5. Washing hair using shampoo and conditioner

Too much washing of your hair can cause a dry flaky scalp, too little will give you dirty and oily hair. The American Academy of Dermatology suggests washing your hair as often as it needs based on how oily your scalp gets. Use shampoo and conditioner that best fits your hair type, gently massaging shampoo on your scalp and applying conditioner on your hair tips. This will help keep your hair looking healthier, shinier, and stronger. If you love to swim, protect your hair from the harmful effects of chlorine by wearing a swimming cap and making sure to condition hair after a swim to bring back loss moisture.

This said, nothing replaces a balanced diet, stress-free lifestyle, and proper nutrition as the ultimate key to hair health. Maintain healthy hair with food and vegetables rich in omega-3 fatty acids, protein, iron, antioxidants, calcium, and vitamins.

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