Lustrous, silky smooth and well styled – yes, we are talking about your hair or maybe the hair you aspire to possess! The well maintained mane that instantly draws attention to you and speaks volumes about your personality can now be yours but with a little effort!
Before following any hair care regime, learn to recognize your hair type as that will be the defining point of your regime and styling. Both men and women can have Oily hair characterized by excess oiliness and proneness to look flat; Dry hair that becomes frizzy and takes a tussled up look; coarse hair that will not yield easily to anything; wavy hair, straight hair and curly hair each of which come with their own benefits and banes. Besides these basic ones, there are many others like wiry, bouncy, coiled, etc.
So what makes your hair the way it is? Well, you can blame this one on your parents as hair types are mostly hereditary. Other factors like styling products, health conditions, and hormonal changes also affect your hair type to some extent.
Common Hair Problems:
Living the modern life, poor diet, busy lives, artificial styling products, and stress are the main causes behind hair problems. Almost everyone we know is affected by oily or dry hair, dull hair, breakage, split ends, lack of bounce, dandruff, itching and hair fall. But with these tips you can create a proper hair care regime that suits your hair type and lifestyle.
Hair Care Tips:
Irrespective of your gender, age and geographical location, hair care is best when it is done naturally. Use homemade remedies for your hair problems as much as possible. They cost hardly anything, are easy to make, and easier to use.
Some Dos for That Perfect ‘Do’
1. Do oil your hair: A light massage to the scalp with an oil that suits you at least twice a week will work magic for your tresses. Choose any hair oil ranging from mustard oil to olive oil, lavender oil to coconut oil. Find out what works best for you.
2. Do choose the right shampoo: This can be tricky, but it’s worth it. After identifying your hair type, do a little research and pick the best shampoo that suits your hair type. Using the wrong shampoo can be damaging to your hair. Remember that the motive of shampooing is not just to clean hair, but is also to nurture it.
3. Do use conditioners: Hair, like skin, needs extra pampering to protect it from the effects of UV rays, dust and pollution. Deep conditioning is like a hair spa at home! Remember to use conditioner along the length of the hair and NOT at the roots. That will make your hair oily and dull.
4. Do try herbal remedies: Baking soda, apple cider vinegar, Indian gooseberry (amla), lemon juice, egg, yogurt and onion juice are all herbal treatments for hair problems. See our homemade remedies section to find out more. You will possibly save a lot of time and money.
5. Do have a healthy diet. It goes without saying that your hair is part of your body and takes nourishment from you. Your hair actually reflects your overall health! Take a high protein diet, eat lots of fruits, skip junk food and too much caffeine… and quit smoking!
6. Do hydrate: Like your skin, your hair also needs moisture from within. Drink at least 8-10 glasses of water each day.
7. Do select the right comb and hair brush: Fine toothed, plastic combs and hair brushes will make your hair brittle and also irritate the scalp. Invest in a wide-toothed comb or a brush with soft tips. Wooden combs are also useful as they minimize hair frizz caused by static electricity created by friction from plastic combs.
8. Do maximize on your natural hair texture: Avoid styling and changing your hair style radically to get the ‘in vogue’ look. Stick to your natural texture as much as possible. Many hairstyles can be done with your natural hair…experiment!
9. Do let your hair breathe: Avoid styles that pull back your hair too tightly. Dreadlocks, high ponytails and tight braids can trigger a receding hairline. As much as possible let your hair loose, especially at night.
…And Some Don’ts:
1. Don’t stay in the sun too long: Sun exposure is the leading reason behind dull, frizzy unhealthy hair. Prolonged exposure can also lead to hair loss. If you can’t stay indoors too long, use a conditioner with sun block, wear a hat or scarf and oil your hair properly before shampooing.
2. Don’t make the swimming pool your second home: Chlorine damage is another cause of hair problems. Wash and condition your hair both before and after a swim. Open air pools or the beach are best avoided during peak afternoon hours.
3. Don’t use harsh chemical treatments: Perming, permanent straightening, color streaks and bleaching are all very ‘in’. But go slow on them as they can cause severe damage to your hair. Again, natural is best! If you already have permed your hair, use natural remedies to nurture your mane back to health!
4. Don’t use too much hair gel or wax: Avoid overusing gels and wax on your hair as they make hair fragile and susceptible to falling. The wet look can soon turn into a ‘dude-where’s-your-hair’ look! But if you have to use some wetness to keep your hair from straying, GO Natural!
5. Don’t brush wet hair: Wet hair is more sensitive to falling and getting split ends. Air dry your hair and brush it only when it is at least 80% dry.
6. Don’t overuse hair dryers and straighteners: Hair that is subjected to these trinkets becomes prone to excessive dryness. This will cause brittleness, roughness and split ends. Use only when necessary and only after deep conditioning.
7. Don’t shampoo with hot water: Your hair needs the natural oil secreted by the hair roots. Washing with very hot water will strip the natural oil and make your hair frizzy and dry. Use cold water and dilute your shampoo among other such hair wash tips to keep your stresses tangle free and soft!
Most possibly, your mother has always been badgering you with all these tips. No surprises, but she’s right about them! Uncared for hair can be a cause for many woes – baldness and thinning hair being the leading ones. However, if your hair is signaling to some serious underlying health problem, do not hesitate in approaching a doctor.