Do you feel like your hair always looks dry and sad? Well, past me can definitely relate to that (and maybe current me, too). For many years I did not treat my hair very well and I thought I had a completely different hair texture than I actually do as I was mistreating my hair so much! My own hair experience has certainly been a journey, but you might be damaging your hair and causing unwanted frizz and dryness without realising. Here are 8 things, based on my own experience, that you could be doing that are secretly harming your hair.
1- Overwashing your hair
It is completely understandable to want to wash your hair as soon as you feel it going greasy, but this might be causing you to overwash your hair. Overwashing strips your hair of all its oils and in turn causes your scalp to overcompensate its oil production, making your hair go greasy faster! It is recommended to wash your hair once to twice a week. For me, this is completely achievable as I have dry afro-Caribbean hair, but if you have straight, oily-prone hair, you can increase the time between hair washes by using a dry shampoo whenever you have unwanted grease. This will allow you to wash your hair less often and so your hair will retain more of its natural oils, making it more balanced and healthier balanced in the long run.
2- Undermoisturising your hair
Overwashing is particularly harmful if after washing your hair, you are not giving it any type of replenishment. If you have oily hair, the thought of putting an oil anywhere near your hair may make you want to run away screaming, but if you aren’t adding any moisturisers to your hair (apart from conditioner in the shower) then your hair may be seriously parched! Adding a hair oil after you wash your hair, to the tips or to the lengths of your hair can help you keep your hair nourished and shiny, for that salon finish at home! Any hair oil is good, but I personally love Argan oil. You can also use hair masks before washing your hair. Coconut oil is a fantastic oil to use as a hair mask as it is relatively inexpensive and extremely nourishing, but many shop-bought hair masks are good! Moisturising your hair is especially important if you have curly hair or afro-Caribbean hair like me, as our hair is very dry-prone. My hair is so thirsty and it can be difficult to give my hair all the hydration it requires, so after washing my hair I use a conditioning cream and add a hair oil daily until I wash it again.
3- Towel-drying your hair
For many of us, after washing our hair it is our routine to towel dry our hair. This could be damaging your hair and causing frizz as we have the tendency to roughly towel dry our hair. The scrubbing of your hair can harm it and even cause breakage. The unnecessary friction will destroy any curls or waves in your hair which would be holding your hair together sleekly, causing frizz. Next time you wash your hair, try squeezing the water out of your hair once with your towel, and then letting it air dry or blow dry on a cool to low heat. If you normally air dry your hair you will notice a difference in the sleekness of your hair!
4- Aggressively brushing your hair
Did you know that the way you brush your hair could be damaging it? Similar to towel-drying your hair, the way you brush your hair may be causing breakage. If you start brushing from the roots to the tips, where the majority of knots usually lie, you are putting the hair under a lot of strain. Starting from the tips of your hair and slowly brushing out the knots while moving up towards the root helps to eliminate knots without putting your hair under unnecessary strain.
5- Sleeping with your hair tied up
The overwearing of hair bands, particularly in tight ponytails, can cause excessive rubbing and wear in one area of your hair. Try to take your hair out of a tight ponytail as soon as you can if you regularly style your hair that way, and definitely do not sleep every night with a hair band in your hair. If you sleep with your hair in a ponytail, while tossing and turning it is being pulled and strained and it may rub against the hairband which can cause breakage.
6- Using heat styling tools every day
Using hair straighteners, hair dryers and hair curlers every day can seriously damage your hair. In fact, I had a friend who completely lost her curls as a teenager due to damage caused by straightening her hair every day! Try to not use heat styling tools every day, and if you can’t resist using them, opt for a lower heat and use heat protectant hair products.
7- Not protecting from the sun
Although we remember to apply SPF to our bodies, one place we often neglect to protect from the sun is our hair. The sun can dry out the hair; think of how our skin feels when it gets sunburnt! Did you know that you can buy sun cream for your hair? SPF can be found as a hair cream or lotion, mist, spray or oil. Or, if you don’t want to add any product to your hair, you can just wear a good old-fashioned sunhat!
8- Using 3-in-1 body wash, shampoo and conditioner on your hair
My rule of thumb is that if it isn’t made exclusively for hair, don’t use it on your hair. The same way you wouldn’t use shampoo to wash your face, I don’t recommend using body wash to wash your hair! Our skin and hair have very different needs and so it is unlikely that a 3-in-1 can be well suited to both your body and hair. Also, if you are conditioning at the same time as shampooing, it is likely that you are not getting all the moisturising benefits of conditioner as the shampoo element of the product will foam up and block the conditioner from smoothing your hair cuticle. This product could be drying out your hair and causing your unwanted frizz. I recommend using shampoo and then following this up by a separate conditioner afterwards- you will see your hair quality improve!
It can be difficult to get silky soft hair, especially if you have dry or curly hair. But taking some steps to be gentle with your hair and to give it the moisture it deserves can really help in reducing frizz, smoothing your hair and forming your curls. Be kind to your hair!
Comment below some hair sins that you have made, or tips on how you keep your hair healthy!
Bye for now,
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