Most people, perhaps especially women, find that if their hair looks unkempt, they feel unconfident and don’t want to be seen in public. Many spend a fortune on keeping their hair in tip-top condition with regular salon treatments and expensive hair products. However, although there is no doubt that looking after your hair is important, there is not necessarily any need to take out a second mortgage to maintain healthy hair. Here are some basic tips.
Shampoo regularly…but not too regularly
How often you shampoo your hair is obviously up to you, because it really depends on your hair type. If you are unsure of how often you should be washing it, ask your hairdresser. You don’t want it to be so lank that it is sticking to your head, but nor do you want to wash it so often that it dries your hair out. If you do wash it every day during the week, try to give it a break during the weekend.
Always use a conditioner following shampooing – it will replace some of the sebum that has just been washed out along with all the dirt. Try a conditioner appropriate for your hair type – this is particularly important if your hair is greasy, because you don’t want a conditioner that will weigh it down. Don’t think that you have to pay a lot of money for a good conditioner – often cheaper ones are just as good, especially if you can leave it to soak in your hair during a bath.
Rinse with vinegar
Once you have rinsed the conditioner out of your hair, try pouring a vinegar rinse over it (around 15mls per 250mls of water). Ordinary household vinegar is fine, although many people recommend apple cider vinegar. It will smooth down the scales of your hair, making it look shiny and healthy. There may temporarily be a vinegar smell to your hair, but this will soon lift when it is dry.
Regularly change shampoos and conditioners
You will probably find that, if you use the same shampoo and conditioner all the time, your hair will eventually stop reacting to it and will look limp. Chop and change your brands to keep your hair responsive. If you are on a budget, try shopping in discount stores for branded products – you can often save a fortune this way. Or you could try home remedies, such as olive oil.
Minimize the use of hairdryers and straighteners
If you really need to use hairdryers and straighteners when styling your hair, try and cut down on the length of time that you use them and, where possible, don’t use them at all. The heat will weaken your hair, particularly if it is long and can make it look dry and dull. Always use an extra moisturising product when you use straighteners.
Don’t wear it tied back too tightly
If you usually wear your hair tied back, try to ensure that it is not tied too tightly. This will eventually weaken your hair and will cause it to split. If you must tie it back when you are out and about, use a scrunchie or other fabric coated hair bands, and then let it loose once you are home. Experiment with your hairstyle so that you aren’t constantly putting stress on the same part of your hair.
Eat a healthy diet
Something a lot of people forget is that the appearance of our hair can be affected by our diets. Ensure what you eat on a regular basis includes Vitamins A, B (the range) and D, as well as minerals such as zinc (although too much can cuase hair loss) and iron. If you are concerned that you are not getting the nutrients you need, then try taking one of the many supplements on the market.
Massage your scalp
Try and massage your scalp on a regular basis – at least every time you wash your hair. This increases blood circulation to the hair follicles and can also be incredibly relaxing, as well as helping with headaches. If you don’t like doing it yourself, see if there is a local Indian head massage practitioner, or ask your hairdresser if they do massages.
Get hair trimmed regularly
Finally, you should get your hair trimmed on a regular basis. This helps keep it looking neat, which will make you feel great. If you have damaged hair at the ends, it will eventually spread up the hair shaft, leaving you with long-term damage. Regular trimming will minimize this problem – it will also enable you to maintain and up-to-date hairstyle.
It doesn’t have to take up a lot of your time to ensure that you maintain healthy hair, particularly once it becomes a habit.