Having a good hair day shouldn't be limited to salon visits or hours spent in front of the mirror. But certain harmful hair habits will make those good hair days few and far between. Curbing these habits and implementing some seriously low-maintenance steps into your natural haircare routine will get you on your way to shiny, bouncy hair. Here are the 7 Common Hair Mistakes You May Be Making.
Overwashing Your Hair
Washing your hair daily can strip it of its natural oils, leading to dryness and increased susceptibility to damage. Instead, aim to wash your hair 2-3 times a week, adjusting based on your hair type and lifestyle. If you have an oily scalp, try a natural dry shampoo (no talc, please) in between washes to keep your hair fresh. GK ProTip: avoid washing your hair with scalding hot water. While a piping hot shower feels ahhhmazing, hot water makes the pores of your hair follicles open up naturally. The high temperature damages your strands by destroying the keratin and lipid bonds on your hair cuticles. This ruptures the cuticle layers, causing frizz. Cold water shrinks the pores and keeps them shut, reducing hair frizz.
Brushing And Styling Wet Hair
Wet hair is seriously vulnerable to breakage. Instead of wet brushing, gently detangle your damp hair using a wide-toothed comb or your fingers. Start from the ends and work your way up to prevent unnecessary damage. Wait for your hair to dry before styling. This may be hard to hear for those of you loving the slicked-back ponytail trend - but trust us - we have a workaround! Wet hair stretches, so if you anchor it back when it's wet, as it dries and shortens, you're going to see breakage. If you want the wet, slick-backed look, style a dry ponytail and smooth back with a styling cream like the Serenity Smoothing Cream from Innersense Organic Beauty (also excellent for men's hair styling). While we're talking tight hairstyles - routinely pulling your hair into tight ponytails or braids can cause stress on the hair shaft and lead to breakage. Opt for looser styles and give your hair a break from tight hairstyles to promote healthier growth. We love accessories that are gentle on your strands, like satin scrunchies and pillowcases.
Regular use of heated styling tools like straighteners, curling irons, and hair dryers causes breakage, decreases moisture in your hair, and slows growth. Extreme heat and twisting from hot rollers or curling irons can also lead to hair thinning or falling out (this is known as traction alopecia). Embrace your air-dried natural texture and limit heat styling to special occasions. If air-drying isn't an option, use an ultra-absorbing microfiber hair towel before diffusing hair, to protect wet hair and cut blow-dry time in half.
Skipping Heat Protectant
Using heated styling tools without a heat protectant can cause irreversible damage to your strands. Heat protectants like Innersense Organic Beauty's Hair Love Prep Spray create a barrier between your hair and the heat, preventing breakage and split ends. GK ProTip: Hair should be bone dry before flat-ironing or curling. If you can hear it sizzle, crackle, pop - it's not dry.
Ignoring Scalp Health
Healthy hair starts at the root. It takes a healthy scalp to grow healthy hair. Neglecting scalp care can lead to dandruff, oily scalp, and hair loss. Incorporate scalp exfoliation and regular massages into your hair care routine to promote blood circulation and maintain a healthy scalp. Use a clarifying shampoo occasionally to maintain a healthy scalp environment.
While at it, incorporate rosemary or black castor oil into your scalp massage. Studies show rosemary increases circulation, preventing hair follicles from being starved of blood supply and dying off. Want to up your scalp massage game? Use a gua sha stone.
Neglecting Regular Hair Trims
If your hair is easily tangled in your brush or fingers, your ends are probably a little split and in need of a trim. Freshly cut ends help to detangle your hair and are essential to maintaining hair health. Trimming the ends every six to eight weeks helps prevent split ends from travelling up the hair shaft and causing further damage.
Ignoring Diet and Hydration
Your hair's health is closely tied to your overall well-being. A poor diet and dehydration can manifest in dull, lifeless hair. Nourish your hair from within. Your body needs adequate nutrients to support healthy hair. Hair is made of protein, so incorporating foods rich in protein, like chicken, fish, nuts, and legumes, can help strengthen and promote healthy locks. Vitamins and minerals such as biotin and collagen provide the body with specific amino acids that make up keratin (the protein that helps form hair). Biotin, in particular, is known as the "hair growth vitamin" and can be found in foods like eggs, almonds, and sweet potatoes.
Achieving and maintaining healthy hair requires a combination of good habits and the right products. Just like natural skincare routines, hair care routines are highly customizable. If you'd like a personalized hair care routine, contact your knowledgeable Green Kiss Educator.