There’s nothing more youthful than a full, healthy head of hair. Most people will do whatever it takes to keep their hair in good condition. You probably already know that overprocessing and tearing apart split ends can damage your hair. However, even if you avoid these examples, you still need to make sure you’re not guilty of other everyday habits that may also destroy your strands. Here are the most common ways unsuspecting people ruin their hair and how you can remedy the situation:
1. Washing Too Frequently
Clean hair looks best, and convincing shampoo advertisements encourage people to wash and scrub their tresses daily. Over-washing, however, strips hair of its natural oils. These oils protect your hair from environmental stresses. They also lock in moisture and give your locks a beautiful shine. When you over-shampoo, you may end up with dry strands and an itchy scalp. Even worse, shampooing too frequently may also lead to premature hair loss.
What’s the solution? Try washing your hair every other day instead. Your scalp won’t get too oily in this amount of time, and washing less often will make your hair stronger. If your hair is difficult to style between washes, consider refreshing it with dry shampoo. When it’s time to shampoo again, look for products that don’t contain harsh ingredients, such as sulfates. Gentle shampoos are better for your scalp.
2. Turning Up the Hot Water
A hot shower feels great on tired muscles, and it’s also a good way to wake yourself up on a cold day. However, washing your hair with overly hot water isn’t a good habit. The hair cuticle opens in hot water. When this happens, moisture escapes from the stands, and your hair may become brittle or dry. Repeated exposure to hot water prevents the cuticle from lying flat, and you may notice more frizz than usual.
It’s easy to stop this bad habit, and it doesn’t involve giving up your hot showers. Enjoy hot water when washing your body, but change the temperature to lukewarm when it’s time to wash your hair. After applying a conditioner to hold in moisture, rinse your hair with cold water. Although it may give you a slight shock, cold water actually closes the cuticle and creates smoother, shinier strands.
3. Styling with Heat
Blow-drying speeds up the hair drying process. It’s also a modern amenity many people can’t fathom living without. However, styling with a blow-dryer, flat iron, or curling rod is the number one way to damage your hair. Heat damage causes split ends and breakage. The only way to get rid of split ends is with a haircut, although you may be able to camouflage them with a deep conditioner.
Instead of relying on heat, try letting your hair air dry. It will take longer to fully dry, but your hair will look healthier. You may even be able to go longer between trims. You may even learn that you like the natural texture of your hair. If giving up the blow-dryer gives you anxiety, try drying your hair on a cooler setting and use a heat protectant.
4. Brushing the Wrong Way
Do you remember the saying that you should brush your hair 100 strokes before bed? This hair myth does more harm than good. Sure, brushing your hair removes tangles and helps you style your strands. Unfortunately, brushing too much can also lead to damage and premature hair loss. Aggressively brushing from the scalp downward puts unnecessary stress on your hair. Ripping out knots also causes breakage. Learning a better way to brush will protect your hair.
Always start brushing at the ends. Doing so will make it easier to loosen tangles without pulling out stands. Avoid brushing wet hair. Your tresses are the most vulnerable to damage when wet. Instead, detangle wet hair with a wide-tooth comb, and always apply a leave-in conditioner if your hair tangles frequently. Spray any stubborn knots with a detangler, especially if you have a tender scalp.
5. The Wrong Pillowcase
What material is your pillowcase? Most pillowcases are made from cotton or flannel. While these materials are great for bed sheets, they’re not the best option for keeping your hair in good shape. Cotton pillowcases are curly hair’s worst enemy. The fabric pulls apart curls and leaves behind a halo of frizz. Sleeping with a cotton pillowcase may even be the reason you keep waking up with a head full of tangles and knots.s
No, this doesn’t mean you can’t sleep without your favorite pillow. It’s just time to upgrade to a more hair-friendly pillowcase. Consider trading in your cotton pillowcases for satin or silk. These fabrics are much slicker than cotton. Your hair will glide across these smooth pillowcases. You’ll wake up in the morning with fewer tangles, and less frizz means you won’t spend the entire morning styling your locks. Besides, there’s something luxurious about owning a silk pillowcase.
6. Wearing Tight Ponytails
There’s something timeless and classic about a ponytail. This hairstyle has remained popular for decades. It’s a popular way to cool off the back of your neck without compromising style. However, you may want to rethink your beloved hairdo if you noticed you’re losing more locks than usual. Pulling your hair back in a tight ponytail can damage your scalp. Putting too much stress on tension on the hairline may cause stands to break at the root. Some people even get painful migraines from pulling their hair back too tightly.
It’s still possible to wear a ponytail without damaging your hair. Instead of using traditional rubber bands, try securing your hair with a soft scrunchie. Loosely pulling your hair back at the nape of your neck is a good alternative to the standard high ponytail. Never put your hair in a ponytail while it’s still wet. That’s a surefire way to damage your strands permanently.
Break Bad Habits for More Good Hair Days
How many of these everyday hair habits apply to you? Although these habits may seem small, they can cause a significant amount of damage to your hair. Beautiful hair starts with proper care. Breaking these bad hair habits will ensure you always have a good hair day.