Do the words 'dry hair', 'split ends', 'breakage' or 'frizz' strike a chord with you? Then, you've come to the right place. All these words signify hair damage and indicate that your hair requires your attention.
Discover the different types, causes and ways to repair your hair damage in this post.
What Exactly Is Hair Damage?
Hair damage usually refers to the damage caused to the outer layer of the hair or the cuticle. The cuticle opens and makes the hair shaft susceptible to more damage.
Hair that’s damaged can look and feel.
What Are The Types Of Hair Damage?
1. Dull And Dry Hair
Damaged hair is deprived of the natural oils on the outer layer of your hair. This causes the hair to lose its shine. Shampoos containing harsh chemicals can strip off the natural oils from your scalp and hair. Wash your hair less often and use shampoos that suit your hair type.
Damaged hair is prone to tangles. The raised cuticles create friction between the hair strands and cause them to get intertwined. Lack of moisture in the hair can aggravate this situation. Brush with a wide-toothed comb starting at the bottom and work your way up. Detangling sprays, oils, conditioners and masks come to your rescue.
When the cuticle does not lay flat, it can cause frizz. Frizz can appear at the surface level, crown level, top of the hair or at the ends. Humidity and damaged hair can cause frizz in the hair. Serums help in taming the frizz.
4. Brittleness And Breakage
Split ends occur when a hair strand splits into two. It can lead to brittle hair that is prone to breakage. Hair dusting, serums and conditioners can fix split ends to a large extent.
What Causes Hair Damage?
1. Heat Styling
Heat during hair styling like straightening, curling or blow drying can open up the cuticle and make the hair porous. High temperatures are a sure shot cause of damaged hair.
If you have to style for an important event, what you can do is blow dry from a distance of about six inches and use a good heat protectant serum. Also, make sure you dry your hair partially with a soft cotton T-shirt before beginning to heat style your hair.
Bleaching is a process to turn hair a shade or two lighter than your natural hair color. The technique lies in dissolving the melanin pigment that gives hair its color. Bleaching can make the hair dry, brittle and rough. It can also remove the elasticity from hair.
To minimise further damage from bleaching, use sun protective gear (hats and caps) and moisturizing ingredients for your hair. Also, protect your hair from chlorinated water in the swimming pools. It can make your hair turn green and can strip off more moisture from the hair.
3. Chemical Dyes
Dying your hair to make a fashion statement comes with a price. The price is hair damage! Yes, the pigments in your hair dyes can suck out the moisture from your hair making them rough to touch. Dry hair is prone to split ends and breakage.
Pro Tip :
Choose hair dyes that are within the three shades that are closer to your natural hair color. Unnatural colors require frequent touching up which means your hair is exposed to more and more dye.
The easiest way to minimise hair damage due to dyeing is to get it done less frequently. Hair care experts at SkinKraft suggest using shampoos meant for dyed hair and washing hair less frequently to avoid frequent touch ups.
Word Of Caution:
Never go for too many treatments like perming, straightening or curling in between your dyeing sessions. Give a few weeks of time in between different treatments.
Other causes for hair damage include:
- Harsh hair care
- Massaging hair too hard while shampooing
- Rubbing hair aggressively with a towel
- Hot showers
- Lack of humidity
- Exposure to sun
- Wind blowing through hair
- Sleeping with your hair down
How Do You Treat Damaged Hair?
1. Hair Care Routine
Switch to a gentle hair care routine. This requires some level of research before you step out to purchase your shampoo, conditioner, oil and serums. Washing and conditioning hair are the basics of any hair care routine.
Make sure you buy products that are free of sulfates, parabens, alcohols, dyes and artificial fragrances. Wash your hair regularly to get rid of the dirt, sebum and dead skin cells. You could use deep conditioning treatments available in the market to repair damaged hair. These contain more potent ingredients and have longer leave-on times.
2. Apply Hair Serum
We can’t stress enough on the importance of serums. They protect hair from heat styling, control frizz and leave a shine on your hair. As a general rule of thumb, apply serum on your hair and the ends. Applying it on the scalp can make the hair look greasy.
3. Trim Your Hair
Get your hair trimmed once in 6-8 weeks to remove or prevent split ends. Split ends when left untreated can cause brittle, dry and damaged hair.
4. Homemade Masks
Inexpensive at-home masks can repair damaged hair and make your hair healthy.
Use a ripe avocado and an egg to make a hair mask and leave it on for 20 minutes. Avocado is rich in vitamins, minerals and fatty acids - everything you need for healthy hair.
Blend a ripe banana with curd or mix it with olive oil. Apply this mixture on your hair and scalp. Wash with a gentle shampoo. Bananas contain carbohydrates, potassium, vitamins and natural oils needed to add moisture to the hair.
Use egg white and half a lemon to make a smooth mixture. Apply it on your hair and cover with a shower cap for 30 minutes. Rinse with a mild shampoo. Eggs are loaded with proteins, vitamins A, D and E. They work like conditioners and bring back the lost shine. Lemon is antifungal and helps to clear up the product residue on your hair.
5. Hair Oils
Coconut oil is one of nature's fab products for your hair. It can penetrate the cuticle of your hair to repair hair damage.
Olive oil is considered as an excellent moisturizing agent and can help replenish the lost moisture from your hair.
Almond oil helps in rehydrating dry strands and reducing the frizz.
Argan oil is enriched with vitamin E and A. It hydrates the hair and prevents breakage.
Tips To Control Your Hair Damage
- Resist the urge to rub shampoo on hair strands. Simply massage it on your scalp and let it run through your hair. Using more product to generate more foam results in dryness.
- Wrap your hair in a soft cotton t-shirt that will absorb the water. Air dry your hair later.
- Do not brush your hair when it is wet as the hair is delicate when damp.
- Do not sleep in tight hairstyles like ponytails and buns.
- Limit your heat styling, dyeing and bleaching sessions.
- If you have tangled hair, brush your hair with a wide-toothed comb after applying conditioner to your hair in the shower.
Hair damage can be attributed to one or many factors like heat styling, bleaching, dying, hot showers, bad hair care routines and so on. The easiest ways to repair hair damage include gentle hair care, serums, oils and homemade masks. We hope these help you bring back the lost glory of your locks.
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