Do you ever just wish you were in a Pantene commercial? Because same. Finally, I can say that I might have come very close. No, I’m not Pantene’s latest face, however; Pantene, hit me up with a sponsorship (kidding, but not really). What I am trying to get at is I have mastered the art of haircare and hairstyling in the past couple months after years of trial and failure.
Are you making the same mistakes I once made to damage my hair? The way you wash, style, and dry your hair can dramatically alter the health and appearance of your hair. Don’t worry, I am sharing all my tips and tricks, as per usual, to help you get through the tough times of dull and unruly hair.
This one seems like a no-brainer, but sometimes your hair needs to breathe, literally. Over styling hair is the biggest mistake most people make. Heat styling breaks down the hydrogen bonds in your hair; concentrated heat can have long lasting damages — such as hair loss, thinning, and breakage — especially when done to wet and fragile hair consistently.
Not Brushing Before Washing
Hair is most fragile when it is wet. Brushing your hair before hopping in the shower reduces your chances of annoying tangles. If you like combing your hair in the shower, opt for applying conditioner first, then untangling the strands with your fingers before combing your hair with a wide toothed comb.
Washing your hair everyday strips your hair of its natural oils that maintain its shininess and health. I workout almost daily so an alternative to this habit is washing your hair with just water or a light conditioner to prevent damaging the scalp.
Washing with Shampoo and Conditioner Always
Consistent shampooing dries out your hair and increases chances of breakage. As previously stated, I normally only condition my hair when I shower. Last year my hair was extremely damaged from consistent shampooing and over-styling; conditioning my hair every time I shower and skipping shampooing for most days of the week have revived my hair to a luscious state.
Aggressive Towel Drying
Remember that your hair is most fragile when it is wet? Aggressively towel drying your hair can damage the hair cuticle resulting in dullness, frizz, and breakage. Blotting your hair with a towel and air drying before styling and/or applying product is your best bet for preserving healthy strands of hair. Don’t avoid towel drying all together by heat-styling your hair wet because it will yield greater damage.
Hairspray Before Styling
I have made this mistake many times when upset with how my hair looks after tons of product and attempting to fix it by re-blowing my hair. This is a big no-no, especially with flat irons. If you hear a sizzling noise, chances are whatever you are doing is not healthy for your hair. The alcohols in hair spray burn on contact with heat. You can still live your best voluminous life, but AFTER you style your hair.
At this point, I feel like a high school gym teacher teaching safe sex — just with more credentials. Protection is, in fact, important. Using heat protection products can shield your hair from the damaging aftermath caused by heat styling. I know I can’t live without my blow dryer, and I will still be able to use it years from now as hair protection is vital to prevent hair loss and damage.