With so many things to worry about in a day, taking the time to think about if your habits are doing damage to your hair, may never have occurred to you.
Our hair is put through stress every day, which can lead to damaged, dull, brittle hair over time. While some bad hair habits are easy to identify, most times, you’re actually DESTROYING YOUR HAIR without even knowing it. To help you with your hair care checks and balances, we compiled a list of common mistakes you might be making! And remember, , especially when it comes to something as important as your mane!
- Ponytails And Braids
Have you ever removed a ponytail after a long day of having your hair up? If your scalp feels sore or itchy, there’s a good chance you had your hair pulled back too tightly. When you pull too hard on your locks, it can affect the roots near your scalp. This can cause hair thinning and irritation. You might notice your hair starting to pull out easier.
Ponytails and braids can cause hair to break, especially if your style is pulled tightly. Braiding or putting your hair in a ponytail when it’s wet, can cause damage sooner because wet hair is more fragile.
When you do tie your hair back, choose a low, loose ponytail instead. Or, opt for looser styles like a messy bun.
- Over Using Dry Shampoo
Just like throwing your hair up in a ponytail, dry shampoo can be a great option when we’re in a pinch. And while a quick post-gym spray before an unexpected happy hour is perfectly harmless, you probably don’t want to switch out too many regular hair washes with a dry shampoo spritz. don’t switch regular hair washes with dry shampoo.
One to two dry shampoo uses per week it’s okay but more uses will allow for a build-up on the hair shaft that can weigh down the hair, and cause increased inflammation. This can lead to increased susceptibility to damage as well.
- Towel Drying Your Hair
Towel drying may seem like the more gentle approach compared to blow-drying, but that’s not always the case.
Forcefully drying your hair with towel results in frizz and tangled hair, as well as breakages.
The next time you step out of the shower and wrap your hair in a towel turban, think again. Regular towels are usually made with rough, coarse fabric.
This leads to more friction when rubbing against the hair, creating frizz, pulling on fragile strands, and causing damage and breakage. Instead, opt for a microfiber towel, which glides easily over hair, reducing strain.
- Brushing Your Hair When Wet
Your hair is at its most fragile state when is wet and is, therefore more susceptible to damage. Although it may be tempting to brush tangles out immediately after stepping out of the shower, allow your hair to dry at least half way before brushing.
During your shower, consider using a wide-toothed comb to work the conditioner through your strands. After, use a comb to work out tangles from the bottom, working your way up to the roots for the least damage. Bottom line: Use a brush only on dry hair and a wide-toothed comb on wet hair.
- Washing Your Hair Too Much
Shampoos can sometimes work too well, removing the oils your hair naturally produces resulting in hair that looks dull and dry. Our scalp produces natural oils essential for maintaining shiny, healthy hair. You don’t need to wash your hair every day, even if your hair is on the oily side! You should wash your hair every two to three days or even longer, if you can make it. Dry hair should be washed a maximum of two times a week using a shampoo with sulfate-free surfactants and high concentration of moisturizers, (glycerine, sodium PCA) to help mitigate dehydration.
Of course, there are other factors involved. If you work out and sweat a lot, you may not be able to wait three days. In that case, try rinsing with water, scrubbing the scalp, and conditioning your ends only.
You can use a little dry shampoo in your hair in-between washes!
- Using The Wrong Kind Of Shampoo And Conditioner
Not all shampoos are created for the same hair problems, so it’s important to identify what your hair goals are and shop for products accordingly. Use a lot of hair products on a daily basis? Opt for a clarifying shampoo to prevent buildup at the scalp. Suffer from dry hair? Use a shampoo infused with honey or oils to deposit moisture into your hair as you wash.
To avoid greasy strands, apply conditioner on the ends of the hair, where it truly needs hydration—not the scalp. Start with an amount about the size of a dime, and try to disperse it evenly throughout the hair. If needed, up the amount, but never exceed a quarter size.
- Skipping Out On The Heat Protectant
Much like protecting your skin with sunscreen, heat protectant works the same way to shield your hair from the detrimental effects of heat. Spraying a h eat protector on your hair proactively protects hair from heat damage, plus it seals in shine, calms frizz, and keeps hair from becoming dry. Seals In Shine, Calms Frizz, And Keeps Hair From Becoming Dry
- Your Hair Tools Are Way Too Hot
Hot tools are known culprits that rapidly suck moisture out of hair strands, literally frying your ends. You can opt to air dry instead of blow dry when you can and try going heatless a few days a week by experimenting with twists, buns, and braids.
Or you can safely heat-dry your hair with a few extra steps. Before blow-drying, Put a few drops of oil on wet hair to protect from damage while taming frizz and flyaways, you can also use a heat-protection serum. The most important step, however, is making sure your hair tools aren’t piping hot. This applies even when your hair is dry.
- You Sleep On A Cotton Pillowcase
Sleeping on a cotton pillow can lead to tangled hair and contribute to breakage. Satin pillowcases are very smooth which means that your hair won’t get tangled up while sleeping on them.
Cotton pillows are not nearly as smooth as satin ones and their roughness creates friction between your hair and the surface of the pillow which in turn can lead to hair breakage. In case of a satin pillowcase, your hair just kind of slides across the pillow and is much less likely to get damaged. hair slides across the pillow and is much less likely to get damaged.
Most styling products and treatments use chemicals, especially those that color and straighten hair. Bleach is by far the worst culprit. This doesn’t mean that they’re all bad, but just that you should exercise moderation in using them.
Bleaching your hair and dyeing it tend to go hand-in-hand. Not everyone bleaches hair before adding color, but if you do, it could be causing even more lasting damage. Bleach is meant to strip your hair of its color. Unfortunately, bleach strips essential oils and nutrients.
Your scalp naturally produces sebum, which gives your hair its shine. Bleach can strip away those oils and leave your hair looking frizzy and dry. It can also lead to scalp irritation like itching and redness.
Once you bleach, you’ve altered the strength of your hair, making it weaker. If you add blow drying and styling on top of bleaching, you can really damage your hair, causing hair breakage, a dull look, and split ends.
If you do decide to bleach your hair before coloring it, try using a deep conditioning treatment beforehand. This will help to protect your hair from any extra damage the stripping may cause.
- Hidden Chemicals In Your Hair Products
Sodium lauryl sulfate, isopropyl alcohol, polyethylene glycol…do these sound like chemicals you would willingly apply to your hair? The truth is, most hair products contain a multitude of chemicals, alcohols, and silicones, that only give your hair short-term softness and shine. In the long run, however, these ingredients do more harm than good.
- You Avoid Regular Haircuts
While the six-week rule is definitely not set in stone, most people need a trim about every three months; for others, it’s shorter or longer.
We all want long, healthy hair, however, avoiding regular haircuts is actually a counterintuitive way to achieve that long hair of your dreams. If you notice that your ends are starting to feel brittle or developing split ends, it’s time to make a trip to your salon.
Your hair is a reflection of the state of your body. Eat well, exercise, reduce stress and make sure that you use a shampoo and conditioner with a good pH balance.
I would like to hear your thoughts about what you think will damage your hair the most.
Are you destroying your hair without even knowing it? Take a good look at how you treat your hair every day, and make a few small but significant changes and achieve the strong, lustrous, healthy hair you’ve always dreamed of.