Hair Care 4: Tips for Dry Hair

by Sanjeev on November 12, 2010 · 25 comments

Dry Hair

Dry Hair

Hair Care Tips for Dry Hair

Once you know the structure of your hair, you can logically derive the cause for the problem you are facing and can even predict the tips or products that you need to cure your dry hair. For example, now you know that the natural oil (sebum) secreted by the sebaceous glands keeps the hair healthy and shiny. If the sebum is produced excessively, the hair will beome greasy whereas if it’s removed or present in less amount, the hair will become dry, frizzy, or full of split ends. In this case, all the dry hair tips would be about somehow promoting the secretion of sebum, preventing the removal of of moisture from hair, and moisturizing your hair. There! I have said that in a nutshell. Now let me elaborate on the causes of removal of Sebum or moisture from hair and then give the tips for prevention and cure of dry hair:

Causes of Dry Hair

1. Diet related.

2. The most common external cause is ofcourse excessive shampooing. Yes shampoos are needed to cleanse your hair of sweat, dirt, and excess oil. But a shampoos are also detergents which washe away all the natural hair oil from our hair. And shampooing without using a conditioner harms the hair further.

3. Using a blow dryer or curling iron too often is the second common cause for dry hair. Well, unless you know great tips for blowdrying or curling your hair, I have only one word for you- DON’T.

The other common causes for dry hair are

4. Using chemical hair dyes or perming your hair

Dry hair tips

Dry hair tips

5. High exposure to the sun and wind.

6. Chlorine and other chemicals in swimming pools

Now let’s see the tips for treating dry hair. Some would be external tips- aiming at keeping your hair moisturized and some would be internal tips- promoting hair growth and secretion of oil for shiny smooth hair.

Tips/ Cure for Dry Hair

External

1. The best thing to do would be to shampoo less often, or use a mild shampoo with nourishing/ moisturizing conditioner. Also, do have a look at the conditioner if it’s for ‘dry hair’, ‘frizzy hair’ etc. Remember not to use the conditioner on hair near your scalp as this part is naturally oiled by sebaceosu glands. Towel dry your hair whenever possible.

2. If you have split ends, you can use a leave-in conditioner but remember that it would not remove your split ends. The best solution would be to trim your hair before the split becomes longer and spreads through your hair shaft.

3. Many blogs report that shampoos containing alcohol are drying for hair. These tips may or may not be true and depend on the type of alcohol present. For example, fatty alcohols such as cetearyl alcohol, cetyl alcohol or stearyl alcohol actually moisturize the hair and make them soft. So when you are looking at the ingredient list in a shampoo you better be aware of the type of alcohol that is present.

4. Avoid Silicones-based Shampoos/ Conditioners: To find out if a shampoo and conditioner contains silicone or not look at the ingredients on the label. If the ingredients on the label says Dimethicone, Cyclomethicone or silicone, avoid using the products. Remember that Dimethicone and Cyclomethicone are silicone derived emollients. Silicones coat your hair making it look shiny in the short term. However, they slowly start coating hair completely, creating a buildup and effectively sealing off moisture from reaching the cuticle. If you are using silicones shampoo/ conditioner however, be sure to use a clarifying shampoo periodically. (I recently found out that my beloved ‘head and shoulder’ shampoo contains dimethicone :-(  )

5. Use one or two drops of Olive oil in your hair if they look too dry. Don’t use in excess.

Internal (through diet)

6. Take regular dosage of B vitamins, Biotin, Inositol, Folic acid, and minerals (magnesium, sulfur and zinc). B vitamins are important for the health and growth of the hair. B vitamins are found in beans, peas, carrots, cauliflower, soy beans, nutritional yeast, bran, nuts and eggs. A regular dose of vitamin B-complex can be supplemented with the following additional B-vitamins for best results.
Vitamin B3 (niacin) – 50 mg 3 times daily.
Pantothenic acid (vitamin B5) -100 mg 3 times daily.
Pyridoxine (vitamin B6) -50 mg 3 times daily.

Biotin is very important for hair health. It is needed for healthy hair and skin. Eat plenty of foods high in biotin and/ or take it in supplemental form. Biotin is present in brewer’s yeast, brown rice, bulgur, green peas, lentils, oats, soybeans, sunflower seeds, and walnuts. You can also use hair care products containing biotin.

Inositol, Folic acid and minerals are also vital for hair growth.

For all of the above ask your doctor for the regular dosage amount. Remember that it will take three to four months before the effect of these nutirents starts to show.

7. Healthy fatty acids from fish like salmon and tuna are also important to improve hair texture and prevent dry, brittle hair.

8.
Other nutrients that you can take for healthy hair:

Coenzyme Q10- Improves scalp circulation. Increases tissue oxygenation. It is also very important for heart health. Take 60 mg daily.

L-Cysteine and L-methionine: Two amino acids belived to improve quality, texture, and growth of hair. They help prevent hair from falling out.

Also Read:

Hair Care 1: Structure of Hair
Hair Care 2: Shampoo and Conditioner
Hair Care 3: Tips for Healthy Hair

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{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

orange November 12, 2010 at 1:53 pm

nice post :)

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Radhika November 12, 2010 at 2:17 pm

I was reading the article and kept thinking..ha I have dry hair and I follow all the things Sanjeev has listed and still have dry so now I can argue with Sanjeev..err..why argue – just like that – cos its fun naaa…anyways then I came to the diet part.. :-(( :-(( :-(( So that’s why I have dry hair??? Cos I don’t eat proper food???? And no wonder everyone in Kerala has lovely hair…most people I know at least eat tons of fish :-D

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Sanjeev November 12, 2010 at 2:24 pm

Hmmm… my mistake. Forgot to add that cause for dry hair can be diet-based also.

By the way Castor, by this reason people in Bengal should also have good hair no? Is it true? Anyone from Kolkata here who can answer?

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Radhika November 12, 2010 at 2:25 pm

I think they do…

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Sanjeev November 12, 2010 at 2:28 pm

Ahhh… then I have simple tip for people with dry hair- shift to Kerala or West Bengal :rotfl: :rotfl:

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Radhika November 12, 2010 at 2:31 pm

I am happy with my dry hair :-|

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Sanjeev November 12, 2010 at 2:34 pm

:-D :-D

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Vinitha November 12, 2010 at 2:36 pm

Oh they can come to Mangalore too , you will get loads of fish everyday :)

Rads Mangalore is closer for you :-P

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anshu November 12, 2010 at 3:14 pm

Hi rads…nov 1st half is over..when is our IMBB meet… :-/ 15 -22 nov i wont b in bangalore..so plzz if u r planning the meet this month, fix it for month end only…plzzz…

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Veda November 12, 2010 at 2:41 pm

Sanjeev, ur post reminded me of my husbands cousin whos visited last week. have never seen or heard of such typical hair before. Its so very oily in the scalp normal in between and very rough & dry at the ends. I told her to keep a check on what she eats & food timings as she is working in the night shifts…But is this a common hair type??? Truly.. i only know combination skin… but never combination hair ?:-)

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Sanjeev November 12, 2010 at 3:02 pm

Hi Veda,

Do they have long hair? It may be that the natural oils are not reaching far on the hair shaft and they are also not taking very good care of hair.

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monika November 12, 2010 at 3:35 pm

I have frizzy hair. Is that equivalent to dry hair. My stylist tells me to shampoo every alternate day to kepe the scalp clean as unclean scalp leads to dandruff……hehe u metion that we should shampoo less often!! Totally confused….so either I have dandruff free hair or dry hair…uugghhh!!

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Sanjeev November 12, 2010 at 3:54 pm

Hi Monica,

Dandruff is a very separate problem. You will have to use a dandruff shampoo for that. The reason for dandruff is medical and not an unclean scalp. Also, even then shampooing too much would dry your hair. Do use conditioners after shampooing your hair. So you need not be confused; if you believe in shampoo nearly daily, do take care to use a moisturizing conditioner along with it. :-)

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Veda November 12, 2010 at 4:42 pm

Sanjeev,

Yes, she has long hair..she sounds to be taking care of her hair. As u said It might be the natural oils not reaching far on the hair shaft thing..IF so..any remedy???

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shivani April 9, 2011 at 11:41 pm

Y is my name and email id there in all the “leave a comment section”……… ?:) :((

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