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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
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
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.