You know your hair is damaged if it feels brittle and dry. Damaged hair can also be difficult to style, since it can refuse to stay in place or cooperate. Thankfully, you can coax your hair back to health by treating it right and skipping harsh perms and color treatments. Keep in mind that no matter how damaged your hair may be, new hair growing out of your head won’t be if you make small changes to your styling routine now.
Better Diet, Better Hair
The foods you eat can improve the texture and quality of your hair, since the healthier you are, the healthier your hair will be. Add foods that are high in Omega-3, such as salmon, nuts or flax seeds, to your diet. Lack of Omega-3 in your diet can dry out your scalp and hair, according to WebMD. Also be sure to eat foods high in vitamins A and C, which help your scalp produce oil to keep your hair soft. Eating plenty of lean protein, from poultry, fish or beans will help you grow strong hair.
Conditioner is Essential
After you shampoo your hair, follow up with conditioner. Apply about a dime-sized portion of conditioner to your hair, working from the ends upwards. Let the conditioner sit on your hair for a few minutes to soak in. Rinse out the conditioner with lukewarm or cold water. Never use hot water to rinse, as it can strip the hair of its oils. Take care of very damaged hair by using a leave-in conditioner at least once a week.
Be Gentle to Weak Hair
If your hair tends to break or fall out easily, you may need to change your approach. Hair is weakest when it is soaking wet, so don’t run a comb or brush through wet hair. Gently towel dry hair after washing it and let air dry. If you must use a hair dryer, let your hair dry a bit first, then use a low heat setting on the dryer. Use a brush or comb designed for brittle hair.
Protect Your Hair
Just like your skin, your hair can be damaged by the sun. Always wear a hat to protect your hair when heading out on sunny days. You may also be able to find a shampoo or styling product with sunscreen built in. Keep your hair covered when going out on cold or windy days as well. The wind whipping through your tresses and frigid air can dry out and damage hair too.
Cut Back On Products
If your hair is really damaged, you may need to skip a coloring treatment or two. You may also want to cut out hairspray, mousse or gel, at least until you’ve got your hair under control. Another way to help care for damaged hair is to cut back on shampooing. When you wash your hair, you strip it of its natural oils. Shampooing every other day instead of daily gives your hair time to restore itself. Prevent further damage by using a gentle shampoo designed for dry or damaged hair.
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