Like many women, you may experience occasional dissatisfaction with your hair, wishing it were longer and more appealing. Bad haircuts, poor diet, incorrect styling procedures and certain medications can all damage your hair. Like many things in your physical makeup, heredity plays a large part in the growth of your hair. Although you cannot change your genetic structure, you can improve your hair’s ability to grow long and strong. Good health and proper care can help you attain a healthy head of hair.
Turn Down the Heat
Styling products can damage the integrity of individual hair strands, causing them to break and split. Avoid using hot appliances on your hair. Because it’s not living matter, your hair can’t repair itself from burns and breaks. Let your hair dry naturally or turn the heat settings down on your blow dryers, curling irons, straightening wands and hot rollers.
Your shampoo should remove surface dirt from your hair. Some shampoos, especially clarifying formulas, tend to strip the natural oils from your strands. Choose gentle formulas or those labeled for use on damaged hair. Rinse thoroughly to remove all traces of suds and lather. Follow your shampoo with a moisturizing or strengthening conditioner that eliminates tangles.
Style with Care
Some styles damage your hair, pulling strands from your scalp or breaking them apart. Avoid tight styles and twists, such as braids and ponytails. Use a wide-tooth comb to smooth your hair gently, especially when wet. Apply a thermal protector to your clean hair or use a leave-in conditioner that contains sunscreen. Avoid brushing wet hair or pulling on fragile strands.
Consume a Healthy Diet
The Mayo Clinic advises a healthy diet to encourage healthy hair growth. Eliminate unhealthy foods in your diet, substituting them with nutritious choices. For instance, replace your white bread with a whole grain variety and snack on fresh fruits and vegetables instead of candy bars and greasy chips.
Stress can affect your overall health and may lead to hair growth problems. Enjoy activities that help you relax and refocus, such as walking, swimming, meditating and practicing yoga. Cut back on extra responsibilities that take too much of your time and energy.
- beautiful redheaded woman runs fingers thru hair image by Kevin Browne from Fotolia.com