Our addiction to styling tools, a love of heaters in winter and lapses into unhealthy eating patterns can all have a nasty effect on the health of our hair. Longer locks can be particularly hard to maintain, with split ends and nasty tangles taking over before we’ve had a chance to get to a hairdresser.
But fear not, dear SheKnows readers, healthy, happy hair is just a few good deeds away! Try out these quick and easy tips to maintain long hair and nurse your strands back to optimal health.
- A balanced diet rich in vitamins and minerals is essential to maintaining the health of your hair. Just as your skin and nails are affected by what you eat, your hair also needs plenty of nutrients and protein to looks its glossy best. Aim to include plenty of green vegetables, seafood like salmon, and nuts, beans and wholegrains in your daily diet.
- Regular trims are essential for hair health too. Pop into your hairdresser every six to eight weeks for a chop. This should help keep split ends at bay and prevent further damage.
- Keep the use of hair styling tools to a minimum. (You’re laughing, aren’t you?) While you may think your hairdryer is essential, it can actually cause split ends and breakages. Try getting up a little earlier in the morning and wrapping your wet locks in a towel or letting them air-dry instead of blasting them with hot hair post-shampoo. Ensure you also use a heat protectant spray before using your curling wand or straightener.
- Your hair is at its most fragile state when it’s wet, so avoid brushing knots roughly as it may tear the strands. Instead, use a bit of leave-in conditioner to loosen the tangles and use a wide-tooth comb. Brush with care.
- Choose your hair products wisely. Read the labels carefully and choose formulas that suit your hair type. For example, don’t use shampoo for oily hair if you already have dry locks, as it will only dry your hair out further. If you wash your hair each day, make sure you go with a shampoo and conditioner duo especially designed for daily use. Washing your hair too often can also dry and damage your hair, so ensure you always use the right product and don't over-wash your locks.
- Rejuvenate your hair with a deep-conditioning treatment on a regular basis. Incorporate it into a weekly pamper ritual so your flatmates/family know not to disturb you. Sunday nights are the perfect time to give your hair some TLC, soak in a bath and groom your nails so you feel fresh and prepared come Monday morning.
- Avoid using harsh chemicals and damaging hair accessories on your hair. Some hair elastics can pull on your hair and cause breakages, so ensure you only use products that glide smoothly across your strands.