As promised; I want to share with you some information I gathered with respect to the different conditions of hair. Your hair can be dry, frizzy, damaged or a combination of all those conditions. We all strive for healthy hair and the way our hair looks is a good indication that it is not as healthy as it should be.
Today I will share some info on dry hair. Note this information can be applied to wavy or kinky hair as well.
Curly hair seems to be more prone to dryness and frizz. Everyone produces natural oils (sebum) that helps protect hair. Sebum is produced by sebaceous glands in the skin. Sebum would move from the roots to the tips of hair, giving hair a natural sheen and soft texture.
Curly hair however, due to its S-shape prevents the natural oils from travelling all the way down. No wonder we always have dry ends!
One reason for your dry hair can be it is in your genes. If you realise that you have naturally dry skin then most likely you will also have dry hair. Your sebaceous glands just aren’t producing enough natural oils to coat and protect hair hence hair is dry.
You will have to apply moisturizers. Natural oils such as jojoba are good to add shine and moisturize hair. The molecular structure of jojoba oil is similar to sebum. There are many other natural oils such as olive oil, almond, avocado, rosemary essential oil, shea oil and herbal oils such as: nettle oil. You can use these together with your store-bought hair products or make your own concoction.
Over washing strips hair of its natural oils, especially shampoos with damaging chemicals. Use a mild shampoo or one that is specific for curly or dry hair.
You do not have to wash curly hair daily. Once a week or as required (If you have oily hair then you can wash more frequently). You can conditioner-wash or co-wash hair in between shampoo washing. This will help keep hair clean without over drying and losing hair’s natural oils.
We have all grown up applying shampoo to our entire head from root to tips; however, you only need to apply shampoo to your scalp to remove build up of oil and dirt. Use finger tips to gently massage and loose any debris. Do not scratch scalp.
There are shampoos made specifically to remove product build up. These help purify and remove build up of products (ex. Silicone).
Curly hair and especially dry hair needs moisture. A hydrating shampoo will help to lock in some of that moisture.
After washing it is important to seal the cuticles by conditioning hair and applying a leave-in conditioner. Conditioner should be applied from tips up. Do not apply conditioner to scalp unless it is overly dry. Deep conditioning at least once a week will also help re-hydrate dry hair.
Whether it’s with the curling iron, flat iron or blow dryer the heat removes moisture and can damage the sebum layer which can eventually result in dry hair. Excessive use of these heat styling tools can overly dry hair and cause frizz. It is important if you are heat styling to use a heat protector.
Chemical treating hair can also lead to dry damaged hair. Try not to chemically treat hair too often as it will become over-processed and damaged. Ensure that your stylist is properly trained and can evaluate the right product for your hair.
Colouring hair can also damage and lead to dry hair, especially if bleaching hair. Do not colour hair too often. It is good to take a ‘break’ from colouring hair until hair is healthier.
The climate can also dry hair. Living in tropical Trinidad and Tobago with lots of sun and wind, the elements can have its toll on our hair, especially if you are outside a lot. There are some hair products with UV protection. If you have to be outside for a long period of time, wear a hat!
You would think soaking your hair in water will remedy dry hair...right....wrong! Chlorine can also wreak havoc on hair. The chlorine strips hair of its natural oils making it dry and brittle. If you do not want to wear a swim cap then you can use a pre-conditioning treatment prior to your swim. This will help protect your hair while you swim. For the low concentrations in your tap water; installing a shower filter can remove chlorine. Again, applying a moisturizer or leave-in conditioner will help from drying out hair.
You are what you eat or the lack thereof. Your body needs nutrients to maintain itself as well as healthy hair. Essential nutrients for healthy hair include protein, vitamin A, riboflavin, vitamin C, zinc, calcium, iron and biotin.
Dry hair can be an indication that your diet is lacking omega-3-essential fatty acids. Omega-3-fatty acids can be found in salmon, walnuts and flax seed. Eating a well balanced diet will also help with hair growth.
For more information on Foods for Healthy Hair, click here. Also check out Nutrients for Healthy Hair.
For Products for Dry Hair:
Check out the Top 12 Products for Dry, Damaged Hair.