I have really fine hair strands. Like, for real. And if I had not been blessed with wavy hair, it might really look wispy, which is a really sad thing. Now, I honestly thought it was genetics. My mom has really thin hair strands, too. This is why she only ever wears her hair short. During her younger years, she regularly got a perm to make it look fuller. These days, she just let them be in a short page boy cut.
However, learning more about proper hair care lately has helped me realize that it might not be genetics after all. It just might be due to improper hair care.
Truthfully, I was shocked at how poorly I had been treating my hair. I really thought I was doing a well enough job. Seeing my hair state should have been a tell-tale sign that I needed to change old habits and change them fast if I wanted to have healthier hair.
So where do I begin? What should I stop doing first? Well, let us start with the way I wash my hair.
I wash my hair daily since it is so easy for my hair to feel oily and I had experienced dandruff in the past, too. You might say I’m a bit of a clean freak. I would shampoo every other day and use conditioner most of the time. My hair is definitely clean daily but it tends to be flat and listless. This has always been the case until I learned that daily washing could actually do more damage than good.
From the experts' standpoint, washing our hair daily strips it of natural oils and nutrients that make the hair more vulnerable to breakage. Not to mention that wet hair is so much more prone to hair fall especially if you like putting your hair in a towel turban for a long time. The scalp and the cuticles are like pores that become more exposed especially if you are using hot water.
This is where I realized that it was not genetics that made my hair as thin as it is now. It was all those warm showers had been taking all through my life! I never take a bath with cold water.
Why would I punish myself when it feels so good to have a warm shower? Well, what our bodies enjoy, our hair begs to differ. For the hair, warm water is bad. I had to transition to cold water for washing my hair to save my locks somehow.
Now, I know what you are thinking. Cold showers? Nope, sorry. Not a fan. Instead, I use cold water to wash my hair first (If it is wash day). I do it either at the sink before stepping into the shower. Or just set aside my hair as the last to wash when I am done with the bath. It means I need to set up some extra time for this additional step but it is necessary. Trust me, it does feel much better after. I would even dare say, stronger.
Another thing I had to unlearn is using just any random or trendy product off the shelves, just because a shampoo is endorsed by my favorite artist, who kinda has the same hair type as I do, does not mean that it would work on me. The conditioners I had been using were heavy and thus, made my already fine hair even flatter.
So what is the answer? Switch to products that are made from natural ingredients.
It was a real challenge switching – expensive, too! But I found a shampoo that cleanses well, made of natural ingredients, enriched with vitamins, and is cruelty-free! It has been my favorite ever since.
As for the conditioner, clarifying types are my new best friends. I have two that I alternate depending on my mood. They clean and moisturize but do not make my hair feel heavy or oily. It just feels fresh and light; soft and fragrant for longer!
It was trial and error for some time and I am sure you will go through the same thing but it is a necessary step to find hair products that work well for you.
Another thing I found out is that on the days that I am not washing my hair, I can actually use a dry shampoo. Oh, let me tell you how revolutionary this product is for me. First, it smells so good. Second, it does not leave residue or white specs on my dark hair and finally, it adds volume to my hair - an actual lift that lasts all day! Just how amazing is that?
So on days that I do not wash my hair, I do not feel icky or greasy. Dry shampoo saves the day.
One more thing that can help you, my fine-haired, fabulous friends, is the proper use of your blow dryer. But wait...should we even be using it because we already have thin hair strands?
Well, we can actually use it every day if we want to, as long as we stay away from the heat.
Heat is the hair's enemy. And I am talking about heat being dangerous not only to thin hair but for all hair types. So use heat only and when necessary.
Get your blow dryer on cool. Air dry your hair if you have the chance. Go easy on the curling iron or the hair straightener. Find tools that are really made to care for your hair even when heat is involved. You would still be able to play around with different hairstyles. And by all means, use hair protectants like a serum for extra defense. Whether you are staying home or stepping out to the sun, having good quality hair care products can work wonders for our lock. Our frail strands need the best care we can give them, after all.
What is often overlooked when promoting good hair health, is that it all starts to form the inside.
Sure, there are very good products out there containing vitamins that will make out hair shinier and stronger. I believe them that is why I use the shampoos and conditioners that I use now. But real health for our crowning glory is also greatly influenced by our own diet.
Ever noticed how our hair seems shinier and more lively when we eat foods rich in vitamin E like nuts, fish, and vegetables? This is because we are eating more nutritious food. Not only is our hair shiny, but our skin also is supple and glows. This health also applies to our scalp so watch your food choices, too.
Research has proven that there is a strong link between stress and hair loss. I have very close friends that are prone to getting bald spots whenever under pressure. A guy friend I know had his bald spot grow to more than a quarter in diameter when he started on a new high-paying, high-pressure job. He has that bald spot up to now.
When we feel depressed or are going through some phase, identity, or mid-life crises, we also tend to mess with our hair more. You don’t believe me? Can you honestly tell me you did not get a perm, or a hair cut or a new bold color when you went through a break-up? You know what I am talking about. I got heartbroken, and chopped my hair to a page boy cut, colored it blonde then red the next month. I regret everything – relationship and hair be damned.
Apparently, hair gets stressed too. This makes so much sense since we will end up using heat and harmful chemicals for treatments and colors. Hair really needs time to rest. More so, our thin hair strands. So the next time you’re feeling antsy, or heartbroken... stop messing with your hair. Get a massage or enroll in muay thai.
Practically speaking, these hair care tips for fine-haired friends are very doable. These are some of the tips that have helped me work better with my frail locks. I still see hair fall when I shower and breakage still happens when I brush my hair but somehow, taking these easy steps has helped me feel more confident. I feel more confident that I am caring for my hair better and that I have a solid chance of making my hair healthy. I hope these tips would work for you, too.
Some bonus tips I can share would be to use a satin hair cap or satin pillowcases to sleep on. They lessen the friction for the hair. Also, avoid tight buns as the pull can strain your roots and scalp. Let your hair down and feel the wind, You are definitely still fabulous with the hair you wear. Always be Oh – So – Fabulous!
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