After years of shampooing, blow drying, heating irons, bleaches, dyes, relaxers, perms, and a million other things that we do to our hair, it’s no surprise when we look at it and realize that it needs serious help. It becomes dry and brittle, the ends split, the color seems to fade, and it just seems to have lost all signs of life and body. It’s a common problem and every woman has one or a few of these issues with her hair. That’s why the drugstore dedicates an entire row to hair care products – and we fall for them! The best ways to care for your hair are not going to be found in a bottle. Read this list of tricks that has worked for me and set my hair on the road to recovery. It’s only been 3 months and I can already see the difference in my hair!
1. Get a hair cut.
I don’t even cut my hair. I like it long and I hate to spend all of that money just to get a little trim. However, if your hair is brittle, fried, and the ends are split, suck it up (if you can’t tell, I’m talking to myself…) and pay for a cut that will get rid of the bits of hair that are just not salvageable. Your hair will grow nicely from that moment on, so don’t do anything to it! Get your hair cut and don’t put any product in it. It’s time to start the healing process.
2. Stop washing it every day.
Using shampoo every day will dry out your hair faster than anything else. Stop! Your hair needs a break. Use conditioner every time you wash your hair instead of shampoo, and scrub your scalp to get it clean. The extra stimulation will help your scalp regardless, so condition all of your hair and leave it in for about 15 minutes. Put the conditioner on first before your soap up, shave, or wash your face. If you don’t shower everyday (hey, it’s okay, been there) at least put in a leave-in conditioner or use an oil treatment. Keeping your hair hydrated will help heal it so much faster.
3. Stop brushing.
Or brush only once a day. When your hair is brittle, brushing will do much more damage than good. Snagging on knots and breaking strands is no way to help your hair get stronger! Avoid brushing more than you need to by brushing your hair straight once it is full of conditioner, braiding it immediately after brushing it, or picking out messy areas with your fingers. Spread out the natural oils in your hair by using your hands to finger-brush all the way from scalp to tip – your hair will thank you!
4. Speaking of oil treatments…
If you haven’t used an oil treatment before, now is the perfect time to start! Argan oil is the best since it can double as a leave-in conditioner, but coconut oil will work too as a great hair mask! Seriously. Spread a small amount of oil through damp hair and comb it through until every strands is coated. Leave the oil in anywhere from 30 minutes to overnight. If you’re going to use it overnight, put on a shower cap, wrap your head in plastic wrap (yes, you’ll look silly but your hair will look fabulous!!) and put down an OLD towel over your pillows. Waking up to an oily bed is not fun. Trust me.
5. Stop using heat.
Yes, unfortunately this includes blow drying. You can still use the “cool” setting, but heat will damage your hair further and prevent it from getting better. While you can still get away with a blow drier, you should stop using curlers, curling irons, flat irons, and any other tool that relies on heat to shape and mold your hair. If you must use a tool on your hair, at least use a heat protecting spray first. They aren’t miracle workers, but most of them do a decent job at helping your hair not become too affected by the heat. I would recommend finding a natural way to wear your hair while you allow it to heal. Braids, cute hairstyles that use only bobby pins, or clips that won’t snag your hair are all great options – just remember that the next few months are about making your hair healthy again and it should be easy to stick to a routine.
It’s a difficult journey, but it can be done! Coming back from dry and brittle hair will take dedication, but you will begin to see a dramatic change in the way your hair falls and bounces around within a month or two! Don’t give up, and keep on trying. The simplest way is the best way when it comes to your hair. Once you’ve got your groove back, keeping up with these routines will be a piece of cake!