Hair Habits You Need To Quit

January 14, 2015

When all the shea butter and coconut oil in the world can’t revive your broken (or frizzy or dull or…) hair, it’s time to start playing some damage-control offense. Here are the hair-trashing habits you need to quit.

UNDER-SHAMPOOING

Every beauty source out there telling us to lather up less frequently for healthier hair. But don’t get too comfortable with your dry shampoo—product buildup attracts weighs down hair.Washing your hair 2-3 times a week clears away layers of product and excess oil. Use cleansing shampoo at least twice a month. It cuts through grease that gentler shampoos can miss and leaves hair primed to soak up the smoothing ingredients in your conditioner. BLOWING OUT SOAKING WET HAIR The wetter your hair is, the longer your it is exposed to damaging heat. Start your blowout when your hair has already air-dried at least 50 percent of the way. And you know what? The final result will be exactly the same. USING THE WRONG BRUSH Natural-bristle brushes are great for grabbing thick, slightly damp hair and smoothing it out during a blowout. But they create too much tension on fine or damaged hair. Vent brushes are a gentler option. Their rubber-tipped bristles glide through the hair, and they have open backs that allow air and moisture to pass through for a quicker blow-dry. USING TOO MUCH HEAT One more time: Heat damages your hair. We’re not suggesting you swear off it completely, but you need to keep temperatures in check. Your best bet is to use one with at least 2000 watts and set it on medium heat. That way, you’re relying more on airflow than on heat to eliminate moisture. And never, ever turn your flatiron above 350 degrees. IRONING TOO MUCH Yanking of any kind doesn’t do your hair any favors, but it’s especially damaging when the weapon of choice is a flatiron. “The combination of heat and a pulling action can really weaken your hair,” says Thomas. So go easy with your iron. And always, always use a heat-protecting product first. Most contain some combination of silicones, cetyl alcohol, and quaterniums, all of which help the iron glide along the hair shaft without tugging. We like Redken Satinwear 02 Prepping Blow-Dry Lotion. PUTTING TOO MUCH SILICONE When it comes to putting that final gloss on your hair, a silicone is not a silicone is not a silicone. The ones found in spray formulas can dry out hair over time. Serums are a safer bet but just remember that using any kind of hair serum is good in moderation. USING HAIR EXTENSIONS Weaves and hair extensions tug the hairline and weight down your mane, yanking out the hair. That’s when you see traction alopecia, where the hairline recedes from tight pulling. Clip-in pieces are a better option; they’re very temporary and very easy to remove. OVERCOLORING You should be able to go about four to six weeks between dye jobs. If you find yourself needing more frequent color upkeep—which can stress and damage hair—make a few changes at home: put a filter on your showerhead to prevent chlorine and minerals from breaking down color, and always use a shampoo and conditioner formulated for color-treated hair.
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