We all know the feeling of getting ready to hit the town on a Friday night with our friends, taking our time to pick out an outfit that we feel (and look!) our best in, carefully selecting which accessories will perfectly complement it, only to spend hours fretting over how we’ll groom our hair. Whether we choose to crimp, curl, or straighten it, the question remains: why do we bother spending so much time, effort, and money on our locks?
Today, having a perfectly maintained head of hair is closely linked with male virility and feminine beauty. It allows us to express our social status, personality, and sexuality on a deeper level, so as a result, how we style our hair can make or break our overall look.
Although we enjoy styling our hair, depending on our habits and the techniques in our hair care routine, we could unknowingly damage our locks. From washing your hair too often and drying it with a towel to smoking cigarettes and failing to use a heat protectant when using hot tools, various habits/techniques can damage your hair. Don’t stress if you recognise any of them – it’s never too late to create a healthy hair routine! – keep reading as we discuss them in more detail below:
Although washing your hair daily is often associated with good hygiene, which we all want to practice, it can do more harm than good to your locks. Although our first reaction when we see oily hair is to jump in the shower, oily hair doesn’t necessarily mean dirty hair since the shine comes from naturally occurring oils in your scalp, which protect your hair from wear and tear.
You might think that washing these oils out daily helps your hair stay clean and healthy, but stripping your hair of its natural oils can promote faded texture/shine, dry/frizzy hair, dry scalp, split ends, breakage, and many more harmful side effects.
Infrequently washing our hair can also have the same results since the build-up of excess oils, dust, and dirt can cause blockages in the pores of your scalp, which can cause stunted hair growth or hair loss in extreme cases. To prevent these issues, dermatologists and stylists recommend washing your tresses every two to three days, depending on your hair type.
Yet, if you are having trouble developing a hair-washing regime or your hair has more complex needs, it is best if you enlist the services of a specialist who can work with you to create a hair-washing routine that benefits you.
Smoking is an incredibly popular habit in European countries, with an estimated 6.6 million smokers populating the British Isles alone. When you’re in the smoking area with your friends on a Friday night, you don’t take the time to reflect on the damage cigarettes can reap on your physical state. Still, continued usage can affect your appearance – even your hair!
Most smokers understand that consuming tobacco products is closely associated with developing life-threatening illnesses such as cancer and respiratory issues; however, the correlation between smoking and hair loss is lesser known. Over time smoking tobacco can restrict the blood flow to your hair follicles, change the enzyme levels that control your hair growth cycle, lower oestrogen levels, increase the number of cytokines causing inflammation, and much more.
As a result, your hair can become brittle, prematurely grey and increase your chances of hair loss. Fortunately, even if you are a smoker, all hope is not lost. You can reverse some of the damage smoking can do to your hair by reducing your tobacco intake (or stopping it altogether!) or switching to vaping using Elf Bars etc.
Whether you’d like to phase out smoking using disposable vapes like Elf Bars or Geek Bars or a vape pen starter kit, you can find various equipment to help you transition into vaping from independent vape stores like Grey Haze. Consider visiting their website to browse their entire catalogue, read how-to guides, and discover how their products could help you begin your vaping journey (and reduce the damage to your hair!) today.
Towel-Drying Your Hair
As we step out of the shower, we automatically reach for a towel for our bodies and then use the same one to begin towelling our locks dry. So, what’s wrong with that, you might ask? Nothing if it’s for your skin. However, over time your average cotton bath towel can cause more damage to your hair than you might have thought initially.
Since most bath towels are made of cotton to help with their absorbency, if your hair is fragile by nature or has been weakened over time by prescribed medications, illness, diet, environment etc., then you might find your locks could be weakened further by split ends, breakage, frizz, and much more.
When you towel dry your hair, this can cause the cuticle to rise, making it more susceptible to damage like split ends, frizz, or breakage. To prevent this, consider upgrading your cotton bath towels to a more hair-friendly material like bamboo or microfiber. If you don’t fancy replacing your entire towel collection, use an old cotton t-shirt you no longer wear, which is much gentler.
Not Using Heat Protectant With Hot Tools
We all know the feeling of running late to meet up with our friends, yet despite being hard-pressed for time, we still want to look our best. Due to this, we might take shortcuts in our beauty and hair care routines, like forgoing false eyelashes, spritzing our hair with dry-hair shampoo instead of washing it, and even styling it with hot tools sans heat protectant.
Although skipping specific steps of our hair care routine is forgivable once in a blue moon, continued use of curling tongs, straighteners, heated rollers, crimpers etc., on unprotected hair can cause long-lasted damage, dullness and many more appearance issues.
When subjected to the high temperatures of hot tools, hair can become straw-like, dull, and prone to split ends which can be prevented with a quick spritz of heat protectant before styling. The best heat protectants for hair create a barrier between your locks and the surface of the hot tool you’re using, which prevents the heat from affecting your hair’s integrity.
However, not all heat protectants are created equally, so it is essential that you do your research or approach your hair stylist for advice before going out and purchasing a heat protectant. Whether it’s a leave-in spray, an oil primer, a blow-dry spray, or a leave-in conditioner – doing your research beforehand ensures that you get the best protection for your hair type.
Putting Your Hair In Tight Up-Dos
Although we see slicked-back, tight up-dos all the time on the red carpet from Kendall Jenner, Selina Gomez, and Arianna Grande, despite how elegant they might look, mimicking the look of your favourite celebrities all the time can cause lasting damage to your hair.
Despite how good that skull-hugging ponytail might look, try to avoid styling your hair like this every day as it can contribute towards receding hairlines and breakage, so if you must tie your hair up, try to do it loosely and avoid too much tension on your scalp, so these proble