The challenge is your strands are constantly prone to hair damage: dullness, thinning, dryness, breakage, frizz, and more. With all these potential strand stresses, it’s no surprise that having healthy hair requires effort to keep it looking lush. And while there isn’t a secret shortcut to healthier hair, taking time to keep strands strong is worth the commitment. With small tweaks to your routine, maintaining great hair can be effortless.
1. Sleep on silk
Make the most of your beauty sleep: swap out your cotton pillowcase for a silk alternative. “It protects the cuticle of your hair by reducing the amount of friction between your hair and the fabric,” says Brook.
Another secret to reduce stress on strands: “Sleep with your hair in a loose topknot—secured with a silk scrunchie— or try a low loose braid if you have thick or textured hair to give you more control of your strands during the night.
2. Don’t skip your scalp
Healthy hair starts with a healthy scalp. “If you’re notice dryness, itching, or any scalp issues, your hair will be affected by this,” says Brook. To maintain a balanced scalp, Brook recommends her long-time go-to for clarifying the scalp.
If you prefer a more sleek style, go for Head & Shoulders Smooth and Silky collection, which keep hair frizz-free. If your scalp is stubbornly flakey and your hair is dry too, try Head & Shoulders Masque Conditioner Treatment.
3. Turn down the temp of your shower
As soothing as a steamy show may feel, “taking a super hot shower on a daily basis can irritate you scalp and possibly weaken your hair as it grows out,” says Brook. Keep the temperature on the warm side and at the end of the shower, do a quick cold-water rinse to seal the cuticles shut, boost shine, and maintain healthy hair.
4. Take a deep breath.
Repeat after us: breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth. The little things make a big difference. “Your hair is an outgrowth of your body; if you are stressed, your skin will be stressed and that includes your scalp.” Now, keep calm and read on.
5. Eat a balanced diet.
You already know that you are what you eat. “Your hair is mostly made up of protein, so eating a balanced diet of protein rich food is important,” says Brook. Add these items to your grocery list:
Other good sources of hair food: berries, spinach, and avocados, along with anything else rich in vitamins C and E which will help boost collagen production, resulting in stronger strands.
6. Be mindful of key ingredients.
Staring down the haircare aisle can be overwhelming: with endless haircare options, how do you choose the one? As you pick out your products, narrow down your options by looking for strengthening ingredients, which will nourish your strands. Brook suggests incorporating coconut oil, Argan oil, aloe, or spirulina into your regimen.
7. Condition correctly — and with care.
Unless your hair is long (read: Rapunzel-like), a nickel-size drop of conditioner is plenty for most textures and lengths. “Apply your conditioner first to the mid-shaft and ends of your hair; then work your way up to the scalp,” advises Brook. It’s important to make sure your scalp gets hydration as well. Leave it on for a full minute before washing it out. If you are a dry shampoo addict (no judgement!), this is especially important to prevent a dry scalp.
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