We all want salon-gorgeous, commercial-worthy hair every single day. Who doesn’t, right? However, in our constant quest to achieve beautiful hair, we could be doing our hair more harm than good. Below are ten of the most common hair care mistakes we are unwittingly doing on regular, oftentimes daily, basis. Avoid these damaging hair care habits and say good bye to bad hair days forever.
1. Chronic hair washing. Washing the hair is part of personal hygiene but don’t overdo it, especially applying shampoo on your locks. Frequent washing strips the hair of its natural oils and may leave it dull and lifeless. You may shower daily but hold off on the shampoo some days. Experts recommend just rinsing with water and shampooing every other day only.
2. Aggressive towel drying. Hair is at its weakest when wet. Vigorous rubbing after showering will roughen up the cuticle and will easily cause frizz and breakage. Plus, it does not really hasten the hair’s drying process. Next time, pat your hair dry instead with a cotton cloth or shirt and remove excess water by shaking your locks using your fingers. Remember, your mane needs some gentle handling too.
3. Brushing hair while wet. As already mentioned, hair is more prone to damage when wet. Taking a brush to your tresses right after washing may cause the strands to break or snap due to the unwanted friction. Ideally, hair should be at least 70% dry all over before you try to work through those knots and tangles with a correct comb or brush.
4. Donning a ponytail everyday. While a ponytail is one of the classic hair styles around, it’s not an advisable daily look. More so when you tie it up too tight or while hair’s still wet because it could lead to broken strands. If you must wear a ponytail everyday, switch the fastening points, go for a low pony one day and a high tail the next, and use seamless elastic bands instead of rubber bands.
5. Using high heat. When blow drying or using a curling or flat iron, choose the low or medium heat settings. Heat damage causes breakage, dryness, brittleness, and may even burn the strands. Most importantly, do not use any styling tools on wet or even just damp locks. Hair must be completely dry before taking a blow dryer or iron to it.
6. Excessive brushing. No, you don’t need to brush your hair 100 times to make it soft and shiny. On the contrary, too much brushing causes unnecessary friction resulting in broken strands. A few brush strokes is all it takes to spread your mane’s natural oils all over for that natural sheen and luster.
7. Piling on the hair moisturizer. When it comes to hair moisturizers or any other leave-in hydrating product for your mane, remember less is more. Putting on too much will weigh down your mane and leave it looking and feeling limp and sometimes greasy. Apply just a little every morning, paying extra attention to the ends, the hair’s most overworked part.
8. Bailing on your salon appointment. The next time your hairstylist tells you to come back in four weeks, make sure to do so. A regular haircut is important to maintain your hair’s style and shape. Plus, it’s a surefire way of getting rid of those stubborn split ends.
9. Leaving dandruff untreated. Dandruff is an inflammatory scalp condition that needs to be treated with permanent and lasting solutions. Ditch temporary cures like moisturizing oils or pomades that only mask the scalp’s flaky appearance. Instead, look for a shampoo and other tonics that are specially formulated to treat dandruff and eliminate flakes for real.
10. Using the wrong kind of brush. There is a reason why brushes of all kinds and sizes are available in the market. There’s a specific brush for each hair type. Don’t just grab the first brush you get your hands on as using the wrong kind of brush may cause tangles and prevent you from achieving the style you have in mind. Keep in mind this rule: more hair, more brush. Meaning, the longer your locks, the larger in diameter brush you should get. For volume, get a round brush while a paddle brush works best for smoothing out your mane.