Is your hair dry and dull? Do you have split ends and frizz? Hair is damaged easily, and it takes time to repair it. The good news is, there are several easy techniques you can use to restore the health of your hair and keep it looking great.
EditSteps

EditRescuing Damaged Hair

  1. Trim split ends. The best way to deal with split ends is to trim them off. Despite product claims about fixing split ends, they can only be removed, not repaired. Cutting your hair will immediately make it look fresher and restore its body. Aim to get a trim every 6 to 12 weeks, depending on the length, texture, and style of your hair.[1]

    • Ensure your stylist is using extra sharp scissors. Ask them to cut into a wet tissue and inspect the cutóif you see torn tissue fibers, find another stylist.
    • Cut off as much as you dare. Hair is more damaged at the ends due to increased exposure to heat, chlorine, and so on.
    • Ask the stylist not to blow dry your hair or use any heat-styling tools as these will further damage unhealthy hair.

  2. Be gentle with wet hair. Hair is most susceptible to damage when itís wet. Avoid vigorously scrubbing your hair in the shower or rubbing it with a towel to soak up excess moisture. Use a wide-tooth comb to detangle your hair starting at the ends and working up towards the roots. You can do this when itís wet, but make sure to apply a detangling product first.[2]
  3. Stop using heat-styling tools. Heat can make your hair look dull and damaged, so itís best to avoid using heat-styling tools as much as possible. Let your hair air dry and style it with heat-free techniques, like rollers or hair wrapping.[3]

    • Only use blow dryers, curling irons, and flat irons after applying a heat-protectant product to your tresses. Keep the tools on a low setting to further protect your hair, rather than cranking up the heat as high as it will go.
    • Ionic, ceramic heat-styling tools infused with keratin and argan oils are your best bet for limiting heat damage.

  4. Avoid dyeing and processing your hair. Bleaching the color from your hair, then adding chemicals to dye it another color is extremely damaging. Bleaching or dyeing hair can lead to hair breakage, hair loss, and bald patches. Permanent curling or straightening processes are also damaging and should be avoided.[4]

EditUsing Restorative Products

  1. Opt for sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner. Hair care products made with sulfates can irritate the skin on your scalp, dry out your tresses, cause frizzy hair, and fade color-treated hair. Avoid shampoos and conditioner made with sodium lauryl or laureth sulfates. These industrial cleaning agents strip hair of its natural protective oils.[5]

    • When you begin using sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner, your hair may look slightly oily because your body has grown used to overproducing the oils necessary to maintain healthy hair. Ride it out. It should only take a few weeks for your scalp to regulate its production of oil.

  2. Use natural styling products. Most hair sprays, gels, mousses and other commercial styling products contain chemicals that can damage your hair. Avoid these and instead pick products with the fewest amount of ingredients possible. Opt for products that contain natural ingredients, like rosemary, seaweed, honey, olive oil, and avocado oil.[6]


  3. Treat your hair with oil. No matter what your hair type, oil can help restore moisture and keep your locks shiny and smooth. You can use coconut, olive, castor, argan, almond, or egg oil. Simply massage the oil into your hair, let it sit for 15 minutes, then rinse it out with lukewarm water.[7]

    • Place a shower cap over your oiled tresses to minimize the mess.
    • You can even sit under a hooded dryer or direct the heat from a blow dryer at your hair to increase the effectiveness of an oil treatment.

EditPracticing Long-Term Maintenance

  1. Wash your hair only 2-3 times per week. Washing your hair every day dries it out, since it doesn't give your scalp the chance to produce the oils your hair needs to stay healthy. Shampooing less frequently can help repair damaged hair.[8]

    • Simply rinse your hair in the shower rather than washing it daily.
    • Apply dry shampoo to your roots to absorb excess oil between washes.

  2. Rinse your hair with lukewarm or cool water. Hot water damages hair, but cool or cold water closes the cuticle and helps the hair shafts to lie flat. Rinsing out your shampoo and conditioner with cold water will give your hair a shiny, glossy appearance.[9]
  3. Wear a swim cap in the pool. Chlorine causes damage that builds up over time. Always wear a cap when you go swimming to protect your tresses, especially if your hair is color treated.[10]

    • If you go swimming without a cap, make sure to wash your hair with a clarifying shampoo afterwards.
    • Don't sit in the sun after swimming without a cap, because the sun's rays will compound the damage done by chlorine. Wash it out before you sunbathe.

  4. Eat healthy foods to strengthen your hair. Like other parts of your body, your hair is affected by what you eat and drink. Get plenty of water, vitamins, and essential nutrients. Aim to eat a healthy diet containing protein, iron, and biotin.[11]

    • Omega-3 fatty acids are good for hair and skin. Eat salmon, walnuts, flax seeds, and other sources of this beneficial fatty acid.
    • Eating spinach, kale, carrots, and avocados can also improve the health of your hair.

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  • Hats and scarves protect your hair from the sun and air pollution and keep you looking chic between shampoos.

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