8 Tips for Keeping Long Hair Healthy
88% of all women claim that their hair has a direct effect on their self confidence. But of course, you don’t have to be a woman to have long, healthy hair.
Long, luscious hair is one of those things that hair salons can’t give you at your next appointment (at least, not without the aid of extensions). The problem with long hair is that it takes special care to keep looking its best. To help you with that, this article contains eight tips for keeping long hair looking healthy and beautiful.
These tips apply equally to just about every person you see in hair salons. The only reason they’re tips for long-haired people specifically is because long hair requires special care to avoid breakage and other problems, which can make it necessary to trim it shorter.
Before you get your hair stylist to give you your next haircut at one of your favorite hair salons, try these tips for better hair health.
Use the Right Hair Brush
It’s important to use the right hair brush for your hair. For long hair, a boar bristle or wet brush should be your tool of choice. These types of brushes help to smooth the hair shaft, which minimizes breakage. Boar bristle brushes have natural fibers which diminish the friction caused by brushing, which helps you avoid getting caught on knots. As a result, you get smooth, silky hair without having to pull out strands of your hair (which, as you know, takes a long time to grow out!).
Use the Right Brushing Method
Once you have a brush that puts minimal stress on your hair, it’s important to use the right brushing method. Just like brushing your teeth, having the best tool for the job is only half the battle — your technique matters just as much.
To brush dry hair properly, begin brushing at the very ends of your hair and work your way up. Most people begin at their scalp and work down to the ends from there, but this causes more damage than starting at the ends first.
When your hair is wet, you should never use a brush. Instead, use a wide-tooth comb to separate your hair strands. Brushes on wet hair cause the hair to stretch instead of separate, which can result in a lot of damage.
Use Deep Hydrating Treatments
Blow dryers, curling irons, and hair straighteners are all popular tools at hair salons and home vanities alike. And while it’s okay to use these tools gently and with moderation, it’s important to take extra special care of your hair when you do.
Because applying a lot of heat to your hair can drastically diminish your hair’s moisture level, a deep hydrating treatment can help bring your moisture level back up to a healthy place. You can easily find recipes online for hydrating hair masks using natural ingredients that are probably already in your kitchen.
If you don’t feel like mixing up ingredients to make a mask, you can achieve a similar effect using oil that’s high in vitamin E, such as olive or avocado oil. For best results, heat the oil in a sauce pan over low heat, just until it’s comfortably warm. Apply it to your hair, then wrap your hair in a warm towel. The towel helps trap the moisture in your hair, giving it more time to be absorbed. In four to five minutes, you can wash the oil out of your hair, and you’re good to go.
Use the Low-Heat Setting
This goes without saying, but when you do use high-heat treatments on your hair, opt for the less intense heat settings whenever possible.
Use Loose, “Hair-Friendly” Hair Bands
Common hair bands are tight and constricting: they pull at the roots of your hair, causing your hair’s roots to be weaker and your hair to fall out over time. While a little hair thinning is normal, having hair bands that actively tug at your hair all the time can quickly become unhealthy.
Instead of the rubber band-like bands, use 80’s-style scrunchies or plastic coil-style bands. These hold your hair securely and comfortably in place, without placing any unnecessary pressure on the roots of your hair.
These are the best ways to keep your long hair healthy and happy for years to come.