Friday, 23 August 2013

How to Recognize Damaged Hair

Posted by simran at 09:45 1 comments

How to Recognize Damaged Hair

Young woman with damaged hair       The other day I was in line in a supermarket and overheard two women talking about their hair. One complained that her hair was lank and flat and very hard to style. Looking closer, I noticed that her hair was fine, sleek and silky and looked very lustrous, if a little oily. As I listened, I learned that she had seen a commercial for a conditioning treatment for "damaged" hair that promised sleek, silky, and MANAGEABLE hair and had been using it almost daily for a month. The end result was hair that was over-conditioned.

      By contrast, our cashier was a middle-aged woman whose hair was cut to shoulder length, had obviously been colored and permed, and was frizzy and dry-looking. I always hate to be truly negative about other people's appearance, but her hair looked like the classic 'bird's nest". This was a woman with damaged hair, and she obviously hadn't a clue about it.

      That got me wondering how it was possible for these two people to be so unaware of what it meant to have damaged hair. Had no one ever taught them the signs? Well, here are some of the signs of hair damage and ways to treat them effectively.

      Rough Texture
      Overly Porous
      Dry and Brittle to the Touch
      No Elasticity/Susceptible to Breakage
      Becomes Spongy and Matted when Wet
      Color Fades or Absorbs too Rapidly
      The most readily visible signs of damaged hair - rough texture, over-porosity, dryness, and brittleness - are generally caused by damage to and over extension of the cuticle layer of the hair shaft. This can come from blow-drying, wind, harsh shampoos and chemical treatments, as well as other heat-styling methods and environmental influences. By using conditioners that are pH balanced, protein enriched, and moisture restoring, you can smooth the cuticle layer and protect the hair shaft from further damage. When hair is damaged it's important to use a good, moisture-rich conditioning treatment every week until it shows improvement, and to use a light spray-on, leave-in conditioner daily during styling.

      The problem of elasticity loss, susceptibility to breakage, can sometimes be hard to diagnose. Healthy hair can stretch up to 150% of is normal length - without breaking - and return to its original state. Unless your hair shows lots of broken ends and significantly shorter hairs than you noted before, you may not be aware that there is a real problem. The best clue to poor elasticity could be sitting in your hairbrush. Do you have a lot of hair caught in your hairbrush? Do you have to clean your brush often because of built-up hair in the bristles? Unless you can tell that these hairs are all full- length and coming out at the root (in which case there may be other problems to be dealt with) you can be reasonably sure that you have a problem with hair breakage. The best treatment in this case is a protein rich conditioner, and/or weekly protein treatment, which will add strength to the hair shaft.

      Issues with color absorption and retention, and sponginess and matting when wet, are also porosity issues, but on a more severe level. These levels of damage require very intensive treatment and constant care in processing and styling. Some people with this level of damage to their hair find it easier to cut off the damaged hair and start fresh. However, this may not be an option, so its best if you take care of your hair before it becomes so damaged.

      The most important thing to remember is that your hair is NOT alive once it emerges from the scalp. Like the free edge (white part) of your fingernails, the hair is dead tissue. Because of this, don't be tricked into believing promises made by products to heal or cure your hair damage. The conditioning treatments and products available today can help protect the hair, and can lessen some damage, but the best way to have healthy hair is always prevention.

Hair Tips

Posted by simran at 09:34 1 comments

When it comes to caring for our hair, ignorance is the most powerful enemy we battle. Because of our lack of proper knowledge, we cause many of our own hair problems! Educating yourself in this area should be the number one step in caring for your hair.
We often unintentionally abuse our hair because we do not appreciate or understand how to properly care for it. Listed below are helpful tips, facts and important information to help you in your hair-care education.

Purchasing Hair Care Products

  • Be sure to check the ingredients on your hair products. The ingredients that you should avoid are: sulfate, alcohol, mineral oil and petroleum. If your hair products contain any of these, you should stop using it IMMEDIATELY!
  • Petroleum and mineral oil clog your pores. They also cause dryness on the scalp, making it unable to absorb moisture and your hair will be prone to additional damage. If your moisturizer contains mineral oil or petroleum, switch to one without these ingredients. The moisture must get to the cortex, the source of dry hair. Mineral oil and petroleum only lie on the surface of the hair and prevent moisture from penetrating. Avoid moisturizers containing protein, which can cause excessive dryness.
  • When choosing a shampoo, do NOT choose a conditioning shampoo. When conditioners are added to the shampoo, the conditioner can interfere with the shampoo’s ability to adequately clean the hair. The dirt you are attempting to remove may be left on the hair as a result.
  • Do NOT invest in hair care products containing vitamins. The external application of vitamin products to your hair is of no value, because hair is dead. The papilla located at the roots inside the head controls hair growth. Any vitamins that are applied to the hair shaft instead of the roots – where growth is controlled – are a waste of time and money. However, daily doses of vitamins and minerals help to maintain healthy hair. They are essential for beautiful hair growth. Including nutritional supplements in your diet is certainly one way to assure yourself that you are getting the necessary vitamins and minerals your body needs for growing longer, healthier hair.
  • If you are interested in using a hair polish to add gloss to your hair, make sure it contains the following ingredients: Dimethecone and Cyclomerhicone. These two ingredients smooth the cuticle and add a non-greasy sheen to the hair. Keep in mind that the hair polish doesn’t have the same benefit as a moisturizer (it does NOT moisturize the hair!).
  • Aphogee Protein Treatment should only be used if you have SEVERE breakage. After the treatment is used, be sure to follow up with a good moisturizer. Aphogee offers a moisturizer, but it is not the best for dry hair. We need oils to lubricate our hair – especially after a protein treatment, and Aphogee moisturizer does not provide us with the necessary oils.
  • If you have a dry itchy scalp, select a shampoo that does not contain sodium lauryl sulfate or its relative, sodium laureth sulfate; both are known irritants to the skin and found in most shampoo products.

Interesting Facts

  • Trimming your ends does NOT produce growth. Hair grows from the scalp, not the ends. The ends are what you need to keep attached to your hair in order to obtain length. Instead keep your ends conditioned and moisturize them every day.
  • Research shows that air drying dry hair is the best drying method for hair because the moisture just added to it by washing and deep conditioning will not be immediately depleted by intense heat.
  • Dry hair needs intensive conditioning. You must deep condition your hair with a good conditioner to keep the hair you have, and to encourage more hair to grow.
  • Co-washing is when you wash your hair with conditioner ONLY.

  Co-washing does NOT wash your hair! Would you put lotion all over your body in the shower instead of soap? Frequent cleaning of dry hair is necessary, because we must use hair products daily to help replace lost moisture. Also, keep in mind that over conditioning can make your hair limp and unable to style.
  • A deep conditioner should be washed out of your hair. Leaving it in all day could dry out your hair. Protein causes the hair to harden and should not be left on the hair continually.  Use the conditioner with heat to provide the BEST benefit for the hair.
  • Dry hair needs to be washed about every three days, or at least once a week. When starting this hair care program it is important to deep condition the hair each time you shampoo to help get it in the best condition possible.
  • The signs of damaged hair are: a lack of shine, split or frizzy ends, dryness and excessive breakage. A good conditioner can help correct these problems.
  • Organic products don’t automatically mean better products. Organic products contain chemicals. Using something labeled organic or natural doesn’t mean allergic reactions or other problems are eliminated.
  • There are no cosmetic products developed to date that will permanently change hair thickness. However, there are products that will help improve hair texture temporarily and many products offer appropriate and effective solutions under many circumstances.
  • Each hair strand has a life cycle of two to seven years. Hair falls out to make room for new hair and the cycle starts again.
  • Using rubber bands to pull hair back can tear or rip hair. However, covered or fabric bands and most plastic clips and barrettes are harmless to hair when used properly. It’s the pulling of hair that is most damaging, not the use of products like these.
  • 80% of the African American population has dry hair.
  • Studies show that 35% of African Americans are now wearing their hair chemical-free and that number is rapidly increasing.

De-bunking the Myths

MYTH: Certain hair products will make hair thicker.
Not True! Do NOT be fooled by products that say they can make your hair thicker. The only ingredient that can possibly thicken the hair by bonding to it is protein.
MYTH: Wearing braids makes your hair grow.
Wearing braids has nothing to do with your hair growing. Your hair is ALWAYS growing. Hair grows about 6 inches per year (on average).
MYTH: Your hair can split all the way up the hair shaft.
Hair splitting all the way up the hair shaft is a “myth” created by the hair industry. It is not possible for every hair to do such a thing. Hair can split ANYWHERE along the hair shaft. Remember split ends are caused by things you do. STOP doing damaging things to your hair and you will avoid most splitting hair problems.
MYTH: Stress causes permanent hair loss.
Although it’s true that stress can be a factor in temporary thinning of hair, it has no lasting effect on the condition of the hair. Once stress is treated, thinning no longer occurs as a symptom of that condition.
MYTH: A head massage will increase circulation and stimulant growth.
Increasing circulation in the scalp certainly can’t hurt, but it will NOT stimulate hair growth.
MYTH: Pull out one gray hair and two will grow.
The action of pulling out a hair can rupture the follicle, and the replacement hair, which will eventually grow, takes longer to regenerate. During this time, another gray (or mostly gray) hair may be beginning to grow next to it. When the hair that you initially pulled out re-grows, you could have two gray hairs, but the second gray hair has nothing to do with the first hair.
MYTH: Brush your hair at least 100 strokes daily.
Do NOT over brush hair; despite the common myth that 100 strokes a day are good for the hair and scalp, this leads to breakage!!

Preventing Damage to Your Hair

  • Lye or no lye, the results are the same. If you look at the ingredients on the relaxer box, and you see “sodium hydroxide” this is lye. The main ingredient on the “no lye” relaxer box is either: calcium hydroxide, guanidine hydroxide or potassium hydroxide. Do not be fooled! Under any of those names it is still lye. It just contains lower pH levels and supposedly relaxes more slowly, so you do not have to hurry to get it on before the hair starts straightening or the scalp starts burning.
  • Do NOT use heating appliances daily such as curling irons/flat irons. This kind of abuse can be very damaging to our dry hair. The maximum frequency this heat should be applied to your hair is once a week.
  • Do NOT grease your scalp. Greasing the scalp has nothing to do with hair growth. It is not recommended because sebum, the hair’s natural oil, functions in that area on the scalp. The oils in your conditioner actually go where it is needed most, which is on the dry hair shaft to help lock in the moisture and lubricate the hair.
  • Do NOT use the pressing comb on chemically processed hair. Pressing combs were not intended for chemically processed hair. Instead use a flat iron, because the heat is not intense as the pressing comb.
  • Never relax brittle, dyed or bleached hair. If so, this can worsen your condition and you can expect to have severe breakage.
  • Do NOT be fooled by “kiddie” relaxers. They contain the same ingredients as the adult relaxer. This is a common misconception. Next time you go shopping for a relaxer compare the two.

About Breaking and Shedding Hair

Do you know the difference between breaking and shedding? They are each caused by different triggers.
  • Shedding is part of your hair’s natural life cycle. The old root is pushed out to make way for a new one (look for a little white bulb on the end of the hair).
  • Breaking is a result of dryness and damage to the hair, usually near the ends. It occurs when the hair falls off at a weak point in the hair shaft. You can normally find these little hairs on your back, in your comb, on the sink and your bathroom floor. If you are experiencing this problem, it is important to work quickly to address and stop the problem! When the ends drop off excessively, length cannot be accomplished. If your hair is healthy and properly maintained, breakage will not be excessive and there are no barriers to growing it as long as you desire!!!

About Braids

To my ladies who wear braids: This is NOT a good choice if you are trying to care for your hair and let it grow. If you choose to blend artificial hair (including human hair) with your natural hair for braid styles, you are going to experience breakage. The fake hair that is braided in with your own hair does not allow your hair to get the maintenance and treatments it needs, because fake hair functions as a buffer. Maintenance products must reach the hair to improve it; weaves absorb these products and rob your hair of the treatments.
In addition to the above, braids are very damaging because they are continually pulling your hair by the roots and often times pull too tightly. When it is continually pulled, the hair cell will eventually die. If the hair cells have been gone for about a year, the hair cells are probably dead. Once they’re dead, nothing can revive them.
Braids worn too tightly can cause traction alopecia, which is the leading cause of hair loss amongst African American women!

About Hair Loss

Milay’s Standard Textbook of Cosmetology defined the 5 Types of hair loss:
  • Androgenetic Alopecia – is defined as the most common type of hair loss type; it starts during teen years and is hereditary. It is affected by hormones and age. In men, it is most commonly referred to as male pattern baldness. However, women are subject to this condition as well.
  • Alopecia Areta - is defined as sudden hair loss and is most often attributed to stress. Characteristics include round or irregular patches of hair loss.
  • Telogen Effluvium – is defined as hair that sheds prematurely for various reasons, including childbirth, birth control pills, crash diets, fever, shock or drug intake.
  • Traction or Traumatic Alopecia – is defined s a traumatic condition caused by repetitive pulling of the hair (braids) and has been attributed to excessive chemical applications or excessive pressing comb use.
  • Postpartum Alopecia – is defined as a temporary hair loss condition after pregnancy and is affected by hormone levels in the body.
  • Many of the reasons for hair loss cannot be helped while others are very preventable. For Black women, much of our thinning hair issues can be resolved by the elimination of chemicals on our hair. A chemical relaxer is not always needed to achieve straight hair. The industry wants us to believe that we need a chemical to make our hair straight, because this is what helps them to sell the product which allows them to continue to get rich through our ignorance.

Hair Types

According to Andre Walker, who has won numerous Emmys for his work on the Oprah show, has worked out a curly hair types system, which helps explain different types of hair.
What is your hair type?
  • Type 4: Kinky Hair
    If your hair falls into the Type 4 category, then it is kinky, or very tightly curled. Generally, Type 4 hair is very wiry, very tightly coiled and very fragile. Similar to Type 3 hair, Type 4 hair appears to be coarse, but it is actually quite fine, with lots and lots of these strands densely packed together. Type 4 hair that is healthy won’t shine, but it will have sheen. It will be soft to the touch and will pass the strand test with ease. It will feel silkier than it will look shiny. Type 4 hairs looks tough and durable, but looks can be deceiving. If you have Type 4 hair, you already know that it is the most fragile hair around. There are two subtypes of Type 4 hair: Type 4A, tightly coiled hair that, when stretched, has an S pattern, much like curly hair; and Type 4B, which has a Z pattern, less of a defined curl pattern (instead of curling or coiling, the hair bends in sharp angles like the letter Z). Type 4A tends to have more moisture than Type 4B, which will have a wiry texture.
  • Type 3: Curly Hair
    When this type of hair is wet, it appears to be pretty straight. As it dries, the hair goes back to its curly state. When curly hair is wet it usually straightens out. As it dries, it absorbs the water and contracts to its curliest state. Humidity tends to make this type of curly hair even curlier, or even frizzier. Type 3 hair has a lot of body and is easily styled in its natural state, or it can be easily straightened with a blow-dryer into a smoother style. Healthy Type 3 hair is shiny, with soft, smooth curls and strong elasticity. The curls are well-defined and springy. 
Andre defines two subtypes of curly hair. First, there is type 3A hair which is very loosely curled and usually very shiny with big curls. The shorter the hair is, the straighter it gets. The longer the hair is the more defined the curl. Then, there is type 3B hair which has a medium amount of curl to tight corkscrews. It’s not unusual to see a mixture of these types existing on the same head. Curly hair usually consists of a combination of textures, with the crown being the curliest part. Lastly there is a type 3C, is hair type that is not in Andre Walker’s book, but many people suggest that it should be. This type of hair can be described as tight curls in corkscrews. The curls can be either kinky, or very tightly curled, with lots and lots of strands densely packed together.
  • Type 2: Wavy Hair
    A relatively unusual type, wavy hair tends to be coarse, with a definite S pattern to it. There are three Type 2 subtypes: A- Fine /thin, B -medium-textured, and C – thick and coarse. Type 2A is very easy to handle, blowing out into a straighter style or taking on curlier looks with relative ease. Types 2B and 2C are a little more resistant to styling and have a tendency to frizz.
  • Type 1: Straight Hair

Using Relaxers on Your Child’s Hair

In spite of manufacturers’ promises and claims, many experts still maintain that chemical relaxers not only damage children’s hair and scalps, but all hair regardless of the person’s age.
Many hair specialists also believe that using hair relaxers on a young girl’s hair can result in serious damage to her hair.
Hair relaxers require maintenance and reapplication every 6 to 8 weeks, and if applied inappropriately, the hair and scalp can burn and become damaged. Chemical relaxers break down the interior structure of the hair strands and deplete the strands of moisture, resulting in weakened strands and breakage.
Some experts agree that women should never use chemical relaxers on their or their daughters’ hair, and some believe that a certain age should determine when relaxers should be safe to use.
According to Dr. Jeffrey Miller, a dermatologist at Pennsylvania State University’s Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, “The majority of relaxers are done without any major problems.” Miller recommends that consumers avoid home relaxer kits, and instead seek the professional help of a certified beautician to perform the service on a regular basis, in addition to keeping the hair moisturized and conditioned regularly.
Michael Bernstein is a Beverly Hills trichologist and he opposes the use of relaxers, especially on children’s hair. Bernstein stresses the risk of permanent hair loss and allergic reactions and even impairment of vision if the relaxer chemical gets into the eyes. According to the Illinois-based Alverto-Culver Company, who produces the Just For Me, a top-selling relaxer kit, their chemical relaxer product for children as young as 6 years old.

Ingredients found in Hair Care Products

The following items are typically found in hair care products. We at Rapunzel suggest you educate yourself in order to get the most effective and healthy products for your hair care dollars.
  • Isobutane is another form of alcohol. It is used as a propellant in cosmetic sprays. If you find this ingredient on the back of your hair products please disregard use. Alcohol tends to dry out our dry hair even more! There are other products that contain another form of alcohol called Cetearyl alcohol and Cetyl alcohol. Cetearyl alcohol is not drying to the skin and hair. Cetyl alcohol resembles a component of the body’s natural oil Sebum. Both of the alcohols are used as an emulsifier and emollient.
  • Isopropyl Alcohol: Dries and Breaks African American or Ethnic hair. It is found in color rinses, anti-freeze.
  • Mineral Oil/ Petrolatum: It used as a moisturizer in African American or Ethnic hair care products; however, it coats African American or Ethnic hair, actually preventing moisture from getting into the thirsty hair. It is a derivative of crude oil and a cheap industrial grease component. It also prevents the release of toxins from African American or Ethnic hair and alters the skin respiration by preventing oxygen release.
  • Polyethylene Glycol (PEG): Propylene Glycol (PG): An active component in many African American or Ethnic hair care products, make up, lotions, mouthwashes, and deodorant, PG is the active component of anti-freeze and actually deteriorates the protein and cellular structure of African American or Ethnic hair. Protein is what your hair needs to thrive. Workers actually use gloves and goggles when dealing with this substance due to its chemical side effects and toxicity. It strips African American or Ethnic hair of critical moisture.
  • Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS)/ Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES): A cheap foaming and thickening agent that strips African American or Ethnic hair of moisture and causes skin and scalp irritation. 95% of all hair shampoos contain this ingredient or a derivative. Avoid it completely; TEA lauryl is just as bad, if not worse. Do not be fooled by the use of the word TEA. Shampooing African American or Ethnic hair with a product that contains these can lead to the absorption of excessive nitrates.
  • Diethanolamine (DEA), Momoethnanolamine (MEA), and Triethanolamine (TEA): Usually listed as an ingredient containing a neutralizing compound, i.e. as Cocamide DEA or Lauramide DEA, repeated skin applications of DEA-based detergents are known to form cancer causing nitrates
  • After conditioning your hair, DO NOT allow your hair to dry without applying a moisturizer. Protein is very drying to the hair when it is not moisturized, but remember it is also a key requirement for having longer, healthier and beautiful hair.

Human Hair

Posted by simran at 09:10 1 comments

Human Hair - Facts and Information

Hair is defined as a protein filament that grows through the epidermis from follicles deep within the dermis.
Hair can grow on most areas of the human body, except on the palms of the hands and the soles of the feet (among other areas), but hair is most noticeable in most people in a small number of areas, which are also the ones that are most commonly trimmed, plucked, or shaved. These include the face, nose, ears, head, eyebrows, eyelashes, legs and armpits, as well as the pubic region.
Hair can be divided into three parts length-wise, (a) the bulb, a swelling at the hair base which originates from the dermis, (b) the root, which is the hair lying beneath the skin surface, and (c) the shaft, which is the hair above the skin surface. In cross-section, there are also three parts, (a) the medulla, an area in the core which contains loose cells and airspaces (b) the cortex, which contains densely packed keratin and (c) the cuticle, which is a single layer of cells arranged like roof shingles.
Human scalp hair normally grows at a rate of 0.4 mm /day (incidentally human scalp hair grows at a rate four times that of human nails. Human nails grow at a rate of 0.1 mm/day). It is commonly accepted that emotional distress, especially that caused by verbal abuse, etc. often is a contributing factor to a slower hair growth rate.

Dandruff - Due to the excessive shedding of dead skin cells from the scalp. Dandruff can also be caused by frequent exposure to extreme heat and cold. As it is normal for skin cells to die and flake off, a small amount of flaking is normal and in fact quite common. Some people, however, either chronically or as a result of certain triggers, experience an unusually large amount of flaking, which can also be accompanied by redness and irritation.

Hair Texture - Usually defined as fine, medium, coarse, wiry or frizzy hair depending on the hair diameter. Within these four texture ranges hair can also be thin, medium or thick density and it can be straight, curly, 'kinky' (tightly coiled), or wavy. Hair conditioner also affects hair texture. Hair can be healthy, normal, oily, dry, damaged or a combination. Hair texture can also be affected by hair styling equipment such as straighteners, crimpers, or curlers.
Curly and/or 'kinky' hair has a different biological structure from straight hair. It tends to be much drier than straight hair because the oils secreted into the hair shaft by the sebaceous glands can more easily travel down the shaft of straight hair. People with very curly hair may find that this hair type can be dry and often frizzy.

Gray Hair - The tendency of older people to develop gray hair is due to a build up of hydrogen peroxide due to wear and tear of the hair follicles. Gray hair is considered to be a characteristic of normal aging. The age at which this occurs varies from person to person, but in general nearly everyone 75 years or older has gray hair, and in general men tend to become gray at younger ages than women. Red hair usually doesn't turn gray with age; rather it becomes a sandy color and afterward turns white.

Hair Loss - Often drugs used in cancer chemotherapy will frequently cause a temporary loss of hair, most noticeable on the head and eyebrows, because they kill all rapidly dividing cells, not just the cancerous ones. Other diseases and traumas can cause temporary or permanent loss of hair, either generally or in patches. Patients with Hyperthyroidism or Hypothyroidism can experience hair loss until their hormone levels are regulated.

Baldness - Involves the state of lacking hair where it often grows, especially on the head. The most common form of baldness is a progressive hair thinning condition called androgenic alopecia. The amount and patterns of baldness can vary greatly; it ranges from male and female pattern alopecia (androgenic alopecia, also called androgenetic alopecia or alopecia androgenetica), alopecia areata, which involves the loss of some of the hair from the head, and alopecia totalis, which involves the loss of all head hair, to the most extreme form, alopecia universalis, which involves the loss of all hair from the head and the body.
Treatments for various forms of alopecia have limited success. Some hair loss sufferers make use of clinically proven treatments such as finasteride and topically applied minoxidil in an attempt to prevent further loss and regrow hair. As a general rule, it is easier to maintain remaining hair than it is to regrow; however, the treatments mentioned may prevent hair loss from Androgenetic alopecia, and there are new technologies in cosmetic transplant surgery and hair replacement systems that can be completely undetectable.
In the USA, there are only two drug-based treatments that have been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and one product that has been cleared by the FDA for the treatment of androgenetic alopecia, they are finasteride (marketed for hair loss as Propecia) and minoxidil.

Hair Care Myths and Tips

Posted by simran at 09:04 1 comments

Hair Care Myths and Tips

Summary: Hair care tips and facts including some common hair myths and why they are not true.

Document Detail: Hair is an outgrowth of protein,found only on mammals. It projects from the epidermis, though it grows from hair follicles deep in the dermis. The average human head has about 100,000 hair follicles.
Hair texture is measured by the degree of which one's hair is either fine or coarse, which in turn varies according to the diameter of each individual hair.

There are usually four major types of hair texture: fine, medium, coarse and wiry or frizzy hair.
Male Pattern Baldness (androgenetic alopecia) will affect a lot of men, and is a result of a combination of factors including age, hormones, and genes. The gene is said to be passed from mother to child, so if a man wants to ascertain his chances of hair loss, it would be more indicative to look at his mother's father rather than his own father.

In the appearance conscious society in which we live these days, experiencing hair loss is not something most men would like to do.

Male Pattern Baldness (androgenetic alopecia) will affect a lot of men, and is a result of a combination of factors including age, hormones, and genes. The gene is said to be passed from mother to child, so if a man wants to ascertain his chances of hair loss, it would be more indicative to look at his mother's father rather than his own father. However, this theory has many doubters, and it is likely that if hair loss runs on either side of your family, you might be at increased risk.

Male Pattern Baldness typically results in a receding hairline combined with hair loss on the crown of the head. Eventually the two gaps in the scalp will meet. As previously mentioned, there are factors which increase a man's chances of experiencing hair loss, but there are also a lot of myths on the subject of hair loss out there.

This article examines some of the most widely known - and the reality behind the myths.

Excessive washing of hair causes hair loss/dryness
FALSE: Frequency of washing doesn’t harm hair. Wash it as often as you like, although the recommendation is three times a week. The right shampoo for your hair type and texture will actually add moisture, body and beauty to your hair.

More shampoo = cleaner hair
FALSE: Don’t waste your shampoo! A dollop of shampoo, about the size of a quarter is usually enough for long hair. Very long hair may take a little more.

Conditioner helps repair split ends
FALSE: No conditioner can "repair" damaged hair. What it can do is smooth down the cuticle and make hair seem in better condition. A good conditioner can also prevent damage from occurring in the first place.

Blow-drying produces hair loss
FALSE: Blow-drying can damage, burn or dry hair, which can cause it to fall, but the hair will grow back immediately. This is not permanent hair loss.

Sleeping with wet hair causes scalp fungus
FALSE: Scalp or fungal diseases can’t be caught from sleeping with wet scalps. Scalp infections require prior involvement with infected sources such as humans, tainted hair care tools or animals. Scalp fungus (tinea capitis) mainly affects children, whose immune systems make them more susceptible to skin infections.

To get your hair to grow, brush 100 strokes each day
FALSE: Brushing that much can damage the hair cuticle. NOT recommended! Actually, your hair reacts better to a comb than a brush. Brushing it will only lead to split ends and hair breakage.

Sharing combs and brushes can spread scalp diseases
TRUE: Lice and other parasites can be transported from scalp to scalp through the sharing of combs, brushes and other hair care tools.

Cutting hair makes it grow faster and/or thicker
FALSE: This common misconception comes from the fact that hair is thicker at the base than it is at the tip, so shorter hair appears thicker at first. Cutting your hair does not affect its normal biologically determined growth rate or overall texture. Thin, limp or fine hair will not ever grow thicker in response to a haircut. Plump up your hair by using volume enhancing hair care products, experimenting with a hair fattening blunt cut or getting a texturizing perm or color treatment.

Color treatment causes hair loss
FALSE: Most hair coloring products contain chemicals that can do serious harm to the hair itself if not properly used, but it wont instigate hair loss.

Salon products are identical to drugstore products
FALSE: Although there are exceptions, salon products generally contain higher quality, more expensive ingredients that are designed to consistently provide more intensive cleansing, moisturizing and conditioning results. The quality ingredients found in salon products are not usually found in drugstore brands. If in doubt – read the labels.

Long sun exposure favors hair loss
FALSE: Your hair acts as a shield against the sun. Hair loss appears at the follicle level and so the sun would have to penetrate at this depth to do any damage.

Diet is related to hair loss
TRUE: it's important to eat right in order to be generally healthy. However, no individual food has been proven to be beneficial or detrimental to hair.

Stress causes hair loss
TRUE: Severe stress (e.g. surgery or a death in the family), can shut down hair production, causing temporary hairloss (alopecia areata). The scalp usually recuperates, though, and hair grows back

Wearing tight braids, ponytails or buns causes baldness
TRUE: Traction alopecia is a very real hair loss condition that is quite common amongst older African American women. It results from wearing tight ponytails, cornrows or buns over an extended period of time. Over time, hair breakage or loss as the result of tight, stressed styles, can become permanent. Avoid this potential problem by opting for looser styles that minimize scalp tension.

Smoking causes gray hair
TRUE: According to J. G. Mosley of the Leigh Infirmary in Lancashire, England in an article in Science News (January 11, 1997) smokers are four times more likely to have gray hair than non-smokers. Even worse, smoking has been conclusively linked to accelerated hair loss.

Dry hair is damaged by too-frequent washing
FALSE: Hair is more likely to be damaged if it's left too long between washes. Not washing can cause the scalp's natural oil to be blocked, and unable to lubricate the hair shaft. As a result, hair can become dry and brittle. Things that damage hair include bleaching, coloring, styling and brushing when wet.

To stop the frizzies, use shampoo only twice a month. The rest of the time, rinse daily with conditioner
FALSE: Oil becomes rancid when it stays on the surface of the scalp, so regular shampooing is required to keep hair and scalp clean and healthy. Avoid frizzies by conditioning after every shampoo and try a leave-in conditioner, too.

A rinse out conditioner does not provide benefits because it is rinsed out
FALSE: Rinse out conditioners applied to your hair after washing will leave a deposit of moisturizing proteins and other ingredients on the hair shaft giving hair that is softer, shinier and better conditioned.

Blow-drying hair can cause it to smoke
FALSE: This strange myth has circulated in different variations for many years. On the rare occasion that hair “smokes” it is due to the evaporation of condensation on the hair from styling gels or similar hair care products.

Brushing thinning hair makes it fall out faster
FALSE: Although, brushing can damage hair (see above), as long as you use a good brush, normal daily brushing will not accelerate the normal loss of hair from the scalp. If your hair is suffering from a hair loss condition like alopecia brushing will only cause you to lose hair that is already ready to fall. Excessive brushing is always discouraged under any circumstances.

Shaving a baby’s scalp will alter their natural hair texture
FALSE: The hair that a baby is born with may or may not be the hair that they grow up with. Shaving a baby’s head will not alter the texture of their ultimate hair nor will it cause their hair to grow faster or thicker.

Gray hair can only be covered with permanent color
FALSE: Depending on the percentage of gray hair that you have, you may be able to blend or cover the budding gray with a semi-permanent or demi-permanent blend that does not contain harsh chemicals.

Excessive use of hair products causes hair loss
FALSE: There are no known, (professionally produced) hair care products that cause hair loss. You may sculpt your locks with as much gel, mousse or spray as you desire. However, be careful of home-made remedies, or any product that you don’t know the contents of.

Hair care products advertised as natural are chemical-free
FALSE: Not all hair care products sold in health food establishments, etc are completely natural; some may contain chemicals like SLS. When in doubt read the label.

Eating Jell-O will make your hair grow faster
FALSE: According to dermatologists, there is no evidence that Jell-O will do anything for hair growth. Syncronized swimmers use Gelatin on their hair to protect against chlorine damage), but there's no evidence that it will stimulate growth.

Stress causes your hair to thin
FALSE: Everyday stress won't cause your hair to thin. The problem may be hormonal or nutritional in nature.

Steroids have no side effects on hair
FALSE: Bodybuilders beware! Anabolic steroids are very potent chemicals that have some treacherous side effects including acceleration of hair loss. The problem is that these side effects are usually delayed by several years.

Standing on your head cures hair loss
FALSE: Hair follicles need more than blood flow to grow hair. Standing on your head to increase blood flow to your scalp, may be great for your gymnastic skills, but will have no effect on your hair.

Split ends will travel
TRUE: Uncut split ends can travel up the hair shaft towards the roots. Hair that is not tended to, over time, may develop splits that migrate and split all or part of the entire hair. Some ends can actually tear multiple times so that your split ends have splits.

Hair will always remain the same texture
FALSE: Although you may be born with straight, curly or wavy locks, there are many circumstances under which your hair’s ultimate texture can be permanently altered. Pregnancy, medication, chemotherapy, age and other variables can cause your texture to be temporarily or permanently altered.

Wearing a Hat
It is often said that wearing a hat increases the wearer's chances of Male Pattern Baldness. Men lose hair every day, without even noticing. This is due to the natural growth cycle of the hair, and they will ultimately be replaced by new hairs. If a man wears a hat for most of the day, any hair lost will gather in the hat, and this will probably be obvious to the wearer when he removes the hat. So, the man who wears a hat will perhaps notice natural hair loss more than the man who doesn't wear a hat. There is nothing to suggest that wearing a hat can cause hair loss, but the actual wearing of the hat will make the natural loss of hair more obvious that it otherwise would have been.

Cutting the Hair
Another urban myth is that cutting the hair will make it grow back stronger and quicker. This is perhaps due to the fact that when cut, the hair feels thicker. There is no evidence to suggest that cutting the hair makes it grow back any differently. A person's hair will grow back at the same rate as before.

Brushing your Hair
There is a school of thought that brushing your hair is good for it, even compared with combing. The reasoning is that brushing is just like massaging the scalp, which will increase blood circulation, and hence stimulate hair growth. This is also nonsense; in fact too much brushing could damage the hair by causing split ends.
Heard another myth about hair? Do your research – ask an expert! This doesn’t include your grandmother, best friend or local barmaid. Instead, talk to an experienced hairdresser or a trichologist. Always get the real facts before you act on any hair myths – you owe it to your hair.

Why you need to change your hair care routine in winter??

Posted by simran at 08:45 1 comments

Why you need to change your hair care routine in winter

Hair Romance - big braided bun and winter hair care tips

Although it doesn’t feel like it, winter is about to hit the southern hemisphere.
The end of summer comes with a sigh of relief as we see the end of humid weather in Sydney. But as we turn the heaters on, there are other stresses that affect our hair. In the same way I start using a richer moisturiser for my skin, you also need to think about changing up your hair care routine for winter.

Why do we need to change our hair care routine in winter?

Our hair structure changes when it’s exposed to different environments, and this is why it’s important to update our hair regime according to the different external conditions, just as we would with our skincare.
We heat-style more in winter which makes our hair more prone to damage, so we need to counteract this by using more hydrating products.

What extra care steps should we take in winter?

Swap to a shampoo and conditioner for dry hair, and use a nutrient rich oil as a deep conditioning treatment and styling aid (like David Babaii Miracle Elixir).
Conditioning is very important, but you must be careful not to over condition. Be plentiful with conditioning product, but make sure you rinse hair well. There’s nothing worse than limp, flat hair from residual conditioner.

Any tips for reducing static in our hair?

Have a beauty regimen for your hair, just as you do for your skin. Make sure you are using quality tools and products on your hair to keep strength at its optimum.
Prep hair with a conditioning leave in anti-frizz treatment before heat-styling to protect against humidity and make smooth sleek locks last. Finish off your blow out with a cool heat setting on your dryer to extend the life of your straight style.

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