Friday, 23 August 2013

Hair Care Myths and Tips

Posted by simran at 09:04

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.

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