What Causes Brittle Hair and How You Can You Treat It Fast?

Brittle hair? It's time to send your hair on the road to recovery...   

Brittle hair is essentially hair that is dry, frizz-prone and extremely dull. This combination of mane issues means you’re most likely to experience split ends and breakage when your hair is brittle. But, what actually causes it? Anything from the weather to chemical treatments and excessive heat styling can result in you ending up with dry, brittle hair.

Still need more answers? If you’ve got brittle strands and want to know what is causing it, and more importantly, how to treat it, you’ve come to the right place.

6 Reasons Your Hair Is Brittle

Brittle hair: Blonde girl with long hair backstage Vera Wang SS12 wearing a black top.
Brittle hair? We’ve got your back. Credit: indigitalimages.com

There are a number of reasons why your strands may have become dry and brittle. While these can range from environmental and genetic factors, we’ve rounded up 6 common causes you might identify with…

1. You Colour or Bleach Your Hair

While we love to switch up our hair colour from time to time, let us tell you: it doesn’t do your mane any favours in the long run. Any time you dye your hair (even for the first time), you’re causing some sort of damage to your delicate strands! This damage is even more so if you bleach your hair, so factor this into your hair care routine.

2. You Chemically Treat Your Hair

This may seem like an obvious one, but if you often undergo chemical straightening or perm treatments, know that they can make your hair more susceptible to breakage. Often, the procedures can leave your hair weak and brittle, so it’s best to really research the treatment before you commit to getting it done.

3. You Use Heated Styling Tools Excessively

If you’re a straightener, curling wand and hairdryer addict, take our advice: step away from the heated styling tools! By using them too frequently, you can cause your tresses to become dry and brittle, and, as such, increase the likelihood of breakages occurring.

4. You Brush Your Hair Too Vigorously

Your hair is delicate, so you should be careful not to be too rough while you brush your hair, otherwise, you could be causing unnecessary damage to your strands (eek!).

5. You Don’t Eat Hair-Friendly Things

It’s not only how you handle your mane that determines the look and feel of it, don’t you know? We’re probably not the first ones to tell you this, but what you eat (and don’t eat) will also have an effect on your tresses. Find out which foods you should be eating for healthier-looking hair, here!

6. Environmental Factors

When hair is constantly exposed to different elements, from rain, wind, heat and humidity, it can slowly start to impact your mane and result in hair that’s dry and brittle.

The Best Treatment Options for Dry, Brittle Hair

Now you know what causes brittle strands, let’s get into telling you how you can treat it and get your mane back on track, fast! Follow these easy steps below to improve your hair’s health.

Use a Hydrating Shampoo and Conditioner Duo

If you aren’t using hydrating shampoos and conditioners, you’re missing out on a chance to restore some moisture into your dry strands. The best combo for dry strands? The Nexxus Therappe Shampoo and Nexxus Humectress Conditioner, of course.

The lightweight shampoo formula gently cleanses while nourishing, while the conditioner contains a Caviar and a Protein Complex that helps to restore lost nutrients and lock in moisture.

Follow Up With a Deep Conditioning Mask

Using a deep conditioning treatment once a week can really help to moisturise dry, brittle strands, and can also be used more frequently if your hair is particularly patched. We recommend applying the TRESemmé Biotin+ Repair 7 Intensive Mask to your mane after shampooing, and letting it work it’s magic!

Try a Nourishing Hair Oil

Hair oils are specifically designed to penetrate the hair cuticle, which in turn helps to hydrate dry, brittle strands.

For extra TLC we suggest weekly treatments of the VO5 Nourishing Coconut Hot Oil.  This hot oil treatment with UV filters uses the power of heat to restore moisture to your locks in just 1 minute. Hair will be left with a fabulous shine and each strand will be strengthened to reduce breakage.

Always Use Heat Protectant

If your styling routine consistently contains a hairdryer, curling wand, or straighteners, then it’s time to take a break. Follow our mantras on how to care for heat-damaged hair and get your tresses back on track.

If you can’t bear to part with your beloved heated styling tool, be sure to use a heat protect or a hair primer. Our top pick is the TONI&GUY Heat Protection Mist for heat styling up to 230°C. Use before blow-drying AND before using a hair straightener or curling tool.

Wear Protective Styles

To shield your hair from the elements, try your best to wear hairstyles that are protective. If you need some inspiration, these 6 easy hairstyles for damaged hair are here and ready to help you take care of your brittle locks.

Switch Up Your Pillowcase

If you’re really trying to maintain moisture and keep tangles at bay, the best thing you can do is invest in a silk or satin pillowcase. These types of pillowcases absorb less moisture than general cotton ones and cause less friction. This will make it less likely for you to wake up with frizz and hair knots.