Want glossier, shinier-looking hair? Then get ready to adopt some of these good habits…
What you’ll need
For many, the pursuit of healthy hair is a tiring and never-ending quest, especially when it’s not easy to distinguish fact from fiction. So, what should you do if you want to obtain an enviable mane that looks as healthy as it feels? Ahead, we round up 8 good habits that will benefit your tresses and hopefully lead to more luscious-looking locks in the near future. Adopt them or not: the power is now in your hands.
How to get healthy hair
1. Handle with care
This might sound a little odd, but it’s true: people with healthy hair don’t over manipulate it. Too much brushing and combing (yes, there really is such a thing), and excessive styling can leave your mane more prone to damage.
So, what can you do to counter this? And before you panic, don’t worry, we’re not suggesting you stop brushing your hair altogether! But first thing’s first: handle your hair gently after you wash it and avoid combing straight away, because wet strands are far more fragile. Top tip for natural hair: try wearing longer-lasting, protective hairstyles so that daily manipulation is relatively low. This will help lessen split ends and the much dreaded mid-strand breakage.
2. Minimise friction
We’re not suggesting you’re all currently rubbing your hair into oblivion, but everyday we are unknowingly applying unnecessary friction to our hair. The main culprits for this are seemingly harmless materials like towels, pillowcases and even clothes. But don’t panic: you don’t have to avoid sleeping and drying your hair after showering. However, do take note that many people with ultra healthy hair tend to dry their locks with T-shirts and sleep on silk/satin pillowcases. How does it help? Silk pillowcases are softer on strands and don’t suck moisture from your mane while you sleep, while T-shirts have a smoother texture than towels, which helps to reduce friction and frizz.
3. Turn down the heat
Be honest: how much heat are you using on your hair daily? The truth is, over-styling with electrical appliances or incorrectly using heat is a major contributing factor to less-than-healthy-looking hair. We know they can be difficult to give up completely, so why not aim to lower your usage, instead. And we’re not just talking the temperature of your hairdryer and straightener here (tip: a lower heat setting and a more gentle blast can also help prevent frizz), but also your water. Hot water can make your tresses more susceptible to damage, so play it cool when you wash and rinse.
4. Apply aptly
Technique is king when it comes to hair care. So, what habits can we learn from our healthy-haired friends? This one is really simple. Apply shampoo only to the scalp and roots, and softly massage to remove any buildup and excess oil. When using conditioner, you want to do the opposite: avoid the scalp and roots, and apply a small dollop to the lower strands and gently rub to moisturise the fragile and older hair ends.
5. Pair products
Are you currently using shampoo from one brand and conditioner from another? After reading this, you might want to rethink your choices. Try to match your shampoo and conditioner from the same brand and range. But what difference does it really make? Well, it’s as simple as: because they were formulated together, they will work better together. So start pairing up your products now!
6. Eat a balanced diet
It’s not only what you put on your hair and how you handle it that determines the look and feel. What you eat (and don’t eat) will also have an effect your tresses. Eating a balanced diet is a no-brainer, but what types of foods do you need for a luscious mane? Protein, healthy fats and, surprisingly, complex carbohydrates, like wheats, grains, corn and sweet potato, are all important for the production of healthy hair. So, make foods like eggs, avocados and kale staples in your diet. Don’t forget to consult your doctor for advice if you have any serious concerns.
7. Practice makes perfect
This adage can be applied to almost anything, but it definitely rings true when it comes to healthy-looking and feeling hair. Devising a routine and putting it into practice can benefit your tresses in many ways. Not only in terms of washing and conditioning, but also by employing deep conditioning treatments regularly to help retain and add moisture, as well as keeping on top of periodic trims. Try using the TRESemmé Platinum Strength Deep Conditioning Treatment (£5.50*) once a week to help repair damaged hair.
For more tips about deep conditioning, read our article on the dos and don’ts of deep conditioning here.
8. Be kind to yourself!
Last but not least: be kind to yourself. Sometimes, without realising it, we can be our own worst critics. So don’t be so hard on yourself if you can’t do all of the above (no one is perfect): small tweaks and changes can still make a big difference.