During December I am inundated with questions from magazines regarding maintaining hair health in the winter. This isn’t the case with my patients, mind you, who come en masse to my clinics during January with hair that has been subjected to various assaults over the holiday season. It seems that many (including my wife and 2 daughters!) throw caution to the wind during this time, choosing to suffer the consequences afterwards. I am hoping this article has caught your attention early enough so you can avoid the January hair blues this year. In this month’s article I am sharing my PRE New Years Resolutions so you can toast in 2015 with beautiful, healthy locks.
CONDITION. And correctly!
Conditioner is a vital component of any hair care regime. It isn’t simply a devise to mask problems, but a well-formulated one will help restore health to your hair and treat brittleness and dryness. However, many people – especially those with fine hair – steer clear of using conditioner as they find it weighs their hair down. To avoid this, simply apply it to your mid-lengths and ends only. Contrary to the ‘all over’ application I frequently encounter at hair salons, conditioner is never meant to touch your roots. They don’t need it and it will indeed create limpness.
Hair is an excellent barometer of general health – with flus, high fevers and stomach bugs frequently affecting the hair growth cycle. This can result in mass hair shedding 6-8 weeks later and may last as long as 6 weeks depending on the severity and duration of the illness. While there is no fool-proof way to avoid getting sick, I strongly suggest you ask your doctor about getting a flu shot. It takes a mere few seconds and may help you avoid a serious hair blip.
December is one of the busiest times for salons in terms of hair processing. Who doesn’t like to have a head of freshly done colour for Christmas and New Years!? While you may time this quite well after your last appointment, leaving at least 6 weeks in-between, this isn’t always possible. Quite commonly, it is much less and this can lead to overlapping of previously done colour, resulting in breakage near the root area. To strengthen your hair pre-colour, prep it a few days before a salon visit with my pre-shampoo conditioning treatment, Elasticizer, and then again a few days after. You can also discuss your concerns with your stylist so that they are even more cautious than usual.
It may well be the season to be jolly, but it is also the season of blow-dryer tomfoolery, sizzling styling tongues and haphazard de-tangling. The result? A frightful case of split ends. Firstly, take a look at your ends (yes, right now). If you see splits occurring, make an appointment to see your stylist ASAP. If you leave them, they can split all the way up the hair shaft and cause a great deal of damage. Contrary to popular belief, split ends cannot be mended – and the only cure is to snip them off. To avoid them in the first place, choose brushes with widely spaced and padded plastic prongs, always apply a detangling spray (Daily Damage Defence) before combing, and be sure to detangle starting at your ends – never your roots. Also, limit your use of hair straighteners to twice a week, and use a heat protective conditioning serum, like my Straight Hair, when doing so.