For those of us who are diligent students of hair care, we are well versed in all the various rules for how to promote growth and avoid breakage (don’t use too much heat, deep condition regularly, protective style etc…).
What we often overlook are the small habits that, over time, do just as much as the well-known faux pas to sabotage our healthy hair journeys.
Here are 3 damaging hair habits you may be guilty of and suggestions on how to fix them:
1. Being Overdue for a Mani
If you’re a woman with curly, kinky, or coily hair, chances are you will use your hands a lot when styling. This means combing, parting, sectioning your hair with your fingertips. It’s happened to all of us: that moment when we’re running our fingers through a section of hair and all of a sudden we feel the dreaded snag.
When your nails have rough edges, it’s very easy for hairs to get caught repeatedly, tangle, and break off. It’s an incredibly frustrating experience that often leaves us searching frantically for a nail file before we can continue our styling routine.
What To Do Instead:
Before tackling your tresses, take a look at the condition of your nails. If you see jagged, uneven edges that will no doubt reak havoc on your strands, simply smooth them out with a nail file first.
2. Trimming with Dull Scissors
A regular trim is essential to maintaining healthy hair. As ends get damaged, not only does the damage make its way up the entire hair shaft, but the rough ends are much more prone to tangling.
As important as trimming is, when administering a self-trim, many pick up whichever pair of scissors are closest and start hacking away. The problem with this is that common scissors (e.g. kitchen shears, utility scissors) are often far too dull. Instead of cutting ends evenly, they tend to tear and shred them instead, leading to–that’s right– even more split ends.
What to do Instead:
It’s always best to visit a professional if you have little experience trimming your own hair. However, if you must go at it yourself, be sure to invest in a pair of proper hair shears and never use them for any other purpose. Sharpening your hair tool(s) regularly will also ensure you get a clean cut every time!
3. Bundling Up
A scarf is the most practical and stylish of all winter accessories, but if you’re rocking a cotton blend scarf on the daily, this may be damaging the hair on the nape of your neck. While your wrap may keep you warm, the fibers in it can damage your hair by drawing moisture out of the strands, getting caught in your hair and tugging at it, or weaken the hair from constant friction.
What to Do Instead:
If you can’t live without a scarf (especially in a cold climate), try switching to a silk scarf a few times a week instead. This will at least reduce the amount of contact between the rough fabrics and your hair. You could also try layering your cotton/wool scarf over top of a silk scarf for double the warmth and half the damage!
Although you may avoid the major hair-care sins, be sure to watch out for the little habits that cause hair damage over a long period of time.
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Do you know of any other healthy hair habits we should adopt? Let us know by commenting below!