We all want our hair to look good, and we’ll go through great lengths to flaunt it. But some of the styles we wear and how we care for them may actually damage our hair. Over time, our hair begins to shed and fall out.
It’s important to understand the difference between hair breakage and shedding. Hair shedding involves long strands of hair falling with the hair bulb often attached. Take a look at a strand that’s fallen out and check for a little white bulb attached to the end of the hair strand. In general, shedding has an internal cause such as improper diet, stress, medication, or even not getting enough rest.
Breakage doesn’t involve the hair shaft but includes is a mixture of long and short pieces of hair that fall off the shaft of hair strands. Generally in breakage you will see hair on your shoulders, in the sink, on the floor, etc. and is usually caused by external factors such as harsh chemicals, extreme heat or styling techniques like tight braids or ponytails. Lifestyle changes can help reduce internal causes while adjusting product and style choices can eliminate external factors. Here are some suggestions:
When more than 375 degrees of heat is applied to your hair with a flat iron or curling iron, 50% of your hair’s moisture is lost. So, the more you style with heat, the more you rob your hair of moisture.
Solutions- Only use heat once a week between shampoos. Apply a deep moisturizer during the shampoo/ conditioning process. When blow drying use minimum heat and light tension. Try to use an ionic blow dryer with Infar red heat verses other dry direct heat. Only use ionic ceramic flat irons or curling irons and lower-watt blow dryers. Only re-curl once during 7 days. Pin curl, wrap or roll your hair to maintain the style nightly so you don’t have to use heat so much.
Prolonged tension can cause hair loss and scarring, and using chemicals aggressively over processes your hair and weakens the fibers. Weak fibers easily break from brushing, combing or other manipulation. So pulling our hair into tight ponytails, braiding every baby hair around the edges and coloring every grey hair are bad habits that can cause traction alopecia.
Solutions - Loosen the ponytails and braids. You may have to do them more often but it will reduce traction alopecia. Allow 8-12 weeks between chemicals, color, relaxers, etc. Comb your hair -- especially when wet -- from the ends to the scalp to eliminate unnecessary tangling and shedding. Always condition with your shampoo process.
Lack of moisture
You may be surprised to learn that dehydration is a primary cause of hair loss or shedding. That’s right, your hair needs water, too.
Your body uses and loses 2 to 3 quarts of water per day so that’s why you need to drink 8 to 10 glasses of water a day. Replenishing your body’s water supply will not only make sure that organs are functioning well but will also stimulate new hair growth and skin cells.
Solutions: Your hair must be treated every 7 days to maintain needed balance. Shampoo with moisture enriched shampoos only and always condition with a moisture and protein combination conditioner to strengthen the hair and add elasticity. Also, maintain moisture content with daily use of a non-grease shine serum to keep the cuticle sealed. Eliminate heat as much as possible.