Want soft, shiny hair—without split ends, frizz, and hair breakage? These traits are markers of healthy hair—but they can be hard to achieve. In fact, many of our daily hair practices do more harm than good. The good news is that hair is resilient. It’s always growing and changing, and so with simple shifts, we can alter our hair’s health dramatically.
We’ve got haircare down to a science. Here are our best healthy hair tips so you can achieve healthier hair—and maintain it.
Read on to learn how to make your hair healthier.
#1 Take a Personal Approach to Haircare
Everyone’s hair color and texture are unique: blonde, auburn, black, brown, curly, straight, wavy, short, or long. And all hair types can be healthy or unhealthy. The tips below can apply to everyone, but it’s important to use specific products and techniques for your hair type. For example, curly-haired people are prone to moisture loss and need to wash curly hair less frequently and condition it more deeply than those with straight hair.
A great way to give your strands what they need is to find hair products online formulated for your unique hair type and hair concerns. We know hair care isn’t one-size-fits-all. That’s why we offer an entire collection of sulfate-free shampoo formulas to target each hair type. Curious to see what other types of products are best for your hair? Take our hair quiz to help determine the best haircare routine for you.
#2 Avoid Harsh Ingredients
The science of haircare is always evolving. Thanks to modern research, we know some once-common ingredients found in beauty products like shampoo and conditioner have questionable impacts on our hair. One example is sulfates, particularly sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) and sodium laureth sulfate (SLES). So what does sulfate do to your hair? These cleansing agents are a little too good at cleaning the hair—leaving both your hair and scalp stripped of moisture. This can lead to damage and irritation.
If you’ve seen labels with “free-from sulfates, parabens, or silicone,” you’ve been privy to the efforts many companies have made to leave sulfates out of their formulas.
Sifting through ingredient labels to try and steer clear of the not-so-good ingredients isn’t easy. That’s why we leave them out of all our Living Proof products. That’s right— paraben-free, sulfate-free (SLS and SLES), and silicone-free. When you bid adieu to these harsh ingredients, you can help prevent your hair from becoming unhealthy.
#3 Use Hair Masks Regularly
Moisture is a major component in hair health, but is easily lost—through dry air or cleansing with harsh ingredients, or heat styling. Damaged hair and curly hair are particularly prone to moisture loss because the oil from the scalp can’t slide down curls easily.
There are ways to replace moisture, one being to use a hair mask or hair conditioning treatment. Hair masks can help strengthen and moisturize strands—and even restore damage. Try a hair mask such as Instant Repair Mask or Intense Moisture Mask. You’ll see benefits—less frizz and more shine.
#4 Don’t Skip Trims
Healthy looking hair is generally free from obvious split ends or rough, dry ends—both can be avoided with regular trims. Getting a trim is one way to achieve healthier-looking hair instantly; it can also make maintaining hair health easier. Long hair is more prone to tangles and friction than short hair, which can lead to damage and breakage.
#5 Use Heat Styling Tools With Caution
Heat styling, whether it’s using a curling iron or a blow dryer, can damage your hair follicles and remove moisture from your hair. While you can use heat styling tools to dry your tresses or to experiment with different hairstyles, try to avoid overusing them to help keep your hair healthy.
Before using a heat tool, reach for a heat protection spray or styling product as a helpful shield between your hair and your tool. You may also consider trying a hair strengthening treatment like Triple Bond Complex that uses th power of heat to help strengthen your hair bonds. Additionally, keep in mind to monitor the heat level of the tools you use.
#6 Go Longer Between Color Treatments
While you want to visit the salon often for your stylist’s scissor skills, refrain from coloring your hair every time you go. Coloring, or any chemical process (perms, Brazilian blowouts, etc.), alters the structure of the hair shaft. Over time, this can result in hair breakage. With consistent coloring, the hair shaft becomes structurally weaker, making it more prone to tangling, and visually rougher.
#7 Don’t Wash Too Often
How often should you wash your hair? Washing your hair is essential for hair health and hygiene, but washing it too frequently can strip it of the natural oil it needs for health and hydration. It’s important to strike a balance that works for your hair, which may require a bit of trial and error.
A good place to start is by only washing your hair when it needs it––soon you’ll notice the benefits of not washing your hair every day.
Wondering how to clean hair without shampoo and a shower? Between washes try a dry shampoo to keep hair feeling fresh. It’ll help your hair stay healthier, and your style last longer. It’s a win-win.
#8 Avoid Silicone-containing Products
Silicones are common in a variety of hair products, from shampoos to oils. They can give your hair a slick, smooth feeling and appearance, but is silicone bad for your hair? Unfortunately, the positive effect doesn’t always account for some of the negative effects like hair buildup, potential scalp irritation, and hair bond damage. Discover the benefits of silicone free shampoo, and if your hair needs a little extra support, try a hair strengthening treatment to help restore strength to your strands.
#9 Be Gentle on Wet Strands
Wet hair is more susceptible to breakage than dry hair, as it can be stretched beyond its normal length and is more prone to friction due to lifted hair cuticles. To avoid breakage, be gentle when washing and conditioning your hair—and when combing and drying it. Use gentle brushes, detangling spray, and a microfiber towel, which causes less friction than heavy cotton towels do.
#10 Take Care of Your Scalp, Too
Scalp care is an essential part of overall haircare. A dry, untreated scalp can lead to dry and dull hair. So even if you do everything else on this list, you may still experience side effects from an unhealthy scalp.
If you have a dry and flaky scalp, consider trying a scalp treatment. Our Revitalizing Treatment promotes fuller, thicker, healthier-looking hair from the root, while our Dry Scalp Treatment instantly soothes an irritated scalp and provides lasting hydration. With scalp care products, you’ll be on your way to a healthy scalp that can ultimately promote a healthy foundation for your hair to grow. Taking care of your scalp is essential for keeping your locks soft, smooth, and healthy, for longer.
#11 Remove Buildup
Another component of a healthy scalp and hair is regularly removing buildup from pollution, products, and hard water.
It’s important to remove buildup because it can block hair follicles at the root, and create a coating on hair strands. This can keep natural oils produced at the root from reaching the hair shaft—and added nutrients from treatments and products from penetrating strands. Visually, buildup can also cause hair to look dull and greasy.
Eliminate buildup to achieve and maintain healthy hair by using a detox shampoo once a week.
#12 Protect Your Hair From the Sun
The sun can also damage your scalp and strands and lead to brittleness, dryness, and discoloration. Protect them from UV rays by using products with UV hair protection before going in the sun. With a variety of hats, styling products, finishing sprays offering protection, there are plenty of ways to maximize hair protection from the sun.
#13 Embrace Your Natural Hair
The more you embrace the natural texture and color of your hair, the healthier it’ll be. Some big hair-damage culprits include chemical treatments and heat styling. You can help prevent these culprits by air-drying your hair, styling it according to its natural texture, and showing off its natural color, rather than coloring it frequently.
Embrace your hair’s natural beauty, treat it with products formulated for its type, and revel in your hair’s optimal health.
As you implement these healthy hair tips into your everyday routine, you’ll notice a difference. Living Proof has you covered with the right hair products to achieve and maintain healthy hair.