Hair—relaxed or natural—is no resilient matter. It splits. It snaps. It easily falls out. But wait! Don’t reach for the scissors just yet. Are you failing to give your hair the moisture it needs? Are you wrapping it up every night? It’s time to let go of these hair routines…forever. Here’s five habits that are ruining your hair.
1. Not trimming your ends
Retaining length is very important to a lot of us but do we really need to be so scared of a pair of scissors? Split ends cause breakage and weaken the hair. A little snipping goes a long way in gaining the length you want. Do it regularly.
2. Not Moisturizing Correctly
When it comes to relaxed hair, moisture is essential. But not any kind of moisture! Instead of using products that suffocate strands (namely those containing petroleum and mineral oil), have your go at natural oils like jojoba, coconut or extra virgin olive. They’re substantial enough to nourish hair while providing elasticity, but light enough not to weigh it down.
Great Natural Oil To Try: DME Virgin Coconut Oil. It’s certified organic, comes in a resealable jar and will keep for several years at room temperature.
3. Overusing Heat
For optimal hair health, retreat from the heat. Curling irons, flat irons and blow dryers can be detrimental if used too often. When you do plan to apply heat to your hair, make sure you use a quality heat protectant.
Have Some Extra Time? Think about letting your hair air dry. To eliminate frizz, apply a styling foam such as Aveda’s Phomollient while hair is still damp. Not only will it leave your hair soft and voluminous, but it doubles as the quality heat protectant we just mentioned above.
4. Unwrapped P.M. tresses
This kinda goes hand-in-hand with the sleeping-in-makeup thing. No matter if your hair is relaxed or natural, you need to protect your hair before hitting the hay. So whether that means slipping on a bonnet, scarf or a satin pillowcase, wrap it up.
5. Relaxing hair too often…
And not often enough is a one-way ticket to hair breakage. Because it’s recommended you have at least one inch of new growth before scheduling a retouch, aim to relax hair every 8-10 weeks depending on how quickly your hair grows. Any earlier poses the risk of over processing, and any later sets the stage for processed hair to weaken at the new growth site – causing it to snap.
That’s Not All: Do you find you leave the salon with burns every time you go in for a retouch? If so, it may be a good idea to switch to a milder relaxer. While it won’t straighten your hair to bone-straight perfection, it’s gentler, aids hair in retaining natural oils, and will leave some extra body for you to work with. Who wants limp locks anyway?