How to Manage Damaged Hair - Without Cutting It Off

Whether it's the result of too much heat styling or a severe chemical treatment, badly damaged hair can be frustrating to handle. While trimming hair is the fastest, simplest solution to ridding yourself of split ends and "gummy" hair texture, you aren't necessarily limited to those options if you are committed to salvaging your hair. 

The habits listed below can help to improve your hair's strength and elasticity if you incorporate them into your beauty regimen and are willing to stick to them for several months.

Cut back on hair washes. Washing your hair, especially with shampoos that contain sulfates, can strip your scalp of its natural oils. Like a scab that forms over a cut, often our bodies are capable of producing their own remedies to minor ailments. Hair condition is no exception, as the oils produced by your scalp act as a built-in moisturizer for your locks. Aim to wash your hair no more than two or three times a week if it has been badly damaged. 

Condition your hair regularly, and incorporate deep conditioners into your routine. 

Look for conditioners that don't contain silicones, as silicones merely coat the hair shaft. You want a conditioner that will penetrate the hair shaft. Additionally, you might want to use hair oils as a dry-hair conditioning treatment. 

Determine the balance of moisture and protein your hair needs. Buy both strengthening and moisturizing conditioners, and experiment with how they make your hair feel. Try using only the strengthening treatment one day, sample the moisturizing treatment another day, and finally try using both products in tandem with one another. It is possible to "overfeed" your hair protein, making it dry and brittle, which is why following up with a moisture treatment is important. Everyone has a different protein/moisture balance that works for them. 

Lay off of the hot tools, or at least use a heat protectant product. While it may seem like the only way to control damaged hair is to run it through a flat-iron, try to resist this temptation unless you're going to a special event. Let hair air-dry as often as possible, and invest in a good-quality heat protectant spray or serum. 

Wear your hair in protective styles. One of the most discouraging parts of having damaged hair is thinking you can no longer wear your hair down. This is not necessarily the case, as damaged hair typically holds style longer. You might find that you can go an entire day without having to touch up your hair with gel or spray, saving your hair from chemical buildup. By preventing buildup in your hair, you'll find you can get away with washing it less often. You can also wear your hair in braids, which will often hide frizz. 

Having damaged hair doesn't have to mean your only solution is to cut all of your hair off or buy hundreds of dollars worth of extensions. While your hair may not completely "heal" or go back to normal overnight, by following the above tips you will likely see a significant improvement in your hair health over the course of several months.

 Braun Satin-Hair 7 Brush with IONTEC

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