We all know at least one woman in our lives with perfectly Cared for, non-frizzy, model-worthy hair that could have bounced straight out of a L'Oréal commercial. She's the one who gets up early to blow-dry her hair, applies regular to-end treatments, wet combs instead of dry damaging her hair and would never ever use a straightener to crisp her perfect hair.
As much as we all want to be her, we will unfortunately never be her. Most of us are just tooooo busy and we would never give up that couple of minutes extra sleep. But luckily there are easy steps to follow to improve your hair.
We've rounded up the top 6 hair care commandments that experts from around the world are agreed on.It is the holy grail of rules: From how many times to wash your hair per week to how to use colourants in your hair.
1. Use great hair care products:
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2. Wash your hair two to three times a week, max
How often should you wash your hair? Experts advice that washing everyday is a no-go.
A better way is to cut it back as much as you can.
"Your hair's natural oils are designed to condition and protect your tresses, so when you shampoo daily, it strips these vital oils away," explains New York-based hair stylist Dan Sharp, whose clients include Kate Winslet, Hilary Swank and Charlize Theron.
"It creates a vicious cycle of over-production of oils and a need to shampoo very often. Ideally, to keep your hair healthy, you only need to wash two to three times a week, max."
Don't overwash coloured hair
This is especially true for coloured hair, which can lose its sheen quickly with too much washing.
"The biggest mistake people make is over-washing coloured hair," says colourist Tracey Cunningham, the woman behind Gwyneth Paltrow’s icy blonde hue.
"Buy a good-quality shampoo – Pureology ones are great – and wash it every few days using styling products in between to keep it looking fresh."
Take into account your hair type and lifestyle choices
Of course, how often you need to wash your locks also depends on the type of hair you have.
"Your hairdresser can advise how often you should be washing – it depends on how active your scalp is in producing oil," says Tom Gallagher, creative director at the award-winning Oribe Hair Care.
"The curlier your hair is, the longer you can go between washes," explains dermatologist Dr. Doris Day. "The straighter it is, the faster the oil wicks down, so that can make it oilier faster. If you have superstraight hair, you may not be able to go more than two days without washing."
And lifestyle choices like going to the gym may also affect how often you shampoo your tresses. But even here, there are ways of cutting back - you could try simply rinsing your hair rather than adding in shampoo.
"You may not be able to imagine not washing your hair after a workout (we totally get that), but you can can always rinse out sweat without shampooing," says hair stylist Kerrie Urban. "A water-only rinse will remove salt and sweat without stripping hair oils."
Invest in some good dry shampoo
"Use dry shampoo instead of washing your hair every day. It will help reduce the oil build up in your hair and gives amazing texture," says stylist Mark Townsend, who tends to Reese Witherspoon's hair. "You can also leave dry shampoo in (instead of brushing it out) to give volume."
"As opposed to washing your hair every day, dry shampoo will help to refresh your hair at the roots and the tips whilst helping you to retain all the essential moisture your hair needs," agrees hair visionary Luke Hersheson.
3. Avoid hot showers and shampoo your scalp, not your ends
Most of us just blob on a hand full and we are Good. But if done wrong your results will be highly affected for the wrong.
"Healthy, beautiful, shiny hair starts in the shower so make sure to use the right shampoo and conditioner for your hair type and level of damage,"
"The amount of shampoo you should use depends on the length and thickness of your hair, but a blob the size of a 2 rand coin coin is a good start," says Michael Lendon, advanced creative director at Aveda. "Longer hair needs a 5 rand coin-size blob"
Apply on the scalp and not the ends
It's not just how much shampoo you use, but where you apply it that counts.
"Use shampoo on the scalp only - not on the ends of your hair.
on the ends your shampoo will only wash away.
Massage your scalp to encourage circulation
"Giving your head an invigorating massage as you shampoo is a good way to encourage blood circulation and helps to detoxify the scalp," notes Aveda's Michael Lendon.
A Good massage will make your hair look healthy and expensive.
Avoid hot water
"Cool off in the shower," says Brian Phillips, founder of Canada's World Salon. " Hot water will dry out your hair causing it to tangle and break.
4. Towel-dry your hair before applying conditioner
What conditioning product you use and how you use it is, if anything, more important than the shampoo process. Invest in a few good quality conditioners and leave-in treatments or hair masks, Even more so if your hair is coloured.
Good conditioner is also crucial when it comes to thick, curly hair.
"For curly, highly textured hair, always deep condition," says celebrity hair stylist Ted Gibson. Deep conditioning involves a conditioner that will add moisture and strength (protein) back to hair. You should use heat by either applying conditioner to hair while taking a shower and let it sit while showering or by covering the hair with a plastic cap and applying heat from an outside like a hair dryer.
Gently towel-dry the hair before applying conditioner
Make sure you dry your hair after shampooing and before you apply conditioner: water in your hair means the conditioner won't be able to take affect on the hair shaft and deliver the needed moisture to keep hair looking healthy and shiny.
Avoid the roots and concentrate on the ends
"Try not to put the conditioner on the roots, because that can cause your scalp to get greasy faster," says stylist Kerrie Urban.
While you exercise, you sweat, which means that your hair gets damp with sweat that can actually make it dry," says famed LA-based hair styling talent Andy. "Before you hit the gym wet your hair and add in some conditioner from the middle to the ends. Rinse out the conditioner post-workout and you’ll be left with shiny, hydrated hair.
Avoid the sun as it is damaging to hair.
5. Brush your hair twice a day
Healthy hair needs regular brushing but don't tear force your way through.
For perfectly shiny, healthy and untangled hair, you have to brush your hair atleast twice a day, Once in the morning and once before going to bed, for roughly 60 seconds each round.
Comb wet hair, don't brush it
When your hair is soaking wet, it is weaker and fragile to breakage. Try not to dry to hard with a towel, and instead dab the water out. Also, do not brush your hair while it is wet. Use a wide-tooth comb, working from the ends of your hair on up.
Use a mix of brushes through the whole process:
"At home, you should have a round brush for blow-drying, for styling and a tail comb to move hair around a little.
clean brushes are your friends:
Filthy hair brushes that are covered in hair, oil and product build-up are breeding grounds for bacteria. Clean them at least once a week with baking soda and warm water. A toothbrush will help you to get into all those tiny bristles."
6. Use low-heat for hair-drying
One of the worst things you can do for your hair is overheat it with excessive blow drying. If you want to avoid dry and damaged hair, you need to pay attention to how you're using it and take care to apply heat protection products beforehand.
Cut back on heat-styling tools
Don't use heat-styling tools daily. Flat irons, curling irons and even blow drying can damage your hair. Damaged hair is not able to retain colour the way that healthy hair can.
Styling doesn’t always have to involve tools. If you give yourself a hardy blowout on Monday, push through Tuesday and on Wed do nice ponytail. Making your style last a few days will really help prevent damage.