Volumized, beehived, poker straight, slicked back, braided or tousled and curly, the basic foundations for maintaining healthy hair are still the same. In light of Fashion Week, here are our expert’s top hair protection tips for keeping hair healthy and beautiful throughout the upcoming hairstyle trends.
No matter the trend, removing tangles gently and correctly pre and post styling is essential. Harshly unsnarling knots easily snaps the hair, causing split ends and even damage all the way up the hair shaft. Before combing, be it on wet or dry hair, spritz a detangling spray through the mid-lengths and ends of your hair and gently work a wide-tooth comb up from the tips to your roots.
If you are using heat to style your hair, make sure to use products that guard your hair from associated damage. This will help prevent excessive breakage, rupture of your hair’s cortex and split ends. For curly styles, heat protective sprays are best, whilst straighter styles benefit more from smoothing botanical gels that act as a barrier against dryer temperatures and straighteners. However, no heat protective product will 100% prevent damage if you use extremely high heat, or keep going over the same areas again and again. Stop styling when your hair is dry, and not 5 minutes after!
Braids and Updos
Styles incorporating loose braids, rather than tight braids, are best as they cause less breakage (if any at all) and don’t pull on your hair from the follicle. However, if tighter braids are in your sights, make sure that you only leave them in for a day at maximum – and don’t do them too often. Wearing tight braids can snap hair off close to the scalp, and eventually cause traction alopecia – a type of hair loss whereby the hair is literally pulled from its root. The same rule applies for tightly done updos and ponytails.
The Alternative Backcomb
Backcombing certainly does create lift, but, if we were to pick the worst of all the styling methods, it might just be at the top of the list! Backcombing raises the hair cuticle beyond repair, and as soon as you smooth a brush over it, the cuticle snaps off. We are not complete party poopers though – so here is a good alternative: Spritz a good volumizing spray throughout your roots and blow-dry your hair at the root against the direction to which in grows. This creates amazing, lasting lift, whilst causing minimal damage. You may also want to boost the body of any do by using a lightweight dry shampoo, and brushing through as normal, and then with your hair turned upside down. Not only does this soothe the scalp and adds significant volume, but also camouflages the roots of blonde hair.
Prep and Post
Sometimes there’s a must-have hairstyle that, no matter what you do, is going to do some damage to your hair. I.e. those that really do require backcombing or heavy use of tongues and straighteners etc. Or there might be a week where you know your hair is going to be harassed more than usual. However, as long as this is only done once in a while, it should be OK – provided that you take measures to strengthen and repair your hair! A few days before embarking on a complicated, new style, apply a pre-shampoo conditioner before you go to bed and sleep with it in overnight. Similarly, a day or two after you style, do the same again. This will help to restore lost moisture, shine and elasticity to your strands. Follow all the hair protection tips in order to keep your hair perfect.