I’ve never taken really good care of my hair. I got it cut a couple weeks ago, it was the first time since August of 2009. Not even a trim in all that time. And before that, it had been about two years since I last cut it. So the first thing I’m doing to try and make sure my hair is healthy for the wedding is get it trimmed every six weeks.
I’m also easing off the heat styling. It causes damage, and most of the time it just ends up in a ponytail anyhow, so why bother? Of course, I think I should probably do less ponytails. And what about brushing? Anyone have any good info on this? I’ve heard too much brushing is bad because it causes breakage, and I’ve heard lots of brushing is good, because it stimulates scalp circulation. Anyone have the truth?
I do a deep conditioner from time to time, which involves slathering my hair with oil (usually coconut), sleeping in it, then washing it out (which usually requires two or three shampoos) the next day. This leaves my hair super soft and shiney for at least a week. I want to try doing these weekly, in the hopes that it will really improve my hair.
I’m trying not to shampoo too often. Your own natural oils are the best for your hair. But if I go too long between shampoos, I get dandruff. Some people I know swear by the no-poo method, which basically means they never, ever shampoo their hair. That doesn’t work for me. Other people I know just use conditioner. That doesn’t work for me either. I can stretch the time between shampooing by rinsing my hair with vinegar, but I can’t cut my shampoos down to less than two or three times a week. I’ve tried. I’ve tried alternative shampoos too – baking soda, Dr. Bronners, dry shampoos. Dry shampoos (such as corn meal or corn starch) work alright in a pinch, but they aren’t a solution for long term hair cleaning for me. I need to soap up my hair from time to time.
Shampoo and conditioner is one personal care item I splurge on, because it’s so hard to find a good one without nasty chemicals in it. I justify my opulence in shampoo purchases by looking at how little I spend on every other cosmetic. I also don’t color my hair, so that cuts back on expenses as well. But times are tight and weddings cost lots of money, so I’m planning on purchasing cheaper shampoos and conditioners in the future. The real chore is finding something that doesn’t contain parabens or pthaylates, because they mess with your hormones and reproductive system.
Basically, I’m just trying to be gentle with my hair, and maybe give a little extra boost every now and then. I cut it short enough so I don’t have to braid it when I go to sleep anymore, for people with long hair, I highly recommend that. It reduces tangles, so it reduces the likelihood that your hair will break when you brush it. I used to have really long hair, and I lived by braiding it at night. Or on windy days. Or when I would be driving with the window down. Etc.
I’ve also looked into supplementation to deal with the massive amounts of breakage I’ve got going on with my hair. The amount of hair I lose each day in the shower and when I brush is insane. You’d think I was balding. So I’m giving a shot to some protein powder in my green smoothie every morning, raw wheat germ (which I hear makes hair super shiney), and a supplement called BioSil, which a woman at Vitamin Cottage recommended to me. It tastes awful, but if you mix it with a little bit of juice, you can’t taste it at all. I’ll let you all know how it goes.