Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Shower Tips

Some of the best tips I have ever picked up have been for the shower. And I felt like sharing. :)

1. DO NOT shampoo everyday. Do not do it. This is THE MOST IMPORTANT shower tip. 
Your scalp's natural oils act as a natural shampoo in between showers and help keep your hair and scalp moisturized. Shampooing strips the hair of its natural oils, which can make hair brittle, dry and weak. If you suffer from oily hair, don't worry; there are steps you can take to ease your hair into your new, less-shampoo routine. First, invest in a good dry shampoo to use when your hair is on the greasy side (I like TRESemme). Second, if need be, shower slightly more often but only condition (do NOT shampoo or you defeat the purpose!) in between shampoos. Over time, your hair will get used to shampooing less. 

Now, I know that this first step sounds totally crazy, but trust me, it is so worth it. I've tried sharing this tip with friends, and some think I'm nuts. I admit, I thought it sounded a little sketchy when I first heard it, too. But I've been doing it for years now, and I have noticed a HUGE difference in the overall health of my hair (and scalp - more on this later). My hair used to be brittle, dry, perpetually damaged and frizzy. Those days are largely over, and to top it off, my hair now grows much, MUCH faster.

2. Use a hair mask. This is especially important if you have color-treated (or just dry) hair. If you have the money, I recommend Redken's Real Control Intense Renewal moisturizing mask. Otherwise, Neutrogena's version is good, too. Hair masks are also great if you do a lot of swimming (since chlorine is harsh on hair).

3. Exfoliate your face. Not only does exfoliating remove the standard dirt and grime, but it gets rid of dead skin cells (ew!). I like to wash my face first to let the usual soap get rid of the usual stuff, then use an exfoliater such as St. Ives' to soften my skin (and get rid of those used up skin cells).

4. Healthy hair starts at the scalp, so use a scalp-friendly shampoo. This is another trick that I have been doing for years, and again, it makes a big difference. Hair growth starts at the roots, so that's where you should be focusing for healthy hair (and, of course, to make your hair grow faster!). I have become a huge believer in Head & Shoulders over the years, even without dandruff issues. John Frieda's Root Awakening line is also great.

5. Bask in some steam post-showering. For those of you like me, who are diligent about moisturizing after you shower (and you should be, because showering can dry out your skin), this is a great tip. Steam opens up your pores, allowing your skin to better absorb moisturizer. So instead of running out of the steamy bathroom as soon as you are covered, try sticking around for a minute to moisturize first.

6. Dry your hair with a t-shirt. Towels can be quite abrasive, and thus can leave your hair frizzy. Instead, use a t-shirt on your wet tresses.

7. When you do shampoo, make sure it lathers. Shampoo lathers when your hair is clean, so if it doesn't, then shampoo again. BUT, remember trick #1: do NOT shampoo everyday (and definitely do NOT double shampoo very often).

8. Rinse your hair with cold water. Using cold water to rinse out your conditioner closes the shaft so your hair will be silkier.

9. If you have wavy or curly hair, use a wide-tooth comb. Hopefully you already know not to brush your hair when it's wet, because brushing your hair (wet or dry) makes it frizzy. But not just any comb will do. If you are planning on utilizing your hair's natural texture, use a wide-toothed comb so that avoid you taking out the natural wave.

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