Hair Wash: Perfecting the Process
A hair wash is one of the simplest things to get done, and yet there is also the possibility of things going wrong, if you do not do it the right way. The frequency of your wash, the products you use and the way you do it, all of these factors significantly impact the state of your strands and your effort to keep your hair clean.
However, it all depends essentially on your hair, its texture, the condition of your scalp and a number of other factors. Amazingly you will find that the most common actions could have major implications for your hair health. Let’s find out more.
How to Wash Your Hair
Ever wondered why a hair wash when done by a professional gives your hair that shine and gloss. That is because they are properly versed in the techniques of hair care and the way a head wash should be done. A professionally trained person can transform your hair simply by using the proper methods to give you a shampoo. Follow their methods closely and you will learn about the right way to wash hair.
This is more often than not a trial and error method, and depends on the amount of oil that your scalp produces. If you wash your hair everyday you have to reduce the frequency by one, with every successive week, until you get the hair of the desired quality.
- Warm water for shampoo: Always rinse your hair with water before using your shampoo. You will use less shampoo as it lathers better and spreads evenly. Using warm water for a hair wash is always recommended as cold water will leave your hair looking dry and dull. You can rinse your hair with cold water after you are done with your shampoo. Warm water opens the cuticle while cold water keeps it shut, helping retain the moisture inside the cuticle. This is the best way to wash hair.
- The right shampoo: You have to identify the right shampoo that suits your hair. Focus on the scalp and not the hair as this is where the dirt accumulates. Oily hair requires a shampoo that purifies rather than moisturiser or hydrates. Dry hair, on the other hand, requires something very moisturising. If your hair is fine and soft, use a milder shampoo to avoid putting pressure on your hair.
- What to do post after your hair wash: You should always remember to towel your hair dry after the shampoo especially if you plan to use a hair dryer. Do not rub your scalp but gently dab your towel for some time and allow it to dry on its own. Do not brush your hair when you are in the shower. You might end up weakening and breaking your hair.
What to Do Before Hair Wash
It is important to prepare your hair wash in the right manner so that you can gain the maximum advantage from a shampoo. Let’s find out how:
- Oil Massage: Use warm oil to massage your scalp at least an hour before you wash your hair. This helps nourish your scalp, removes dryness and improves blood circulation. You can try out different types of oil like castor and olive oil and massage for about 15-20 minutes.
- Brushing before washing: It is easier to detangle dry hair than wet hair as wet hair could break. Brushing your hair before your hair wash enhances blood circulation and reduces hair loss.
- Reverse conditioning: Condition your hair before you shampoo if you have long hair. Apply the conditioner to the ends of your hair. This will prevent hair breakage and add to its shine. You can prepare a conditioner with a mix of yoghurt and eggs or alternatively honey and curd as it will add to the health of your hair.
- Diluting the shampoo: You should always dilute the shampoo before using it for your hair wash, it may contain a higher proportion of certain chemicals that might not be good for your hair.
- A hair mask: Using a hair mask is an excellent way to rejuvenate your hair follicles. Leave it on for half an hour before continuing with your hair wash.
What to Do After Hair Wash
After your hair wash, you should ideally pat your hair dry and then keep the towel wrapped around it to remove the remaining water. Put a conditioner to help retain the moisture. You can then detangle the hair more conveniently.
A wide-toothed comb to detangle the hair is recommended. This will help get rid of those knotty hair problems.
Always use a heat protecting serum before using a dryer as this will ensure that the moisture is retained as well as help you style your hair.
Avoid tying your hair up when it is wet after a hair wash because wet hair has the possibility of breaking.
Tips to Wash Your Hair
Apart from this there are a number of processes you can follow to keep your hair in proper condition. Let’s take a look:
- Choose your hair products with care: Use products free from silicone and sulphate as they could cause a lot of damage to your hair. They could block the pores and restrict the oils from flowing thereby drying out your hair.
- Avoid hot water to wash your hair: Don’t use a hot shower for your hair. Always use cool/lukewarm water as hot water could wash away the beneficial oils in your hair.
- Deep conditioning: Try deep conditioning your hair at least once a week. The conditioner needs to be applied along the length of your hair. Use a comb for detangling and spreading the conditioner over your hair. Keep it on for 10-15 minutes to help your hair soak it in, before you rinse it out. As you use the conditioner (with the shampoo) for the second time try and smoothen it across the hair. Use cold water after that to close the cuticle.
Do not attempt to completely rinse out the conditioner as it provides protection to the hair. You can remove the conditioner from the scalp but let it remain ever so slightly towards the ends.
- Massaging your hair: Massage your hair from the front to the back and from the back to the front in a circular motion. This will exfoliate the scalp.
Benefits of Washing Hair
Washing hair helps remove odour, deposits and debris, and keeps it silky and smooth. If you increase those gaps between those hair washes, you run the risk of making your hair smelly and dry. There are a number of positives of washing hair. Let’s find out what:
- Excess sebum builds up if you do not wash your hair. This will provide the fodder for bacteria and lead to dandruff. It will also weigh down your hair and make it heavy. A good shampoo will help you avoid these problems.
- Shampoo will also help you style your hair. The right shampoo resets hair and makes it flexible enough to adopt any style. Avoiding a hair wash would make it difficult for you to maintain any hairstyle.
- The development of skin scales happens every 28 days, but if you don’t wash your hair this could become even more frequent. Also washing your hair will lead to the reduced production of cortisol. This is a stress hormone which is linked to hair thinning in women.
- You should definitely wash your hair after a workout as it will spread sebum and make your hair grimy and dirty.
- Washing hair removes dead hair follicles and helps faster growth of hair.
What to Not Do Before and After Washing Your Hair
The rules to be followed before a hair wash are very basic but they could make a big difference to the health of your hair.
- Rinse your hair with water before using your shampoo. This will ensure that the shampoo spreads out evenly across your scalp.
- Comb your hair from the bottom to the top, working your way up to the scalp. Also brush in smaller sections so that you are detangling small areas at one time.
- Do not try to iron your wet hair. The steam produced will form bubbles inside your hair strands and make it brittle.
- Do not attempt to straighten your hair frequently. This will make your hair dry and frizzy. Also do turn up the heat to ridiculous levels in order to quicken the process.
- Do be careful in choosing your shampoo if you colour your hair. It is normally seen that people spend exorbitant amounts on colouring hair but very little on the shampoo. This might damage your hair irreversibly.
Shampoo-free hair seems to have become a norm of late as people adopt different ways like a herbal hair wash or an alternative shampoo, thereby enabling the natural oils to take care of the hair. In the process they are dropping astringent shampoos as an option. Washing with cleaning conditioners has become an extremely popular option of late for people with curly and wavy hair. There is also the water-only option for washing hair, which can remove the dirt and dust, but will not be able to moisturise your hair.
If you follow the processes detailed above you should be fine. But if you feel that you need a closer examination of your hair issues then visit us at Traya. Our experts will provide you options after a comprehensive analysis of your problem and ensure the completion of your journey towards healthy hair.
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Dr. Jaspreet Sarna, M.D
Dr. Sarna is an MD (Skin & VD) with a decade-long experience in treating hair loss and working on hair regrowth. She believes stress management is the key to good health.