Moroccan Gold Series’ Guide to Damaged Hair
Your hair is not just your crowning glory. By wearing different hairstyles, you can use your gorgeous locks to show your personality. For example, if you dye your hair, it could mean that you’re up for adventure, and you’re not afraid to try new things. If you wear your hair in a sleek ponytail or a tight bun, it could indicate that you might be someone who always means business. If you have curly hair and you couldn’t resist using a hair straightener to tame your locks, it could signal that you might be someone who values balance and organization.
Indeed, styling your hair is a lot of fun. However, to achieve your desired hairstyle, you need to use styling products and heating tools. It’s only a matter of time before heat and chemicals leave your hair strands dry and unhealthy.
What Is Damaged Hair?
Three layers make up a hair shaft. The innermost part is the medulla, which is mostly present if the hair strand is thick. Next is the cortex or cortical layer that contains melanin, which gives the hair strength and color. On the surface is the cuticle, a transparent layer of overlapping keratin cells that protects the cortex.
A healthy hair strand would have a flat cuticle. But when hair is damaged, the overlapping cells lift, crack, or blister, making the hair dry, rough, and brittle.
What Are the Signs of Damaged Hair?
There are many ways that damaged hair can manifest. When you see these unwelcome signs, it means your hair needs better care.
Damaged hair is brittle. Pollution, exposure to the elements, and frequent use of heating tools in styling your hair are the common culprits of hair breakage. The damage may appear as split ends, where the tips of the hair strand become frayed. Hair breakage can also appear further up the hair strand.
Healthy hair looks shiny because the hair cuticles lay flat and reflect light. When you have damaged hair, the cuticles are raised and lose their reflective ability. Damaged hair also lacks natural oil and moisture, making the hair look dull and lifeless.
Frizz and Fly-Away
Damaged hair is unmanageable. Because damaged hair loses its natural moisture, hair becomes frizzy or stands in different directions. Hair frizz even worsens when your hair is exposed to humidity or frequent use of heat styling tools, or when you wash your hair with shampoo every day.
Tangles form when the open cuticles of damaged hair strands snag or cling together. Damaged hair is dry, making it difficult to separate hair tangles or knots.
Hair loss or thinning
Shedding some hair strands every day is normal. However, if the fallout is excessive and persistent or leads to bald spots, then it could be a more serious condition that may require medical attention.
How to Care for Damaged Hair?
Dealing with hair damage can be frustrating. Fortunately, there are ways you can care for damaged hair, and most of them don’t even require expensive hair salon treatments.
Apply a hair mask
A hair mask is a convenient at-home treatment that you can apply to damaged hair. Some treatments take as short as five minutes, unlike salon treatments that can last for hours.
Look for hair masks with ingredients like Moroccan Argan Oil. This natural treatment for damaged hair contains Vitamins A, C, and E, and other hair nourishing nutrients that help restore your hair’s shine, moisture, and softness while protecting the hair from heat and sun damage.
Reduce use of heat tools
Styling your hair with a blow dryer, curling iron, or hair straightener exposes your hair strands to high levels of heat, which opens up the cuticles. But sometimes using heat tools can’t be avoided, especially if you’re attending a party or a special occasion. In such cases, set the temperature at the lowest or at mid-range. Also, dry your hair a bit with a cotton fabric before styling.
Modify hair washing methods
If you have dry hair, don’t use shampoo every day because it strips your hair of its natural moisture. When washing away the shampoo, gently massage your scalp instead of rubbing vigorously. Rinse the shampoo with flowing water. Don’t forget to use conditioner afterward.
Give your hair time to rest between treatments
Hair treatments like rebonding, perming, or color treatments use harsh chemicals that weaken the hair shaft. To prevent hair damage, allow your hair to rest for a few weeks (or as recommended by your hairstylist) before having another treatment.
Live a healthy lifestyle
Sometimes hair damage comes from within. If your body does not receive the proper nourishment from a balanced diet, it could affect the health of your hair too. Drinking alcohol or smoking excessively can also have damaging effects on your hair.