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Anuoluwapo Adebayo: @anu_chayil Talks about the need to Take Care of your Hair

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We probably hear and read all sorts of advice about caring for our hair and wonder products for hair growth; some of us have been lucky, some disappointed while others do not believe it is worth their time and just live through the days with no consideration for their hair. Nevertheless, hair care is an essential part of grooming and caring for our hair requires as much attention as skincare (our scalp is part of the skin and will affect hair strength and growth).

Besides the obvious unpleasant smell, hair that is uncared for and often left dirty, can cause bad skin conditions on the face, neck and upper back. This can also lead to hair breakage and itchy scalp which can be embarrassing and a huge inconvenience. There are easy ways to take care of our hair and once we develop the habit, we will be happy with the benefits.

Drink a lot of water – Water is one of the Universe’s greatest gifts to man. Drinking sufficient amount of water keeps the whole body hydrated and that includes our hair. Sometimes dried out hair is an effect of not enough water/dehydration.

Wash your hair- This may seem like I am stating the obvious however it can be tricky when deciding how often you need to wash your hair; unlike the men who can wash their hair at every bath, women or men with long hair do not have this luxury and need to develop a wash day routine. I would advise that you pay attention to your hair; do you have oily or dry scalp, does your hair break, do you need to moisturize often, are you athletic and sweat on your scalp? These will influence how often you wash and treat your hair.

Conditioning – Most people believe this is just an indulgence and ignore the benefits of conditioning the hair.  Just like washing your hair, you need to pay attention and find out what treatment works for you; some hair types need more deep conditioning or respond better to some products. I can be quite lazy so I often just do the Olive Oil conditioning where I put olive oil on my scalp and cover with a shower cap for as long as I like until it is time to wash. This process made my hair healthier and got rid of dandruff.

Use natural oils to keep your scalp moisturised and your hair healthy- Coconut oil, shea and almond oil are a few good ones to use however do not let hair become too greasy.

Heat Control – If you choose to treat and wash your hair at home, it is better to let it dry naturally rather than use a hair dryer. You can also use a heat protection product before curling or blow drying your hair.

Trimming your hair- For both men and women who do not have low cut, no matter how you choose to wear your hair, getting a trim at least 4 times a year is advised by professionals to keep it looking healthy.

Hair protection – Develop the habit of protecting your hair when you plan to go swimming as chlorine in the pool can be damaging to the hair; during winter/cold seasons as hair can break if weather is extremely harsh; and at night when sleeping by wrapping or tying a scarf to maintain your style and lock in moisture.

Hair styling – Most of us lead busy lives and would often leave our hair in braids for endless weeks or wear wigs daily while nursing bird nests underneath. This is detrimental to your hair and total wellbeing. A convenient way to deal with this is to have a hair calendar; if you can’t create one for the whole year, then make one every quarter. This will save you money, help you be more organized and take the stress off worrying about what style to wear and it will help you take better care of your hair.

Pay attention to your health and lifestyle – sometimes a change in hair texture or incessant hair loss may be an indication of stress, scalp disorder, a deficiency or illness; other times it may be hormonal or genetic. It is also good to avoid or limit sharing tools like combs, hair clippers and to keep them well cleaned and dry. Eating healthy and taking vitamins promotes good hair condition.

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