1. Brush your hair
Brushing your hair helps to stimulate blood supply to the scalp and remove dead skin cells from the scalp from building up to prevent infection. It also helps to distribute natural hair sebum oil over the hair shaft for moisturizing and protection. When brushing your hair, use a natural bristle brush or other gentle brushes. Do not rush through the brushing and pull at tangled hair. It is better to go slow than go fast and risk breaking or pulling out your hair. Get into the habit of brushing your hair and dangle it before washing your hair.
2. Massage your scalp
Before brushing your hair, make it a point to do a quick scalp massage first. Massaging your hair scalp helps in blood circulation to your scalp and will also help your hair to grow faster and more healthily. Place your finger tips on your scalp and massage in small circular motions. Using your finger tips will keep your hair from breakage, while scratching your scalp with your fingernails might cause infection.
3. Give Your Hair A Break
Get into the habit of giving your hair a break once a week. It is not necessary to wash your hair every day (unless you tend to work up a sweat every day in your job, activities etc). If you are over the age of 20, and do not have any rashes or infections (like dandruff), do give your hair a break for a whole day by not washing it. Pick a day where you normally do not go out, or just do housework and run errands. Do not wash with shampoo and do not blow dry your hair. If you are not used to it, simply wet your hair and apply a little conditioner on hair ends and rinse well thereafter. Washing your hair too much will remove your natural hair sebum, which is good natural hair oil moisturizer for your hair. Give your hair a break from shampooing once a week, and whenever possible, from blow-drying and heat styling.
4. Conditioning Treatment
Unless you have dry hair, get into the habit of applying a deep conditioning treatment to your hair only once a week. Deep conditioners are not the same as daily conditioners and they are much more intense than daily hair conditioners. Coconut oil is especially good for hair conditioning. Brush your hair, wash and then towel it dry. Apply your deep conditioner and then wrap your head in a heated towel to open the hair cuticles and allow the conditioner to soak in. Leave for about 10-30 minutes then rinse thoroughly in warm water to remove the conditioner residue, follow by rinsing with cold water to close the hair cuticles. Rinsing your hair in cold water can be a little uncomfortable, but it help closes the hair cuticles close to the hair shaft, which help increase shine and also help to keep hair strong. Adding some lemon juice to the cold water can further improve your hair’s shine and strength (a half of a teaspoon of lemon juice in two quarts of cool water is sufficient).
5. Daily Conditioner
Apply a daily conditioner to your hair ends every time you shampoo. This will reduce split ends, hair discoloration and reduces damage caused by heat styling and reduce the need for frequent hair trims. Do not apply hair conditioner to your hair roots, as this is the part rich with natural hair sebum and applying hair conditioner on top of hair sebum will cause your hair to be greasy and drop easily.
Get into the habit of getting your hair trimmed regularly. This reduces split ends and keeps excess weight off your hair (which can cause breakage). Go for a hair cut about once every 8 weeks if you have shoulder length or longer hair and once every 6 weeks if you have shorter hair styles.
If you have long hair and want to keep it that way, try to pin up your hair up when possible. One of the reasons that women grew such long beautiful hair back in the “olden days” is because they wore it up all the time. The weight of your hair can cause damage to your hair. When hair is long, it weighs down, stops growing and falls out, or simply breaks off. Putting your hair up frequently will keep that weight or stress off the root of the hair. You can pin it up gently with bobby pins or a hair clip when running errands, doing housework, cooking dinner, doing yard work, or working on your computer, watching TV, etc. Now, this depends on your hair style and hair length. If you have a short hairstyle, this step is unnecessary. However, if you have shoulder length or longer hair, and want it to look thick, shiny and healthy, make it a point to bun it up and keep the weight off your hair roots.
8. How to Wash Your Hair
There is a right and wrong way to wash your hair. Treat it like the finest silk! If you’ve ever made the mistake of running a pair of expensive silk clothing in your washing machine, you’ll know what I mean. Here a few tips to avoid causing any excess damage to your hair while washing it:
1. Let your hair hang naturally when you wash it; either standing in the shower or with your head leaning over the bath, or in a sink. Do not squeeze shampoo directly on your head to wash and don’t keep your hair straight when washing your hair as this will cause hair to tangle easily and cause breakage.
2. Wet your hair with warm water (not hot water) to prepare it for a shampoo. Lower the pressure on the shower head so that it is gentle enough to avoid excess water pressure on your hair.
3. Pour shampoo into the palm of your hand and lather it, do not squeeze shampoo directly onto your hair or scalp.
4. Work the shampoo into a lather in your hand, and apply to your scalp. Work the shampoo into your scalp all over your head by massaging with your fingertips (not your fingernails). Do NOT drag your fingers through your hair. Remember, hair is the most vulnerable to damage and breakage when it is wet. If your hair is particularly dirty or oily, you can work the shampoo through to the ends. If your hair is very dry or damaged, you may just want to wash your scalp, and let the residue shampoo rinse out any dirt on hair ends as you rinse your scalp.
5. Rinse hair thoroughly with lukewarm water. Ensure that you allow it to hang reversely. You may comb through it gently with your fingertips if it’s long and needs extra help rising out the shampoo.
6. If you chose to use a conditioner, only apply conditioner to the ends of your hair, and then onto the rest of your hair with any remaining hair conditioner, follow by a rinse.
7. Towel dry gently. Once hair is towel-dried you can apply a leave-in conditioner while hair is still wet.
8. ALWAYS comb wet hair with a wide-tooth comb and never brush wet hair.
9. NEVER sleep with wet hair, as it is vulnerable when wet and can break easily as you turn and toss about on your pillow. Even if it doesn’t break, your hair cuticles will become rough and will make hair look dull. Therefore, always dry your hair naturally or with a hair dryer whenever possible.