9 Tricks for Healthier, Fuller-Looking Hair

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  • Hair It Is

    Hair It Is

    While genetics play a key role, your diet, the weather, pollution, and your overall approach to hair care are all critical to maintaining your crowning glory. Find out how a healthy diet and proper care can keep your mane a head above the rest.

  • Pump up the Protein

    Pump up the Protein

    A well-rounded diet is an important factor in hair and scalp health. Hair is primarily made up of protein, so be sure to eat at least 45 grams of protein daily. Good sources include:

    • lean meat
    • poultry
    • fish
    • beans
    • low-fat dairy products
    • eggs

    Diets with inadequate protein can result in weak, brittle hair and loss of hair color.

  • Zinc About It

    Zinc About It

    Zinc deficiency can cause hair to shed. Incorporate nuts like Brazil nuts, walnuts, pecans, cashews, and almonds into your diet to combat shedding.

    Eat an abundance of:

    • vegetables
    • fruits
    • leafy green salads
    • drink plenty of clean, filtered water

    A multivitamin or zinc supplements can enhance your diet when necessary.

  • Omega Your Hair Nice

    Omega Your Hair Nice

    Increasing your intake of omega-3 fatty acids may stimulate your hair follicles and sebaceous glands. While this won’t cause your hair to grow, it may improve scalp health.

    Omega-3 fatty acids are found in cold-water fish, such as salmon, sardines, and herring. Other good sources include:

    • flaxseed
    • yogurt
    • cottage cheese
    • salad
    • cereal
  • Know Thy Hair

    Know Thy Hair

    There are conflicting opinions about how often to shampoo your hair. It all comes down to personal preference and individual needs, which depend on:

    • your hair type and texture
    • how often you use hair products
    • your activity level

    For example, people with oily hair may need to shampoo every day, while people with dry hair may need to shampoo less frequently.

  • Choose the Right Shampoo

    Choose the Right Shampoo

    Using the wrong shampoo and styling agent can cause significant hair damage. Look for products that are right for your hair type (oily, normal, or dry) and target any problems you have, such as dandruff.

    Try to avoid shampoos with harsh ingredients, such as ammonium lauryl sulfate or sodium lauryl sulfate. And remember, cost doesn’t necessarily indicate the quality of a product.

  • Get Condition-Specific

    Get Condition-Specific

    Conditioning after shampooing is an important step in keeping your hair soft, shiny, and manageable. You can choose a separate conditioner or a shampoo with built-in conditioner.

    Comb conditioner through for even distribution. Leave it in your hair for two to three minutes before rinsing out.

    Just like hairwashing, not everyone needs to condition every time they wash their hair. Experiment to find what works best for you.

  • Wash Up and Brush Up

    Wash Up and Brush Up

    Experts suggest that many people over-shampoo or shampoo incorrectly. The standard rules of thumb are:

    • Don’t wash your hair more than once a day.
    • Use only enough of the product to cover your hair.
    • Avoid using very hot or very cold water.

    Treat hair gently when it’s wet — it’s three times more vulnerable to breakage. Don’t rub wet hair excessively with a towel. Use a wide-tooth comb to detangle, but don’t over-comb or brush wet hair.

  • Hair Maintenance Tips

    Hair Maintenance Tips

    Keep these tips in mind for healthy locks:

    • Start off on the lowest heat setting while blow-drying and gradually increase heat as needed.
    • Allow your hair to air-dry whenever possible.
    • Change up where you place pins and clips so that breakage isn’t localized.
    • If you dye your hair, choose a shade that’s within three shades of your natural color.
    • Massage your scalp often to promote hair growth and increase blood circulation.
    • Get your hair cut regularly (every 10 to 12 weeks) to keep hair healthy and prevent split ends.
  • Cut It Out

    Cut It Out

    Harsh shampoo, hair treatments, styling products, and overbrushing contribute the most to poor hair health. However, other culprits include:

    • over-consumption of alcohol
    • low-calorie and crash diets
    • decreased thyroid hormone
    • excessive stress
    • blood thinners
    • some prescription drugs for heart problems, depression, high blood pressure, and arthritis
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