We all want shiny hair, and we want it yesterday. It seems simple enough. We aren’t asking for the moon here, we just want the luscious, lovely locks we grew up with. Is that too much to ask?
Here’s a sad thing: as we age, our hair loses its natural luster. I know. Yet another lovely thing about getting older. But before you shave your head or get a drastic cut, hear me out. There is hope, and it’s not expensive or hard to find. Having shiny hair is an easily attainable goal, if you use common sense and a bit of creativity.
Get your nourishment
It’s important to make sure that you’re getting your essential vitamins, minerals, and nutrients to stay healthy. Our bodies often express lack of something via external appearance — for example, when our bodies lack adequate calcium, it often shows up in our nails, making them weak and brittle. Make sure you’re taking a multivitamin every day, and that you’re getting the proper supplements based on your dietary needs and restrictions. When we eat a strictly plant-based diet, for example, we miss out on things like vitamins B12 and D3. Salmon and walnuts provide omega-3s, and carrots and spinach have vitamin A. Believe it or not, you can get all your vitamins through food. You just have to know which foods meet what nutritional guidelines. And don’t forget biotin. This supplement strengthens your hair and keeps it healthy.
Lay off the heat and stay hydrated
I always feel more ‘done’ when I’m able to blow out my hair— but my scalp and locks pay a big old price for that feeling. Every so often, as often as possible, try and skip the blow dryer or the curling iron and let your hair air dry. Constant exposure to high levels of heat dries out the hair follicle and makes you more prone to scalp inflammation and frizz.
Every few weeks, treat your hair with a mask—this can be an all-natural concoction (egg wash, olive oil, coconut oil, apple cider vinegar rinse— even mayonnaise—just make sure to wash and rinse thoroughly following) or a salon-worthy one such as glazes, glosses, and hair masks.
Our scalps are sensitive and need TLC.
Washing your hair too often or too infrequently, harsh or heavy products, excessive heat styling— even the wrong kind of hairbrush– can trigger scalp flakiness, dandruff, or general scalp distress, which contributes directly to lackluster hair. Exfoliate once a month with a scalp scrub. Use a clarifying shampoo to tackle product buildup. And when you wash and condition, be gentle— our hair is much more fragile when it’s wet.
Choose topical wisely
When it comes to choosing topical products, you have to know your hair. For example, thinner, finer hair textures need a lighter serum or mist as opposed to an oil or cream to avoid that weighed down, greasy look.
One last pro tip? Get a silk pillowcase. The friction of cotton pillowcases can cause frizz. Following these simple guidelines will lead you to your dream locks in no time.