It’s amazing how many ads for shampoos and styling products you see on television that claim to promote “healthy hair!” Let’s get real, people! There is no such thing as “healthy hair.” Hair is basically made up of protein and keratin. The hair itself has no blood supply and no nervous system. Hair is not alive, so it cannot be “healthy.” Because hair is not a living structure, it cannot repair itself and must be maintained properly to preserve strength, elasticity, and shine. Some shampoos and conditioners claim to “repair the damage” to your hair. They simply cannot. The first step in maintaining healthy looking hair is to maintain a healthy scalp and following these mens hair care tips.
Once hair is damaged, the only way to “repair” it is to cut off the damaged length. Just like your car, your hair needs proper maintenance. The following are a few mens hair care tips to keep your hair looking great… looking “healthy!”
Mens Hair Care Tips
Towel Drying is one of the leading causes of damage to men’s hair. Guys love to take a towel and rub that hair like crazy. The problem here is that when hair is wet, it is also very easily damaged. When “rubbing” the hair with a towel, some of the hairs become tangled in the threads of the towel and are stretched to the breaking point, causing damage to the cuticle and split ends. To minimize damage from towel drying, shake out the excess water and then stroke your hair with the towel in the direction it grows. This may take a bit longer but it’s worth it. Remember, though, the damage that is already done cannot be fixed, but after a few haircuts, you’ll see the difference.
Blow Drying is also a leading cause of hair damage. It can dry out the hair and scalp. Haircuts for Men is just not a big fan of the blow dryer, but if you must blow, then follow these tips. First, to prevent damage from blow drying, apply a thermal styling spray or detangler to the hair. This will make it easier to comb and protect against heat damage. Next, make sure to hold the dryer 6-10 inches away from the hair and move it briskly from side to side. This will keep the hair from becoming damaged by heat.Finally, avoid drying the hair completely. Leaving the hair slightly damp will prevent drying out the hair.
Easy On That Comb, Pal
When hair is wet, prevent damage by using a wide-tooth comb or brush. This will limit damage caused by the comb or brush pulling on the hair. I love the Conair Velvet Touch Paddle Hair Brush and the Cricket Ultra Clean Comb for these tasks.
Wash In Lukewarm Water
Water that is very hot can dry out the hair and scalp. Take it easy on the heat.
Avoid Chemical Abuse
Repeatedly coloring or perming hair can wreak havoc. Chemicals used to process hair can be very harsh to your hair and scalp. Haircuts for Men does not endorse use of at-home chemical products. A good barber or stylist will know how to properly prepare your hair and scalp and chose the best product to protect hair from damage.
Don’t Over Wash
Feel free to shampoo daily. Professional shampoos are designed to deposit softening agents, moisturizers and protectants into the hair shaft. But, when you shampoo, concentrate on cleansing the scalp. The hair will be sufficiently cleansed by rinsing the shampoo out of the hair.
Make Hair Grow Faster and Stronger
Eating well, drinking plenty of water, taking vitamins, getting plenty of sleep, and living a stress free lifestyle will promote faster growth of the hair. The hair is often a reflection of the entire body. A body that is healthy and well maintained will likely have hair that is strong, shiny, and “healthy looking.” A hair vitamin such as Natrol Biotin can also help.
Ditch The Ponytail and Ball Cap
Try to avoid wearing tight ponytails or baseball caps which can cause “traction alopecia.” Tight styles can cause breakage and pull hair out of the scalp. If worn long enough, damage can become permanent. If you find yourself wearing a ponytail or ball cap to keep the hair out of your face, then perhaps it is time for a new haircut better suited to your lifestyle.
Frizzy hair is caused by a low amount of moisture and protein. To control frizz, use a good moisturizing conditioner. You can also apply a “smoothing” serum such to add shine and manageability. TIGI Rockaholic Rock Out Shine Blaster is a good option.
Brighten Dull Hair
Hair becomes dull when the cuticle (the outer layers of the hair shaft) is damaged. Well maintained cuticle layers lay flat (like fish scales) and reflect light. When the cuticle is damaged or raised hair tends to become caught on other hair shafts and reflects light poorly, leading to a dull look. Following the steps discussed above will help protect the cuticle and brighten dull hair.
Watch the Pool Water
Pool water contains chemicals that can dry, damage, and discolor hair. To minimize damage from chlorine and other chemicals, always wet the hair with tap water before entering the pool. This will help prevent your hair from absorbing water from the pool. Haircuts for Men recommends taking a spary bottle filled with tap water and a tablespoon of leave-in conditioner (such as Paul Mitchell The Conditioner) to the pool. Before getting in the pool (and frequently durning swimming), wet your hair completely with your water/conditioner mixture. This will help prevent damage, dryness, and discoloration caused by pool water. If you notice discoloration, use of a Clarifying Shampoo (such as Redken Clean Brew Extra Cleansing Shampoo) can help.
Caring for Straight Hair
Wash every other day with a gentle shampoo and follow with a light conditioner. If you’re maintaining a longer style, have it trimmed every six weeks to remove split ends. Pomade will help keep hair relaxed and natural while adding shine and separation.
Caring for Thinning Hair
Choose water-based products that won’t leave a heavy residue and weigh hair down and provide volume and lift. A thickening shampoo and conditioner will help. Keep the cut short and choppy and it will appear fuller. Longer hair will make hair appear thin and stringy.
Caring for Wavy Hair
To minimize excessive volume (pouffiness), use a hydrating product and dense conditioner to add weight. A medium-lenght cut will work well for a versatile look. For styling, an oil based wax or pomade (such as American Crew Grooming Cream) will add shine and weight.
Caring for Curly Hair
Curly hair’s structure can stop natural oils from reaching the hair’s ends leaving you with a frizzy look. Use a strong moisturizer to keep hair soft. Keeping hair cut short will help maintain a neat look. Longer styles should be layered to reduce volume. Wash hair no more often than every other day and follow with a good conditioner. A good leave-in conditioner will help add extra moisture. Style hair with an anti-frizz serum.
DISCLAIMER: The advice Haircuts for Men provides is not intended to be a substitute for a personal consultation with a barber or stylist. Any information or materials posted on this service or transmitted from this service are intended for general informational purposes only. Determining a proper haircut or service depends upon a personal inspection of your head and face shape, hair type, and scalp condition. By using this service, you acknowledge that Haircuts for Men is not liable for haircuts or services performed based upon the advice given or content posted on this service. The responsibility and liability for any service performed is that of the client and barber/stylist performing the service.