We tend to think of hair problems as being an external thing.
In other words, we think that if we only wash with the right shampoo, condition with the right conditioner, or whatever, our hair will be beautiful. If only it were that easy!
The secret to luscious, beautiful hair is internal. In other words, it’s what you put in your body that determines 90% of what your hair will look like.
Hair grows out of the scalp, which is part of your skin. And when your skin is healthy, most of your hair problems are taken care of.
A regular hydration program (our “20 glasses of water a day” in addition to the other liquids you’re drinking) helps to keep the body free of toxins and other waste products. When the body is not getting enough water, poisons can accumulate in your system. Even if those poisons are not enough to cause you to be noticeably sick (although I would argue that you still won’t be as optimally, vibrantly healthy as you could be) they can still cause your skin, hair, and complexion to be not as beautiful as they could be. So, get going on your water program today!
It’s especially important to maintain a large amount of fluids during warm weather, when your body will secrete a larger than average amount in sweat. And if you’re going to be out in the sun, bring a water bottle along! It sounds elementary, but it’s something that’s easy to neglect, and you’ll neither feel your best, nor look your best if you do.
But I wouldn’t want you to neglect the external uses of water for your hair as well. Water cleans the daily grit and grime from the hair. It especially cleans the pores and follicles of the scalp, enabling them to “breathe.” And again, during warm weather, you might want to wash your hair more frequently. That goes double for times when you’re out in the sun, or when you’re exposed to a lot of salt water at the beach.
If salt is allowed to accumulate in the hair, it will leave the hair looking lifeless and dowdy. Remember what I said earlier about washing. Water is the primary ingredient for washing. Soaps and shampoos can help, but water is what you need the most, and you should be liberal in your use of it. If you’re on the beach, and there’s a public shower, for example, rinse your hair frequently. You don’t have to always use shampoo — just make sure you rinse it well! (The same goes for any time you use shampoo: make certain all of the shampoo gets rinsed out).
The shampoo you use should be gentle and easy on the hair. Baby shampoos can be good at such times, because they are obviously designed to be less harsh than some adult shampoos. The primary thing you’re looking for is a very gentle soap to remove dirt you’ve got in your hair.
Conditioners can be useful in helping to revitalize the hair, too. They are especially useful when the hair has been damaged. Damage can come from a lot of factors. Prolonged exposure to the sun can be a biggie. But coloring the hair can do it, too, as well as other chemical exposure.
There are many conditioners to choose from, but one of the simplest and gentlest on the hair is plain vinegar. Before you think I’m nuts, give it a try. The process is easy.
After washing your hair, and thoroughly removing rinsing out any shampoo, pour over your hair a mixture of 1/4 cup of white or apple cider vinegar and 3/4 cup of warm water. (The vinegar should be pure vinegar, without additives. If it’s food grade vinegar, it’s fine to use for this). A warning: close your eyes tightly before pouring this over your hair. While it won’t really hurt your eyes, they will sting if it gets in them.
After putting the mixture into the hair, massage it into your scalp. Then rinse it all out. Your hair will be bright and lively, and will feel wonderful.
The important thing to remember, though, is the water. Make use of it. And your hair will thank you for it.