People have always been gullible where their hair is concerned. It is said that Queen Victoria drank silver birch wine made from sap because she believed it would cure her baldness. And despite icons such as David Beckham shaving off their locks, hair loss is refusing to become fashionable. Hair loss or baldness is not a life threatening condition, but if it starts to dint your self-esteem, it is probably worth seeking treatment.
One of the commonest problems is having fine, dull and flat hair. This generally happens due to use of cheaper products which often contain manmade plastic polymers that coat the hair and leave them looking dull. The solution would be to opt for ha high-end quality products that contain plant proteins such as keratin and soy protein which build up the hair more naturally, maintaining shine.
Another common problem is split ends and breaking hair. People who use too many chemical products on their hair tend to suffer more than others. Unfortunately, there is no hair product available that can solve this problem. The only thing that can be done in this case is to trim the hair. This problem can be prevented by replenishing moisture in the hair with a quality conditioner.
People who have greasy or dry hair can choose a shampoo and conditioner suited to their hair type. While choosing a shampoo, choose a product for greasy hair, if the hair shows sign of greasiness within 24 hours. If the hair is not greasy after two days, a normal shampoo may be chosen and if the hair is not greasy after three or more days, a product for dry hair needs to be chosen.
Some people get frizzy hair because of the way their hair follicle is arranged, which depends on their genetic makeup. Humid atmospheres tend to make matters worse for them. Such people need to use hair serum products that will even out the hair texture and give their hair a glossier, smoother looking appearance.
The problem of static hair usually affects people with dry and fine hair that is more prone to breaking and split ends. In such cases, gloss sprays can help replenish moisture and get rid of the static. These products are usually applied to hair after styling, when hair is dry.
Grey hair is one of the commonest problems. However, such people should not use colorants more than once every six weeks, particularly if they contain bleaching agents. They can maintain the luster of the hair by using good quality conditioners and hair masks. Shampoos designed for dyed hair often contain tiny bits of pigment that attach to the cuticle layer and improve the color and radiance of hair. While getting their hair dyed, it is advisable to test a small area first for any allergic reaction.
Another problem is dandruff skin flakes, mainly caused due to a microscopic yeast that occurs naturally on everyone's scalp. Normally, as dead skin cells are shed they are washed or brushed away without trace. But if these skin yeasts start to increase, they irritate the scalp and trigger an inflammatory immune response. The turnover of scalp skin cells increases, which causes them to die more quickly and clumps of dead skin cells are formed. As a result, the skin starts to itch, peel and visible flakes (dandruff) develop.
Many people think they get dandruff because their scalp is too dry. They stop washing their hair with shampoo or wash it less frequently, because they believe it makes the condition worse. This is not true. Dandruff is believed to be associated with an overgrowth of a fungus commonly found on the skin and scalp, called Pityrosporum ovale. Though it can be difficult to prevent dandruff completely, it can be controlled. The condition may also improve as one gets older.
Anti-dandruff shampoos containing the antimicrobials selenium sulphide or zinc pyrithione are helpful for mild dandruff. They are widely available and are also active against the fungus Pityrosporum ovale. In cases of persistent or severe dandruff antifungal shampoo containing ketoconazole provides a mild, yet effective treatment. The shampoo should be used twice a week for two to four weeks. After that, it should be used every one to two weeks to prevent dandruff coming back.
Hair care routine needs to be changed if the hair becomes dry, lifeless and dull; there are split ends and breaking hair; itchy or sore, flaky scalp; lank and greasy hair; or frizzy, unmanageable hair. While changing hair products, it has to be understood that no product can intrinsically change the structure of the hair, but good quality products can leave it looking shiny and healthy. More expensive products often go further because they are more concentrated, so they need to be used less.
Washing hair every day with a quality shampoo would invigorate the scalp and leave the hair healthy and shiny. It is not necessary to change the shampoo regularly because as long as a shampoo is suited to a person's scalp and hair type, one should get fine results every time. If hair is not washed regularly, it will just get dirtier and could result in an irritated, itchy scalp and greasy, lank hair.
A conditioner is advisable for all, except for people with very short hair. The key is not to massage the conditioner into the scalp, but only to be applied to the body and tips of the hair. And lastly, rinsing with cold water makes the hair shinier as cold water helps to close the cuticle layer on the hair strand and helps conditioner work better, leaving the hair more lustrous.
A certain amount of hair loss between 50 and 100 hair a day- is normal. Hair falls out naturally to be replaced by new growth. But new hair growth slows down as we age, which may lead to thinning and eventually baldness. Male pattern baldness, which is hereditary, usually occurs in middle-aged men but can also affect men in their late teens. It is caused by increased sensitivity to male sex hormones (androgens) in certain parts of the scalp.
Baldness is natural and not a disease. In the past, it was often seen as something unfortunate or undesirable. However, this attitude has changed over the years and nowadays a clean-shaven head is usually considered both fashionable and attractive.