We all know that anything from harsh chemicals to heat styling tools can damage your hair, but what about hair products? It’s not too often that we hear about the actual products that could be causing harm to our hair. So, we put together a list of three products that could be causing some of the hair woes that you’re concerned about. Fair warning, you might shed a tear on the first one.
Don’t say we didn’t warn you. Yes, we know how dependent people have become on life-saving dry shampoo, but using it the wrong way could be causing more harm than good. We came across an article where the author confessed to her bad habit of using dry shampoo more often than she’d actually wash her hair, and that’s where the problem lies. When you substitute shampooing your hair with dry shampoo, the grease, dirt, and bacteria that are usually washed away just stay on your scalp and build up to cause clogged hair pores. We’ve mentioned the disadvantages of clogged pores several times on this blog, but in case you forgot, it can lead to scalp issues like dermatitis & fungal overgrowth, AKA dandruff. And just as your skin develops pimples from excessive oils and bacteria, your scalp can suffer the same consequences. Eventually, your pimples will scab up, causing hair growth to alter and you may even experience hair loss. Keeping your hair clean will prevent the buildup and irritation that causes hair loss, so try to avoid using dry shampoo for more than two days. Listen, we’re not saying you should avoid dry shampoo at all costs, but just be smart about how you use it. Avoid ingredients like alcohol which can dry out your hair and only use dry shampoo on dry hair and scalp. Also, try aiming it below the root of the hair rather than directly at the scalp.
Another cult-favorite of celebs and hair stylists alike, salt sprays are the key to dreamy beach waves without the hassle of sticky sand and too-hard-to-find parking. We hate to be the bearer of bad news, but salt sprays are not as great as they seem. You may have noticed a crunchy, stiff feel after applying a salt spray to your strands and it’s for a reason. Water molecules are attracted to salt, therefore using a salt spray on your hair will draw out moisture quicker than usual. As if that chemical explanation wasn’t enough, most salt sprays contain drying ingredients like alcohol which cause strands to weaken and split at the ends. If you’re okay with dull, lifeless hair caused by over-hyped salt sprays, then so be it, but if you’re looking for an alternative that gives you the same effect with added radiance, try a sugar spray instead. Can’t live without salt spray? We’ve got some tips on how to properly use it. Try avoiding the roots unless you’re aiming for some added volume with the use of a blow dryer. Instead, apply to the mid-lengths down and don’t go overboard. Applying too much can have the reverse effect and cause hair to go limp and weigh it down.
Let’s be honest, hairspray already has a bad stigma around it considering the evidence that showed its potential harm to the environment back in the day, but ozone-depleting chemicals were eliminated by brands in the late 1970s. Still, that doesn’t mean it won’t cause harm to your hair. The issue with hairspray is that many of them still contain alcohol which can dehydrate the hair with excessive use. Hair will start to look lackluster, dull, and may even develop a layer of dandruff-like flakes due to product buildup. When you purchase extra-hold versions, the hairs become harder to brush through, and you may experience breakage and even hair loss. Luckily, there’s an easy way to avoid these problems. Nowadays, there are a ton of options from hydrating to volumizing hairsprays to lightweight or soft-hold hairsprays. If you absolutely must use a hairspray, opt for a lighter version and one that allows you to brush through with no tangling or breakage. Also, be sure to wash hair thoroughly to avoid any residue that may stick behind.
As we always say, everything in moderation. Of course, we don’t expect you to rid these products from your daily hair routine altogether, but be cautious of how you use them and the ingredients they contain. If possible, find more natural alternatives or options that have additional hydrating and nourishing ingredients.