Have you heard that changing your hair routine or products will make your hair look fabulous? Rumor has it that it’s a good idea to switch up your hair products a couple of times a year because your hair “gets used” to the products, making them less effective. So, for many, if they notice their locks looking limp or dry, they hit the hair care product aisle to shop for new shampoos, conditioners, and gels or mousses.
Sure, some people are just product junkies and love trying out new things, so they look for any excuse to stock up on new stuff. But, experts say you don’t have to break up with your shampoo and conditioner if you don’t want to. According to Women’s Health Magazine hair care specialists, “It’s a myth that your hair gets immune to shampoo.”
That doesn’t mean there is no reason to change your hair care products. For example, if you notice your formally lustrous, thick, and bouncy mane looks dull and dry, you should try to fix those issues. But, it’s not that your product has stopped working. It could be that your hair or other circumstances, like the season, weather or water, has changed.
When to change your haircare routine
Think about how your lifestyle changes each season, depending on where you live. For example, you change your clothes depending on the weather, your activities, and your skincare routine. So why not change what you put on your hair as well?
In the summer, you’re likely out in the sun and hitting the pool or beach. The effects of chlorine and UV sun exposure can dry out your hair, especially if you have color-treated hair, while sweating can add more oil and sebum to your hair. Therefore, you should find the right product to treat your hair and lifestyle.
Winter, on the other hand, is more drying to your scalp — and skin. Chances are you’ll experience an itchy, possibly flaky scalp due to reduced moisture in the air during the colder months. You may want to use a super moisturizing product that can treat a dry scalp.
Why does your hair change?
Other reasons your hair may be looking luster-less could be you recently color-treated, or you over-color treated your hair, you moved and your water source is hard water, or you may have a buildup of product that’s dulling your shine. In the case of product buildup, washing your hair once or twice a week with a clarifying shampoo may be all you need to do to restore your tresses without cluttering your shower with other hair products.
Lastly, hormones can wreak havoc on your hair. During pregnancy, a hormone surge usually gives women fast-growing, thick, shiny hair. Unfortunately, when hormone levels return to normal after labor, that thick, gorgeous hair falls out at an accelerated rate, often disturbingly clogging our drains. During menopause, when estrogen and progesterone production decline, women’s hair may become thinner and grow more slowly.
While no hair products can help manage your hormones, some products and supplements can help remedy your hair woes.
How to pick the right product
Using the right product for your hair type is essential to healthy hair. So, another reason your hair may look dull and luster-less is that maybe the products you’ve been so devoted to were the wrong ones for your hair all along.
For example, if you have fine hair, you should avoid thick, creamy conditioners because they can weigh your hair down. Instead, products made for fine hair and volumizing foams and powders are good choices. On the other hand, or strand (ha!), those with thick hair should use hydrating products to help ward off frizz. Similarly, curly and wavy hair also needs lots of hydration, whereas oily scalps and hair don’t.
How to create a hair care routine
Your specific hair care routine will depend on your hair type and goals. For example, do you have curly hair that you like to straighten? On the other hand, do you have coarse hair that you want to smooth? However, regardless of hair texture, there are a few basics to creating a solid hair routine.
The first step is cleansing your hair and scalp. A good cleansing product should help eliminate dead skin and debris and wash away product buildup and excess sebum without stripping your hair of essential healthy oils. A cleanser could be a daily shampoo, a dry shampoo, a clarifying shampoo or a cleansing rinse. Whatever you choose, make sure it’s sulfate-free. Sulfates can leave your hair dry and frizzy.
The next step in your hair care routine is conditioner. A conditioner helps hydrate and smooth your hair. Conditioning your ends to reduce breakage and split ends is especially important. If you have dry hair, you don’t have to rinse it all off entirely.
After the cleanse and conditioner, you may want to add an oil or lotion before styling products. Either way, it’s important to detangle your hair with a wide-tooth comb and, if necessary, a detangling product to prevent knots and breakage. It also seals in moisture.
Lastly, if you use a styling product, apply it now. Mousse, gel, cream, oil, etc., pick the one that will help craft the perfect hairstyle whether you want it straight, curly, wavy, up or down.