THE FIVE-STEP PLAN TO HEALTHY HAIR

We once walked into a fellow editor's office and found her in what appeared to be a state of religious ecstasy. Turned out she hadn't found salvation, but rather a split end that had frayed a record-setting eight times. When hair is so damaged that it snaps or spllits that  dramatically, you need to take steps to save it.

1. Lay off the chemicals
Even the strongest har can't withstand a full-on assault of peroxide and straightening solution. Talk to your stylist or colorist about how to give it a rest for at least three months (it may require a different cut or daily routine to camouflage roots or unwanted waves).
2. Shampoo gently
Hair that's weak or damaged needs a moisturizing shampoo. Wash as infrequently as possible, and unless hair is filthy, there is no need to scrub hard-just rub shampoo into the scalp, and let the runoff clean the ends.
3. Don't stint on conditioner
Those weekly deep treatments some consider a luxury are now a necessity for you. Consider slathering them on every other day before shampooing (to fill in cracks), then following the wash with a regular rinse -out formula.
4. Protect yourself
If you can't lay off the blow-dryer completely, at least minimize further damage. Coat strands with a protective styling product, wait until hair is mostly dry (so you spend less time under the nozzle), using the warm setting instead of hot, keep the dryer six inches from the head, and not point it on one area for too long. If you insist on flatironing, coat hair first with a leave-in conditioner or silicone- based product.
5. Stay out of the sun
UV rays dry out hair and ruin its color. Before going outside douse your hair with a leave-in sunscreen  treatment-or better yet, wear a hat.




 

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