Daily exposure to pollution, and hair styling products can decrease your hair’s health and its shine. This is because the outer layer of the hair has cuticles, which are kind of like the tiles on a roof, and the more uneven and curled up the edges become, the more the light will be absorbed into the hair, making it appear dull.
Damage is the number one cause of dull hair. When strands get damaged, from heat treatment or harsh chemicals, they begin to break, and don’t reflect light properly. The most important thing for shiny hair is that the hair cuticle is closed and smooth so it can reflect the light.
Here are some tips from the hair pros on how to keep your hair looking its shiny and lustrous best!
Leave-in Conditioners Are Better Than Heavy In-shower Conditioners
Moisture is key for shiny hair, but you don’t need a heavy-duty one when looking for shiny hair, nor do you need to double condition. Sometimes heavier conditioners end up leaving hair looking dull and weighed down, so opt instead for a leave-in conditioner if your hair is dry.
Don’t Forget The Cold Water Rinse
A final cold rinse shuts all the cuticles down, making them lay flat so your strands reflect light and look shiny and healthy. Use warm water on your hair when conditioning as the humidity from the warm water will open up the cuticle and allow the nutrients from the conditioner to soak into the cuticle and nourish the hair, but remember to end your shower with cold water as you rinse out the conditioner to close the cuticle, sealing the nutrients in and allowing the hair to reflect light.
It’s All About The Scalp
People often try to fix a hair issue with a topical product like hairspray or shine spray, when the problem lies deeper. A healthy scalp means healthy hair, so if you are having unexplained hair fall or premature balding, a visit to your medical doctor would be the best solution.
Strip away shine-blocking residue with a good clarifying shampoo. Product buildup can clog up hair follicles and prevent your scalp from producing its natural oils, which are essential to maintaining a shiny mane. If you think your hair may have buildup to the point that it is dull and not styling properly, try shampooing a couple times with a clarifying shampoo which will remove excess product buildup, hard water residue, and pollutants from the hair.
Consider A Hair Oil
Hair that’s well-moisturised is naturally shinier, therefore applying a hair oil is a good way to boost hydration levels. Oils also close the cuticle to help reflect light, just don’t go overboard or you will end up looking like you haven’t showered in a week. A couple times a week is adequate. Simply run the oil through the end of your hair and hit it with a warm blow-dry to set the shine.
RELATED: The Benefits of a Hot Oil Treatment for Hair—and How to Do It Yourself
Try A Boar-Bristle Brush
The sebaceous glands produce natural oils to lubricate the scalp, and the act of brushing your hair scalp to tip using a natural boar-bristle brush evenly distributes oil from the scalp to the ends and is also able to close the hair cuticle, making your hair look shinier.
Switch To Silk
Silk causes less friction to your hair so sleeping on one will leave it looking smoother and healthier in the morning. Silk is naturally moisturising unlike cotton, will prevent friction, hair breakage and damage. It’s kinder to your skin too, so make the switch and opt for silk or at the very least satin.