One of the downfalls of aging is changes to our hair. The older we get the more delicate our hair can get...sometimes. Caring for maturing hair can be a lot more difficult than it was in our 20's and 30's! Not only are grey hairs emerging, but hair can get more brittle, thinner and even finer. Ugh!
As hair ages it starts shedding faster, but growing more slowly. This causes your hair to get thinner....there are less strands on your whole head. On top of that, sebum production reduces which can cause the hair to feel dryer. Then some hairs turn grey, which can cause them to either feel finer or courser. That is a lot going on!
Anti-aging hair care tips
Luckily there are a few steps you can take to keep your hair in great shape...and they're pretty simple stuff.
1. Use professional products.
While you can skimp a little on the shampoo, a good, professional conditioner is a must have. Look salon brands that are customized for your hair type. Stay away from those all-in-one shampoo and conditioner combos, they are definitely made for the younger set.
2. Choose a cut tailored to your face and hair type.
The number one mistake that people make when choosing a new hairstyle is to pick a style based on popularity rather than how it will enhance their features. Always choose a new cut based on how it will enhance or detract from your facial features and work with your hair texture.
Many women switch to shorter hair cuts as they age because the hair growing slower and shedding faster tends to leave the bottom of long hair looking ragged. Ask your hairstylist for recommendations.
3. Use UV protectants.
Just as your skin gets damaged by wind and sun, so does your hair. To combat this, look for finishing products such as mousses, gels and sprays that block UV rays. Avoid extended exposure to the sun as it is very harsh on your hair. Wear a hat or wrap when exposed for long amounts of time.
4. Regular hair appointments.
Did you know that your hair will split faster than it will grow? You need to get a trim every 6 to 8 weeks, even if it’s just a micro trim. A good hairdresser is essential because they know what to leave on the head, not take off.
5. Don't use box dye.
Leave the chemicals to the professionals! There is a reason why beauticians need to go to school to learn how to handle chemicals and hair processes. You can do irreparable damage with these products even if the package says that it’s harmless.
If you don’t make your hair fall out, you could end up looking horrible and paying a stylist big bucks to fix your mess. Most stylists charge double the rate for corrective color than they do for normal color processes.
6. Get color for interest and body.
Every cut needs a little bit of color to make it truly breathtaking. No matter whether your taste is subtle or dramatic, you can add interest and volume to your tresses with a color process. Highlights, lowlights, all over color, gray coverage, permanent or temporary...you name it, it can be done. You need to love your hair at every age.
7. Weekly conditioning treatments.
Even if your hair is extremely healthy, it is constantly on the attack from wind, sun, cold and heat. During the summer months, your hair is battered even more when it absorbs chlorine and other chemicals from your pool. A weekly mask or deep conditioning treatment can do wonders to keep your hair feeling it's softest.
8. Be careful with heat styling.
Get an ionic ceramic flat iron. Instead of frying your hair with a conventional metal plated flat iron. Straighten your tresses, add shine and infuse moisture with one of the a negative ionic flat irons. Turn your blow dryer on low or medium when drying hair. Extreme heat can cause damage to already thin hair.
9. Choose your styling products wisely.
Avoid products that leave build-up on your hair. If you see white gunk, that means that your product is not water-soluble and may be coating your hair shaft. Build-up causes limpness, breakage and inability to curl not to mention the white flakes.
Not to bash them, but Pantene is one of the worst for this! It can really weigh down thin hair, making it look limp or dirty. Other products (like some mousse or gels) use a lot of alcohol which is very drying.
10. Dry your hair the right way!
Did you know that if you use a towel incorrectly to dry your hair you are causing split ends and adding static electricity to your hair? Don’t rub the towel back and forth over your hair, scrunch the towel around handfuls of hair. If you wrap the towel around your head turban style, don't wrap too tightly! Just tight enough to stay in position for a minute is all you need.
11. Brush gently!
We may have grown up with the myth of 100 strokes daily, but it certainly is not true! Brushing hair gently helps to redistribute the natural oils to the entire length of the hair shaft so should be done daily...but only brush until your hair is untangled. Definitely not 100 strokes!
12. Make sure your diet is on point.
Not enough protein, too little fat, iron and other deficiencies in your diet can affect your hair growth and health. Try adding a biotin or collagen supplement to your diet for 6 months and see if that helps hair growth and health. Here's a great article about eating gelatin and how it benefits hair growth.
While all of these tips won’t make your hair look like it did in your teenage years, they will definitely help your hair to look it's absolute best now! When it comes to hair care, remember that you wear your hair everyday. Now isn’t it worth the time, effort and money that it takes to keep it looking spectacular?
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