A mane that looks full of life—that’s the ultimate hair goal, right? But it turns out that certain habits you have could be doing a number on your strands. When it comes to caring for your hair, it’s all about treating it well and using the right products to help ensure your locks are happily hydrated. Below, take a peek at seven common hair habits it’s time to put a stop to—plus, get advice on what to do instead.
BAD HAIR HABIT #1: SHAMPOOING ROUGHLY
As far as shampooing goes, you don’t have to scrub-a-dub-dub aggressively. Sure, that may feel like the only way to truly cleanse your hair, but you don’t actually have to do that. Instead, gently massage your ‘poo into your hair in circular motions before rinsing out and moving on to conditioner.
BAD HAIR HABIT #2: SHOWERING IN TOO-HIGH TEMPS
It’s time to turn down the dial! Although it can feel relaxing, extra-hot water can strip your hair of essential oils, which is not what you want. The next time you’re ready to hop in the shower, make sure to do so in lukewarm water. While it might not be quite as enjoyable, your hair will thank you!
BAD HAIR HABIT #3: SKIPPING OUT ON THE CONDITIONER
Don’t just hop out of the tub after you’ve rinsed out your shampoo! Use a system of shampoo and conditioner formulated for your hair’s specific needs.
BAD HAIR HABIT #4: ROUGHLY DRYING HAIR
When you step out of the shower, what’s the first thing you reach for? Chances are, it’s a towel! It is important not to aggressively rub your hair against the towel. Instead, gently blot excess water before moving on to styling.
BAD HAIR HABIT #5: BRUSHING YOUR HAIR WHILE WET
Your hair is at its most fragile when it’s wet, which means brushing it at this stage is a hair care faux pas. If you must, use a wide tooth comb or a brush with flexible bristles to help detangle knots—and make sure to spritz on a detangling spray beforehand to help make the process easier.
BAD HAIR HABIT #6: OVERDOING IT WITH THE HEAT TOOLS
Heat tools like blow-dryers, flat irons, and curling wands are certainly good at what they do—but excessive heat styling can lead to damage. You don’t have to ditch your beloved heat tools altogether, though—just give them a rest from time to time. Try using a hooded bonnet that attaches to your blow dryer. Indirect heat through this bonnet attachment or a regular hooded hair dryer/thermal cap is much safer than using direct heat from a blow-dryer.
BAD HAIR HABIT #7: TYING HAIR UP TIGHTLY
Sweeping your hair off your neck and into a tight updo may be convenient for sleeping or working out, but it can also cause stress on your mane. Too tight of a pony can pull at your strands, not to mention feel uncomfortable. Give hair a break by opting for low ponytails and swapping out elastics for soft fabric hair ties.