Home Remedies for Damaged Hair
Some of the home remedies for damaged hair include a healthy nutritious diet, drinking adequate amounts of water, using oils like coconut oil and castor oil for hair massage, applying egg yolks, Aloe Vera juice, and henna. Damaged hair is troublesome, but it can be fixed by following proper home remedies.
Decoration and styling of the hair has been used as a means of social communication for displaying social identity. Modern day individuals are constantly exposing themselves to chemicals, straightening irons, and dyes. In the process, our hair becomes vulnerable to getting damaged. Damaged hair tends to be devoid of natural oils and has a dry, coarse, and brittle look.
Understanding Hair: It is important to understand the structure and growth of hair. Hair is a thread-like outgrowth that grows from a follicle. It is mainly composed of keratin and divided in to three morphological regions, namely the cuticle, medulla, and cortex. The cuticle is the outermost layer of the hair, while the medulla is the middle layer of the hair and the cortex is the innermost layer of the hair and the hair is attached to the scalp through the cortex.
Damaged Hair: Hair is said to be damaged when either of the layers of the hair are physically or chemically altered. This alteration in the layers of the hair also causes dryness of the hair. Keratin, which is the main component of hair, gets dissolved, causing the hair shaft to become thin.
What are the causes or reasons behind hair damage?
The reasons for hair damage are different for different people and might range from ordinary practices that cause hair damage all the way to some extreme procedures that cause damage. Some of the common reasons that cause hair damage are as follows:
Hair Treatments and Harsh Brushing: Aggressive brushing and backcombing are considered some of the physical causes behind hair damage. When the hair is brushed, combed, blown dry, or styled, mechanical damage can also occur. Physical manipulation that entails even the slightest tugging and pulling causes hair damage. Blow dryers, curling irons, crimpers, and combs used for straightening cause a depletion in the moisture levels of the hair. Exposure to heat during the use of styling equipment damages the hair cuticles. Thus, frequent hair styling may result in extreme hair damage.
Exposure to UV Rays: Exposure to the ultraviolet rays of the sun can cause the layers in the cuticle of the hair to fuse with each other. This leads to a loss of elasticity of the hair, making them prone to mechanical breakage.
Chemical Processing: Permanent or frequent coloring, permanent waving, or straightening can cause alteration in the chemical bonds of the hair and the loss of tensile strength. This also causes the moisture to evaporate from the hair.
Excessive Hair Shampooing: Excessive shampooing is one of the major reasons for hair damage. During the shampooing process, when hairs are rubbed against each other, they cause erosion of natural oils that can lead to the deformation of the hair. It can also deplete the natural oils present in the hair.
Lack of Nutrition: The lack of nutrition is perhaps one of the most undermined factors in damaged hair and hair loss. Scientific studies suggest that a lack of nutrition in food is one of the reasons for hair damage and hair loss in otherwise healthy individuals. A lack of protein, vitamins, antioxidants, and minerals tend to have damaged hair and ultimately lose hair.
Home Remedies for Damaged Hair
If you are looking for some natural remedies with long term results, then here are some home remedies for you:
Egg Yolk: According to Melanie A. S., author of “Ayurvedic Beauty Care”, the application of egg yolks is beneficial in repairing damaged hair. Massage whisked eggs on your scalp and hair for a few minutes. Then, rinse your hair with cool water and shampoo. Egg is also a great natural conditioner for dry hair. Another way of using egg yolk is by preparing a shampoo with egg yolk as one of the major ingredients. Mix an herbal infusion along with a beaten egg. Massage this mixture onto your scalp. Leave it for about 15 minutes and then rinse it with cold water. This is one of the best home remedies for damaged hair.
Henna: Another way to repair and condition your hair naturally is through the use of henna. Henna, when mixed with water, and applied to damaged hair, makes it shiny and healthy. Henna binds to the keratin (a hair protein) by penetrating the hair shaft. Henna is useful in strengthening the cuticles and thickens the hair by making it resistant to breakage. This makes the hair strong when it comes out of the scalp, which repairs the damaged hair.
Coconut Oil: The use of coconut oil is beneficial to fix damaged hair. Massaging your scalp with pure coconut oil will heal the damage that is caused to your hair. Coconut is a rich source of lauric acid, which has a high affinity for hair proteins. This property makes the oil penetrate deep into the hair shaft. The oil prevents the cuticle from becoming damaged and makes the hair look healthy and fresh.
Aloe Vera: Aloe Vera has been proved to be excellent for skin since time immemorial. There are certain benefits that it provides for healthy hair as well. The gel obtained from a freshly-cut plant has antibacterial and anti-fungal properties that can be enjoyed when the gel is applied on the hair and scalp. It helps to clear itching, dry scalps, and brittle hair.
Hibiscus: The shrub hibiscus, also called rosa-sinensis, is excellent for hair growth and the repair of damaged hair. The leaf and the flower of the plant is proven to be exhibiting more potency for hair growth. Hibiscus leaf also possesses anti-greying properties. Applying a paste of the leaves on the scalp and rinsing it with warm water will improve the shine in the hair and also increases the volume of the hair.
Olive Oil: Olive oil is one of the home remedies for damaged hair. It can be applied to hair on a regular basis to prevent any damage to the hair. Using olive oil helps reduce dandruff, split ends, and makes your hair shinier and more manageable.
Indian Gooseberry: Indian gooseberry, or amla, as it is called in India, has been used extensively in Ayurveda (Indian philosophy of medicine and lifestyle). One of its many uses is in treating hair damage. Juice from the fruit can be extracted and can be applied on the hair, while dried powder can also be applied to the hair. According to Ayurveda, Indian gooseberry has many medicinal qualities, one of them being promoting hair growth.
Avocado: Avocado is known to be beneficial in reducing hair loss and for preventing damaged hair. Hair loss or damage caused by vitamin deficiency can be overcome by supplying your body with all of its required vitamins. On the other hand, avocados are also used as a conditioner for promoting hair growth and a smoother structure to hair.
Guava Bark and Leaves: The bark and leaves of the guava plant are beneficial in increasing the shine of the hair and in giving relief from itchy scalp. Boil the leaves and the bark of the tree and allow it to cool. Rubbing this on the scalp will improve the shine of your hair.
Brushing: Excessive brushing of the hair can cause hair damage. The use of a wooden brush for combing your hair is ideal. This massages the scalp and distributes the natural oils equally throughout the head. This will also help in improving circulation to the scalp.
Include these remedies along with a proper diet, good sleep, and regular exercise for improving overall health as well as the health of your hair. Applying any of these home remedies can help you get that sheen back to your hair. However, in case there is excessive dryness or extreme hair loss, it is advisable to consult a doctor.