frizz 101: understanding and treating unruly hair
Banana Cake, Dalgona coffee, work from home - for sure, this was the talk of the town during the lockdown.
But what was the talk of my BFF's WhatsApp group chat was how suddenly, my hair started to look & feel good.
I was curious to find out the answers!
So, I dialed the number on my speed dial and called Joseph! Joseph - my shine in the armor - my hairdresser.
When I addressed my confusion to him, he laughed and asked, "do you really wanna know what caused the difference?" To which I instantly stated - YES!
And he started, Let's start with the basics then.
Curly, wavy, straight, and coily are the four broad kind hair categories of natural hair. And whatever type you fit in, one most common hair problem that binds them all is - HAIR FRIZZ.
But First, What is Frizz hair?
The mere sound of the word 'frizz' can be enough to cause alarm in many females with natural hair! Apart from the undesirable appearance of frizz itself, effects ranging from simple annoyance and inconvenience to anxiety and low self-esteem impact millions of women everywhere because of frizz.
But at the heart of the problem of frizz is dry hair.
Remember, frizz is a symptom! Its real cause is the dryness of hair.
Four primary reasons why women in India suffer from Frizzy Hair.
For healthy natural hair and to properly treat the root cause of natural hair issues, what's most important is to bring in some changes in your habits, products that you use & your lifestyle; Read on to find out the cause & symptoms and the changes you need to work on to treat it.
1. DRY HAIR
Dry hair is one of the frizz's most significant causes. It comes about when hair is exposed to humidity. The main reasons can be -
You are not taking enough water into your system.
Over-cleansing or washing your hair can strip its protective layer.
Using shampoos that contain sulfates work on hair like detergents.
Not moisturizing adequately or skipping conditioners.
Washing your hair with boiling water can remove the natural oils.
Wrapping a rough towel turban-style around your wet hair.
The roughness plus absorbent nature of the cotton pillowcase
2. Damaged Hair Cuticles
The cuticle plays a protective role in hair as it forms the outermost layer of the hair shaft. Hair cuticles are damaged when this cuticle layer or its outer scales become cracked and raised without properly overlapping. Damaged hair cuticles can result from many factors -
Using frequent heat styling tools and in high temperatures.
Towel-drying can disturb the hair cuticles.
Rough washing and rubbing your hair when it's wet.
Using shampoos with high pH levels (above 5.5).
Harsh brushing or combing with an abrasive brush or comb.
Applying excess chemical treatments.
Intense hair coloring treatments like hair dyes and bleach also harshly affect hair.
3. External Factors or Environmental Aggressors
From UV rays, harsh sun heat, and air pollution, there are loads of environmental aggressors that can make hair frizzy. They are much harder to deal with in some ways as they are all external factors we have no control over. Few of them are -
Smoke & gaseous pollutants are found in the air & break down air pollution into particulate matter such as dust, soot, etc.
Exposure to direct heat from the sun.
The sun's UV rays direct & regularly are particularly harsh to the hair cuticle.
4. Stress, hormonal changes, diet, medicine, etc.
These are equally important as other external causes we listed as frizz promoters. Our body's chemistry has a significant role in hair's relative health or ill health. Below are the factors that can have such an effect -
Stressful environments bring on excessive Stress.
Massive hormonal changes that the body undergoes during events in life such as puberty and pregnancy.
Consumption of a poor diet daily, over time, can cause a lack of protein, omega-3 fats, etc.
The Secret to having frizz-free hair in India
Frizz-free hair might be a dream, but we can manage frizz when changing our relationship with hair and our habits.
1. Firstly, let's work & improve on the basics - tackle your hair dryness
Improve your water drinking habit. Have enough water throughout the day, at least ten glasses.
Never overwash your hair. The basic rule is, once if your hair is dry, twice if oily.
Shift to sulfate-free shampoos & conditioners.
Remember to condition your hair after the shampoo also. Once in a while, you can provide your hair with a royal spa treatment.
Use cold to mild-warm water to wash your hair.
Shift to a microfiber towel (or an old cotton t-shirt) to wrap your hair instead of a harsh cotton towel.
You can also try switching your cotton pillowcase with a silk pillowcase.
2. Secondly, let's focus on our hair cuticles
Avoid using heating appliances on your hair regularly. Let your hair breathe.
Use a diffuser when blow-drying your hair.
Do not rub your hair when wet or when washing or applying products.
Remember to choose shampoos having less than a 5.5 pH level.
Choose a good quality hairbrush to comb your hair and avoid combing wet hair.
Do not overdo chemical treatments. If not required, please avoid it.
Reduce chemical hair treatments as much as possible unless you feel it is the only option or a necessity.
3. Thirdly, let's work on our environment. Though we have no direct control over these factors, we can still make a difference.
Avoid places where there is dust, a lot of pollution, etc.
While traveling on the road, cover your head & hair with a scarf or satin cloth.
Avoid standing directly under the sun for an extended period. Wear hats if possible.
4. Lastly, focus on your lifestyle. You can make it or break it.
Avoid taking unnecessary, excessive Stress. Instead, meditate and practice yoga.
Be patient with events like pregnancy, puberty, etc. Don't be too harsh on yourself.
Have a rich diet daily, full of proteins, omega-3, fatty fish, etc.
One cannot tie the frizz in the hair to a particular reason.
Frizzy hair is the outcome of many reasons. It may be your lifestyle, eating habits, or how you deal with your hair. That's why the cure is not one size fits all.
The above reasons & solutions to tackle the frizz are tried & tested formulas. Now, you just have to match your cause for frizzy hair & then apply the solution accordingly.
Frizz-free hair is an achievable dream. But it will take time & effort. The result may be slow, but it is all worth it. Tell me, who doesn't want to wake up with frizz-free hair?
Looking for an effective therapy session, that would help you control the frizz?
Come visit us at Salon Nayana.