How to keep your hair appearing youthful and healthy

How to keep your hair appearing youthful and healthy

Unfortunately, as we get older, so does our hair. The headful of gleaming locks with highlights naturally glittering in the sun can now, for most of us, only be attained by taking extremely good care of our hair, and using the right products.

So, what to do? With the onset of grey hairs in your locks, you may notice that the grays have another feature to add to their annoying nature. They are the complete opposite texture of the rest of your head!

They are kinky, dry, and just plain ugly. What causes this? Melanin, or the lack of it. For most of us, our bodies only produce melanin for a short while. When it stops the production, our new hair grows in grey. Not much is known about melanin, other than that it is involved in pigmentation. It is the substance that makes your eyes blue or green, your skin dark or light, and your hair colorful or grey. The most convenient solution to this problem, unless you are one of the ‘lucky ones’ with grey growing in evenly and without too much texture loss, is hair coloring.

Hair coloring, when done by a professional, can enhance a person’s looks, or totally change them. The beauty of hair coloring is that it is always changeable. Unfortunately, the harsh chemicals in hair dye often result in dry, brittle hair after a while, if precautions are not taken. Lightening your hair or ‘double-processing’ is probably the most severe thing you can do to your hair. It involves using peroxide to get rid of all of the colors in your hair first, and then adding color to it, giving a truer color.

Unfortunately, it also has the potential to leave your hair looking and feeling like straw if the proper products are not used for care. Coloring your hair to a darker hue is not as traumatic as bleaching it. Covering grey can be achieved by choosing a hair color similar to your natural look, and simply applying it overall. Most new products are very simple to use and can be done in your home. For more drastic changes, I heartily recommend a professional. A hairstylist can achieve highlights and more subtle color gradations than can be achieved in my bathroom.

Probably one of the best investments in your looks is a good shampoo and conditioner. Skimping on shampoo can leave you with dry hair faster than you can say ‘Split ends. You don’t need to take out a loan, either. Ask a professional hairstylist for a recommendation. Sometimes a lesser-known brand can reap all the same benefits of a big name.

Buying salon size bottles can help defray costs as well. Recently, I stopped at a small store in my local mall, which sold beauty supplies. They were selling quart-sized bottles of my favorite shampoo and conditioner, which usually retails for about 12.00 for 10oz. The quart-sized bottles were 20.00 each! Well, do the math! I bought a bottle of each, and poured the stuff into my little bottles when they were empty, saving me 32.00! I love it when that happens!

Another product not to skimp on is mousse. Use of mousse instead of hairspray can save you frizz hair or two. Just take a small egg-sized dollop of mousse, mix in a few drops of your favorite hair gel, rub between your hands a couple of seconds, apply, and blow-dry hairs. You’ll be amazed at how well it works!

A hairdresser friend of mine also recommends adding a drop of a silk-based frizz-reducer to the mousse/gel mixture. I tried this, and after a couple of adjustments for my hair type, got it down at a drop and a half. Puts that healthy-looking sheen in your hair, and gives it that little bit of bounce.

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