Dry, brittle damaged hair is not pretty. What caused it? Too much of everything, especially over processing with color, styling products, daily use of hair blowers, flat irons and curling rods. Hair is protein just like your skin and your hair can get damaged the same way your skin can. Dry, brittle cotton candy hair can even be brought on by too much sun plus too much chlorine from the pool and your bathroom shower-head. Even a tight pony tail can cause damage.
Throughout my career on television, I struggled with all of the above and one time ended up with a very bad case of cotton candy hair. Have you ever had it or felt it? It’s disgusting and hair feels mushy and soft with a cotton candy texture.
How to fix? Make sure you are getting the right protein in your diet and use the right products for you hair, including the best shampoos and conditioners for your concern.
The problem is, what kind of shampoos and conditioners do you pick? Moisturizing or protein? Protein enriched products for your hair might not be the solution and could cause more damage to your hair including breakage. Fact is, there are times in which your hair needs more moisture to recover.
So, the big question is, how to tell if your hair needs protein or moisture? There’s a quick test that you can do at home to give you the answer.
Take a strand of wet hair and stretch it gently. Does it go back to its original length without breaking? If it does then you have the correct balance of protein and moisture in your hand. If it breaks on the other hand, then your hair probably needs more protein, which you can get through a keratin treatment, conditioner or mask. If the strand doesn’t break and returns to its original length but feels rough and dry, it needs moisture.
Generally speaking, hair that is brittle and dry, needs moisturizing, while hair that is chemically processed and ultra-fine, needs protein. Hair that is ultra-fine, or chemically damaged to the point of having a mushy, cotton candy-like feel, needs protein.
Now, if you have damaged hair, here are some additional tips for you to consider.
1. Let your hair air dry instead of using blowers
2. Minimize the days of the week you use styling tools and products on your hair
3. When using styling tools, keep the temperature on low to medium
4. Don’t use hair spray direct to hair and then use curling iron – recipe for disaster
More on hair spray
5. Use alcohol free whenever possible
6. Stay away from firm hold sprays
7. Be gentle when you brush your hair…excessive or aggressive brushing can shatter your fragile hair even more!