We all want the kind of hair that looks so good, you might as well have stepped out of a shampoo commercial. The truth is shiny, healthy hair can be achieved. Here’s how…
1. SERUM FOR YOUR STRANDS
You see ‘shine serums’ on the stands but what do they actually do? Formulated to obviously give high gleam to hair, shine serums are also packed with nourishing and strengthening proteins like phyto-keratin. Try Garnier Fructis Sleek & Shine 72H Fortifying Serum, $7.99 – it smooths hair without weighing it down.
Your regular conditioner is great, but if you really want to bump up the shine factor, add a leave-in conditioner like L’Oréal Paris Hair Expertise EverCreme Nourishing Leave-In Spray, $14.95, to your routine by spraying it onto damp hair once a week. If you prefer an intense rinse-out option, try Dove Therapy Intensive Repair Treatment Mask, $8.79, when you’re in the shower. Leave on for 5 minutes then rinse. Hello soft, shiny strands.
3. SMART HEAT
Do you love your showers hot? Can’t part with your blow-dryer? You might want to reconsider your techniques. Heat, including hot water and hot air, can open the hair cuticle, making it dry and coarse. Instead, at the end of your shower, rinse your hair in cool water and after blow-drying; flick the switch onto cool and blast all over, pointing the nozzle down. This will close the cuticle, allowing light to reflect better and producing lots of shine.
4. TREAT YOURSELF (AND YOUR TRESSES!)
Nothing is more indulgent than a trip to the hair salon. During your next colour or cut appointment, add a salon-only treatment to the mix. Shu Uemura’s Luxe Ceremony, is the ultimate hair and scalp experience. It features oils custom blended with treatment masks to rebalance the scalp and restore hair to a healthy, shiny state. And, the scalp massage – which may put you to sleep – is to die for.
5. STOCK UP ON SALMON
Aside from being delicious and rich in protein (which is fundamental for strong hair), salmon is full of omega-3 fatty acids. These good fats make your strands stronger and shinier. Got dry scalp? Omega-3s are also found in the cell membranes in the skin of your scalp, and these natural oils are what keep your scalp hydrated. TIP: If you’re not a fan of salmon, you can also get essential fatty acids from other fish like sardines and trout, as well as avocado, pumpkin seeds and walnuts.
Is your hair losing its fullness and starting to thin out as you age? Supplement tablets may help. Some research suggests biotin (which is part of the B complex vitamins and is found in walnuts and (Blackmores Nails, Hair & Skin Supplements, $20.95) can improve thinning hair and brittle nails. Biotin is also water-soluble, meaning your body excretes what it doesn’t need. Other vitamins like B6, B12 and folate, help with the creation of red blood cells. These cells then carry oxygen to the body’s cells and can help keep the scalp healthy and hair grow.
Chlorine is a bleaching agent, which strips the hair’s natural oils and minerals, leaving it feeling damaged and dehydrated. Limit your hair’s exposure to such harsh chemicals and always rinse with water after swimming. To avoid build-up, use a clarifying shampoo like Moroccanoil Clarifying Shampoo, $35, once a week.