We’ll tell you which bad habits to kick, and teach you tips for getting a healthy scalp and healthier head of hair!Posted on March 01, 2019 Written by: 100% PURE®
For lustrous hair with healthy re-growth and strong roots, it’s important to trace hair care back to where it all begins: your scalp. Maintaining a healthy scalp is essential for keeping your mane happily nourished, and although it’s easy to neglect, scalp care (yes, like skin care) requires cleansing, exfoliating, and moisturizing.
But most of us are guilty of a variety of habits, which can leave us with brittle hair, unhappy hair follicles (which then translate into dreaded thinning), or an itchy scalp victim to flaking and irritation. These super pesky symptoms all point back to your scalp — and whether or not it’s efficiently dealing with dead skin cells, producing adequate lipids, and getting enough circulation.
It’s time to ask yourself: do YOU have a healthy scalp?
First, make sure you’re not scalding your scalp, either with ultra-hot water or high settings on heating tools. When your scalp is exposed to extreme temperatures, its natural lipid barrier is disrupted, leading to either sebum overproduction (resulting in greasy hair and even breakouts on your scalp) or sebum depletion, meaning clinical dryness and flaking.
At-home hair coloring is another major offender for harming your scalp. Frequent use of at-home bleach kits, dying your roots yourself, or even using natural citrus based products for sun activated highlights can also be a scalp health red flag. Hair cuticles are stripped in the process of bleaching, and if the chemical is applied for too long, or too close to the scalp, you can produce mild chemical burns which prevent healthy growth. Professional hair stylists use protective products and conditioners to prevent this kind of damage, so do your scalp a favor and leave coloring to the professionals.
For most hair types, using clarifying shampoos more than two or three times a week isn’t necessary, and might be the culprit behind your frizz. Particularly damaging are conventional drugstore shampoos, which are filled with sulfates and chemical laden foaming agents. Frequent use of these types of products can strip your scalp of its natural oils, creating brittle hair and fluctuations in oil production (either too much or not enough).
Don’t neglect your brushing and combing habits! Yanking and tugging with your brush can damage hair follicles permanently, and using a dirty brush or comb can distribute bacteria to your scalp, causing irritation or hairline blemishes.
A few proper, everyday habits will keep your follicles strong and your scalp balanced. When it comes to combing and brushing, be gentle and make sure you brush from the roots to the ends to stimulate hair growth, and distribute nutrients and product.
Scalp massage is another excellent trick to encourage follicle health: a weekly self-massage will stimulate circulation, evenly spread oil from root to tip, and allow your hair’s natural conditioning mechanism to reach your dry ends.
If you’re a curly girl or have particularly coarse hair (or mature, grey or white hair), chances are your scalp is slightly more prone to dryness. If this is the case, opt for a weekly scalp oil or moisturizing treatment, which will help your hair produce keratin (its primary protein). Antibacterial oils like coconut oil are also excellent for massaging directly into your scalp, to reduce inflammation and flaking (jojoba and almond are great, too).
Stick with plant-based, hair loving ingredients in your conditioner, like flaxseed oil, hemp oil and honey, and make sure you’re not just conditioning your ends — work the product into your scalp as well! A scalp conditioning routine will enhance your scalp’s lipid balance, and allow your follicles to absorb H2O for super bouncy and hydrated hair. Peep our scalp-conditioning guide for a breakdown that’s tailored to different hair types!
As we do with our skin, it’s important to consider the role of exfoliation — only this time, in regards to healthy hair growth. When pores on your scalp suffer from a buildup of dead skin cells and accumulated hair product, they effectively block new hair growth and contribute to thinning hair. This means that gentle mechanical exfoliation is ultra important, to increase skin cell turnover and slough off buildup.
Exfoliating is also an essential method for bringing oxygen and protein to the scalp, and preparing it for maximum absorption of any hair treatments you apply. The experts have weighed in, and scalp exfoliation is key — and we’ve created a handy guide for giving you the full breakdown on scalp exfoliation.
Remember, we all have different hair types, and our scalps are reflective of that. Some of us might hail from the land of dandruff, while others might suffer from the four o’clock grease shadow. But with the right natural hair care products, a healthy scalp and shiny locks are easy to achieve! Just remember: healthy hair starts with a healthy scalp!
So which natural ingredients should YOU be looking for in your shampoo and conditioner? Peep our shampoo and conditioner guide for answers. Keep up with us here for more 100% PURE hair, body, skin care, and makeup guides!