curly-hair-blackBad Advice for Curly Hair
As you can imagine, and likely have experienced yourself, there`s no shortage of bad advice for those with curly hair. Perhaps you`ve heard of or tried one of the supposed "tips for curly hair" we list below. If you haven`t, we can assure you that you`re not missing out on a great tip, and likely have saved your curly hair from becoming an unmanageable mess.
We`ve seen recommendations to use sea salt spray as a great way to redefine curls and texture and revitalize styling products. Utter nonsense! Saltwater is never good for any hair type. Salt is drying and coarse on hair, causing curly hair to separate and feel even drier than usual. Anyone with curly hair who has taken a dip in the ocean knows this is true.
What about washing curly hair with cold water to make it shinier, lock in moisture, and reduce frizz? It makes not an ounce of difference, other than making you feel uncomfortably cold. Hair is dead and it can`t tell the difference between shower water that is warm or cold (although the nerve endings in your scalp will definitely know!). Wet hair doesn`t change its structure until it starts drying—that`s what makes the difference, not the temperature of the water you use to rinse your hair.
You cannot detoxify your hair. Nothing lives on your hair, not germs or toxins of any kind. Again, hair is dead, and there is nothing for germs or bacteria to live on. Hair also can`t absorb smog or pollution. Regarding the smell from cigarette smoke, shampooing easily takes care of that. None of these things ever get trapped inside your hair so there is no need for it to be "de-toxed." Even if the bad stuff did get trapped, it`s physiologically impossible to detoxify hair.
Some myths just won`t go away, and avoiding shampoos that contain sulfates is one of them. The truth is that non-sulfate shampoos aren`t any better for hair than shampoos that contain sulfates, and the cleansing agents they contain are no more gentle than those in other shampoos. It is all about the amount of the cleansing agents, not whether the formula contains sulfates or not. You can avoid shampoos with sulfates if you choose to, but that won`t help your hair. To close this topic, consider that many major hair-care brands that make much ado about "no sulfates" continue to sell shampoos that do contain—you guessed it—sulfates! Clearly, those companies don`t believe sulfates are a problem; if they did, why would they continue to sell the products that contain the allegedly bad ingredients? And even more important, why support a brand that does that?
We`re sure someone along the way has warned you about alcohol in styling products. While we are the first ones to say alcohol is an absolute no-go for the skin, especially on the face, it is far less of an issue for the hair. Hair is dead, and so alcohol does not have the impact on hair that it has on skin. The drying aspect of alcohol, however, is a consideration for hair, but because of how alcohol is used in hairstyling products it evaporates from hair before it can have any significant impact on the hair`s moisture content. If you`ve used a good conditioner and other healthy styling products like silicone serums, leave-in conditioners, or styling lotions, the alcohol in styling products like hairsprays will have minimal to no impact. If your hair feels dry after using styling products with alcohol, it`s likely not from the alcohol, but rather from a high concentration of film-forming agents. These ingredients form a coating on hair that can build up and feel stiff, while also making hair feel unnaturally dry.
If you`ve been told that brushing your hair for two minutes is a good thing because it distributes the oils from your scalp through your hair, consider that some of the worst hair-care advice around! Whoever is disseminating this baloney has never seen a shred of the large amount of research showing that the less you touch your hair, brush it, wash it, style it, or do anything to it, the better. Trying to get the oil from your scalp to your ends is a waste of time, especially for curly hair. Styling products do a much better job, and the kinds of ingredients they contain add dimensional shine and protection to curly hair without the need to over-manipulate it. So, your hair will look much better if you use well-formulated styling products than if you use your own oils.