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5 Tips to keep hair hydrated

Kori Ellis is an editor and writer based in San Antonio, TX, where she lives with her husband and four children. At SheKnows, she writes about parenting, fashion, beauty and other lifestyle topics. Additionally, Kori has been published i...

Nourish and restore your hair

When your hair loses moisture, it can become brittle, dull and lifeless. To hydrate and revive your dry hair, follow these five simple tips.

In the summer months, hair can get dehydrated by the sun, chlorine and salt water. In the wintertime, things aren't much better, as the cold, dry temperatures and wind can zap the life out of your locks. To keep your hair healthy, lustrous and hydrated all year round, you need to treat it with some tender loving care.



Deep condition once a week

If you have dry hair, you can hydrate it by using a deep conditioning treatment once a week. Deep conditioners are normally left on your hair for 15-30 minutes to penetrate the hair strands and follicles. You can find a variety of deep conditioning treatments at your local drug store. Look for products that contain protein, olive oil and other moisturizing ingredients. You can also make a deep conditioning treatment in your own kitchen. For example, mayonnaise is commonly used to condition hair. Check out these homemade beauty treatments. These fruity recipes will restore moisture and body to your dull, dry hair.

Woman washing hair

Use a moisturizing shampoo

Some shampoos can strip your hair of its natural oils and moisture. To rejuvenate and hydrate your hair, be sure to use a shampoo that is specifically designed for dry hair. Look for shampoos labeled "moisturizing" or "replenishing," and check the label. Avoid products containing high levels of alcohol, which will dry out your hair even further. Moisturizing shampoos contain oils and other ingredients that will help trap the moisture inside the hair shaft when you wash your hair.

Dry your hair naturally

Blowdryers, flat irons and other heated hair tools cause hair to dry out, become brittle and break. If possible, avoid blow drying your hair altogether. If you don't have time to dry your hair naturally, towel dry your hair halfway by blotting out the moisture, then finish drying it with a blow dryer. Never rub your hair vigorously with a towel. This can cause damage to your hair, particularly if it's already dehydrated.

Brush your hair

Brushing your hair thoroughly twice a day will distribute the oils from the scalp down the hair shaft. Select a soft bristle brush and don't pull or tug. Brush your dry hair gently in long, downward strokes. Brushing will stimulate the scalp, increasing the natural oils for extra shine while also helping to remove dirt and damaging particles from the hair. Avoid brushing wet hair. Instead use a wide tooth comb to detangle hair when wet.

Eat a balanced diet

A healthy diet isn't just good for your body, it also has an effect on your hair. Eat a balanced diet featuring plenty of green, leafy vegetables, fruits, whole grains, lean protein and good fats. Protein-rich foods, as well as those containing vitamin A, B, C, E and K are especially good for your hair. Additionally, look for foods that are high in silica, such as potatoes (including the skin), asparagus, cucumbers and bell peppers. Silica is a mineral that is essential for strong, healthy, shiny hair. If you experience hair loss or brittle hair due to thyroid or hormonal issues, consult your doctor but also eat foods that are rich in vitamin A and iodine. Furthermore, if your hair is dehydrated and brittle, you probably lack essential fatty acids (EFAs). Foods that are rich in EFAs include fresh tuna, salmon, sardines, herring and mackerel. Flaxseed, olives, avocados and some nuts are also high in essential fatty acids.
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