If you yearn for gorgeous, model-worthy hair, but are having little success growing your locks, you need to look to the root of the problem, meaning your roots. Everyone knows a good conditioning masque can do wonders for your mane, but what about your scalp? For healthy, thick strands, scalp health and care needs to be at the top of your priority list.
You may think you only need special scalp care if you’re having a specific scalp issue. Think again! As Taylor Brock, expert stylist and treatment specialist at Butterfly Studio Salon, explains, you need to be proactive when it comes to scalp health. “Anything from dead skin to product build up on the hair follicle can very easily destroy follicle production, and could potentially put a stop to growth permanently.” Yikes!
Brock has an arsenal of natural remedies to prevent this from happening. Every once in a while you need to slough away dead skin on your scalp – just like exfoliating your face and body. He suggests mixing raw brown sugar with honey and working through from roots to ends. Sometimes your scalp gets really out of whack and you need to reset the pH; look no further than raw, organic unfiltered apple cider vinegar. Dilute one part apple cider vinegar to three parts water and apply to your scalp for about twenty minutes. If you’re coveting clarity and insane shine (um, who isn’t?), pour sparkling water with fresh lemon juice over your hair then wash with a daily shampoo. Finally, for hard core moisture, coat your strands in coconut oil. This magic ingredient can be used for anything from cooking to removing eye makeup, but our hair follicles love to soak it up when they’re parched. Leave on hair for at least 20 minutes and wash out.
There are plenty of products on the market that can help you along this journey. MiN Detox Clarifying Hair and Scalp Treatment ($20) will properly clean your scalp while simultaneously promoting new hair growth by removing restricting DHT. To soothe the inevitable itchiness of dry winter scalp and the subsequent dandruff flakes (no thank you!), reach for Moroccanoil Dry Scalp Treatment ($38). The antioxidant rich formula will balance your scalp and revitalize your hair. Win-win!
It may seem counterintuitive to get regular cuts if you want to grow your hair, but Roxy Brennan, hair stylist and extension specialist at Rittenhouse Spa & Club – Hair by Paul Labrecque, explains the importance of regular trims. “Haircuts are always helpful to keep the ends of the hair just as healthy as the root. Trims help to keep the ends from splitting, tangling, and eventually breaking off. You should have a haircut every 8-10 weeks for longer hair and 5-6 weeks for shorter styles.” Sounds like it’s a good time for a little snip-snip, no?
Healthy hair starts from the inside out. Models with extension-wrecked locks swear by the supplement Viviscal ($40) to promote hair growth and strength. We’re also huge fans of Phyto Phytophanère Hair And Nails Dietary Supplement ($60), as is celebrity hairstylist Jen Atkin, who gushed about the pills back in 2013.
For thick, long, gorgeous strands, make sure you’re eating foods rich in Omega-3 Fatty Acids, including salmon, walnuts, and flax seeds. Iron is also great for your mane, so splurge on a steak and spinach to get your fill.
Healthy hair can be your greatest asset and accessory. Commit to these tips, and you’ll be looking like a Pantene girl in no time!
Casey Sharbaugh currently resides in New York City and works in the fashion industry. In her spare time, you can find Casey spinning, trying new beauty products, or browsing the city for the best ice cream cone. Find her on Twitter at @chs_psu