Getting into a hair care routine is just like embarking on a skin care one. Once you’ve found one that works for you, you’ll rarely stray.
But the process of finding that routine can seem a little daunting, especially when there’s numerous options for people with the same hair type.
Here’s a breakdown of everything you need to know to find the hair care ritual that’s right for you.
Your individual routine ultimately depends on a few factors
From the feel of your hair to the styles you prefer, these elements will all alter the routine you end up choosing.
Your natural hair texture or type
Hair types tend to be fine, thick, or coarse and fall into one of four categories:
straight wavy curly kinky
Each has its upsides and downsides. For example, straight hair usually looks and feels greasy quicker than curly hairTrusted Source due to oil speedily making its way down the hair shaft.
Whether your hair has been bleached, dyed, or otherwise chemically processed
If your hair has come in contact with dye, bleach, or chemicals, you may have to think extra hard about your routine.
People with dyed hair are advised not to wash it every day to prevent premature color fading and dryness.
And bleached hair may require some extra nourishment in the form of conditioner or hair masks.
How you want to wear your hair on a daily basis
Do you like to straighten your hair? Curl it? Leave it completely natural?
It’s another thing you’ll have to consider, especially if you’re a fan of using damaging heat tools.
Whether you have specific concerns that you want to address
It’s normal to find at least one aspect of your hair problematic, whether it’s frizz, a flaky scalp, or dry, damaged strands.
Knowing what the problem is, is half the task. The rest involves finding the best solution.
However, every routine shares a few basic components
Although your hair type and concerns will alter your hair care routine in some ways, there are a few basic steps that every person can benefit from.
Cleansing is a balance between removing things like dead skin and product residueTrusted Sourcewithout stripping the hair of its natural oils.
Without a good wash, sebum will build up, leaving unwanted oiliness.
So will dead skin if not removed. The skin renews itself around every 28 daysTrusted Source, and this may be noticeable if the hair is not clean.
And, if you’re an avid swimmer, you don’t want to leave chlorine on your locks. The longer it sits, the more time it has to strip hair of its natural elements and cause damage.
Conditioners have myriad benefits. The main one is moisturizing, but others include detangling, shininess, and frizz reduction.
The main ingredient of a conditioner is called a cationic surfactantTrusted Source.
When hair is wet, this sticks to it, coating the strands to replenish the moisture that shampoo may have removed.
Moisturize and seal
To add further hydration to the hair, you may want to embark on a two-step process known as moisturize and seal.
This can be particularly useful for kinky or coily hair that tends to be dry.
The aim is to seal in moisture, not to lock in dryness, using a hydrating product and sealing oil.
Detangling is essential for stopping breakage and for making your life a whole lot easier.
But you need to use the right tool, such as a wide-tooth comb, to avoid pulling hair out by mistake.
Depending on your hair type, you may need to detangle every day or much less often.
Style and protect
Thanks to a number of tools and tricks like volumizers and gels, you can style your hair practically any way you want.
But if you’re a fan of heated tools, you’ll need to protect those strands with a heat protection spray.
Spot-treating hair simply means picking out a particular area that’s bothering you and doing something to remedy it.
For example, you’re fed up with how frizzy your hair is, so you try a protein treatment.
Or you’ve noticed that your scalp is feeling extra dry, so you apply a super nourishing product designed for that area.