Thick, luscious locks have been a symbol of beauty for generations, it’s no wonder why almost everyone has hair advice they swear by when it comes to getting thicker hair.
While it’s tempting to try out one kooky suggestion after another, this can be costly and might even be counter productive since you’re causing undue stress on your hair.
So today, we’re sifting through the beauty tips, and debunking the myths that you should ignore. Plus we’ll give you the low-down on the actual hair care tricks that are proven to give results!
Myth #1: Hair grows back faster and thicker if you cut it often
Hair growth happens at the follicle, and cutting the ends don’t help at all in increasing the growth rate of hair or making it look thicker. At an average, hair grows a quarter of an inch a month, and this is dictated by the growth cycle of your hair follicles, and not by any other external factor.
However, there is one benefit in having frequent hair trims. Getting rid of split ends lessens the friction between individual strands, so hair doesn’t become brittle.
What actually works: If you’re trying to grow your hair long, thick and healthy – remember that taking great care of your hair (like religiously conditioning it) cuts down on split ends meaning less trims and long, healthy hair faster.
Myth #2: 100 brush strokes a day will stimulate hair growth
This is an old wives tale if there ever was one. 100 brush strokes are actually too many, regardless of the length of your hair.
Ideally, one should just brush enough to remove the tangles (light brushing often to get rid of tangles before they happen is a good idea), since too much brushing can cause static and friction between hair strands. This increases the likelihood of split ends and split ends is actually cause additional hair loss.
Some also claim that brushing hair often increases blood circulation to the scalp and helps in distributing hair oils. While it can contribute to some degree, there are definitely less hair-damaging ways to achieve the same results without stressing out your hair strands too much.
What actually works: Frequent scalp massages are much more effective in improving blood circulation to your scalp to stimulate hair growth.
And when it comes to distributing scalp oils, the body already takes care of this process – if you want to help get the natural oils to travel down to the tips of your hair, simply try skipping a shampoo session or two.
This allows the scalp to evenly distribute oils without it being stripped away by your daily shower routines.
Myth # 3: Exposure to the sun causes hair loss
The sun has a bad reputation against all the damage it inflicts on our bodies, but hair loss is not one of them.
While skin problems are extensively linked to UV exposure, hair experts say that sun exposure has no effect on the growth patterns of hair follicles, so sun worshippers can rest easy.
In fact, a growing body of studies are showing that an ample supply of Vitamin D ( the only vitamin the body can synthesize on it’s own with ample exposure to sunlight) is helpful in preventing hair loss, since Vitamin D has an impact on the specific genes that promote normal follicle growth.
Here’s an important note though, 30 minutes of exposure 3 times a week is all your body needs to produce an optimum level of Vitamin D. Excess sun sessions also have consequences. Too much UV exposure can take it’s toll on weakening the layers of the hair shaft, causing hair to be frizzier and prone to breakage.
Myth # 4: Putting your hair up before going to bed causes hair loss
A stubborn myth that persists is that one should always have their hair down before hitting the sack in order to let scalp breathe. There is no evidence to back up this claim.
While tight hair styles cause hair loss by putting the tension on the scalp, a loose bun or ponytail when you to go to bed brings more good than harm. Loose up-dos minimize the friction in your hair while you sleep, and constant friction between hair strands cause split ends and frizziness.
What actually works: An awesome way to let your hair down while you sleep and get rid of any static or breakage during the night is to opt for a lovely silk pillow. Your hair (and face) will thank you 🙂
Myth # 5: Your hair stops growing at a certain age
Contrary to popular belief, old age does not stop hair growth at all. In fact, as long as your follicles are alive and healthy they will continue to produce hair.
What causes the changes in your hair as you age is more the deteriorating health of your hair follicles. As we grow older, the follicles tend to shrivel up and become miniaturized versions of themselves.
This is caused by a variety of factors. Genetics could be a possible cause, but more often than not it’s the cumulative result of bad eating habits and poor lifestyle decisions that affect the health of hair follicles.
What actually works: To maintain the health of your hair follicles, load up on the best foods for healthy hair like iron-rich proteins, vitamins (especially Vitamin B-complex and other fat soluble vitamins) and minerals such as zinc and magnesium.
These minerals help your body process amino acids and improve your circulation so the hair follicles would always have enough amino acids, nutrients, and oxygen at it’s disposal to create strong, healthy hair strands.