How to shampoo hair? Tips for easy, healthy locks

It's not possible to do away with all kinds of hair fall. Photo: iStock/Deepak Sethi

Many people complain they suffer from excessive hair fall and dandruff, especially during summer. However, we can keep our hair healthy and strong by following certain simple tips. Dr. Divya explains how to care for your hair to restore its moisture and shine. Hair fall may be caused by various reasons in different persons. Dr Divya says that most people suffer from vitamin D deficiency, which may be the reason for severe hair fall. Besides, those who suffer from hormone imbalances, PCOD and fibroids may experience hair fall when there is variation in the testosterone levels. This condition is called androgenic alopecia or hair fall that is similar to that of men. In such cases, hair may fall out in patches, especially in the crown area. Moreover, iron deficiency, anaemia and thyroid problems too could lead to severe hair fall.

It is not possible to cure all types of hair fall. For instance, temporary hair loss may happen due to fever bouts or by washing hair in hard or unclean water. These could be easily overcome with a few home remedies. However, severe conditions like androgenic alopecia where hair doesn’t grow back or the new hairs are too brittle, require medical treatment.
How to choose shampoos
Shampoos must be chosen depending on the texture of the hair. If your hair isn't exposed much to dust and pollution, you could manage with natural cleansers like mung bean powder or hibiscus thaali or even a mild baby shampoo. These cleansers are mild yet effective too. However, if you oil your hair regularly, these natural cleansers may not completely remove the oil. If you still prefer a natural cleanser, then shikhakai (Senegalia rugata) may be helpful. You could also try soap nuts.

Is it safe to use shampoo daily?
Shampoo shouldn’t be used daily. It should be used only on days when you oil your hair. Some people may oil their hair daily; then the hair should be washed using shampoo. Oiling the hair isn’t the real problem. The oil residue on hair may lead to dandruff, irritation on the scalp or folliculitis. So, it is alright to rub oil on the ends of the hair follicles. But, if you are oiling the scalp, then you should wash it off using shampoo.

How often should you wash hair?
You could wash your hair daily if you have access to clean water every day. If clean water isn’t available or if you are travelling, hair could be washed once or twice a week. In summer, your scalp is likely to sweat more and it can result in severe dandruff and itchiness. If dirt, dust, pollution and sweat get accumulated on the scalp, then washing the hair daily would be the best way to keep the hair follicles stronger and healthy.

Are regular haircuts necessary?
Trimming your hair often is a good option. Hair breakage or split ends happen due to many reasons. In such cases, it is better to trim the hair at least once in a month or once in two months. The hair would be more prone to breakage if it isn’t trimmed at intervals.

Special homemade hair spa
Gooseberries are incredibly beneficial to maintain the health and shine of hair follicles. Grind gooseberries, curry leaves, aloe vera gel as well as the leaves and flowers of hibiscus into a paste. Mix egg whites in this herbal paste. Apply this pack to the scalp and hair follicles. You could wash it off after 20 – 30 minutes using hibiscus thaali or a mild shampoo.
Blend a banana in a mixer jar. Add egg whites, water and some olive or almond oil. Mix well into a smooth paste. Apply this pack on the scalp and hair; wash off after some time.

Nighttime hair routine
The most important step is to get rid of hair knots using a wide-toothed hair comb. You could use a few drops of coconut oil, virgin coconut oil or almond oil if the hair is dry. If you do not want to directly apply the oil, then mix it with some water and spray it onto the scalp and hair using a spray bottle. You could then tie the hair up in a loose bun to prevent breakage. 

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