If you, like many people, have only ever had short hair, you might be completely at a loss for what to do when you want to grow it out. Because of that, once it gets past your shoulders, you’ll probably keep doing the same thing you always do. What you don’t know is that you may actually be hurting your hair! Change up your hair routine with these six long hair care tips.
1. Use the Right Brush
The same brush you used on your short hair probably isn’t going to cut it anymore. Instead of just picking up a brush at the dollar store, you’re going to need a brush that smoothes the hair shafts. This helps ensure that you don’t end up with split ends and broken strands of hair everywhere.
Brushing long hair should always start with a natural fiber brush, such as a boar bristle brush or a wet brush. When your hair is wet, you should only ever brush it with a fine-toothed comb.
2. Blow-dry Your Hair the Right Way
No matter what type of hair you have, you shouldn’t be blow-drying for long periods on high heat. However, this advice goes double for long hair. It’s a fast track to dry, damaged hair, and if you do it too much, you’ll probably also end up with a lot of frizz.
Your hair dryer should always be at least 2 inches away from your hair, and always on a low-heat setting. Remember to blow-dry straight down rather than from the side, to avoid frizz.
3. Stop Using a Curling Iron
A curling iron might give you fast results, but, just like a high-heat blow-dryer, it’ll just end up damaging your hair.
Plenty of alternative curling methods for hair won’t dry out hair that you’ve spent years on. Put in foam curlers, tie your hair into loose braids, or twist it onto itself. As long as you do it the night before, you’ll get those beautiful curls you’re looking for.
4. Don’t Wash Every Day
In your attempts to make sure your hair doesn’t become greasy or grimy, there’s a good chance that you’ve actually committed a completely different offense: over-washing.
In fact, you shouldn’t be washing your hair every day. Most people should wash their hair two to three times per week at most, and many people can get away with just once a week. Make sure you use a natural shampoo and a moisturizing conditioner for the best results.
5. Avoid High-tension Hairstyles
Many people tie their hair up into a tight bun or high ponytail without really thinking of the consequences. These high-tension styles place a lot of stress on your hair strands, and can easily cause them to start breaking and tearing.
When it comes to long hair, you should usually stick to leaving it down. After all, when you have hair that long, you should show it off! If you do need to tie it up, try a ponytail at the nape of your neck, or pull it into a loose braid.
6. Think About Your Sleep
Most people sleep for eight hours a day, and that adds up to a third of your lifetime. It makes sense that you’d want to protect your hair during that time, especially if you happen to toss and turn frequently.
The best way to keep your hair safe while you sleep is to use silk pillowcases and sheets, which will discourage breakage during the night. However, if you don’t have access to that, you can try braiding your hair before you sleep, which will keep it from getting everywhere throughout the night.
Long hair may be a bit more labor-intensive than short hair, but that shouldn’t deter you from growing your hair out. There are plenty of ways to wear long hair to suit your unique style, and by taking care of your hair, you can try out all of them.
Getting the perfect long hairstyle can take some work, and if you’re not a professional, that can be daunting. Don’t try to figure it out on your own; come in to the Ogle School salon in Houston to get some professional assistance.