Our hair is something that many of us take for granted. However, there are several things that one can do to his hair that can hasten or cause hair loss. This is because some grooming habits cause damage to the hair shafts and/or follicles that can cause the hair to fall out or break off. Some bad habits dry the hair severely, leading to damage. Here, we are going to look at 10 habits that damage men’s hair:
Although this is not actually a grooming habit, smoking is one habit that damages the hair, skin, and many other organs. Smoking allows free radicals to accumulate in the body and damage cells, including the follicles that produce hair. It can also keep vital oxygen from reaching the cells because carbon monoxide in smoke replaces oxygen in the blood.
2. Hot Showers
Showering with hot water can strip the natural oils out of the hair. If one has colored the hair, this can cause the color to fade much more rapidly as well, often leading to the application of color again at intervals that are too frequent.
3. Brushing/Combing Wet Hair
One should never brush wet hair. This is because the hair strands are weakened while wet and can not handle the strain put on them by a brush. If the hair becomes tangled during the washing process, it is better to use a comb with widely spaced teeth to remove the tangles. This is gentler than a brush. If possible, it is better to use just the fingers.
4. Semi-Permanent Hair Color
Using semi-permanent hair color can open the hair to damage. While these dyes are not as dangerous as permanent dyes, they do contain peroxide, which can enter the hair cuticles and remove the natural pigments while making room for the new color. This practice does not normally create a great deal of damage alone, but combined with other bad habits can be brutal to the hair.
5. Permanent Hair Color
The use of permanent hair colors is a major problem for the hair. These chemicals make use of both ammonia and peroxide. The peroxide opens the hair cuticles and removes the natural color. The ammonia helps to set the new color in place. Use of any color of this type can damage hair seriously, but lightening darker hair is the worst because this requires a double treatment.
Application of a perm is one of the more damaging habits we have when it comes to our hair. The chemicals in the perm change the molecular structure of the hair so that it can be set in a new shape, usually curls. This weakens the hair shafts and creates the potential for breakage under any small strain.
7. Blow-Drying & Ironing
Many people use a blow dryer on their hair. If the heat setting is used, this can dry out the hair severely, making it prone to breakage. Another problem of a similar nature is ironing the hair in an effort to straighten hair. The heat of the iron damages the hair in much the same manner as the heat of a dryer.
8. Tight Hairstyles
Adopting hairstyles that put a lot of stress on the hair is seriously bad habit. Ponytails, tight braids such as cornrows, and other hairstyles that exert constant tension on the hair can cause the hair to fall out. This is a condition known as traction alopecia and the only cure is time without the strain on the follicles.
9. Chemical Relaxers
While it is pretty much opposite to a perm, the use of chemical relaxers in the hair affect the molecular bonds in the shafts and make them weaker. This allows the hair to fall straighter, but puts one at risk of breakage under light stress.
10. Thermal Conditioning
By far the worst habit one can adopt as far as the hair is concerned is the use of thermal conditioning. This is a straightening process that makes use of chemicals, tension, and heat at the same time to get the results one is looking for. This trifecta of damage can lead to catastrophic failure of the hair shafts to hold together. Breakage, falling out, and frizzy dryness are just some of the potential results of this treatment.
These are not all of the potential habits that can damage hair. However, they are the 10 habits that damage men’s hair the worst.