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10 Reasons Why You Have Brittle Hair and How to Fix it

John Simmonds

Posted on April 06 2018

10 Reasons Why You Have Brittle Hair and How to Fix it

Brittle hair is more common than you might think. Here are some reasons why, and more importantly, what you can do to take care of your hair and bring it back to a state of healthy, natural sheen.

1. Lack of Moisture

Without hydration, hair is more prone to breakage, so you want to ensure you're giving your strands the love they deserve. Make sure your shampoo and conditioner have ingredients that not only hydrate but also add a lot of shine. Drink three liters of clean water per day, if not more.

2. Too Much Heat Styling

It's no surprise that heat styling makes your hair weaker and more prone to breakage over time. And as you might imagine, it's even worse if you don't use any heat protection. If you heat style daily, try using heating tools once or twice a week. Apply heat protectant just to be sure. Do not overexpose your hair to the flatiron. Don't exceed the maximum suggested time on your hair (about five seconds). Using a flatiron only once a week and only using those with ceramic plates can also help protect your hair.

3. Blow-Drying Dripping-Wet Hair

Let your hair air-dry for a bit first. Your hair will be much better off if you start blow-drying when it isn't dripping wet. Blot (don't rub) wet hair with a microfiber towel, which is less damaging than the classic terry-cloth turban. 

When blow-drying, avoid stretching your hair with a brush. A good blow-dryer dries so quickly that there really isn't time for the hair to overheat - check to make sure you are using the best hair dryer you can afford. Use a brush with smooth, synthetic bristles. Also, when you're blow-drying, don't yank on the hair and don't let the dryer's nozzle get too close. 

4. Chemical Exposure

Coloring your hair regularly makes it hard to maintain it in a healthy and strong condition, as the constant overprocessing contributes directly to breakage. If you have severe damage may even need to get major cut so that your hair has a fresh start and a chance to grow back in its original healthy state. Use a protectant but avoid products containing formaldehyde.


5. Sleeping on a Cotton Pillowcase

Your cotton pillowcase could be causing your hair to break off more than usual because it creates friction between the hair and the fabric while you sleep. Instead, get a satin or silk pillowcase, which cuts down on the snagging while you snooze. 

6. Towel Drying

While it might feel like the thing to do post-shower, tying your hair up in a towel can lead to major tangling and breakage issues. Instead, swap out your towel for an old, soft T-shirt or a paper towel, both of which are absorbent and easier on your hair.

7. Over-Washing

The more you cleanse your hair, the more it's stripped of the natural oils it needs to stay in top shape. Try shampooing only three times a week (depending on your hair type, of course). If you have fine and/or oily hair that needs to be washed more frequently, you can still shampoo — just be more careful, drenching your hair with water before lathering. Concentrate on the hair two inches closest to the scalp, as that's where sebum collects.  Rinse well under the coldest water you can stand - cold water will smooth the cuticle so frayed ends are less obvious.

8. Infrequent Hair Cuts

If you avoid cutting your split ends, eventually they might just break off. Make sure to keep schedule regular hair cuts for healthier hair.

9. Not Deep Conditioning

Get a good deep conditioner  - the ingredients aren't that different from those in your daily conditioner, but they're much more concentrated and they leave behind a smoothing film that won't wash off for days.

10. An Unbalanced Diet

Your hair needs protein to remain strong. as protein can repair weak spots in the hair shaft, preventing breakage. But be forewarned: Too much protein can make the hair brittle, and too much moisture makes strands too flexible. It's important to find the right balance.