Archive for July, 2012

Understanding Excessive Hair Loss

Hair loss seems to be a growing concern among women today.

So when are you loosing too much hair, what causes it, and what can be done about it??

Balding is generally hereditary, following male or female pattern thinning and ultimately resulting in permanent balding. Whereas the causes of hair loss most commonly seen in the salon among female clients is often temporary, the hair growing back once the underlying condition, is stabilized.

Firstly it is important to understand that it is normal to loose up to an average of a 100 hair stands a day. Hair follows a growth cycle, which consists of a growing stage of about 2-5 years. About 90% of the hair stands will be at this stage at one time. The next stage is the resting stage, the remaining 10% of hair will be moving though this stage to the falling out stage and then to a new growth stage in the hair follicle when the new hair will begin the growing stage again.

So what causes abnormal and excessive hair loss?

  • Hair styling routines such as tight ponytails and braiding can cause hair thinning especially around the hairline.
  • Stress or shock is another cause of abnormal hair loss, this includes the effects of sudden weight loss, illness or death of a loved one. Hair pulling is also a result of stress and leads to balding patches on the scalp.
  • Poor nutrition or a lack of certain vitamins and minerals can also cause hair to fall out. A lack of iron is a common cause of hair thinning. Crash diets and eating disorders also cause abnormal hair loss.
  • A thyroid imbalance is another common cause of hair loss. Hormones have a big impact on the hair and hormone imbalances or changes can cause hair to fall out. This is often see after pregnancy when the hormones return to normal. Another common time this type of hair thinning is noticed, is at menopause.
  • Excessive exposure to the harmful UV rays of the sun speeds up the aging process of the scalp by thickening the epidermis (the top layer of the skin) and thus increases hair thinning.
  • Infections and diseases it another cause, for example fungal infections such as ringworm.
  • Hair loss can be the result of medication, chemotherapy being the most obvious. But arthritic medication, anti depressants, heart medication and high blood pressure medication as well as steroids can all have a huge impact on the hair condition.
  • And lastly, blocked hair follicles caused by excessive sebum, sweating or over use of products can also cause hair to thin.

It is often thought that salon treatments can use hair loss but in my opinion this is not true. Salon treatments done incorrectly can use hair breakage, not hair loss.

So what do you do if you are loosing too much hair?

If necessary a trip to your local GP is recommended and have a physical examination done to find out if you have an underlying medical condition or a vitamin or mineral deficiency.

Always shampoo your hair regularly, using a good shampoo. This is especially true if you gym or exercise a lot or if you use hairsprays and other such products. There are numerous shampoos, conditioners and treatments available today that help combat hair thinning and loss. Speak to your hairstylists about a home care range that would be best suited to your hair. Eat healthy and take a good supplement. Vitamin B, iron, calcium and zinc all promote healthy hair. And be sure to get enough sleep, fresh air and exercise.

A healthy body and mind is the first step to a health head of hair.

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Using your GHD to give your hair soft and sexy curls.

If you own a GHD, giving your hair soft and sexy curls is easier than you realize.

Start with freshly shampooed and dried hair, and don’t forget to use a thermal protector to prevent damage to your hair shaft while ironing your locks in.

It is not important to blow dry your hair into a style first, but it is important that your hair is completely dry before you start to iron it.  I suggest you tip your head over, to give lift to the roots and using your hair drier, tumble dry it till it is completely dried.

Then starting from the back take a fairly large section, about a 3cm’s square. Brush that section out, so that it is clear of tangles and knots before you iron. Take your iron in which ever hand feels more comfortable and hold your ends in the other hand. Place your heated GHD over the section, as close to the roots as possible. Then use your wrist to turn the iron over once ( a 180 degree turn). Your hair in that section should now be moving though your iron in a “s” shape. Slowing and steadily move your GHD down the length of your hair  – keeping the section secure by holding the ends with your free hand. When you reach the end of the hairs’ length be sure to feed these ends though the GHD to complete the curl.

Carry on, taking similar sized sections and repeating the process though the rest of your hair until you have done all the hair. And voila! You have a head of gorgeous sexy, loose curls. Finish with a bit of silicone shine to add a silky smooth texture and a touch of hairspray for hold and you are ready to go!

The smaller your section, the tighter your curls and for looser curls or waves take bigger sections. Give added texture to your style by taking various size sections. Or leave fine sections of hair straight to create more of a messy bed head style. Your GHD can do a lot more than give you a straight smooth look. Enjoy!

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Coping with Curls

So many of us have been blessed with curls and far to many see these curls as a curse. Curly hair can be one of your best assets if you learn to embrace them and learn to love them! But first you need to understand how they work and how best to maintain your gorgeous locks.

Curly hair does not respond the same way straight hair does and thus needs to be approached differently to straight hair. Rule number one is don”t try to brush your curls out, this will only separate the curl and create a frizzy appearance. I would even go as far as saying don’t run your fingers though your curls, again you will lose the definition of the curl and end up with a frizzy un-kept look. Curls work best with as little fuss as possible.

Finding a product that best suits your curls is most likely to be the most challenging part of creating defined and controlled curls. The product you use will depend on the texture of your hair and tightness of your curls. Curl defining creams give a more natural and softer control to curls. Whereas a mousse or gel tends to give a crisper, harder and more structured look. There are a fortune of products available, and unfortunately finding the one that you prefer is a matter of trail and error. I do recommend that you stick to a salon product for styling your curls, as curly hair tends to need more moisture than straight hair and often a supermarket product will not nourish your curls sufficiently. If you absolutely cannot afford a good styling product using conditioner to control your curls works very well, although conditioner can leave the hair feeling sticky and looking flat. Because of the texture, curls reflect less light than straight hair and don’t have as much shine, so using a silicone shine spray does wonders for curly hair! Don’t go without it, it will finish off your style beautifully.

Apply your product to wet, clean hair. Concentrate the styling aid on the ends of the hair and scrunching it in. Then either allow your hair to dry naturally or diffuse your hair dry to add extra curl to your style. It’s as simple as that, remember, the less you fuss – the better. When it is dry you can create extra volume and separation to your curls, by tipping your head upside down and shaking your curls loose from the roots only. This will give your curls a soft romantic look. And for a more fashionable ethereal feel to your curls you can slightly tease of your curls with a wide tooth comb.

Enjoy your curls, yes, you might not look like every other girl in town. But why would you want too – you were born to stand out!

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How to create a fashionable fishtail braid

Creating your own fishtail braid is easy once you know how!

First you need to decide where you want to start the fishtail braid from, traditionally a braid is done from the nape of the neck but for a more fashionable look try starting your braid from the side so that it falls over one of your shoulders. You could also start your braid from the parting coming down along the hairline either on one side or on both. Play around and experiment with different ideas. Express your individuality in your fishtail braid style!

Then divide the hair you want to braid into two equal sections.
Begin your fishtail braid by holding one section with that same side hand. Then, using your other hand, pick up a small section of hair from the outside of that hand’s section and cross it over to the inside and add it to the section you are holding.
Now hold the section you have just taken a piece of hair from with the same side hand and repeat what you just did to the other side, taking a slice of hair from the outside, cross it over and again add it to the inside section of hair you are holding. Carry on picking up small sections and crossing them over, until you reach the end of your hairs’ length.

Fishtail braids tend to look better with taking finer sections, it adds more texture to the final braid.  You don’t need to make the braid too tight and don’t be too concerned if bits fall out of the braid along the way. A more fashionable fishtail braid is created with a messy bedhead look.

When you reach the end of the hairs’ length, secure with an elastic.

To finish your braid off, you can pull the braid slightly looser and give it a slight teased effect.

Don’t get despondent if you don’t get your braid perfect the first time. Remember, practice makes perfect.

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