How to know what your hair needs

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A common mistake a lot of women make is use and do things to their hair simply because they saw someone do or use it without knowing why. At every stage of your hair journey, your hair needs something, For some, it is simply regular hair moisture or choice of hair products, for some others, it’s consistent treatment, and for others, it is constant protective styling.

The regimen and needs of someone whose hair is recovering from chemical damage and that of a person dealing with dandruff are different. Also, even for healthy hair, with short hair, getting more length might be the goal while with long hair, moisture and length retention would be the goal. So, for every regimen and product you use, you need to know your “why”?

For example, you might be using a certain treatment constantly because you saw someone use it whereas what your hair needs the most at that point is Oil to seal and retain moisture.

Natural Hair Needs
Finger Coils done at TasalaHQ Saalon

So how do you determine what your hair needs the most?

Determining what your hair needs is often not a one-minute decision, in most cases, it takes time with careful observations to determine. There are a couple of tests that are also very relevant such as Hair porosity, Hair moisture, Hair elasticity, etc.

Hair Porosity

Essentially, Porosity is how your hair can retain and absorb moisture. There are three categories of hair Porosity: Low, Normal, and High. High porosity hair means your hair takes in moisture just as easily as it lets go of it. Low porosity means your hair has a difficult time taking in moisture.

How to Test for Hair Porosity: The Water Test

Another way to check your hair porosity is to drop a strand of hair into a glass of water. If it floats, your hair is low porosity. If your hair sinks slowly, it has normal porosity, and if it sinks immediately, your hair is high porosity. This test is best done immediately after washing your hair.

Hair Porosity Test
Hair Porosity Test

This method is not a foolproof method as each hair is different and factors like hair’s natural ability to absorb water, layers of the hair cuticles, individual texture and curl pattern can to a large extent influence the result of the water test. The best way to test for hair porosity is to have your hair examined by a professional stylist who understands various natural hair textures. Visit the TasalaHQ Salon to have your hair examined by an associate stylist or Book a consultation session with our head stylist.

Now having known how to test and check for your hair porosity, whatever results you get should guide you on the regimen and products you use. Learn how to take care of high porosity hair and learn how to take care of low porosity hair.

Hair Moisture

Thanks to sebaceous (oil) glands in your scalp that release sebum, your body naturally moisturizes your hair. The sebum makes its way from the scalp to lubricate the rest of your hair strands however this natural moisturizing system is not always enough. You might have underactive oil glands due to genetics or age. Your hair type and length can also disrupt sebum from reaching your hair in a timely manner. Overwashing, over-styling, and treatments can also lead to dry hair. Hence, how well your hair is moisturized can to a large extent determine the kind of products you use.

Know that
  • Water = Moisture! Your moisturizing routine should always involve water.
  • You must seal the moisture! Applying water or any moisturizing product to your hair is great, it’s perfect. But if you don’t follow that up with an oil or butter to seal in that moisture and lock it into place, it will leave, and your hair will be just as dry.
  • Properly moisturizing your hair means knowing and understanding your hair’s porosity – the hair’s ability to absorb and retain moisture.

Hair Elasticity

Hair elasticity is simply how long a single strand of hair can stretch before it returns to its normal state. How your hair reacts to being stretched can help determine your hair regimen and choice of product.

In order to find out what the elasticity of your hair is, wet a strand of hair and stretch it as much as you can.
  • If it doesn’t stretch or if it breaks, feels dry and rough, it is brittle/damaged and needs moisture treatment.
  • If the hair stretches far and does not return or it breaks, your hair needs protein. 
  • However, If your hair stretches a bit, then returns to its normal state, your protein and moisture are balanced.

Colour treatments like bleaching and texturizing can impact your hair’s natural stretch as well. Restoring your hair’s elasticity is all about getting moisture into the hair’s core and locking it in with a sealed cuticle. A simple way to do that is to

Hair breaks and Split ends

Another thing to keep in mind is how often your hair breaks and how many split ends you have, Unfortunately, you can’t treat or repair split ends. So once the ends of your hair start splitting, the only way to get rid of them is to trim them off. Book a Hair Trim Appointment at TasalaHQ Salon to have your trimmed by a professional stylist.

Split Ends Trim
Split ends trimmed at TasalaHQ Salon

Note that hair breakage and shedding may seem the same, but they are actually different. Shedding is a natural part of your hair cycle. You’re supposed to lose hair daily. Breakage, on the other hand, happens when the actual strand shreds. Most times, you won’t notice full hairs on the ground but instead little pieces of hair.

There are hair regimens and care products that prevent breakage. Most of them help rebuild the hair from the inside out, whether that’s by adding moisture or replenishing certain proteins that may be making it weak. Products tagged as repairing or strengthening or anti-breakage can do just that. Another fix for hair breakage is to pump moisture back into it with a hair mask or deep conditioning treatment.

If after all these, you still require more clarity, you can book a one-on-one consultation session with the founder and CEO of TasalaHQ, Dupe Tasala Talabi to figure out your hair needs.

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Did you learn something new or have further questions? Leave us a comment below.

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