Magazine / Beauty / Hair Care

Six Common Hair Myths Uncovered

MD Alexandra Dorobantu
Dermatologist
On Apr 5th, 2021

A dermatologist addresses six of the most common hair myths. Learn to identify when something is false before you put your hair through unnecessary stress and damage.

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As part of the Hair Routine mini-series, we looked at the essential steps in choosing your shampoo, conditioner, and mask according to your hair and scalp needs. With an abundance of tips and tricks available on the internet about getting Rapunzel locks, one must be careful about implementing them, as some can cause damage to your hair. We've compiled a list of six popular hair theories to debunk, so get ready because it's time to get some facts straight.

Myth 1: Washing Your Hair Every Day Will Keep It Healthier

This myth has been around for ages, and we usually follow it without asking questions. As a dermatologist, I can assure you it is false. How often you need to wash your hair depends entirely on your hair type and any scalp condition you may have. Washing your hair too frequently will dry it out, causing breakage and split ends. As time goes by, it can make your hair look dull and lifeless.

Avoid washing your hair daily, even if you have an oily scalp. See a dermatologist that will do a trichology test to know more about your scalp special requirements. A professional will recommend a personalised treatment and specific hair products to address your concerns. Check our previous article about scalp types and shampoo choices.

Myth 2: Trimming Split Ends Will Make Your Hair Grow Faster

This hair myth is challenging because it is partially true. We've always heard that getting frequent haircuts helps your hair grow faster. Cutting your split ends does not influence the hair growth rate, but it makes it look fuller and smoother. 

We already know that hairs grow from the follicles in our scalp, and no matter how much we cut it, it will grow about a quarter-inch every month. Cutting the hair does not speed up its development, but it does prevent it from falling off at the ends. As a result, the strands will continue to grow at their usual pace. Also, if you go to regular haircuts, your locks will grow longer and healthier. So, it's time to visit your hairstylist.

Myth 3: Avoid Conditioner and Hair Oils If You Have Oily Hair

Conditioning your hair does not produce extra sebum. Conditioners provide moisture, nourishment, and protection, all good stuff regardless of hair type. Our Hair Routine mini-series has a dedicated article on hair conditioners and masks and how each should be applied. Apply your conditioner only to the length of your hair.

It's not true that you can't apply oil if you already have an oily scalp. To help you out with this myth, we suggest using oil on your scalp the right way. Start by finding the perfect product for you, massage it gently and leave it for about 20-30 minutes. After that, rinse with lukewarm water and continue with your washing ritual. If you are using a styling oil, apply a small amount of product only to your ends.

Myth 4: Co-Washing Is the Answer for Curly Hair

I don't know if you heard about it, but co-washing is a massive trend among curly-haired people. The idea is to wash your hair with a conditioner only. This is a myth, and the information is false!

The conditioner helps provide nourishment and instant hydration for your locks but does not have any attributes in cleansing the sweat, dirt, excess sebum, other debris, and impurities. Regardless of your hair type, you still need to wash your scalp and stands. So, choose the right shampoo for your scalp and a conditioner or mask for detangling. Just do your research beyond social media trends.

Myth 5: Stress Will Turn Your Hair Grey

I think it's something we've all heard at some point in our life. It's not clear when this misconception originated, but it has been a widely accepted reality. It is unquestionably false. When you get older, your hair starts to lose melanin, the pigment which gives your skin, hair, and eyes their colour and turns grey. It happens due to genetics or certain medications. And before you ask, yes, it can happen to men in their 30s too. 

While stress will not lead to your hair turning grey, it's important to mention that stress plays an essential role in our hair's health. Stress can make your hair thinner and weaker, causing it to fall at about three times faster than average. A healthy diet, proper sleep and hydration will improve your overall well-being.

Myth 6: Brushing Your Hair 100 Strokes a Day Is Essential

This myth you have probably heard from your grandma or read in old fashion magazines. It is 100% false. There is no truth to this myth; in fact, it is ill-advised to comb your hair that much. Repeated brushing is unnecessary and can destroy your hair. It also promotes hair loss in people with fine hair. Brushing is necessary to spread oils from the scalp across the strands, keeping them moisturised. However, it can be done softly, once or twice a day, if necessary.

So, keep in mind "if you've heard it a million times doesn't mean it's true". Whenever in doubt, ask a professional. Learn how to choose a shampoo based on your scalp type and hair type from the previous articles of the Hair Routine mini-series. Use #DHHairRoutine on social media for more tips and products that will improve your routine.

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