10 Secrets for Gorgeous Hair

If your hair looks good, you feel good. And when you suffer through a bad hair day, it can even take a toll on your mood.

That is why we spend so much time and money shampooing, conditioning, blow-drying, coloring, curling or straightening and styling our hair.

Your hair care routine may have just gotten a little easier, thanks to WebMD, which has revealed the top 10 secrets for gorgeous and healthy hair.

1. Shampoo using lukewarm water to keep hair shiny.
The protective oil in your hair that not only acts as a natural conditioner and gives it shine, can be stripped away by hot water. Shower in lukewarm water when you wash your hair.

2. Mend split ends with protein.
Split ends are caused by frequent hair styling, coloring, bleaching, or perming, but they can be repaired with conditioners that contain protein. The fix is temporary so you need to use it every time you shampoo.

3. Brush your hair less to limit hair loss.
Your grandmother's admonition to brush your hair 100 strokes a day is wrong! Excessive brushing will actually damage it by snapping off hairs. Some hair loss is normal, but to minimize undue hair loss, use a brush with ball-tipped bristles. Never brush your hair when it's wet.

4. Avoid styles that can damage your hair.
Tight ponytails and braids may look cute, but they can break off hair and damage the hair follicle. The continuous pulling can even lead to hair loss. Wet hair is more fragile than dry hair, so never put your hair in a ponytail or braids when it's wet.

5. If you're dyeing gray hair, be gentle.
If you're coloring your hair to cover gray, choose a gentle brand of dye. As we age, our hair not only loses its natural color, but also becomes weaker and grows more slowly. So if you damage your hair with harsh chemicals, it will take longer for it to grow out.

6. Avoid extreme color changes.
If you're a brunette who wants to go blonde or a blonde who wants to be a redhead, be aware that extreme color changes can damage your hair. A good recommendation is to stay within three shades of your natural color.

7. Blow-dry your hair on the cool setting.
Frequent blow-drying can actually lead to hair loss, but if you don't have time to let your hair air dry, use the blow-dryer on a cool setting. Always use a conditioner before blow-drying.

8. Don't use oil to treat dandruff.
While it may seem that your dandruff is caused by your dry scalp, it's not. Dandruff is caused by an inflammatory process that affects the scalp, and rubbing oil onto your scalp can actually make that inflammation worse! Use a medicated shampoo made for dandruff.

9. Get bounce!
The fullness of your hair is determined by two things: your genes and your styling technique. Enhance your hair's volume with a leave-in conditioner or mousse.

10. Your hair reflects what you eat.
The protein and omega-3 fatty acids in salmon and nuts will create a healthier scalp, while nutrients in leafy vegetables, beans and carrots are good for your hair.

--From the Editors at Netscape

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