Three ‘Hair Care’ Myths You Need to Avoid
The Internet is honestly great for many things. I can do so many things from the comfort of my home; order my favourite mac and cheese, book a trip to Paris, fuel my debilitating shopping ‘passion’ (yes, let’s stick with calling it that), and now a more recent addition to the list, watch compilations of beauty hacks on Tiktok for hours on end. If you’re new to the Tiktok scene, or just don’t know what a hack is, then to put it simply, it’s a way of getting a familiar result for something, but in a more easy or accessible way. For example, if you ran out of cream blush in a pinch, you can just use a blush coloured lipstick as a substitute instead of having to go out and buy a new one!
In theory, this sounds good. Everybody likes a shortcut to being beautiful, right? But in actuality, it can be a bit more complicated than that. Sometimes you can find absolute gold in these Tiktoks and some methods are actually useful and can be good tips to keep handy for when you need them. Translating the idea of a beauty hack into reality, however, can leave a lot to be desired, and that’s mostly because sometimes the users posting these hacks are doing it for a multitude of reasons, like getting more views, having more people engage with their content or reaching the post quota they set for themselves. Whatever reason they may have, the bottom line is that they post ‘hacks’ which, in the best case, just do not work but on the flip side can actually be dangerous to your wellbeing.
A lot of hacks these days revolve around hair, like hair-care, styling, cutting; if you can think of remotely anything belonging to the realm of hair, theres probably a hack out there for it. Many of these hacks fall flat from expectations though, and one major reason for this happening is because they are based on assumptions about how hair works that are simply not true.
The three most far-reaching questions based on the myths that I’ve found being referred to in these bogus hacks have been:
Does hair grow faster if you cut it?
Can I repair split ends with hair products?
If I pluck out a grey hair, will two more grow in its place?
Read on and let’s debunk these myths together as well as discuss actual solutions and methods to properly deal with these questions.
1. Hair grows faster if you cut it
While a regular visit to the salon for a hair trim is recommended, it’s not for the reasons that these hacks claim. If you think about it logically, it makes sense; hair growth is attributed to your hair follicle, not the ends of your hair. There are many different factors that influence hair growth like genetics, age, health and diet, but there haven’t been reports of any kind of correlation found between cutting the ends of hair and its rate of growth. That’s because the magic condition to make hair grow faster is not a trim, but how healthy your hair is.
Now, the question lies in how can you promote better hair health. The answer is two-fold. From an external perspective, you can use treatment products to repair any damage, but healthy hair also comes from proper internal nourishment. Directing a higher volume of blood flow to the scalp by getting a nice scalp massage is a great way to increase your chances of growing longer tresses. It’s also a very good idea to look at your diet and incorporate foods like eggs, fatty fish, avocados and berries, that are rich in nutrients which promote hair growth.
That being said, while it is good to know that cutting the ends of your hair is not what makes it grow faster, it is also good practice to book a regular trim, around once every six weeks. Although it may not be a miracle worker for hair growth, it does remove split ends which is essential for reducing damage and stopping breakage. This point is actually a really great segue into the next myth we will be debunking, so keep reading for more information.
2. You can repair split ends with hair products.
If you don’t know what split ends are, take a look at the ends of your hair before you schedule an appointment for a long overdue trim. Chances are, you will see that the ends of some strands of hair are frayed and has splintered into two or more fibres.
Once you get a split end, hair is prone to breaking off, which seemingly slows down its growth. ‘Seemingly’, because while the actual rate of growth is not slowed, the overall growth seems slower because of the loss of a significant portion of hair that will now take time to grow back to the length that it was at before the breakage occurred.
To put it bluntly, split ends are irreparable. This means that once you have split ends, the only way to protect your hair from further damage is to cut them off. No miracle product or hair care ‘serum’ can glue your split ends back together and keep them together. This is where the regular trim that I was talking about in the previous section comes into the picture. So don’t let the debunking of these myths stop you from scheduling your next trim at Essa Beauty!
3. If you pluck out a grey hair, two more will grow in its place.
This one’s my favourite because it’s just so absurd and more idealistic than the previous two. Take a second to just imagine a world where you don’t go beyond getting that first grey, simply because you resisted the temptation to pull it out! Now if that seems illogical to you, you would be surprised to know that a lot of people do retain faith in this myth and strictly avoid plucking greys.
This one’s completely untrue of course, but let’s get into exactly why that is. As I mentioned earlier, hair growth is caused by the hair follicles that sit below your skin and work to produce hair. When you pull out a grey hair, it is removed and the live follicle underneath simply grows a new one to take its place. Plucking out one hair doesn’t affect other strands of hair because what happens to a single follicle is not mirrored across its counterparts that are spread out over your entire scalp.
But that doesn’t mean you should whip out your tweezers and start the hunt. Plucking out hairs is discouraged because not only is it painful for no good reason, doing it over a long period of time may cause damage to the hair follicle and slow down hair growth or even stop growth in that particular spot.
Alternatively, there are two more effective remedies that you can consider if you are coming across more grey hairs than normal, both of which sound more appealing to me than plucking them out.
The first is to embrace it. While this may seem like not much of a fix-it at all, that’s because there might not be anything at all to fix in this situation. Having grey hair is just a symbol that you are a living, breathing person whose body performs certain functions, as does anybody else’s. Rocking the salt and pepper look with confidence can do wonders to how people perceive you, so go for it!
The second is for those who think having grey hair really cramps their style, and that is of course to get it dyed. It is recommended to not DIY this particular art project though, because the goal is for you to boost your perception of yourself and I would imagine that damaged hair can’t do much to help there. The sad truth is that dyeing is definitely going to damage your hair on some level, but by getting it done somewhere professionally, like the colouring services offered by highly qualified hairstylists at Essa Beauty, you can minimise the risk for long-term damage.
The fun part about dyeing your hair though, is that you can totally go wild with it. You can definitely maintain your natural hair colour without those pesky greys, but you could also seize the opportunity to try out some bold, unique colours.
To sum it up, a trim doesn't magically make your hair grow, plucking your grey hairs is not going to make them multiply in Hydra-esque fashion and, to take it from Taylor Swift, your split ends are never ever ever ever getting back together.