Dull No More: 5 At-Home Treatments for Shiny Hair
The silky, shiny hair you see in shampoo commercials and magazine ads sets a high bar, but the right lighting, oodles of styling products, and Photoshop will always achieve that impossible gleam. That's not to say that you can't buff up the shine of your own crowning glory, though. Here, we'll look at why dull hair happens and impart you with five easy, inexpensive, at-home treatments for shiny, glimmering hair.
Why Your Hair is Dull
Dull, lifeless hair is the bane of many an existence, and it can have a number of causes. Addressing those causes is the best way to improve the natural shine of your hair.
Nutritional deficiencies. Zinc, vitamin B, protein, omega-3, and vitamin C deficiencies, among others, can take the shine out of your hair.
Cheap hair products. Cheap hair products contain chemicals and alcohols that can build up on the hair and dry it out, causing it to look dull and lifeless.
Overexposure to the sun. Excessive sun exposure can affect the protective barrier of natural oils that make your hair shiny, and it draws moisture from the hair cells, leaving it looking dry, course, or frizzy.
Frequent dyeing. Hair dye contains ultra-harsh chemicals that can strip your hair of its healthy shine.
High mineral content in your water. Minerals in the water can build up on your hair, affecting its luster.
Age. As we age, our hair becomes drier, more brittle, and thinner, but a little extra TLC can help restore health and shine.
Even if you can't change any of these factors, there's still plenty you can do at home for gorgeous, shiny hair.
At-Home Treatments for Gloriously Shiny Hair
Look no further than the kitchen to restore glossy shine to your locks. Try one of these better-than-store-bought treatments at home.
- A cold-water rinse. Heat and moisture affect the shape of the hair shaft, and heat makes the shaft swell and the cuticle open. This causes your hair to reflect less light, leaving it looking dull. One of the best ways to restore shine to your hair is to always, always give it a cold-water rinse before getting out of the shower. Just pop your head under the shower, turn the water to cold, and saturate it. This will help the shaft contract and close the cuticle so that it reflects light more readily.
- An egg mask. Eggs are a good source of protein, fatty acids, and other nutrients that can help repair damaged hair. Mix an egg white with a tablespoon each of honey and olive oil. Apply the mixture to your damp hair and scalp, and cover it with a shower cap for a half hour. Shampoo your hair, and rinse.
- A beer rinse. Beer is packed with protein that can help repair damaged cuticles and nourish your tresses. First, wash your hair, and apply flat beer from the roots on down. Massage the beer into your hair and scalp, and let it sit for five or ten minutes before rinsing thoroughly.
- Apple cider vinegar. ACV is an excellent conditioner that helps remove built-up residue left by hair products. It can also help treat dandruff and frizz. Mix together equal parts water and apple cider vinegar. After you shampoo, apply the mixture to your hair, and massage it into your scalp. Let it sit for a few minutes, then rinse thoroughly.
- An avocado mask. Avocados are rife with nutrients that'll moisturize the heck out of your hair. They're particularly good for dry, damaged hair. Make a paste from a whole avocado and two tablespoons of olive oil. Apply the paste to your damp hair, cover with a shower cap, and let it sit for a half hour. Rinse, then shampoo your hair as usual.
For the healthiest, shiniest possible hair, eat a healthy diet, stay well-hydrated, and use high-quality shampoo, conditioner, and styling products. Keep your hair clean and trimmed, and treat it at home weekly for the best results.