Having healthy hair starts with having a healthy scalp. A clean and healthy scalp is important. A healthy scalp will strengthen your hair follicles and help your hair grow better. If your scalp is not healthy then you can experience some problems with your hair; like hair loss, excess oil, scalp acne, hair thinning and dry hair.
What does a healthy scalp look like? It looks translucent on our scalp skin. The healthy scalp skin is not too oily and not too dry, no flaking.
Our scalp is skin, like the rest of the skin on our bodies. A healthy balanced scalp has a pH balance level of 4.5 – 5.5. It is important to keep the pH levels of you scalp skin balanced to prevent problems. You want your scalp skin to be more acidic. If your scalp pH level is too alkaline it will dry out your hair faster because it opens your cuticles. Having a balanced pH scalp can help with controlling bacteria growth and fungus growth that leads to dandruff problems. Also, our pores and hair follicles on our scalp can get clogged with excess oil, hair products and dead skin cells. When the pores on the scalp and hair follicles get clogged then bacteria and fungus can grow, which cause dandruff, scalp irritation and scalp issues. For these reasons, it is important to maintain a healthy scalp.
The sebaceous glands produce sebum (an oil or waxy substance our bodies produces). Sebum moisturizes our hair. If we have too much sebum or oil production, the hair follicles will get clogged. Too much sebum leads to growth of fungus or yeast that causes dandruff. A build up of sebum can contribute to hair loss. Hair becomes dry when we do not have enough sebum on our scalp. A dry scalp is when skin gets dry, flakes off and can feel itchy and irritated. A dry scalp can have some of the same symptoms of dandruff.
Many different things can cause damage to your scalp. Be careful how you treat your scalp. The UV rays from the sun can burn your scalp. Use hair products with a SPF 30 or higher. Wear a hat to protect your scalp from getting sunburn. Chemical hair treatments; bleaching your hair and perms are too harsh for your scalp.
Cleanse your scalp by shampooing the dirt, bacteria, sweat and excess oil from the scalp skin. It is recommended to wash your hair two to three times a week. Clarifying shampoos clean your scalp skin, remove buildup, chemicals, mineral deposits and chlorine from your hair but clarifying shampoos do not strip your scalp from moisture. It is recommended to use a clarifying shampoo once or twice a week. Avoid using hot water.
Hot water removes moisture from your hair, which can cause dehydration to your hair and scalp. Hot water dries out your scalp and weaken the hair. It is better to use lukewarm or cool water when cleansing your scalp and hair. Cool water locks in the moisture in the hair and hydrates the scalp.
Healthy scalp and hair needs to be exfoliated just like the rest of the skin on our body needs exfoliating. Exfoliating helps less excess oil buildup and helps with hair growth. If you do not exfoliate it can cause many problems; your hair can become dull looking, your hair follicles can get clogged up with dead skin cells and the scalp can become irritated, itchy and flaky. To exfoliate your scalp you can buy a scalp scrub or an exfoliating scalp brush to remove buildup.
The scalp and hair needs moisture. You need to prevent the scalp and hair from becoming dehydrated. There are hair serums, hair conditioners and hair oils that moisturize the scalp and hair. The scalp and hair needs to be treated just like your face and body by using serums and moisturizers to prevent dryness and dehydration.
Scalp massages help improve your scalp and promote hair growth. Massaging your scalp is relaxing and helps to relieve stress. Stress causes our bodies to release a hormone called cortisol. High cortisol levels interferes with the function of hair growth; the adrenal glands produce less hormones which develop hair growth, the hair follicles get weaker and shed hair.
Maintaining a healthy scalp is essential for healthy hair. Healthy hair is not dull, brittle, damaged or dry. When your hair is healthy it is moisturized, ends are not tangled or split, the hair feels soft and looks shiny. Healthy hair glows.
Balance your scalp. A clean, healthy scalp equals healthier hair.