There’s no magic to achieving shiny hair. All you need to do is hydrate, condition and cleanse. And use the right products for your hair texture.
HOW DO I MAKE MY HAIR SHINY?
- Condition your hair after every shampoo. Shiny hair is hair that reflects light. You may have noticed that smooth surfaces are shinier and reflect light better than uneven surfaces. Well, this is true of hair surfaces too. It is why you use a hair conditioner. Conditioners immediately smooth your hair cuticle (the outermost layer) and allow light to easily bounce off of it.
- Conditioner gets rid of tangles, so you are less likely to pull, damage and break your hair.
- Conditioner helps to close (or smooth) your hair cuticle, so that the inner cortex is better protected and less likely to lose excess moisture.
HYDRATE YOUR HAIR
- Hydrate your hair with an intensive pre-shampoo moisturizing treatment once a week. Moisturized hair has an intact, smooth and shiny cuticle while dry hair usually has a damaged, rough and dull cuticle.
- Hydrated hair is elastic and does not break as easily. Lots of broken hairs can give you the appearance of dull and frizzy hair and hair that’s all different lengths tends to stick out in odd places.
- Wash your hair daily. Contrary to popular belief, shampoo does not dry your hair - it moisturizes it. This is because water is your hair’s best hydrator. And the correct shampoo draws water into your hair and cleanses at the same time.
CLEANSE YOUR HAIR DAILY
- Shampoo your hair daily. Clean hair reflects light better than dirty hair as dirty hair is covered in dust particles. Look at how much grease and oil can be wiped off of your face when you cleanse at night. The same applies to your hair.
USE THE RIGHT PRODUCTS
- Use the correct shampoos and conditioners for your hair texture. Your shampoo should always be based on your hair texture, while your conditioner should take your hair length and level of processing into account. If your hair is long and processed, it will need a stronger conditioner.
- Use the right styling products for your hair texture. Oil-based, heavy serums can make fine hair appear dull and dirty. And lighter products won’t be smoothing enough for coarse hair.
- Look for products that contain ‘glossers’ and/or ‘laminates’. These give lustre, gloss and brightness to your hair. These include the silicone derivatives - ‘methicones’ – like phenyl trimethicone.
USE YOUR PRODUCTS CORRECTLY
- The most common cause of dull hair is insufficient rinsing of shampoo. If you think you’ve rinsed enough, rinse again. Rinse until the water runs clear and there are no bubbles forming at the bottom of your shower.
- Apply conditioner to your mid-lengths and ends. Applying condition to your roots can make your hair look dull and flat.
- Do not overload your hair with styling products. You only need enough to smooth and set your style. Too much makes your hair look greasy and drab.
- Silicones can give wonderful shine, but only when used in small amounts. A product with too much silicone can give you ‘silicone burn’ which causes an unpleasant brittleness and dullness of the hair. Make sure silicone is not in the first four ingredients listed on your shampoo, or in the first two listed in your styling products.
LOOK AFTER YOUR ENDS
- Hair that has eneven or messy ends can look dull even when cleansed and conditioned. Again, it’s due to poor light reflection. When you blow dry, do so gently and avoid high heat. Use a light conditioning styling aid and a heat protective spray or serum to help keep your ends smooth and protected.
- If you have split ends, smooth a styler over them when your hair is dried. This will temporarily camouflage them. However, it’s best to snip split ends off. There’s no cure for split ends and they can break all the way up your hair shaft if left for too long.
TOWEL DRY GENTLY
- While conditioners smooth your hair cuticle, rubbing your hair vigorously with a towel afterwards will roughen and raise them again. Squeeze excess moisture out gently to avoid damaging your hair.