Maintain a Healthy Diet
This healthy hair habit might seem like it has nothing to do with your actual hair: a balanced diet. "Protein is the building block of hair, because hair is keratinized protein," Pullan says. Hair is considered a non-essential tissue, so the body doesn’t send protein to hair follicles first—it focuses on essential organs, like the heart or liver—but if you’re eating enough, the body will be able to distribute protein everywhere it’s needed. Another crucial nutrient is iron. "It’s an energy source for the hair," Pullan says. "It’s a mineral the hair needs." In fact, studies have shown iron deficiency has been linked to female patterned hair loss.
Go Natural as Often as You Can
Your hair needs a rest from everything it endures during the week. Lindsey Bordone, a dermatologist at Columbia University Medical Center in New York, recommends using the weekend to let your hair recuperate. If possible, let your hair air-dry, avoid heated styling products, and keep it out of a ponytail or tight headband to avoid any unnecessary pulling on the hair shaft. In other words, sometimes you just have to let your hair chill a little.
“The sun oxidizes your hair and dries it out,” Pullan says. So while a hat protects your face from the sun, it also protects your scalp from burning and hair from dehydrating. This is as good an excuse as any to treat yourself to a cute sun hat.