In order to have healthy locks that are free of hair breakage, conditioner is your number one pal according to Pantene’s Toronto-based consulting stylist, Justin German. “If you’re protecting your hair and using a conditioning system on the regular, it’s going to keep your hair more healthy from root to tip as the hair ages,” he says.
When it comes to breakage, it’s obvious we want a long-term fix (and, yes, regular trims will help), but a conditioning system is key in aiding prevention. In order to lock in that moisture as much as possible, German suggests diving into Pantene’s 3-Minute Miracle family.
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We’re all guilty of doing it — leaving the house with our hair still damp or soaking wet. But winter is the time of the year when your hair is actually at its most vulnerable due to chilly temperatures. “If your hair starts to freeze, it’s going to be that much more susceptible to breaking or snapping,” says German.
If your mornings are hectic and you don’t have time to dry your hair completely, refrain from tying your hair back in a tight ponytail or letting it blow freely in the drying wind. Instead, try a loose hairstyle that will not only give you a cute natural hairdo but also protect your hair from breakage at the same time. Just remember, the looser and messier your style the better.
First off, take a small amount of BB crème for hair and apply to damp locks to gather any flyaways. This will help set your style. “Bringing your hair over to one side and splitting it into three, do a really loose braid,” he says. “The tighter the braid the tighter the waves are going to be, so focus on looseness so you don’t have any tension.” This way, by the time you get to work and pull your hair out, you’ll have soft waves. Plus, this will help you refrain from grabbing a hot styling tool, which can further damage your mane.
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Using your blow dryer, straightener or curler may seem like the fastest way to get cute hair, but have you ever thought about the changes you could make to your hair-care routine to help you cut back on heat altogether?
German says that if your hair takes forever to dry, chances are that it is holding onto excess water. “By conditioning your hair on a regular basis, you’re going to have healthier hair, which will help get rid of that excess water faster and cut down on drying time,” he says. “So, in fact, it’s going to cut down on your heat styling, and your hair will be less susceptible to heat damage.”
There are products you can apply topically as well that you should aways have in your arsenal at home to prevent hair breakage. German’s go-to products are Pantene’s BB crème and leave-in detangling spray. “Think of your leave-in like the moisturizer you put on before makeup.” It will set up your hair for its best results if blowdrying.
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If you’re going to tie your hair back, a good hair elastic is a must. German recommends a coiled band or a hair bungee to save your hair from the damage that most elastics can cause. But tying your hair up in the same spot all the time can also be a damaging factor because it puts strain on that part of your locks. Move it around from time to time to spread the love (and avoid causing major breakage).
And according to German, the key thing when it comes to protecting your precious tresses from snapping is to avoid styling a wet pony. “When you pull your hair back when it’s wet, your hair has no room to move,” he says. “If the hair wants to contract, which it will because your hair stretches when it’s wet, this will cause your hair to break in certain spots.”
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Of course you’re going to want to brush the tangles out of your hair— but what should you be using to cut down on damage? A wide-tooth comb, which is the perfect tool for gently removing unwanted tangles. German also recommends avoiding a traditional brush on wet hair because it will pull and snap the hair. “There are now tools like The Wet Brush that we use; its teeth are situated more like a comb,” he says.
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