5 Hair Health Myths Hair Experts Want You to Ignore

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In the age of TikTok, it’s almost impossible to go a full day without seeing some iteration of a beauty hack, trend or DIY phenomena, especially when it comes to hair. With that comes a lot of discourse about what constitutes “healthy” hair, what you should be doing for certain hair concerns, and other such conversations that aren’t always rooted in truth. (Let’s be honest, many of us have tried pouring lemon juice in our hair in attempts to lighten it amongst endless other harmful hair “hacks.”)

With all the information and opinions circulating about hair health and maintenance today, it can be hard to decipher what’s true. Curious about which social media hair myths you should be staying away from? Ahead, expert hairstylists and hair-care aficionados reveal the five hair myths they want you to ignore.

Hair Myths: 5 Ideas You Should Unlearn

Myth: Sweaty Hair is Dirty Hair

“One of the biggest hair myths I wish people would ignore is that sweat is dirt,” begins creative director of Paul Labrecque Salon and Skincare Spa, master stylist and colorist Paul Labrecque. “Sweat is only water. It comes from the head’s pores for a variety of reasons like humidity or working out. Often times, in the summer especially, you can have freshly washed hair, go outside on a humid day and, voila, you’re sweating. When this happens, it does not mean you run back home to re-shampoo. Instead, you should get into a place with cool air and dry off.”

Myth: You Shouldn’t Shampoo Your Hair If It’s Feeling Dry

“Even if you have dry ends and strands, your scalp will still remain active and produce oil,” Labrecque explains. “Make sure you continue to shampoo instead of layering on dry shampoo, as your hair still needs to be cleaned and, oftentimes, dry shampoo can be toxic. A simple shampoo when your scalp hair begins to split is necessary, and a great conditioner on your ends will reduce your dryness, helping to keep your hair its healthiest. Wash your dry ends at least once a week, concentrating the massage of the shampoo on your scalp where you’ll find natural oils.”

Myth: Wearing Hats Can Cause Hair Loss

“One hair myth that I commonly hear in my practice involves hair loss associated with the use of hats,” begins Wayne, NJ facial plastic surgeon and hair restoration specialist Jeffrey Wise, MD. “Wearing something like a baseball cap over time does not increase the rate of balding in men and women,” he explains. “One ‘myth’ that actually is true is that of a condition known as traction alopecia, whereby repeated use of certain hairstyles can cause pulling of the hair follicle and eventually lead to hair follicular death. The most common hairstyles that cause traction alopecia are very tight buns, or very tight braids that will contribute to this traction effect. If identified early, the hair can regrow if the hairstyles are modified. We perform hair transplants to treat advanced traction alopecia at the Wise Institute for Hair Restoration.”

Myth: Finding Flakes In Your Hair Means You Have Dandruff

“So many times, I hear clients say things like ‘My head is flaky—I am diseased!’ This is simply false,” Labrecque assures. “While flakes on the scalp can indicate dandruff or other scalp conditions, you’ll more than likely see and find flakes when you’re not properly rinsing your hair, or if you perspire a lot and that moisture is sitting on your scalp and strands. Don’t fret: Drying your head after sweating and a good, thorough rinse is the best cure for flakes.”

Myth: A Flat Iron Is The Only Way To Straighten Hair

I’ll be honest, even as someone well-versed in the beauty world, this one surprised me! “The more you iron, the more you’ll really NEED to iron for straight strands because you begin to burn your hair and/or pull too hard, which causes your hair to fray,” Labrecque reveals. “Straightening with a high-quality boar bristle brush while using a hairdryer at a moderate temperature is a much better option for straightening strands while causing as little damage as possible. A good boar bristle hairbrush helps bring your own natural sebaceous oils down through the entire hair shaft, keeping your strands as healthy and smooth-looking as possible.”

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