Dry Hair: Causes, Symptoms and Home Remedies

Dry hair lacks luster and often looks unhealthy. In addition to looking drab and unhealthy, dry hair can lead to hair loss and dandruff. Many people with dry hair also experience excessive breakage and flyaway hairs, which can be unruly at times. These factors make it difficult to achieve a sleek and sophisticated hairstyle. This is why it is imperative to enact a treatment to hydrate the hair so that it becomes healthy, shiny and more manageable.

Taking good care of your hair, eating a healthy diet, using quality hair care products meant for your hair type and using some over-the-counter conditioners can prevent it from drying out. Plus, there are many simple dry hair remedies that can help you get rid of dry hair and restore its health and shine.

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What is Dry Hair?

Hair, which does not have enough moisture to maintain normal texture and shine, is called dry hair.

Hair is made up of three layers. The outer layer is meant to protect inner layers. When the outer layer is damaged, it causes dry and dull hair. Hair follicles are connected to sebaceous glands, which discharge oil onto hair shaft. People having dry skin may have a problem of dry hair. Hair becomes dry when natural oil from hair is removed during activities like swimming in chlorinated water, sunbathing, overuse of hair dryers, and other styling products. Women and men of any age can develop the problem of dry hair.

Causes of Dry Hair

Dry hair is very hard to comb. They appear like brittle or straw. There are various causes which makes hair dry and unhealthy. Some of the causes of dry hair is listed below.

  • Excessive washing of hair with harsh alcohols and soaps
  • Dry and hot climate (dry air)
  • Heredity problem
  • Loss of elasticity or strength
  • Underactive thyroid
  • Skipping conditioners
  • Cuticle damage
  • High porosity
  • Anorexia Nervosa
  • Using excessive chemical treatments, like dye, relaxers, etc.
  • Using cotton pillow while sleeping
  • Excessive use of blow dryers
  • Exposure to sun
  • Underactive parathyroid
  • Excessive hairstyling
  • Swimming in chlorinated water
  • Menses kinky hair disease
  • Lack of moisture in hair

Signs and Symptoms of Dry Hair

It is very hard to deal with damaged and dry hair. The following symptoms indicate that your strands are dry.

  • Dull hair
  • Tangled hair
  • Lack of luster and shine
  • Brittle or harsh texture
  • Itchy scalp
  • Overly porous
  • Split ends
  • Hair breakage
  • Unmanageable rough hair
  • Hyper-absorption
  • No elasticity

Home Remedies for Dry Hair

Dry hair is a very common problem in today’s generation. Instead of taking several hair treatments, try some natural home remedies. Have a look at some beneficial ingredients, which are effective for dry strands.

1. Olive Oil

Olive oil is the most popular dry hair remedy. The rich vitamin E and antioxidant content present in olive oil help heal damaged hair by sealing the cuticle, or outer layer, with moisture. Olive oil can be used as a hot oil hair treatment to strengthen, add shine and restore moisture to very dry hair.

  • Put enough olive oil for the length of your hair in a cup or bowl and slightly warm it in a microwave.
  • Apply the warm oil thoroughly over your scalp and hair shafts. Massage your scalp gently for 5-10 minutes.
  • Cover your hair with a warm towel and leave the oil on overnight, or at least for 30 minutes.
  • Finally, shampoo and condition your hair with products suited to your hair type.
  • Do this at least once a week to give your hair much-needed nourishment and care.

2. Mayonnaise

Mayonnaise is made essentially out of eggs and oil. What sets mayonnaise apart is that it contains vinegar. Vinegar will help disinfect any fungus or bacteria that might be using your scalp as a temporary home, causing itching and dryness.

  • Apply 1/2 cup of mayonnaise to already dry hair. Massage into roots and scalp area and cover with a shower cap or other plastic cover.
  • Let stand for 15 minutes.
  • Rinse thoroughly in warm water before shampooing as usual.

3. Sesame Oil

Sesame oil is excellent nourishing oil. As it is rich in vitamins and minerals, it helps in strengthening hair and increasing blood circulation in the scalp.

  • Simply mix one tablespoon each of root juice, lemon juice, and sesame oil.
  • Apply this mixture on the scalp and hair.
  • Wrap your head with a hot towel.
  • After half an hour, rinse with shampoo.

4. Honey Hair Mask

Honey is another great home remedy for dry hair because it has the ability to trap moisture in your hair, leaving it soft, shiny, and nourished.

  • Apply 1/2 cup of honey to freshly washed, damp hair and gently massage it into your scalp and hair strands. Cover with a shower cap and leave the treatment on for 20-30 minutes. Rinse with lukewarm water.
  • If your hair is extremely dry and damaged, you can add either half an avocado, or a tablespoon of coconut oil, or an egg yolk to the honey, in order to make the treatment more effective. Another good trick is to mix some honey with your regular shampoo.

5. Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar can be a great weapon in the fight against scalp dryness. Try this recipe for a dandruff-busting vinegar rinse.

  • In a saucepan, combine 3 cups water and a handful of rosemary. Bring mixture to a boil, lower heat to a simmer, cover, and slowly cook the mixture for 45 minutes.
  • Strain mixture into a bowl or bottle and let cool. Add 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar, with 10 drops each of essential oils of rosemary and peppermint.
  • Put into spray bottle, keep in the shower, and use generously after shampooing. Either rinse out or leave in. The apple cider vinegar should help feed your dry scalp with moisture and smell good to boot.

6. Beer

With eggs and oil, beer is a great natural conditioner. It may sound weird, but if you think about it, it’s not any weirder than slathering mayonnaise in your hair. Use nicer, full-bodied beer for a better deep treatment.

  • Rinse out with shampoo with warm water and condition with beer. Substitute your conditioner for beer and use exactly as you would after shampooing.
  • Mix 2 cups beer with 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar and apply it to hair after shampooing. Again, use in the same way you would a conditioner.
  • Mix an 8 ounce bottle of nice, dark beer with a few drops of jojoba oil. Apply to dry hair, let stand for at least 15 minutes, and rinse in warm water, followed by shampoo.

7. Gelatin  

Gelatin is an excellent source of protein, and protein is very important in treating damaged, distressed and dry hair. Gelatin restores protein and moisture to the hair, which makes it a perfect treatment for strong and healthy hair growth.

  • Combine one tablespoon of gelatin with one cup of warm water and stir until completely melted. Add one tablespoon of vinegar and a few drops of lavender, rosemary or lemon essential oil.
  • Mix well and apply the mixture to your hair and scalp. Leave it on for 10 minutes, and then rinse with lukewarm water.

8. Avocado

The saturated fats, vitamins A and E, protein and various other minerals in avocado are highly beneficial for dry and damaged hair. Avocado also helps add moisture to dry hair shafts and strengthen your hair.

  • Mash one ripe, peeled avocado.
  • Mix in one teaspoon each of wheat-germ oil and jojoba oil to make a smooth paste. Apply the mixture on freshly washed hair, from the roots to the ends.
  • Cover your hair with a shower cap.
  • Leave it on for half an hour and then shampoo your hair with lukewarm water.
  • Follow this remedy once or twice a week.

9. Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is considered to be a magical remedy for curing dry hair. For using coconut oil, you just have to massage some coconut oil on your hair and scalp. With the help of finger tips, massage your scalp. Leave it for the whole night. Rinse it off in the morning.

10. Aloe Vera  

Aloe vera contains ingredients that have excellent moisturizing properties, which can greatly benefit your hair. Aloe vera treatment will make dry hair become soft, lustrous, and shiny.

  • Mix 3-4 tablespoons of Aloe vera gel with 1/2 tablespoons of coconut oil. Add 3 tablespoons of yogurt and mix well.
  • Apply the mixture to the hair and leave it on for 20-30 minutes. Wash your hair as usual.

11. Tea Tree Oil

Anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties of tea tree oil help in fighting against dry hair and itchy scalp. It works as a natural conditioner. Just add a few drops of tea tree oil to your regular conditioner and apply it on your hair.

You can also pour a few drops of tea tree oil in your shampoo. Else, always use a mild shampoo enriched with tea tree oil, which is suitable for all hair types.

Alternatively, massage your hair with tea tree oil.

Note: Do not apply excessive tea tree oil on straight and thin hair.

12. Yogurt

Yogurt is a natural conditioner for dry hair. It can be applied as a mask on hair. The moisturizing properties of yogurt help in curing dry hair.

  • Add a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar and a teaspoon of honey in half cup of yogurt.
  • Mix it and apply it on hair and hair roots.
  • After 15 minutes, rinse your hair with warm water.

You can also apply plain yogurt on the scalp and leave it for 30 minutes. Wash your hair with warm water.

13. Egg Treatment

This is perhaps one of the oldest home remedies for dry hair. Egg is a good source of protein and lecithin, which strengthen and repair your hair by adding moisture, shine, and texture to it.

  • Mix 3 eggs with 2 tablespoons of olive oil or coconut oil. Add one tablespoon honey, stir well and apply this mixture to damp hair and scalp. Cover with a shower cap and leave on for 30 minutes. Then rinse with a mild shampoo and lukewarm water.
  • Beat 2 eggs together, add 1/2 cup of full-fat yogurt, and 1/2 tablespoons of almond oil. Stir well until it turns creamy. Massage this mixture into your scalp and hair, cover with a towel or a shower cap, and leave it on for about half an hour. Then shampoo as usual using lukewarm water.
  • Beat 3 eggs and combine them with one tablespoon of vinegar, one tablespoon of olive oil, and one tablespoon of coconut oil. Add a few drops of rosemary essential oil and apply the mixture to your hair and scalp. Cover and leave on for 20 to 30 minutes. Wash and shampoo your hair as normal.

14. Bananas

Bananas are another excellent ingredient for treating extremely dry hair. The high potassium and moisture content in bananas prevents split ends, and softens and improves the elasticity of your hair.

  • Mash one ripe or overripe banana and spread it thoroughly on your hair, from the roots to the ends. Leave it on for up to an hour and then rinse your hair with lukewarm water. Do this once a week for effective results.
  • Alternatively, mix one ripe or overripe banana, one tablespoon of almond oil and 2 tablespoons of honey. Apply this hair mask on your hair thoroughly. Leave it on for 20-30 minutes and then rinse well with lukewarm water. Follow this remedy once week to enjoy smooth and shiny hair.

15. Cocoa Butter

Cocoa butter is also a natural conditioner for dry hair.

  • Prepare a paste by mixing 8 ounces of raw cocoa butter pieces, 2 ounces of jojoba oil, and one ounce of sesame oil or sweet almond oil.
  • Allow it to rest until the mixture gets thick.
  • Soak your hair with water.
  • Take the mixture in your palm and apply it on hair.
  • It can be used before shampooing your hair or as a conditioner.

General Tips for Dry Hair

Don’t over-style your hair. While it may be fun, using curlers, straighteners, and blow-dryers on your hair can cause structural and heat damage. Keep your styling damage to a minimum. Style only when you absolutely need to, and don’t overdo it. Shoot to style your hair at most once a week.

Let your hair air dry. Are you addicted to your hair dryer? Time to put it down and let your hair dry on its own. Directing hot air toward dry hair won’t give it the chance to get healthy. While a blowout might make your hair look shiny, the heat is actually quite damaging, and over time will cause breakage and split ends.

Be mindful of the products that you put into your hair. Shampoos and conditioners that contain harsh chemicals like sodium lauryl sulfate may irritate or dry your hair to excess. Be careful which cleaning products you use.

Comb instead of brushing. Hair brushes rip through tangles, leaving a lot of damage in their wake. Since dry hair is very breakable, this can leave your hair looking frizzy and rough. Instead, comb your hair while it’s wet using a wide-toothed comb. This is much more forgiving and won’t cause you to pull out or break your hair.

Shampoo less often. Hair becomes dry when the natural oils produced by your scalp aren’t getting the chance to nourish it. Shampooing dry hair every day will make it ever drier and more brittle since you’re stripping those oils away on a daily basis. Cut back to shampooing just two to three times a week, to give your hair the chance to receive those nourishing oils.

Diet Tips for Dry Hair

Keeping your hair healthy from the inside out will reduce dryness, and make your it look healthy, soft and shiny.

Don’t forget to drink plenty of water as it helps your body expel various harmful substances and toxins that can cause your hair to become dry and brittle. And apart from this, water hydrates!

Try eating plenty of foods or take dietary supplements that contain zinc, Biotin, vitamin C, vitamin E, and omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids.

How to Prevent Dry Hair

To prevent your beautiful hair from getting damaged and dry, you need to adopt the following preventive measures.

  • Rinse your hair with cold water.
  • Do not use a comb with plastic bristles.
  • Trim your hair regularly.
  • Avoid combing wet hair.
  • Do not tie your hair tightly.
  • Do not wash your hair frequently.
  • Avoid harsh chemicals.
  • Use a conditioner after hair wash.
  • Consume walnuts, salmon, eggs, sweet potatoes, spinach, lentils, oysters, and blueberries.
  • Protect hair from UV rays by applying suitable sprays, creams, and serums.
  • Avoid using hair dryers.
  • Massage your hair before shampooing.
  • Practice stress-relief and relaxing activities.
  • Use a satin or silk pillow while sleeping.
  • Wear a hat or cap while stepping out in the sun.
  • Avoid smoking.
  • Avoid using the flat iron on wet hair.

Taking good care of your hair, eating a healthy diet, and regularly applying the above-described home remedies will make your hair look beautiful and healthy and prevent it from drying out. No need to go to expensive beauty salons or spend your money for overrated hair products.


Related Video: DIY Hair Mask for Frizzy Dry and Damage Hair and Hair Growth


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