Hair is one of the most tenacious things in the world. When tombs are discovered and opened in Egypt or crypts are opened in Europe the body within will be nothing more than a few bones and dust with a full head of hair. You can sell hair for good money while nobody would give you tuppence for your finger nails! (Unless they are very odd indeed in which case – run.)
When hair is sold it is used for making wigs or even stuffing furniture and saddles in times gone by. Seriously the history of hair is fascinating but I am here to tell you how to make the most of it while it is still on your head
Hair can be known as your crowning glory. Literature is full of descriptions of hair on both men and women. It can denote your ethnicity or your social standing. No fairy tale is complete with out a handsome prince with dark curly hair or a princess with her hair cascading down her back in golden ribbons. Those writers did like a good stereotype.
Whatever you do or whoever you are most people just want their hair to be shiny thick and doing what it is told. Your diet will make a huge difference to the growth and texture of your hair. After a month of taking Absolute collagen my hair has grown like a weed and is soft to the touch without any special treatment so I strongly suggest you start taking it as well as checking out which foods contain the vitamins and minerals that help skin hair and nails.
A quick round up tells me that incorporating the following foods and vitamins into your diet will increase hair growth.
- Vitamin A – helps hair and skin and is responsible for the production of sebum which is an oily substance covering all your skin and your scalp and this protects and moisturises.
- Eat root vegetables, spinach, kale and if you are not vegan or vegetarian then eat eggs, milk and yoghurt.
- Vitamin B – B vitamins create red blood cells that carry oxygen round the body including to the scalp and hair follicles. This increases growth and health of the tissues.
- Eat whole grains, almonds, dark leafy greens and if able add in – meat and fish
- Vitamin C – this is an antioxidant that prevents damage from free radicals. It is the main vitamin for producing collagen and helps the absorption of the mineral iron that is key to hair growth.
- Eat strawberries, peppers and citrus fruits
- Vitamin D – may help create new hair follicles the jury is out but why take the chance so
- Eat mushrooms, fatty fish and take Cod Liver Oil supplements. Also is produced in the body after contact with the suns rays
- Iron – a deficiency in iron can lead to hair loss so keep upping your intake as you get older to stop any short fall.
- Eat spinach, lentils, meat and eggs
- Zinc – also reduces hair loss and can be found in the foods good for iron plus
- Eat wheatgerm
- Protein – hair is made up almost entirely from protein and we all know where to find it.
If you are on a restrictive diet whether by design or for health reasons then do make sure you are getting the vitamins and minerals you need. Cutting out meat, fish and eggs will leave your body wanting. If you simply do not like the foods that do your hair, skin, nails and internal organs the best then take supplements. We cannot see where we are falling down because it is all going on inside and by the time we see sallow skin, thin hair and flaking nails it is going to take some time to correct. So,, pay attention and do your best, to do your best for your body.
The hair on our heads has a function just like all the other hair on our bodies. Although unlike Rapunzel we probably will not be using it to escape from a tower. We have fine hair all over our body that reacts to temperature and will try to protect us from the cold. Each hair has its own little muscle that pulls it upright to form a barrier from the chill.
The hair on our heads is also a temperature controlling device and may also offer us some protection if we are hit on the head.
Whatever it is supposed to do all we are concerned about having thick, luxurious hair of a colour of our own desire. And, it is also very important to us that quite lot of time is spent washing, conditioning and styling it.
Most people wash their hair too much. Or they put on far too much conditioner and so get a nice build up of product that makes hair look dull and lank. Let’s not forget all the product build up on top of that from serums and sprays. When I lived in LA my friends and I used so much hair spray we suffocated out scalps and got terrible flakiness!!
Just like our face and hands hair is almost always exposed to the elements unless we choose to wear a hat.
When you shampoo your hair you will find that you apply the shampoo in exactly the same places every time out of habit. Firstly cut way back on the amount – a teaspoon full dissolved in a pint of warm water poured over your head is a quick and easy way to get the job done. Do this on days when you have not been to the gym or worked up a sweat in another way. On other days put your shampoo in your cupped hands and massage it around before sweeping your hands back over your head then through the underneath section before massaging it in well adding more water in small amounts to create more lather.
Rinse and rinse and rinse. At the hairdresser the person washing your hair will rinse for far longer than you would have thought necessary. Lightly towel dry by pressing rather than rubbing the hair like you are putting out a fire! Blotting and squeezing like you are drying a piece of silk will keep those cuticles flat and even.
Try out one or more of these recipes that you can create in your kitchen for very little outlay. They are fun and great for dealing with the different problems we experience with our hair.
Rosemary Hot Oil Rejuvenator
What do I need?
- 4 big sprigs of Rosemary
- 40ml olive oil
What do I do?
- Put the oil and rosemary in a small pan and heat until its just warm. Pick out the rosemary. Using a brush coat the scalp and all the way through to the ends of the hair.
- Wrap your head up in cling film or an old carrier bag and then wrap a warm towel over it.
- Leave for 15 minutes or longer.
- Shampoo twice.
- This will leave your hair beautifully conditioned but quite oily so don’t do it just before going out somewhere nice.
What do I need?
- 1 pint of distilled or filtered water
- 1 cupped handful of chopped rosemary
What do I do?
- Combine the two ingredients in a pan and bring to a boil then simmer for five minutes.
- Cool down and decant into a spray bottle.
- Keep this in the fridge.
- Mist this onto the hair to add shine, tone the scalp and invigorate the skin.
Cucumber Hair Drench
Swimming in chlorinated water damages your hair just like it does your costume and skin. We all know what a well-used swimming costume looks like. Stop it happening to your hair by trying this out.
What do I need?
- 1 egg
- 1 eggshell of olive oil
- ½ cucumber
What do I do?
- Peel, de-seed and chop the cucumber then wrap the pulp in a paper towel and squeeze out the juice into a bowl. There will be more juice than you thought possible. (If you have some left over mix it with gin and have a super cocktail!)
- Blend all of the ingredients together
- Paint evenly onto the hair with a brush.
- Leave for 10 minutes then rinse out well.
If you want natural blonde highlights and you’ve got all summer to achieve them then this is recipe is for you.
- Pour 1 tablespoon of lemon juice into 6 pints of warm water.
- Pour over the hair up to 15 times reusing the same liquid by leaning over a basin and using a plastic cup to collect the liquid up again.
- Wring the hair out and leave for 15 minutes or the rest of the day if you are just hanging around the pool, then rinse well with clear water.
Do this every day you can. Being out in the sun will encourage the lemon juice to bleach your hair. Use a good conditioner in the evenings as it is quite drying.
Another home high lights method is to mix 80ml or 8 tablespoons of lemon juice with 400ml of chamomile tea. Brew and cool the tea freshly, then pour the mix over damp hair and leave for an hour while you sit in the sun. Wash it out with shampoo.
Top tip time
If you want shiny hair and who doesn’t, then take some ice cubes and run them down your hair. Ice cubes chill the hair sealing the little cuticles down making the hair really gleam. This is just another step forward from using cold water as your final rinse when washing your hair.
Hair is the most fast growing tissue in the body.