At The Griffin Center for Hair Restoration and Research, we specialize in providing natural-looking hair restoration solutions to our patients, but we are also keenly interested in educating people about how to keep hair healthy. Here is a list of some of the most common complaints people have about their hair, along with a few tips to avoid them.
Number One: Ingrown Hairs
Ingrown hairs are hairs that have curled around and grown back into the skin, irritating it and producing a raised, red bump that looks like a little pimple. While they are generally not serious, they can, in some cases, form a painful, boil-like sore or even become infected. Ingrown hairs tend to occur after hair removal, as new hair has a sharper edge and can more easily poke back through the skin and become trapped under the surface. This is more of a recurring problem in certain ethnicities who have coarse curly hairs and with certain hair removal techniques, such as waxing. Laser hair removal is a great solution for patients who get ingrown hairs in the bikini area, underarms, and/or beard area. In addition, gentle exfoliation a few times per week can be helpful and topical antibiotics or alpha/beta hydroxy acid washes can be prescribed to help combat the problem.
Number Two: Cowlicks
A cowlick is a section of hair that stands straight up or grows in a different direction than the hair around it. They occur when hair grows in a spiral pattern and are most apparent in the crown, although they can show up anywhere, in both men and women. Cowlicks are often more obvious in straight, thick hair as the scalp may be visible in the center of the whorl. For most people, a combination of the right hairstyle, length, styling products, and styling technique can minimize the problem. We specifically recommend allowing the cowlick to grow long so that it can more easily be pulled over or jelled into control using a styling gel like Redken’s Contour 8.
Number Three: Dry, Brittle, and Frizzy Hair
When the hair becomes dry and brittle, it loses its sheen and can appear frizzy, lifeless, and dull. Dry hair, which can affect men and women of any age, can be caused by a variety of factors, including environmental conditions (sun, wind, and excessively dry or humid air), chlorinated pools, and personal hair care habits (such as over drying with hot tools, using drying shampoos, or over brushing with a hard plastic comb which frays the hair strands. Additionally some health conditions, such as anorexia nervosa, vitamin deficiencies, and thyroid imbalances, can cause dry, brittle hair. Always protect your hair before going outdoors, particularly if you live in a dry, humidity-free climate. Wear a hat to avoid long-term exposure to dry or windy air and wear a cap when swimming in the pool or ocean, since salt water and chlorine can easily damage your hair. Avoid excessive heat when styling, spread coloring and chemical relaxing treatments out by at least 6 weeks, use dimethicone containing serums on dry hair to protect the hair shaft, and avoid daily washing if your hair is extremely dry.
Number Four: Dandruff
Dandruff is a common chronic scalp condition marked by flaking of the skin on your scalp, persistent itching, and frequently redness. Although dandruff is rarely serious, it can be embarrassing and sometimes difficult to treat. Fortunately, mild cases of dandruff can usually be controlled with nothing more than daily shampooing with a gentle cleanser or over the counter anti-dandruff shampoos. More stubborn cases of dandruff often respond to prescription topical medications or shampoos.
Number Five: Split ends
When hair becomes damaged by heat, chemicals or mechanical stress, the ends can split and fray, giving it a frizzy appearance. The use of hot curling and straightening irons, excessive application of damaging hair products, or even the repeated forcing of a comb through tangled hair can all result in split ends. While there is no remedy for split ends beyond trimming the affected hair, reducing or eliminating the causes will frequently eliminate the problem. Start with detangling products after shampooing, and then separate the tangled locks using just your fingers or a wide tooth pick. Finally, while drying, use a gentle brush with smooth filaments and tips protected by tiny plastic balls like in a professional styling brush.
If you have questions about caring for your hair or any of the treatments we offer, please contact The Griffin Center to schedule a consultation. Be sure to also visit our website and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.