In our quest for gorgeous hair, we may often do things that damage our hair. If your hair appears dull and lackluster, feels dry and rough to touch, and has split ends - it is believably damaged. Did you know that damaged hair is extremely fragile and tends to break more easily?
While we're all looking for easy ways to repair hair damage, Ayurveda helps you get to its root. It offers a plethora of herbal solutions to prevent damage in the first place.
Let's understand what causes hair damage and how Ayurveda can effectively help restore your hair's health.
How Can You Tell If Your Hair Is Damaged?
1. Shabby And Weak Ends
Since your hair grows from the root, the end is its oldest part. Did you know it is also the driest and most fragile? If you notice that the ends of your hair strands are overly brittle, split, and don't match the rest of your hair, it is an indication of hair damage.
2. Rough Texture
If your hair feels rough to touch and wears a matted look, it lacks protein, natural oils, and moisture. Rough hair is a sign of damage. It takes longer than usual to detangle and has a lot of split ends.
3. Dry And Dull Appearance
Hair looks dull, limp, and lifeless when it is damaged. It tends to lack moisture, body, and shine. Often, damaged hair doesn't respond to any amount of conditioning.
4. Hair Breakage
If you notice your hair breaking when you comb, brush, or run your fingers through it, your hair may be severely damaged. Breakage happens when your hair sheds not from the root but any point of its length. The hair strands begin to look uneven and drier.
5. Hair Fall
It is normal to lose around 50 to 100 hair strands per day. However, it is only a matter of concern if you notice more hair on your brush or pillow than usual.
What Causes Hair Damage?
According to Ayurveda, your hair's health depends on three doshas: Vata, Kapha, and Pitta. An imbalance in any of these doshas may result in weak and damaged hair.
1. Lack Of Nutrients (Vata)
A diet lacking in nutrients imbalances the vata dosha and weakens hair roots. When your hair follicles don't get enough nourishment, they can die. This leads to dryness, thinning, hair fall, and split ends. Fried and packaged foods also disturb the balance of vata dosha.
2. Obstruction Of Blood Supply To The Follicles (Kapha)
Dr. Zeel Gandhi, Chief Ayurvedic Doctor at Vedix, says that high cholesterol, hormonal imbalance, and sugar imbalance can also influence the hair's health by causing dandruff on the scalp and affecting nutrition supply to the roots of the hair.
3. Inflammation (Pitta)
Excessive use of chemicals, prolonged exposure to pollution, and UV rays in conjunction with a high acid diet (spicy, salty, and sour foods) can weaken your hair roots and leave your scalp itchy and irritable.
5. Heat and Pollution
According to a study  conducted on Indians in 2015, pollution can cause scalp irritation, itchiness, redness, excessive sebum production, hair loss, and dandruff.
Today's air contains dust, smoke, hydrocarbons, and other toxins that directly harm the scalp and affect hair quality. UV radiations also damage hair follicles by soaking up natural oils
Brushing your hair too often may cause breakage . Ayurveda suggests using a wide-tooth wooden comb to remove tangles in your hair and avoid hair fall. It is also essential to keep your comb or brush clean and avoid sharing with others.
7. Use Of Chemicals
While numerous products out there claim to offer instant results, they may contain harmful chemicals. For instance, shampoos  containing sulfates and alcohol can strip your hair of its natural moisture and damage it internally.
Coloring and bleaching your hair can also cause long-term damage.
Ayurvedic Treatments For Dry And Damaged Hair
Ayurveda recommends using hair care products based on your predominant dosha at a given time. Each dosha requires a unique type of hair and scalp care.
Here are some natural ways to treat damaged hair:
1. Ayurvedic Shampoos
An Ayurvedic shampoo is a natural hair care remedy for promoting hair growth and repair. Here are some common essential ingredients that you can expect to find in an Ayurvedic shampoo:
Reetha or soapnut is a versatile Ayurvedic herb with antibacterial and antifungal properties to help fight scalp infections. It also kills lice and is used to treat boils and itching lesions.
Shikakai is rich in vitamins A, C, D, E, K, and micro-nutrients that nourish the scalp and promote hair growth. Shikakai possesses antibacterial and antifungal properties that help control dandruff.
Amla or Indian Gooseberry is a rich source of vitamin C and antioxidants. Vitamin C aids in the production of collagen protein, which helps stimulate hair growth. The antioxidants present in Amla also protect your hair from damage.
Brahmi helps strengthen and nourish the scalp and blood vessels. As a result, oxygen and nutrients stimulate hair growth and prevent hair loss. Brahmi also restores lost shine and volume to your hair.
Fenugreek is a storehouse of minerals such as potassium, iron, and calcium. It is also rich in protein and is beneficial against hair fall, dryness, thinning, and baldness.
2. Ayurvedic Hair Masks
According to Ayurveda, a hair mask or ‘Shiro Lepa’ is one of the best treatments to nourish the scalp and hair deeply. It not only helps reduce stress but also boosts blood supply to the hair follicles.
Here are some hair masks that you can make at home using Ayurvedic herbs and a powerful combination of natural ingredients:
A. Amla Powder and Shikakai Hair Mask
This mask is very effective in treating hair fall and restoring scalp health.
- Mix 1½ tablespoons of shikakai powder with a tablespoon of amla powder in lukewarm water.
- Make a semi-thick paste and apply it on your scalp and hair.
- Leave it on for thirty minutes and rinse with water.
- You can use this mask twice a week.
B. Bhringraj and Neem Hair Mask
Bhringraj provides a cooling effect when applied on the scalp. It also prevents hair loss and premature graying. Neem works as an antibacterial agent that fights fungus affecting the hair and scalp.
- Make a thick paste by blending bhringraj and neem leaves.
- Apply it all over your scalp, leave on for two hours and rinse with water.
- Apply this paste once a week.
C. Amla, Reetha, and Shikakai Hair Mask
These three herbs work wonders when applied on the scalp and hair. This mask helps rejuvenate the hair and prevents dandruff.
- You need two tablespoons of amla juice, a tablespoon of reetha powder, a tablespoon of shikakai powder, and two tablespoons of rose water.
- Mix the ingredients and make a paste.
- Apply it all over the scalp and hair.
- Rinse with water after thirty minutes.
- For better results, use this twice a week.
D. Hibiscus, Honey, and Coconut Oil Hair Mask
This is one of the best combinations to nourish the scalp and maintain hair shine. Its ingredients encourage healthy hair growth, prevent split ends, and treat dry and damaged hair.
- Make a thick paste by combining four tablespoons of coconut milk, four tablespoons of crushed hibiscus, and three tablespoons of honey.
- Apply the paste on your hair and scalp and leave it for 30-40 minutes.
- Rinse it off with water.
- Use this mask once a week to nourish your hair.
E. Aloe Vera Hair Mask
Aloe vera is known for its restoration properties that keep the hair strong and healthy. You can apply aloe vera gel directly on your scalp and hair and rinse it off after twenty minutes. Aloe vera can also be mixed with coconut or almond oil for better results.
3. Ayurvedic Hair Oils
Regular massage with an Ayurvedic hair oil provides proper nourishment to the roots and increases blood circulation in the scalp. Ayurveda suggests oiling your hair at least twice a week. You should leave the oil on overnight before washing your hair the next day.
For best results, choose a hair oil based on your hair type to balance your doshas. Vedix provides you with a customized Ayurvedic hair care regimen for your unique hair type.
You can apply oils that include herbs like Brahmi, Guduchi, Ashwagandha, Vidarikand, Shatavari, Yashtimadhu, Gunja, Nimba, and Amalaki. These herbs help balance dosha levels and prevent hair damage.
4. Ayurvedic Therapies
Ayurvedic therapies like Panchakarma, Nasya, Shirodhara, Basti, and Shiro Abhyanga provide intense nourishment to the scalp. They also help detox, rejuvenate, and boost blood circulation by balancing the doshas. Additionally, these therapies reduce stress by relaxing your mind and body.
5. Ayurvedic Hair Serums
An Ayurvedic hair serum works as a shield to protect your hair from external factors like heat and pollution. It helps remove frizz and adds shine to the hair.
You can use a serum that contains natural herbs and ingredients such as japa, gotukola, grapeseed oil, bhringraj, aloe vera, argan oil, and jojoba oil. These help balance dosha levels and repair hair damage.
Other Remedies For Damaged Hair
1. Regular Exercise
According to Ayurveda, regular exercise helps detoxify the body by flushing out toxins through sweating. It also helps provide essential nutrients and oxygen to the hair follicles by increasing blood flow in the scalp. If not cardio, you can include yoga and pranayama in your daily routine for healthy hair.
2. Regular Hair Wash
It's important to maintain hygiene to promote healthy hair growth. Ayurveda recommends you wash your hair twice or thrice in a week to avoid hair fall and greasy hair. Washing cleanses the hair follicles that get clogged by excess oil and dirt.
3. Healthy Diet
Food plays a vital role in maintaining your hair's health. It is necessary to eat foods rich in iron, zinc, protein, and vitamins A, B, C, D, E, and K.
How Long Does It Take To Repair Damaged Hair?
Transformations don't happen overnight. If your hair isn't too damaged, you might see results after a few weeks of treatments. But if the damage is more serious, you will have to wait at least two to three months for your hair to regain its health and normal fullness.
During this time, it is crucial to refrain from using heat-based styling tools and protect your hair from external factors such as pollution.
The Last Word
Because everyone's hair is different, solutions may vary from one person to another. It's always good to know your hair type before you invest your time and money on treatments or solutions.
The best way to treat hair damage is to use natural herbs and remedies as they cause no side-effects.
Vedix provides you with a customized Ayurvedic hair care regimen consisting of a shampoo, serum, and hair oil, based on your Dosha levels.Know Your Dosha Now
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