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What Makes a Healthy Scalp?

Having the hair of your dreams starts with the skin that covers your head. In essence? Healthy hair starts at the scalp.


So Why Does a Healthy Scalp = Healthy Hair

Each hair grows from, and through, an individual follicle which surfaces on your scalp.


Oil is also produced by each individual follicle, the amount of which will vary from person to person.


It is essential that the follicle and the scalp, at point of exit, are clean, clear, healthy and maintained; follicles that are full of oil or blocked by dead skin, dandruff or infection will have an impact on the quality of hair growth.


In fact, permanently blocked or obstructed follicles may eventually cease to produce hair at all.


What Does an Unhealthy Scalp Look Like

  • A itchy or burning scalp

  • An excessively oily scalp

  • A scalp that stings when using products

  • A flaky scalp

  • Dandruff

  • Clusters of tiny, red bumps on your scalp that may have a white tip

  • Sores with yellowish-brown scabs

  • Pain or tenderness

  • Thinning hair or hair loss



5 Elements Of A Healthy Scalp

1. MOISTURE AND OILS

Your scalp contains oil glands that produce sebum, a natural oil that lubricates the hair strand as it grows. Sebum is essential for healthy, moisturized hair. If this oil is stripped from the scalp, your hair will be dry and less manageable.


2. PH BALANCE

A healthy scalp pH ranges from 4 to 5. Scalp pH is essential for moisture retention in your hair. Acid causes the hair cuticle to flatten, helping it retain moisture. If the scalp is too basic/alkali, the cuticle opens up and the hair dries out more quickly. This target acidity also makes hair less prone to tangles, and a pH balance is optimal to prevent bacterial and fungus growth. Many products have an extremely high pH that disrupts the scalp balance. However, products with a very low pH can degrade your hair and skin.


3. CLEANLINESS

Oil, hair products, dead skin cells, and dirt easily build up and clog the pores and follicles on your scalp. This irritates the scalp, prevents hair growth, and creates a haven for fungus and bacteria to grow. Fungus, bacteria, and other infections can cause dandruff, itchiness, irritation, and many other problems. So keep your scalp clean!


4. CIRCULATION

Blood circulation brings oxygen and nutrients to your scalp and hair follicles, which is essential for growth! Think of blood circulation to your scalp like fertilizer for plants in a garden.


5. PROTECTION

If you damage the skin on your scalp, your hair will have more difficulty growing. A variety of factors can cause direct damage to the scalp, including UV radiation, intense temperatures, and harsh chemicals.



How to Have a Healthy Scalp

Having a healthy scalp can seem impossible to those who have had long-term scalp conditions, or those who just can't seem to find the perfect haircare routine.


Following a few of these quick tricks will put you on the right track to not only improving your scalp's condition, but having strong and healthy hair.


Don't forget to exfoliate.To help boost the skin cell turnover process, exfoliate your scalp on a regular basis.


Preserve moisture. Many common scalp problems arise from dry skin or are exacerbated by dehydrated tissue.


Massage. Beneath the skin on your scalp is an intricate network of blood vessels that carry oxygen and vital nutrients to the tissue.


Limit chemical treatments. A great perm, straightening or hair coloring treatment can improve the look of your hair and boost your confidence, but the chemicals used in these treatments can dry out and irritate your scalp.


Shampoo regularly. For many people, washing your hair once per day is ideal, though if you suffer from some scalp problems or damaged hair, you may need to wash less frequently.


Protect your scalp from the sun. Skin cancer is the most diagnosed form of cancer in the United States and often develops on the scalp, which is nearly always exposed to the sun during your day-to-day activities.


Eat right. A well-balanced diet rich in fruits and vegetables will help supply the skin of the scalp with the raw materials necessary to produce new, healthy cells.


It's Time to Put Health First

Getting gorgeous hair has a lot to do with its roots, so if you're looking to achieve your health care goals, it's time to look at the skin beneath.


Need extra support to achieve strong and healthy hair? Talk to the stylists at Altered Images Hair & Beauty at your next appointment!

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