9 Pro Secrets for Your Healthiest Hair Ever


If you sometimes hate your hair, imagine how it feels about you. After all, you are the one that smothering it in dry shampoo, blasting it with hot air, and getting unnecessarily aggressive with a brush. Here, expert advice for coaxing out the shiny, happy hair you were born to have.

1. Upgrade Your Hot Tools
Imagine spending your summer with an old fan instead of AC. Miserable, right? That’s basically what you’re doing if you’re using a blow dryer that dates back to your college days. Technology has majorly improved, and new models, like the Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer, can dry hair faster than ever — and the less time under heat, the less your hair is damaged.

2. Check the Ingredients

Not all hair care is created equal. It’s important to use a strengthening formula that has both proteins and moisturizing ingredients, says Juan Carlos Maciques, a hairstylist at NYC’s Rita Hazan salon. Try Garnier Fructis Damage Eraser Shampoo and Conditioner, which contains amino acids (a.k.a. protein) similar to those found in hair itself and a ton of good-for-you hydrators.

3. Don’t Overdo Dry Shampoo

It’s convenient! You need it post-gym class! But don’t use it instead of regular shampoo. “Using it too often and in place of wet shampooing can cause residue to build up on the scalp,” explains dermatologist Jennifer Chwalek, M.D., of Union Square Laser Dermatology in New York City. This may lead to inflammation and an itchy scalp. She suggests using it just once or twice a week and then sudsing up with traditional shampoo. Speaking of which…

4. Seriously, Wash Your Hair

You need to actually do that, guys. “I see a number of patients who avoid shampooing their hair regularly and then develop seborrhea,” says Dr. Chwalek. Seborrhea is the medical name for dandruff, which results in redness, itching, flakes, and even hair loss. Excuse us while we go turn on the shower…

5. Cool It on Extensions

For fancy occasions when you’re looking for shampoo-commercial-ready hair, extensions are an option. Problem is, “whether clipped in, sewn in with cornrows, or bonded, extensions can compromise your hair depending on your hair’s texture and how frequently you use them,” says Maciques, who says fine hair is the most vulnerable. If you can’t totally quit them, he suggests using a treatment like Garnier Damage Eraser Liquid Strength Treatment, which strengthens and moisturizes thanks to proteins, vitamins, and fruit and plant extracts, once a week to minimize breakage.

6. Ease Up on Salon Treatments

Keratin sounds like such a good option if you’re looking for shiny strands with little maintenance, but “the process can break hairs mid-shaft,” warns Jennifer MacGregor, M.D., a dermatologist at Union Square Laser Dermatology. Try recreating the silkifying effect with a leave-in conditioner, like Garnier Fructis Sleek & Shine Intensely Smoothing Leave-In Cream, which combines proteins and vitamins for lasting smoothness.

7. Don’t Rub With a Towel

If you hop out of the shower and smother your hair with a towel, you could be giving yourself a bad hair day. “Rubbing your hair creates friction to the cuticle, causing frizz, dryness, and weakness, which can potentially break the hair,” Maciques says. Instead, gently pat it with your towel. It may take a little longer to dry, but it’ll also look all mirror-like.

8. Go Easy on Knots
Muscling through tangles is, well, kind of satisfying? But so, so damaging. “Wide-tooth combs work well for detangling wet hair,” says Maciques. “With narrow teeth, you’re just going to struggle.” Instead, once your hair is dry, use a flat paddle brush that incorporates both natural (think boar) and nylon bristles.

9. Snooze on a Silk Pillowcase

Regular cotton pillowcases create friction and cause frizz and breakage — not to mention some epic bedhead. Silk’s smoothness helps keep your hair sleek. It allows your hair to slide, so you don’t get that matting effect, Maciques explains. Plus, it feels fancy.