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Beautiful hair - the object of desire for every woman.

That long, silky smooth mane that glides down past your shoulders and sways beautifully from side to side at every step you take. And with every turn you make, your hair swooshes and reveals a healthy, enviable shine that makes all the other the ladies go "Wow".

How great would it be, if all of that wasn't just your imagination?

Beautiful hair is not just a dream. It is achievable, with the right shampoo and conditioning techniques, the right products for your hair and scalp type, and the right hair washing frequency for your environment. (yes, you might be washing your hair more than needed!) Does it come as a surprise to you that many women are unknowingly making hair washing mistakes, contributing to itchy scalp, slower hair regrowth and thinning hair? Could you be one of them?

 Hair Washing Mistakes That You Need to Stop Making

1. Shampooing on dry hair

Yes, we know that dry shampoo exists. But not in here. We are talking about the regular liquid shampoo that you use in the shower. Before applying shampoo, make sure that you wet your hair thoroughly with warm water first. It is important that every strand of hair needs to be soaking wet before you can apply any shampoo on it. The water will loosen excess oil from your hair strands and open up your scalp, allowing deeper penetration for your shampoo. 

2. Applying shampoo directly to hair

This is a mistake that many, many women make. When you apply shampoo directly onto your hair, what actually happens is the shampoo will not spread evenly, and most of the product will probably sit in the area that you had applied your shampoo. Then what happens? You waste another few pumps of shampoo product onto another section of your hair, repeating the same mistake again. Instead of blindly using more product than needed, try dispensing a small amount on your palm first, lather until foamy, and then apply onto your wet hair. This way, you are not only using the lesser product, but you are also giving your hair equal treatment.

 3. Using your nails to wash your scalp

Your nails are full of gunk. Worse if you have the tendency to keep long nails! All that nail scratching will only result in scalp irritation and unwanted hair loss. If your scalp is already weakened from all the wrong techniques you've been doing, clawing it further will lead to bleeding and more scalp problems. Why would you want to expose your scalp to irritation and infections? If you are using your nails to shampoo your hair, you need to change your ways immediately. The right way is to use your fingertips and massage into your scalp. Now that's a better solution for a scalp massage, isn't it?

4. Rinsing too quickly

A hair wash comprises of shampooing your hair and rinsing it off. While you think it sounds as easy as A, B, C,  you'd be surprised to know that rinsing is also a common mistake that some of you make. Whether its a 5-minute quick shower when you're rushing to leave the house or an hour-long bath routine, you should always make sure that you step out of your bath completely clean. Not rinsing well enough actually does the opposite. When you don't rinse your shampoo thoroughly, the residue builds up on your scalp, causing itchy, flaky dandruff. So, it's no harm standing under the shower a little while longer, making sure that you got all that product out from your scalp before stepping out to dry yourself.

5. Conditioning only your scalp and not the ends

After shampooing your hair, the next step is to moisturise your hair with a conditioner. This is not an "optional" step you can skip because shampoo, as a cleansing product, strips oils and moisture from your hair. And what do you need to do to feed moisture back to your hair? You use a conditioner.

For conditioners, you need to start at your hair's mid-length and work your way down towards the hair ends. With whatever that is left over, use the rest for your upper half of the hair. Typically, conditioners are best for your hair ends, and shampoo is for your scalp, so don't worry if you feel that your scalp isn't getting much product. What's important is that your hair ends are coated with conditioner for that extra moisture that was lost from the shampooing.

6. Washing too often

Your hair doesn't need to be shampooed daily. As mentioned before, shampooing strips your hair of its natural oils, and if you are washing your hair every day or even twice daily, that's double damage done to your hair. Ideally, you would want to shampoo every alternate day so you can give your hair enough time to rest.

7. Washing with the wrong water temperature

Yes, this also a mistake that many women make. Warm showers make you feel relaxed while a cold shower energizes your body and improves your circulation. The question here is, should I shower in warm or cold water? The answer is both. When you step into the shower, wet your hair with warm water. This will open up your pores, releasing the impurities and oils from your scalp. When rinsing, switch your heater to cold temperature to close up the pores.

Now that you are finally aware of some of the common hair washing mistakes, how many have you committed? Take the first step to correct your hair washing techniques and you'll see an improvement in your hair's health and shine in no time.