Sun exposure, heat styling, humidity, smoking, and more can all contribute to hair that's damaged and dry. The good news is that there are a few things you can do if you feel like reducing the dryness of your hair.
Using a harsh shampoo. Blow-drying your hair too often. Heat damage from straighteners or a curling iron. Harsh chemicals like dyes, perms, and relaxers.
For the most part, hair damage is permanent because hair is actually a collection of dead cells, making them beyond repair. The only real cure is time, a pair of shears, and taking steps to prevent new damage.
Sadly, there's really no way to heal damaged hair. Hair is not a living tissue with regenerative abilities, so it can't heal.
Using products that are designed to nourish the scalp and hair can definitely speed up this process, but on average you'd be looking at six months to a year to fully see a difference in your hair's condition.
Hair follicles typically grow back within one to two months as long as your scalp does not need to recover from damage. If your hair follicles are damaged, it can take up to four years until they are able to regrow hair normally unless it is permanent, in which case no new strands will grow.
Unhealthy hair usually has a rough texture, lack of shininess and luster, have split ends, lack of moisture and elasticity even after treatment and easily broken. Damaged hair will also get tangled up and result in knots due to hair dryness.
Take an inch-wide section of hair between two fingers and gently pull them down the hair, right to the ends. Concentrate on the texture: does it feel smooth all the way down? If you feel an uneven surface, with kinks and sections that snap off under tension, these are damaged hair warning signs.
Depending on the type of damage your hair is experiencing, there are telltale signs that you need some TLC: Split ends, flyaways, or frizz: Damaged hair is at greater risk for breaking. Depending on where the break occurs along the shaft, you may experience these symptoms.
Everything depends on where exactly your hair is damaged. “If you have split ends, you're better off getting them trimmed immediately as the hair fibers have become separated and will never return to their normal self.
As a general rule, "once the ends have started to split, there is no way to repair them," Dr. Yadav says. "You can temporarily 'bandage' hair strands with various products, but the damage is done and should be cut as soon as possible. This will help prevent the breakage from traveling up and damaging new/newer growth."
You usually can't fully fix fried hair overnight. Depending on how damaged your hair is, your best bet may involve trimming away the damage and split ends and waiting for it to grow back. Still, you can help your hair's appearance by using moisturizing products and avoiding further damage.
If you've got damaged hair (thanks, hot tools!), genetic structural abnormalities (they typically cause hair to break off at a certain length) or certain hair types, your hair might also grow more slowly.
Your Hair "Stops Growing."
"By not cutting your hair, you are actually risking the length rather than letting it grow," says Bivona. It seems counterintuitive, but by frequently trimming your hair, you'll prevent breakage by removing the dead, fragile ends.
Things like aggressive brushing and combing, sleeping on wet hair or rough fabrics that create friction, constantly pulling your strands into styles that are too tight, and heat styling are all some of the main reasons why hair breaks.
Opt for a wet cut if your hair is experiencing a lot of damage, as your stylist will better be able to assess the health of your freshly washed strands. If you have naturally curly hair and wear your texture every day, you may want to ask for a dry cut.
It had been thought that most hair found in the sink or shower, on the brush etc. was broken hair due to damage and weathering. Studies have now shown this not to be the case. In fact at least 80% of hair loss is from the root, not breakage.
Typically dry hair appears flat and dull, think no shine. Dry hair is also usually more difficult to manage and when you touch it, it has a noticeably brittle texture i.e. knots and tangles, etc. If your hair isn't maintaining a blow-dry this can also be a sign that your hair is lacking hydration levels.
Does damaged hair grow back healthy? The only way to get healthy hair is to allow your hair to grow without further damage. If you'd damaged your hair by over-styling, too much heat or over coloring with harsh chemicals, the good news is - your hair will grow back healthy.