Crowning Glory: 6 Haircare Tips for a Healthy Scalp

by Simone Wu
LIFESTYLE  |  September 04, 2018
  • Add a pre-shampoo for the scalp
    1 / 6 Add a pre-shampoo for the scalp

    You may have heard that you should treat the scalp the way you would your skin as it is an extension of your face. However, you should actually treat the scalp better than your face. And here’s why. Unlike skin covering your face, the scalp is thicker. It carries more blood than the rest of your skin. It has more sebaceous glands in order to produce sebum to protect hair. And with more sebaceous glands, it’s especially important to cleanse your scalp thoroughly. If sebum builds up on top of dead skin cells and dirt, hair follicles become clogged and can lead to hair thinning, hair loss and dandruff. To take good care of your scalp, include a pre-shampoo for the scalp.

    Try: Derma-Rx Trichology Scalp-Clear Prewash, $65. This moisturising deep cleanser uses a fruit enzyme to exfoliate the scalp, remove excess sebum without drying the scalp.

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  • Add a pre-shampoo fr the hair
    2 / 6 Add a pre-shampoo fr the hair

    When you don’t wash your hair, sebum buildup on the scalp not only clogs hair follicles, it starts to coat the hair and causes it to look flat. And if you’re out and about, pollutants in the air from exhaust gas, cigarette smoke, dust and odours stick onto the hair surface. And that’s why you should wash your hair before heading to bed. However, washing hair (with any type of water) every day can also weaken hair. When hair is wet, it swells up from within and forces the cuticles to raise up. When this happens, hair feels rough and dry. (And this is why we have the conditioner to smooth the cuticles.) However, when this happens over and over again, your hair becomes more prone to breakage and split ends.

    (Also read: 7 Most Refreshing Haircare and Skincare Products for Post-Workout Showers)

    To prevent this, use a pre-shampoo on the hair before your usual shampoo to reduce damage. This would smooth the hair cuticles before hair gets wet. If your hair is fairly healthy, you can skip a pre-shampoo and use a lightweight conditioner over dry hair (without touching the scalp) before your usual shampoo. However, if you have chemically damaged hair or naturally dry, frizzy hair, a dedicated pre-shampoo would protect hair before it gets wet to help leave hair smoother and less dry.

    Try: Phyto Phytomillesime Color Locker Pre-shampoo, $65, from Beauty By Nature. Ideal for coloured hair, this is infused with Red Love apple, an antioxidant, to protect hair from external aggressors, and other botanical extracts to smooth cuticles and form a protective barrier around hair. Apply this lightweight gel-in-oil texture from roots to tips and leave it on for one to two minutes before washing hair with your regular shampoo.

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  • Apply a scalp tonic daily
    3 / 6 Apply a scalp tonic daily

    Contrary to popular belief, you should start using a scalp tonic before hair loss starts. Like how you would apply an anti-ageing serum for your face every night, you should also apply a hair tonic every night on clean scalp to protect it from external aggressors that can accelerate hair loss.

    Try: The Face Shop Dr. Schwarz Scalp Serum, $19, which is rich in antioxidants, amino acids and minerals to help promote blood circulation, hydrate hair follicles and strengthens hair roots. Or if you’re more concerned with hair fall, Phyto Phytocyane Revitalizing Treatment Serum, $149.90 per box of 12 x 7.5ml Vials, from Beauty By Nature can help. This revitalising serum purportedly boosts healthy hair growth to make your locks stronger, smoother and shinier. Each single-dose vial is packed with ginkgo biloba, soybean extract, vitamin B6, grapeseed and tyrosine to boost microcirculation, and help prevent thinning and greying.

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  • Deep cleanse weekly
    4 / 6 Deep cleanse weekly

    A weekly deep cleanse helps remove scalp buildup, i.e. remnant residue of styling products. Replace your regular shampoo with a deep cleansing shampoo once a week to remove impurities, control oiliness and unclog hair follicles.

    (Also read: These Powerful Hairdryers Will Reduce Heat Damage to Your Hair)

    Try: IGK Low Key Cleansing Walnut Scalp Scrub, $54, from Sephora. This sulphate-free, colour-safe cooling scrub gets rid of dead skin cells and product build-up on the scalp with apple cider vinegar and helps hydrates scalp with walnut oil.

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  • Use a hair mask weekly
    5 / 6 Use a hair mask weekly

    The cure-all for hair overly exposed to the sun, chemically-processed hair, and excessive use of heat-styling hair tools, a hair mask is topically infused with botanical oils and butters to give your hair a deep-conditioning treat.

    Try: Hair Rituel by Sisley Regenerating Hair Care Mask, $122. Made with four botanical oils rich in proteins, vitamins and minerals, this light and creamy mask promises to rebuild the hair structure, soothe irritation, and hydrate and nourish the scalp and hair to leave your locks soft and shiny.

    Or get your hands on Kiehl’s Olive Fruit Oil Deeply Repairative Hair Pak, $54. If you tend to use heat-styling tools every day, change your hair colour every month, perm your hair, or simply have very dry hair, this would transform brittle hair with its blend of avocado oil, lemon extract and olive fruit oil to moisturise and strengthen hair for shiny, healthy looking hair.

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  • Get an in-salon scalp treatment once a month
    6 / 6 Get an in-salon scalp treatment once a month

    Whether your scalp is dry or oily, a monthly scalp treatment works to balance the scalp condition, boost blood circulation, promote nutrient absorption, reduce any inflammation and itching, and maintain scalp health for healthy hair growth.

    Try: Kérastase Avant Garde Ritual (from $198) at J’s Salon (Level 3 Grand Copthorne Waterfront Hotel, Tel: 6733-3882). This scalp-rejuvenating treatment is said to help hair growth through the use of the Infra Red Healing Brush to stimulate the scalp and a hair steamer to help product penetration. The head, neck and shoulders massages boosts blood circulation, relieves tension, and were incredibly relaxing. You’ll also appreciate the tea menu, snack and fluffy robes, too. After the treatment, your scalp would feel fresher and your hair softer for the next few days.

    (Also read: 8 Volumising Hair Products That Will Transform Your Hair From Limp to Luscious)

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