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Ways to Care for Your Hair at Home

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Going to a trusted stylist is great for pampering yourself, especially if you're not very skilled in styling your own hair. However, there are several things you can do to your hair at home, to maintain its health and save yourself some money. Don't worry that you have to be a professional or serious hair freak to know how to handle your own locks. Anyone can accomplish these easy methods.

1. Shampoo

Some women don't do anything to their hair at home, whether from lack of confidence or because they prefer going to the salon for everything. Shampooing your tresses is easy, and anyone can do this, even the person who's all thumbs when it comes to curling irons or blow dryers. Clean your hair on a schedule that works with your lifestyle, though a minimum of once per week is recommended. Look for cleansers designed to moisturize and hydrate thirsty locks, as black hair is often dry by nature.

2. Condition

Follow up each shampoo with a conditioner. Like cleansing, applying a product that gives hair some "slip" and imparts moisture is one of the simplest ways to care for your mane. It's a good idea to choose a conditioner that, like your shampoo, is moisturizing in nature. After cleansing, squeeze excess water from your hair, generously apply conditioner and comb it through your hair with a wide-tooth comb. During a shower is a good time to do it.

3. Deep Condition

Want to keep your hair as supple as possible, and thereby prevent brittleness and breakage? A deep conditioner should be a regular part of your hair care routine. Identify these products by reading labels. Often, you're instructed to leave these conditioners on your hair for anywhere from five minutes to an hour. You can slip an inexpensive plastic cap over it and sit under a low-heat dryer, or wrap your head in a warm towel to hold in heat. You won't need to use a deep conditioner as often as a rinse-out one, but apply it according to what you do to your mane. Relaxed, colored and/or heat-treated hair needs more deep conditioning than natural locks that rarely, if ever, see heat.

4. Treat With Protein

If your hair is chemically treated in any way, adding regular protein treatments to your regimen will help keep your tresses strong. This is especially important if you relax and color your hair. Protein treatments can be drying if used too often, so you must balance them with regular moisturizing treatments in the form of conditioning and deep conditioning. Look for products containing keratin. The healthier your hair is, the less often you should use protein. Minor treatments that are applied after shampooing and conditioning may be used once or twice a month, but if you need emergency care due to severe breakage, either see a stylist or use a product designed to halt breakage only once -- be sure to follow up with an intense conditioner.

5. Not an Exhaustive List

This isn't an exhaustive list by any means, but if you don't know where to begin when it comes to healthy hair care, try starting here. It's never a bad idea to learn how to take care of your hair yourself, even if budget isn't a concern. Trial and error may define many of your product-finding endeavors, so if you don't want to waste a lot of time and money in finding products that work for you, try recommendations found here or from trusted friends with a similar texture to yours. With regular care and practice, people may be coming to you for hair advice!
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