Your hair needs hydration and protein to become strong and healthy. Unfortunately, we can inadvertently damage our hair and contribute to the loss of moisture, through the styling products and tools used on our hair.
You might not notice that your hair is even in trouble until it becomes visibly brittle or starts to break and peel off. Once the hair is so badly damaged, it may take a while to bring it back to its natural state. Therefore, it is important to keep track of the condition of your hair and take corrective action before they get out of hand.
Testing the moisture levels of your hair is really very simple. There are two things you can test for your hair to really need. One is the moisture, the other is the protein. Both are essential for healthy hair, and a loss of one or the other can lead to split ends, hair loss, and hair that does not grow properly.
After combing or brushing your dry hair, take a single strand left in the brush to perform a strand test with. (There is really no need to pull the hair out of your head!) Hold each end of the hair and pull it gently to see if it extends or breaks. If it breaks quickly, your hair shows signs of dehydration. It should stretch a bit and then break after more traction.
Next, soak a lock of hair in the water and repeat the tensile test. This time, you are looking for a loss of protein as well as moisture. If the strand stretches like rubber, you need more protein. Wet hair should not have much elasticity and are more likely to break when they are piled up. The stretch results from low protein levels that give hair its structure.
This easy test can be done at any time, and should be done every two weeks or more, especially as the season changes. If your test reveals dehydration, start using a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner and reduce heated appliances. If the levels of protein in your hair look low, try protein enhancers to restore and structure your hair.