My hair has always been problematic. I have a cowlick in the back that, if not blown out the right way, used to create a “bald spot” back when I was younger. It has always been on the thin side, and difficult to style. I never had a good haircut as a kid–maybe only when it was cut short. It’s also wavy at a certain point in its length, thus making it difficult to blow out straight. So, I’ve often opted for short hair. But who wants to walk around with short hair all the time? (Depending on where you live, and your age, short hair can send an unintended message about your sexuality. yikes!)
Yet over the past few years I’ve noticed some hair conditions that I think have more to do with age than with the overall health of my hair. It is more flyaway than it used to be. The diameter seems thinner. I have a real “bald spot,” the result of low thyroid and probably other hormonal imbalances that were corrected, but did not promote hair growth. And I have one spot, on one side of my head, where the hair feels more coarse and is kinkier than the rest of my hair.
Usually when I go for a salon color treatment, it feels great and behaves properly. Right now, though I can’t afford it though. And things are looking pretty awful–as my recent driver’s license photo indicated (yow! it’s bad! I almost want to say I “lost” my license so I can get a new pic taken.)
I figured that, if I can’t get my every six-to-eight week dye and treatment, I’m going to have to do something with shampoos and conditioners. However, my hair is NOT responding the way it used to when I use products that used to give me good results. It’s like I have a completely different head of hair! I also have completely different nails than I used to, and have to use a nail oil to keep my cuticles from becoming dried out wrecks. Not to mention that I had to change-up my makeup regimen after years of high quality drugstore brands–because I wanted my skin to look great and not like a wrinkled road map.
It seems like the right thing to do now is to try some age-defying shampoos. These are fairly new products, and there aren’t all that many of them. The “mature” shampoos I remember as a kid were mostly to enhance gray, make it a bit more white. That is definitely NOT what I’m looking for. I know that oils are fantastic for my hair, but that they can weigh it down and make it too soft. I will then read the ingredient labels to see what kinds of oils are in the formulas, and where they occur on the ingredients lists. I’ll want to see them in the middle of the ingredient pack, not at the beginning nor towards the end.
I’ll probably look for the stuff at my local CVS–partly because I have a few coupons that will reduce the cost of a new shampoo and conditioner. Available there are Nuance Flax Seed Age Therapy Shampoo (that’s the Salma Hayek line, and I’ve liked some of her products, as well as the new Pantene Age-Defy system for which Courtney Cox is the spokeswoman. I’ve had fair to middling experiences with Pantene products, and I know they have made some huge improvements in their products, so I am most interested in trying their formulas.
However, the ingredients list does not have too many natural ingredients, and as I’ve learned from my makeup experiences, the more pure the ingredients (less harsh chemicals and heavy cream-making ingredients like dimethicone) the better the product. Although I will avoid products that are mostly pure oils or shea butter, which weigh my hair down.
I’m also interested in trying Tresemme Anti-Breakage Shampoo with Vitamin B-12 and Gelatin. Gelatin and B-Vitamin supplements have been said to strengthen hair, so I figure that trying them as a topical treatment, in shampoo, can’t hurt either.
Overall, it’s not looking good for my hair when it comes to mass-market shampoos. And the Age-Defying claim might be just good marketing. I don’t know quite yet–other than that I need to start taking Vitamin E again. That’s one thing I know works for keeping my hair healthy.