Sometimes we do everything right for our hair – we use a good sulfate-free shampoo, leave the conditioner on for a good while and wash it the right way. Yet, we feel like our hair isn’t just there yet, as if we need that one last step for amazing finishing to the hair. If this has happened to you, the solution is simple – a hair serum!
Why Hair Serums?
Hair serum is a clear, silicone-based liquid that usually comes in a bottle with a pump. It forms a protective layer on the hair, solving many common hair problems. Here is a look at some of the benefits of using a hair serum:
- Hair serums can soften rough hair, and silicon coating makes it easy to detangle and style.
- Serums are silicone-based, which means they contain a lower pH level minimizing the risk of hair damage
- Hair serums protect against damage caused by heat styling tools
- Serums can reduce frizz and protects against humidity
- A hair serum coats the hair shaft, protecting against pollutants and environmental damage
- Since it is silicone-based, light reflects off the hair, giving it a healthy shine
- Some hair serums contain nutrients that nourish hair and make it healthier
With so many benefits, you are probably waiting to run out and grab the first serum you lay your eyes on! Hold your horses – there are a few things you need to know before you buy that bottle. Hair serums can be used for any hair type, with any length, but if you use them the wrong way, they can do more harm than good. Avoid this by getting informed on the do’s and don’ts of using a hair serum.
The Do’s and Don’ts of Using a Hair Serum
- Use The Right Hair Serum
The first and foremost thing to do is to identify your hair type and choose the right serum for your needs. There are all kinds of serums available out there, and it can get confusing and overwhelming if you’re going to get one without any idea of what you need.
People with fine hair or oily hair should choose a lightweight serum. It doesn’t make the hair look greasy, and it doesn’t weigh it down either. There are also special serums that give the impression of volume for thin hair.
For coarser hair or hair that really acts up when it’s humid, try a thicker or cream-based serum that’ll nourish hair while smoothing it down. Serums with intense moisturization properties can help thick curls stay put without frizzing out.
If you frequently color your hair or use styling tools, choose hair serums with keratin that repairs damage while strengthening hair and preventing split ends and breakage.
If you’ve been using a serum and you’re not getting the results you need, change it out. Read the labels and pick another brand – it takes a bit of trial and error, and your needs may also change with the season.
- Apply It On Damp Hair
Well, you can apply the serum on hair that’s completely dry, but to get the most out of your carefully chosen serum, it needs to be used on damp hair. After washing hair, towel dry it, so it’s damp, but not soaking wet. This is the best time to apply the serum, so when your hair dries, it looks shiny and nourished, but without the frizz. You can then leave it as it is for the rest of the day or touch up just a little if it’s too humid or your hair is too frizzy.
- Warm It Up In Your Hands
We know that a gentle heat improves the effectiveness of what we apply to our hair, which is the base for all those hot oil treatments you hear about. The same goes for hair serums, but unlike oil, we don’t heat it over a stove. Instead, put a little serum in your palm and spread it out with your other hand. One benefit of this is that it enables a more even application all along the hair, another is that the friction from your palms warms it up a little. Moreover, it causes the compounds in it to break down a little and get more easily absorbed.
- Use Before Heat Styling
Most of us can’t do without any heat styling, and we go for it on special occasions, at least. Use a hair serum in such situations as a heat protectant. It shields hair from damage due to high temperatures. It also makes hair more flexible and easier to style without causing breakage. Many such serums also contain ingredients that offer additional nourishment to hair to counter any damage during the styling process.
- Use Too Much Serum
With all the good things you hear about serums, it can be tempting to slather on a lot. Don’t! Less is more here, and all you need are a few drops, depending upon your hair length and thickness. Experts recommend not using more than a coin size amount. If you use too much, it can weigh down the hair, making it greasy and unmanageable.
- Start With The Top Of Your Head
Hair serums aren’t like hair oils – they aren’t meant to be applied to the scalp or roots. Serums should be applied to the hair lengths, like a conditioner. This is why it’s recommended to start applying from the back of your head, moving downwards. If you start at the top of the head, you risk making the top greasy and sticky. Applying serum to the roots or scalp can also lead to product build-up and annoying scalp conditions. It’s also helpful in case you’ve taken a little more than you need – the excess won’t land on the top of your head.
- Apply To Unwashed Hair
Always apply serums to clean, washed hair. This ensures you get the most out of your serum, whether its heat protection, treating frizz, or shine. It can be tempting to make unwashed hair look like it’s freshly washed by applying some serum, but it can backfire. Unwashed hair has probably got build up with the natural oils of the scalp, and applying the serum at this point can weigh it down further and trap all the dirt right there.
- Go Outdoors Without Drying
Going outdoors without properly drying your hair is a sure shot recipe for frizz, especially in a humid country like ours, and the serum will not help! The best practice is to apply the serum on damp hair but to make it truly work for you, wait till the hair is completely dry before stepping out or blow dry it if you’re short on time. By going out with damp hair that has serum on it will attract more dust and grime and lead to a complete mess.
So you see, a serum can prove to be the ultimate solution to all your hair woes – but only if you use it right! Get the right product, use the right amount in the correct way, and avoid the don’ts – and say ‘hello’ to soft, shiny, and beautiful hair.