Q: I recently finished high school in Malaysia. I am 17 years old. My problem here lies with my hair change in texture. Based
on the photo while I was a toddler my hair was smooth, straight and shiny. As I became a teenager I suddenly noticed a dramatic
change in my hair's texture. It is now dry, frizzy, with split ends and well I guess you get the point. I have since done research
on the matter and have concluded that it was the weather that may have caused the damage. I was cycling to school under very hot and
humid conditions (around 35 degrees centigrade) every day for about 20 minutes for 3 years. However, since then I moved to a new
school and I have been going by car everyday. I have also changed my shampoo regiment to 3 times a week. I am using Pantene's Pro-V
with protein. Besides that, I have put leave on conditioners daily. However my hair texture still remains roughly the same as it is.
I am not sure whether this is the case of genetics, environment, or usage of wrong products. Please help.
A: It is not uncommon for an individual to have a certain hair type as a small child, and for the hair to become coarser and thicker
after puberty. Just as the hair on the body will get thicker and change in the way it looks and feels, so does the hair on the head.
Most small children have very fine-textured and silky-feeling hair, whether the hair is curly or straight. However, as they get older
and mature, the hair begins to change, growing in thicker, coarser, and in many cases in a different wave pattern. Some people who
had silky ringlets as a small child mature into teens and adults with thick wavy or straight hair. Others whose hair was stick
straight as a child now have a head full of kinky curls. It’s largely a matter of genetics.
The only part of your description that makes me think you have possibly environmental or styling
damage is your mention that the hair is dry and that you have split ends. It sounds like you may not be sufficiently conditioning
your hair, or that your styling methods are potentially damaging the hair.
I would advise that you make sure you condition your hair everyday, and in addition use a
smoothing or anti-frizz serum on the hair. If you use a blow-dryer, be sure to use a diffuser attachment on the dryer to help
prevent heat damage. In addition, at least once a week, give your hair a deep conditioning treatment by applying your favorite hair
conditioning cream to damp hair, combing the conditioner through the hair with a wide-tooth comb and covering the hair with a
plastic cap. Wrap your head in heated towels for 20-30 minutes and afterward, rinse the hair with cool water.
When your hair is wet, always towel dry the hair by blotting and squeezing the hair in the towel
to soak away the moisture and NEVER rub your hair with the towel. Many people prefer to simply wrap the hair in a towel turban-fashion
and leave the towel on the hair for several minutes to let the towel “wick away” the moisture while they do other things.
Always use a wide-tooth comb and a detangling spray or leave-in conditioner and anti-frizz serum
before trying to comb out the hair when it’s wet. Wet hair is more fragile than dry hair and can break or be damaged more easily.
Basically, treat your hair like the prized possession that it is.