Skin

Updated 07 January 2016

Hair care

There are many things you could do to avoid a bad hair day.

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Sandra’s hair took a knock during her pregnancy, Mike has thick hair which is the envy of many women (and men), while David is very worried about his receding hairline. He rather fancies himself as a ladies’ man, which is quite difficult to pull off if you're involuntarily bald at his age. And Margot’s hair has taken a fair battering over the years with perms and colourants.

Whether you have long hair, short hair or very little hair, it needs care. Regular shampooing of hair and cleansing of the scalp is of course, essential. We have hair to provide some protection for the scalp and head against the sun and a few hard knocks. It also helps to insulate us against heat and cold.

A few things to remember:

  • Basic hair care starts with clean hair.
  • All hair is not created equal – some people have dry hair, others have oily hair and then there is quite a variety of combinations in between.
  • Too much washing can, however, damage the hair as it washes away the sebum, an oily substance that protects our hair and makes it shiny.
  • Good shampoos only remove excess oil.
  • Low ph shampoos should be used by women with dry, permed, damaged or straightened hair.
  • Anti-dandruff shampoos work, but they can be fairly harsh, so they should be used in conjunction with hair conditioner.
  • Don’t brush your hair too much. You could be adding to split ends.
  • Remember that a balanced diet containing proteins and vitamins is more important than expensive conditioners.
 

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Skin expert

Dr Suretha Kannenberg holds a degree in Medicine and a Masters in Dermatology from the University of Stellenbosch. She is employed as a consultant dermatologist by Stellenbosch University and Tygerberg Academic Hospital, where she is involved in clinical duties and the training of medical students and dermatology residents. Her areas of interest and research include vitiligo, eczema and acne. She also performs limited private practice work in the Northern suburbs of Cape Town in general and cosmetic dermatology.

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