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Frugal Solutions to Dry Hair

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Finding a Frugal Solution to Dry Hair

I have long hair, and for some reason, it has gotten very dry and split. Cutting it off isn't an option, so I need another solution that doesn't cost $12. I looked at Wal-Mart yesterday for a leave-in conditioner and the only one that looked like it would work was $12. I can't/won't pay that. Does anyone have a frugal answer for dry hair? Thanks for your help.

It's about Your Brush

Before you buy an expensive conditioner, you may want to focus on your hairbrush. For years, I had split ends when my hair was long. And having long hair, I would typically brush it thoroughly at least once a day with a nylon brush. Then one time when I was in a beauty supply store, I decided to buy a boar hair bristle brush. Within two weeks of using the new brush, I noticed a significant reduction in my split ends. I threw away all nylon/plastic brushes and just used that one. After a time, I had no more split ends. A boar hair bristle brush is more expensive than a nylon brush, but not by much. You can get a very good one for around $20 in a beauty supply store. Consider it an investment. I still have that same brush and it has been over 20 years since I bought it.
Rhonda in Denver

Leave Conditioner in Dry Hair

I have very dry hair as well, and I have discovered that there is no reason you can't use an ordinary rinse-out conditioner as a leave-in conditioner. You can just apply your regular conditioner in the shower and not rinse it out, or you can towel your hair dry first and work a dollop of conditioner in, combing it through with your fingers. I buy VO5 "Moisture Milks" conditioner, but you can use anything that works for you.

The only drawback is that after a while it can start to build up on your scalp, so you have to scrub well with your fingers when you shampoo to get it off. Talking of shampooing, you might want to consider doing it less often. If you have dry hair, you certainly don't need to wash it every day. Cutting back on shampoo may help with the dryness.

Rinse Hair with Apple Cider Vinegar

I have thick, long hair, which used to get super dry and brittle. I stopped using the expensive conditioners and started rinsing my hair (after washing) in one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar mixed into about two to three cups of water. My hair became soft and tangle free within a week! When I used conditioner again, it was back to dry straw with all the curl gone, so now I stick to the vinegar rinse. Sometimes I even add a drop of essential oil to the rinse as a treat. You need not worry that you will smell of vinegar. It is very dilute and evaporates quickly. The best part is that my hair is lovely, shiny, and soft now. I can't remember ever having such soft hair.

Mayo? For Dry Hair?

It sounds crazy, but I have been told by my friend that she puts mayonnaise on her hair about once a month, then wraps it up in a towel, and lets it sit for 30 minutes or so. She says it works great!

Try an EVOO Mask

You can put some extra virgin olive oil through your dry hair as a mask. Leave it for 10 minutes and then go into the shower and shampoo it out. Works like an expensive mask. The warm water from the shower helps it soak in.

Visit the Pet Aisle

Try Mane 'n Tail® conditioner (and shampoo) in the pet food section. I've worn my hair past my waist for 40 years and swear by it.

Try Coconut Oil!

Apply a thin layer of coconut oil to your scalp and dry hair. Allow it to soak for several minutes and then wash as usual. There is no need to use other conditioners with this method, even after washing with shampoo.

Shea Butter Rivals More Expensive Products

My daughter has extremely dry hair, and the solution that we've found is Shea Butter. It is very inexpensive and usually found in the ethnic hair section of your local discount store. If you use it just where it is needed (only on the ends or other dry areas), it will last a very long time. I am a licensed cosmetologist and am sorry to say that this works just as well as the more expensive products out there. It is also great for dry skin. Dual purpose!

Dry Hair Needs Leave-In Conditioner

My daughter has the same problem with dry hair and split ends. I use VO5 leave-in conditioner that you buy at Wal-Mart. It really does wonders. You only need a little bit so a tube will last for a long time.

Split Ends Cannot Be Repaired

As a Cosmetologist, I can tell you that you can never repair a split end. It must be cut off or it will continue to split up the hair shaft. There are products out there that will cover up the damage but not eliminate it forever. I suggest that you get a good trim, keep blow dryers and heat tools to a minimum, and work on preventing damage in the first place. If you are planning on donating your hair, donate healthy hair. Damaged hair will just get thrown away and your good deed will be wasted.

Condition Dry Hair while You Sleep

I was told by a longtime beautician to put about a tablespoon of regular hair conditioner in a spray bottle and fill the rest of the way with water. Shake well before using and spray on hair at night. I also twist my hair up after this in a bun with a nice soft fabric band. After just a few days, my hair was softer than ever before.
Rachel F.

Concentrate on Scalp when Shampooing Hair

If you have dry hair and it is very long, take the smallest amount of a baby oil (unscented if you can find it) and put it only on the ends. If you only use a little and your hair is very dry, it should pretty much soak in without it looking totally greasy.

Also, part of the reason a person's hair seems to be dry (maybe dryer than it really is) is because their scalp has some layers built up that need to be shampooed away. A beautician told me many years ago that when I shampoo my hair, I should really pay the most attention to cleaning my scalp. The rest of the hair gets washed kind of "naturally" as a by-product of shampooing your scalp!

Then, too, it is important to check the ingredient list of your shampoo. If you look and see that there is more than one "alcohol" in it (and I think they all contain some, though I'm not sure why), it's probably a good one to avoid.
Sherry E. in NW PA

Reviewed June 2017

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