Often, the first casualties of a fast-paced life are one’s hair and skin that start reflecting the effects of stress, lack of exercise and a poor diet.
Dr Aparajita Lamba, a dermatologist and a skin and hair expert, told DH that internal and external factors contribute significantly to hair damage and shedding.
“Diet deficiency, hormonal imbalance, chronic illness/fever, digestive disorders, anaemia, and external factors such as dry weather, heat and styling tools, and excessively harsh shampoos result in dull, dry hair,” said Lamba.
Dr Anika Goel, MD Dermatology and owner of Soul Derma Clinic, suggests having a nutritious and balanced diet for better hair. “To control hair fall, use a mild sulphate-free shampoo, get blood tests every six months to check for deficiencies and hormonal imbalances, manage stress levels, and avoid excessive chemical and heat treatments.”
Dr Lamba agrees and recommends taking adequate protein, iron, and calcium supplements, practising meditation, and using homemade hair masks to nourish your hair.
Here are some hair masks you can make at home
Banana and yoghurt mask: Dr Goel suggests mashing a banana and mixing it with yoghurt. Applying and leaving this mask for 30 minutes before washing the hair will result in shiny and conditioned hair. This mask also improves hair texture and strengthens hair follicles.
Fenugreek and coconut oil mask: Soak fenugreek seeds overnight and then make a paste. One can mix it with coconut oil and use the concoction to tame frizz and stimulate the roots of the hair. This paste can also be used as a hair scrub.
Shikakai and olive oil mask: Make a paste of shikakai with water and olive oil. It works as a great hair cleanser, prevents split ends, and boosts hair growth when applied before shampooing, said Dr Lamba.
Avocado and banana hair mask: Avocados and bananas are a great source of fat and are rich in biotin, vitamin, protein, and minerals. Dr Goel suggests mashing an avocado and a banana together and making a slurry by adding coconut oil. While the two fruits soften and treat the hair follicles, coconut oil treats dry, frizzy hair.
Raw egg and yoghurt mask: Eggs are packed with proteins and biotin. They stimulate hair growth, provide nourishment and prevent breakage. Experts suggest mixing egg whites or whole eggs with yoghurt and leaving the mask on for at least 30 minutes. It is an elixir for rough hair.
Honey and milk mask: Apply a mix of raw milk and honey on your hair and wash it off with lukewarm water after 30-45 minutes. The fat content of the milk nourishes and heals dry, damaged hair, while honey adds shine.
Aloe vera hair mask: Rich in vitamins A, C, and E, aloe vera promotes healthy hair growth. Hair experts recommend a mask made of fresh aloe vera gel, green tea leaves or powder, and a spoonful of almond oil. Green tea is full of antioxidants that treat damaged hair, whereas almond oil helps strengthen and soften the hair.