Translated excerpt, Cosmopolitan Germany
Hair specialist Britta Richter reveals the secrets to getting healthy, shiny hair and maintaining the ideal scalp
A mane of lustrous hair is so important to our look. Sometimes, though, it’s not that easy. That is why we have asked hair therapist and nutritionist Britta Richter to explain what you should be aware of in caring for your hair and creating a radiant appearance. She is the Managing Director of the Harklinikken therapy centers in Germany, which specialize in hair and scalp problems.
COSMOPOLITAN ONLINE: WHAT CAUSES HAIR TO BE DRY AND DULL?
Britta Richter: The most common causes for dry and dull hair are deficiencies and a deteriorating quality of hair, which can be age-related. In addition, chemical external influences are a main reason. Often it is a combination of both.
WHAT ADVERSELY AFFECTS THE HAIR THE MOST?
External factors such as weather, water, chlorine, hot blow drying, straightening or wearing the hair too tightly can strain hair. The hair root is also affected by insufficient nutrients. Have a healthy and balanced diet. Your hair will thank you.
WHAT SHAMPOO DO YOU RECOMMEND?
A good shampoo should leave no residue and will not weigh down the hair unnecessarily. The best shampoos are those that do not add gloss and slip agents, perfumes and fragrances and other questionable substances for the scalp.
IS IT HARMFUL TO THE HAIR IF I ALWAYS USE THE SAME CARE PRODUCTS?
Not at all, but make sure the shampoo doesn’t have silicones and other questionable ingredients. Unfortunately, you can’t always rely on the claims of the manufacturer though, as some products with a “repair” function to fill the defect still weigh the hair down.
CAN WE OVER-MAINTAIN HAIR AS WELL?
Yes, people with dry and brittle hair especially fall into a cycle of using care and styling products, which cause further damage. Less is more. Many of our customers are amazed at how beautiful their hair shines when they simply use a shampoo that is free of all additives instead of styling products.
HOW IMPORTANT IS A HEALTHY AND BALANCED DIET FOR MY HAIR?
Very! Our experience shows that up to 50 percent of the problems are from a lack of nutrients. Yet, it must not be forgotten that hair quality, age-related degeneration of the hair structure, and hormones play a role.
ARE CURLS PARTICULARLY IN NEED OF CARE?
Curly hair is exposed to the same environmental influences as smooth hair, such as minerals in the water. However, curls quickly dry out and become brittle because they have more surface for debris to attack. As for the care, a neutral shampoo should also be used to gently cleanse the hair.
DOES THE SCALP NEED SPECIAL CARE?
Like facial skin, the scalp also requires cleaning and maintenance, determined on a case-by-case basis because every individual is different.
WHAT CAN I DO FOR HAIR LOSS?
First, you should determine the cause. Most common reasons include deficiency, hypothyroidism or hormonal changes that occur during pregnancy or as a result of taking drugs. A treatment in the form of iron tablets or thyroid medicines, for example, may help. However, the quality of hair during regrowth isn’t as good with these medicines. If these do not treat your hair loss, we may be able to help with an extract that promotes hair quality.