We never really think about the water we use. Drinking, cooking, washing – we turn on the tap, and out it comes. But there are two types of water in the UK. If you’ve seen soapy scum on the bath and scaling on your taps, then it’s likely you live in a hard water area. And with 60% of the UK classed as having hard water, you’re in good company. You may have heard about hard water causing damage to appliances and clothes, but you probably don’t know it can wreak havoc with your hair too! Hard water hair damage is something millions must contend with. Read on for the lowdown on what it is, and how you can repair it.
What Is Hard Water and What Does It Do to Hair?
The hardness of water is determined by the geology where you live. Hard water has a high concentration of minerals. It is created when rainfall filters through limestone, gypsum and chalk rock. These contain heavy amounts of magnesium and calcium and other elements, which dissolve into the water as it passes through. This liquid then ends up in aquifers, which your water company drills out and pumps into your home.
These minerals are no friend to your locks. Their high concentration makes rinsing hair adequately a difficult task. This causes product and gunk to build up, leaving your hair feeling like it is covered in a greasy film and looking dull and heavy. And it can have a terrible effect on your scalp, leaving it irritated and prone to psoriasis and other problems. Studies have shown that hard water ultimately causes hair breakage, which can lead to hair thinning over time. If you live in a hard water area, then fortunately there are steps you can take to avoid and repair hard water hair damage.
Soften Water with Tech
Soft water is the other type of water in the UK. It still contains the above minerals, but in much lower concentrations. Of course, moving to a soft water area is a drastic (and very expensive) option. So why not try to soften the water where you live? Installing a water softener is one way to do this. This tech filtrates water coming into your house, which removes some of the minerals that cause hardening. However, the good systems aren’t cheap, plus to keep them working in best condition, they will need regular professional maintenance. A cheaper (but not as effective) option is to use a water softening shower head. These have filters built in that help remove some of the problematic minerals. This will allow you to rinse more effectively.
Those pesky hard water minerals dry your hair and scalp out, and while using a clarifying shampoo can help eliminate build-up, it can also strip precious moisture and oils. This can result in your locks becoming dry and brittle, the ideal conditions for breakage and fall. Instead, look to inject hydration and nourishment to your hair and scalp with a hair mask. Our Hair Mask has been formulated to revitalize and moisturize your tresses and scalp, deeply conditioning from root to tip. Use for just 10 minutes twice a week. It will help repair hard water hair damage, while protecting against further harm. And double down on your efforts with a regular scalp facial at home.
The minerals in hard water (particularly calcium and magnesium carbonates) can give it alkaline properties. This can affect your scalp’s pH levels, which leads to dryness and irritation. Restore this balance with a gentle acidic rinse. Add two or three tablespoons of apple cider vinegar to 500 ml of water and apply, paying particular attention to the scalp. Then immediately shampoo and rinse out. Do this no more than two times a month, and always follow with a nourishing hair mask.
While you are combating hard water hair damage with the above external methods, it’s important you also fight from the inside! This means you need to eat a balanced, healthy diet. Eggs, lean meats, nuts, lentils and leafy greens – all the good stuff. Give your diet an extra boost with great supplements. Hair Gain Capsules and Gummies not only stimulate thicker and fuller hair, but they’ve got an excellent blend of vitamins and minerals too!
While it doesn’t have any dangerous effects, if you live in an area with hard water, then hair damage comes with the territory. Fortunately, by following this guidance, you can not only repair the harm, but help avoid problems in the future.