Our hair is often a large part of who we are; what we choose to look like and how confident we feel when facing the world. Taking care of it, therefore, is a key part of our daily routine. Men and women alike can do a lot to ensure their hair remains soft, silky and smooth, framing the face and adding plenty of personality.
Despite the fact that women are the ones who tend to be targeted more by hair care advertisements and marketing campaigns for hair care products, there is no real difference between male and female hair. Both genders can enjoy experimenting with different products and styles – and both genders can experience similar problems and issues with their hair, from itchy scalps to hair loss; tangled hair to dyeing disasters. Here are some hair care tips for men to focus on when putting together a hair care routine for men to enjoy luxuriant, healthy hair.
It hardly needs mentioning that healthy hair must be kept clean to look and feel at its best. Grease, dirt and product build-up can all contribute to making your hair look dull and lifeless. Wash your hair daily, making sure that you clean its whole length, plus your scalp for a thorough job. Do your research into the best hair care products for men and narrow these down to what suits your particular hair type. Try not to wash your hair and scalp too often as this can strip out the protective oils in the hair.
Use a shampoo and conditioner type that suits your hair. For example, you can get varieties that have been formulated specifically for dyed hair, natural hair, curly or straight hair, black hair or Caucasian hair etc. Switch brands around from time to time to stop your hair growing too used to one type and to add a bit of variety to your morning routine. There are countless brands and shampoo types out there and it can be a great deal of fun trying some of them out.
When it comes to drying your hair, this can simply be a matter of towel drying your hair and leaving it to dry naturally. This works well for shorter styles; however, if your hair is longer, or you wear it in a more defined style, you may prefer to use a hair dryer to give it a warm blast of airt to speed up the process. Never set the hair dryer too high, as excess heat too close to your hair could scorch or otherwise damage it.
If you want to add volume by blow drying your hair, divide it into smaller sections and dry each one in turn, starting at the sides and then moving on to the top. Backcomb your hair on top while drying it to add the volume and create a more interesting shape. Finish with your chosen hair product to maintain the shape and leave your hair looking and smelling fantastic.
Most men wear their hair much shorter than a lot of women; however, that doesn’t mean you can’t still have fun experimenting with different styles. From long dreadlocks to scalp-hugging buzzcuts with anything and everything in between, you can wear your hair in any way you choose. Find inspiration by flicking through fashion magazines or looking for celebrities whose haircuts you like online to see what might suit you and your vibe.
Your hairdresser or barber can advise on the finishing touches and the specific ways you can adapt a style to your individual features and shape of your head. If you lead a busy lifestyle, choose something that is easier to maintain and always ask for aftercare advice and tips from your barber so that you can replicate your new look at home.
Again, the world can be your oyster when it comes to colouring your hair, but it is wise to take it slowly if you are using dye for the first time. Always consult a hair professional until you feel really confident to take it on yourself. Ask them to carry out a test patch in an area of your hair that cannot be seen, in case of any adverse reactions and to check that you really do like your chosen colour.
Don’t try to change your colour too dramatically all in one go, as results can be mixed – unless you fancy sporting bright purple hair when you were hoping for blonde… instead, you should build up your colour over several sessions to ensure it is exactly what you want. Don’t forget to maintain your colouring routine as roots can show through even on very short hair.
As with colouring, you should speak to a hairdresser or barber if you are keen to cut your hair in a very different style to what you already have. They will be able to see your whole head and advise you on the suitability of your ideas. They can also spot any issues and help you choose the right hair care products for your specific hair colour and type.
Once you are happy with your cut and if you think you can handle the ongoing trimming sessions at home, you can invest in some hairdressers’ scissors and/or a set of clippers. These will help you keep on top of your haircuts as they are required. Check out tutorial videos online to help you and always wash your scissors and clippers thoroughly between haircuts to keep them hygienic and in good working order.
African and other types of black hair can be more susceptible to dryness, so it can require extra care to keep it looking shiny and feeling healthy. Hair care products for men such as moisturising serums, leave-in conditioners and hair masks containing oils like coconut, almond or olive can help with this. It should be washed once a week to prevent product build-up, but to retain natural oils as much as possible.
How you style your hair is up to you, of course, however, a specialist hairdresser or barber who knows how to care for black hair will be able to advise further on the best cut and style for you. Sleeping on a silk pillowcase can help keep your hair from drying out at night as standard cotton pillowcases can draw out the moisture from the hair far more.
Beards and moustaches can add a great deal of character to a man’s face, but just like the hair on your head, they require care and attention to look their very best. If you are trying to grow a beard or moustache, avoid the temptation to cut it too heavily as it grows. Instead, train it to grow in the desired direction by trimming away excess hair so that it looks more streamlined.
Brush and/or comb your new facial hair daily to help stimulate growth and make sure you wash it when you have your shower to keep it clean and free from food debris. Use a dedicated beard oil on it to keep it looking shiny and to add vital nourishment.
If you overdo the hair treatments, or use the wrong type of products you can quickly find yourself with a hair emergency on your hands. The good news is that there are plenty of household products that you can use to help restore some vitality and repair damage. Mashed avocado contains lots of vitamins, fatty acids and minerals to replenish dry hair, while rubbing warm (not hot) olive oil into it can also restore moisture. Leave on for 45 minutes then shampoo and thoroughly rinse for the best results.
Mixing one egg into a small amount of shampoo can also help enhance your hair’s protein, thus strengthening it against future damage. Finally, if you have tried (and failed) to cut your hair at home and are now horrified by what you see in the mirror, your barber may well be able to rescue it. If they can’t, then you will need to invest in some snazzy hats to hide your mistake for a while until your hair grows back again.
If you are interested in investing more time and resources into caring for your hair, then speak to your hairdresser or barber to find out more about caring for your specific hair type and how to get started.