How to Treat Chemically Damaged Hair

Although they may improve your appearance, chemical-based hair treatments like dyes, bleaches, perms, and relaxers can greatly damage hair. Since treatments like these are so common, many women find themselves constantly frustrated by dry, damaged hair. The good news is that this damage is preventable and can be easily repaired without sacrificing your personal style.

 

Treating Chemical Damage

The smartest solution for chemically damaged hair is to quit using chemical products like dyes and relaxers and never look back. Unfortunately, that can be a very drastic step—one that the majority of women are unwilling to take, especially if they have been using these products for years. The good news is that there are plenty of other ways to treat damaged hair besides giving up chemicals for good. In fact, the process starts with taking a look at which chemicals you use and how often you use them. Here are a few questions to ask yourself if you are dealing with chemical damage:

  • Is your hair not as shiny as it should be?
  • Is your hair not as smooth as it should be?
  • Do you have split ends?
  • Does your hair tangle easily?
  • Does your hair fall out easily?
  • Does your hair feel weak and dry?
Did you answer "Yes!" to one or more of these questions? If so, you probably have chemically damaged hair. Chemical-based hair treatments weaken the protein bonds in your hair, which leads to the issues that you see above.

Products for Chemical Damage

The easiest and fastest way to treat chemically damaged hair is to use a product made specifically for the problem. The best products for chemical damage serve the dual purpose of repairing your hair, as well as protecting it from future damage. For more information on products like these, check out the top-rated products on our product review chart.

Preventing Chemical Damage

Aside from using a quality product to repair chemical damage, the best treatment is prevention. Only chemically treat your hair once every eight to ten weeks to give it time to recover. Also, be sure to follow your product's instructions as closely as possible to minimize the amount of damage done. Leaving chemicals in your hair for even five minutes longer than the suggested time can cause immeasurable damage to your hair.

What's even more important is that you limit the use of heat while chemically treating your hair, unless you're using a thermal-activated hair repair product that can negate the damage that heat styling causes (see our reviews of some of these products here). However, keep in mind that chemical-based hair treatments should still be used as sparingly as possible for best results, even when using a thermal-activated hair repair product.