About 70% of the Earth’s surface is water. An average human being’s body has water in the range of 60 – 65%.
So, it does not surprise to know that even hair contains water. That is the reason it is common to suggest drinking water for natural hair growth.
Water does not form the largest part of the hair. The prominent part of the hair is a protein – Keratin. Water forms the second significant portion of it. Rest are the trace elements like minerals, vitamins, and color pigments. Among them Copper, zinc, b-complex, and melanin are significant.
Variation in any of these elements leads to hair problems. Be it hair loss, losing color or dry hair issues.
Decoding the water and hair loss equation
Water affects the wellbeing of mane. Its presence, as well as absence, brings in changes to hair structure.
Due to dehydration. Hair strands become dry. Thus, making them susceptible to breakage due to wear and tear.
Hence, you must drink enough water to prevent them from turning matte.
Although water is a necessity for maintaining hair. It may not give the best results in all situations.
If you get to see a hazy white layer on your steel taps and sinks. I am sure your scalp will feel the same.
What you might brush off as dry and flaky dandruff. Chances are that it might be the havoc due to your source of water.
The villain in question is the hard water. Hard water has superfluous dissolved minerals and toxins.
These dissolved impurities include one or more of the following:
These impurities react with the metals in the pipes and the shower heads/ taps. Thus, creating more toxins with the combining reactions.
Hence, your issues of brittle and waxy hair do not cease. Even the application of best of shampoos and conditioners does not help.
Continued use of hard water leads to the accumulation of these unwanted elements. So, your scalp skin gets powdery stuff. While your hair shafts seem sticky and waxy. Much like the way you see clouds on your glassware.
The sad part is that the use of shampoos does no good either. Within a day or two of shampoo. The build-up issues recur. Thereby making you go aggressive on your shampoo regime. And not to mention the associated procedures of conditioners, serums and styling products.
Thus, along with the damages from water. Your hair also gets an increased dose of chemicals from hair care products.
So, the cycle of vicious effects continues.
How to prevent hair loss due to hard water
To prevent the water induced hair loss. It is essential to have a clean water source.
Since dissolved impurities are not visible to the naked eye. Us of a heavy duty filter is important.
Also, boiling is of no consequence. Since the high temperature has no effect on removing metals. At the most, it can tackle the living bacteria.
In fact, boiling increases the concentration of dissolved impurities in water.
Certain regions have a high concentration of groundwater impurities. This happens due to the pollution of the water table. That is why it is common to observe that the borewell water causes hair fall. At times, more than the one from the municipality sources.
Even if your source of tap water is from a clean source. Impurities can leech in due to faults during transportation.
Rust, molds and microbial impurities inside water pipes are the common culprits. To resolve water and hair loss issues. The first step is to install a filter to your shower.
A heavy duty filter with an active membrane works. I use the one with activated charcoal. Charcoal is efficient in letting the water pass through minus the dissolved impurities.
No wonder a lot of beauty products boast about this wonderful ingredient.
This filter is in a universal size. Thus attaches to almost all water pipes. Its installation is easy. Once you install it between the shower head and the water pipe. You can leave your tap water hair loss worries at bay.
Tips for washing hair in hard water
Installing a filter ensures that your mane does not receive any hard water damages. Reduction in the build-up will form the testimony to the absence of toxins.
Thus, your hair will stay cleaner within your regular shampoo routines. Thereby eliminating the need to shampoo every day.
Also, your scalp will have a lesser presence of flakes and build-up.
But to reduce the existing buildup. You can use a chelating cleanser to wash off the existing impurities.
Chelates are acidic ingredients that stick to the buildup to form compounds. These compounds then wash off with water. Thereby resulting in a cleaner mane and scalp. Clarifying shampoos work as chelating agents.
If you are a no poo freak like me. You can make your own chelating shampoo with ease.
Add apple cider vinegar to soft water. Use this dilution to cleanse hair. It will wash off the existing impurities and buildup. A 1:5 ratio of vinegar to water is ideal. Though you can adjust it as per your preference.
You can also substitute juice from a fresh lemon instead of vinegar. That will also give similar results as the vinegar wash.
Water is important to sustain life. It is essential to keep cells moist.
Although our hair strands are dead. The roots of hair follicles need water for their well being.
In the absence of water. Hair loses its elasticity.
Thus, dehydration leads to dry hair shafts. These dry shafts are brittle. Hence, they cause hair breakage.
Apart from hair issues due to lack of water. Hair loss due to water quality is another beast to tackle.
Contamination of water also causes damage to the hair. Dissolved impurities in water go unnoticed by the human eye. That includes metals and molds dissolved in water.
Lead, aluminum, chlorine, and other elements reach the human bodies through the water. These impurities interfere with the hair health along with other body functions.
Toxins from water cause long-term damages.
The most prominent are premature hair coloring, hair loss, and scalp buildup.
Making a shift to soft water helps in avoiding damage due to contaminated water.
Water filters, softeners and a healthy lifestyle guards against the damages.
So before you freak out on your excessive hair fall. Check your tap water to solve the mystery of hair damage.
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