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reviewed 12/9/2018

Proper hair care: Myth or fact?

In our quest for luscious locks, we often damage our hair, which eventually can lead to thinning or bald spots. So what can you do to take better care of yours? Test your hair care expertise with this quiz.

Myth or fact: Using conditioners after every shampoo is not recommended.

Myth. Conditioner moisturizes your hair and prevents breakage. It's best to use it every time you use shampoo.

Myth or fact: You should rinse your hair right after swimming in a pool.

Fact. Pool chemicals are hard on hair. Rinsing your hair right after stepping out of a pool or hot tub can help protect it.

Myth or fact: You should brush your hair 100 strokes per day.

Myth. Hair does not benefit from that much brushing. Brush or comb your hair only when styling it to prevent damage. Use a wide-tooth comb, and try not to tug on your hair.

Myth or fact: Washing your hair prevents lice.

Myth. Regularly washing hair won't stop you from getting lice, but other hygiene measures might. Use only your own combs, brushes and towels, and never borrow a hair band, barrette or hat from someone else.

Myth or fact: Drying your hair by rubbing it with a towel can damage it.

Fact. Instead, try wrapping a towel around your hair to absorb the water. You could also let it air-dry. Styling tools like blow-dryers, hot combs, straighteners and curlers can damage hair, too, so try to limit your use of them.

Myth or fact: Pulling hair back tightly in ponytails, buns or cornrows, or wearing hair extensions or a weave, can damage your hair.

Fact. Try to wear your hair more loosely. If you use rubber bands, use a covered variety specifically made for hair. If you prefer a weave or hair extensions, make sure they are light and won't pull on your roots. And only wear them for 2 to 3 months at most.

We all love a good hair day. But damage is not the only thing that can lead to hair loss and thinning, and you should see a doctor if you're concerned.

Visit the hair health topic center

Sources: American Academy of Dermatology; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

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