The 12 Absolute Worst Things You Can Do to Your Hair

Conditioning from your roots


When applying conditioner, it’s best to start at the midshaft of your hair toward the ends. “The ends of the hair are the oldest, meaning they’ve been on your head the longest, contain the least amount of moisture, and are the most dead, so this is the area that needs the most conditioning, ” says Mast. Using the right amount is also key. “How much you need really depends on the length, thickness and texture of your hair, so be sure to ask your stylist the correct amount you should be using,” says Penna.

Brushing just-out-of-the-shower wet hair

iStock/Savas Keskiner

Wet hair is not only heavier, but more elastic and delicate, so stretching it out with your brush will cause the strands to break. Instead, brush your hair before you hop in the shower—especially if you have product in it (hair spray, texturizer, sea salt spray, etc.). “Giving your hair a nice detangle before you get it wet is the key to avoiding detangling afterward,” says Mast. Once you’re out, use a brush created specifically for detangling gentle, wet hair, like the Wet Brush. “These are a lot gentler on the hair and specifically made to not break, pull, or damage your hair whether it’s wet or dry.” This is what your hair is desperately trying to tell you about your health.

Rough-drying your hair with a bath towel


Most people are used to taking a towel to their whole body—hair included—immediately after hopping out of the shower. But that’s a major no-no, says Mast. “It doesn’t matter how low-maintenance you are—don’t stretch and pull that wet, delicate hair!” Instead of aggressively tousling it, twist it up in a nice, not-too-tight towel-turban. This you can do upside down, rightside up—whichever way you’re comfortable with. The idea is to get the moisture out of your hair. These are nighttime habits that ruin your hair.

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