By Allison Ford, Divine Caroline
They say a woman’s hair is her crowning glory, and boy, do we take that to heart. Women spend inordinate amounts of time and energy washing, styling, and caring for their hair (and let’s be honest—men do, too), all for the sake of keeping it shiny, healthy, and manageable. Like many areas of modern life, there’s plenty of advice and chatter on how to handle your hair better, faster, and more easily. There’s bound to be some folklore out there, like these points of hair-care “wisdom” sprinkled in with the facts.
Myth 1: Brushing one hundred strokes per night makes hair healthy and shiny.
At one point in hair-care history, someone thought that excessive brushing stimulated blood circulation, prompting lazy hair follicles to work extra hard. The truth is that although individual strands of hair are fairly strong, brushing more than necessary is much more likely to cause excessive breakage and damage than to leave you with thicker, shinier hair. This is especially true if you use a brush with plastic bristles, which can catch and snag. Natural-bristle brushes (like those with boar bristles) can distribute beneficial oils from the root to the ends of the hair shaft. But no matter what kind of combing implement you use, you should leave your hair alone once the snarls and tangles are gone. Want an all-natural, vegan hairbrush? Read Easy Greening: Hair Brushes.
Myth 2: Prenatal vitamins help hair grow longer.
Although some women swear by them, there’s no evidence to suggest prenatal vitamins are particularly helpful for hair growth. Hair does grow longer and thicker during pregnancy, but that’s because of higher hormone levels, not because of the vitamins themselves. Vitamins can be helpful for people experiencing poor hair growth due to a vitamin deficiency, but in those instances, a regular multivitamin or an iron supplement will perform just as well as the prenatal variety.
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