We often hear people say, “looks like today is a bad hair day”, haircare using the right oil and shampoo can make all days, “Good hair days”. Hair care was very simple and natural in the past. With changes in the lifestyle of people and hair care services, various hair care products came into the market which made it more challenging for the sellers and buyers as well. We should understand while the actual hair appears outside of our body on our scalp, the living parts of the hair are beneath the skin. We need products that work from within. Oiling our hair helps in regulating the health of our hair. Washing our hair removes excess sweat and oil, dirt from the hair. A balanced diet and hydration are equally important to maintain healthy hair. Using natural ingredients in our hair care routine and avoiding chemicals is the best choice we can make.
Oiling of hair which is typically done before shampooing and if done on regular basis works like magic on our scalp and hair and provides much-needed moisture and nourishment. We can read about the usage of hair oil in history too like the Egyptians used castor oil and almond oil since Egypt has hot and dry weather. We can note that the necessity of the kind of hair oil changed as per the region. In India, base oils made using mustard, sesame, castor, coconut have always been used which were infused with herbs and other plant extracts depending on the condition of the hair. Amla was added to treat hair loss and Bringaraj for stress relief. Usage of any hair oil is incomplete without a good massage in typical desi or Indian style which we proudly call Champi. New haircare products entered the market which tried to depict that the product has benefits that a hair oil can provide, we started favoring hair serums, hair masks and so on which cannot provide the benefits of natural hair oil. Even if we use the new age hair care products, we should continue using natural and herbal hair oils. One thing is for sure that artificial hair oil products have a temporary effect on our hair and are mostly external whereas a natural and herbal hair oil can reach the root of the hair and provide long-lasting effects. Traditional and natural herbal hair oils are definitely making a comeback.
CHAMPU to SHAMPOO
A perfect massage to cleanse the body and hair was known as Champu in India for many years. The colonial traders used to indulge in their daily bath with a Champu. When they returned to Europe, they introduced their hair treatment inspired by Champu and called it Shampoo. A variety of herbs and their extracts have been used to cleanse the hair since ancient times, shikakai is one of them which is popular to date. Shampoo came into existence in other parts of the world and more changes were made with time and natural shampoo became detergent-based, sulfate-based, parabens-based, perfumed-based, and synthetic-based too. Shampoo then contained chemicals only and the natural ingredients slowly went missing.
Make a choice: HERBAL or CHEMICAL based?
When we decide to use a new hair product, we often wonder if the hair product, maybe oil or shampoo will damage our hair with the chemicals in it. The ingredients in a chemical-based shampoo might be good for the short term but are of serious concern when used on a long-term basis. Chemical-based shampoos provide short-term solutions. Chemical-based shampoos affect the natural quality of our hair.
Herbal products might work slowly on the hair but their natural extracts and herbs are better absorbed by the hair. Since the herbal hair products are derived from nature, for example, virgin coconut oil, they are eco-friendly post usage too. Herbal shampoos do not produce much lather and we tend to believe that the more the foam, the better the shampoo, the foam is due to sulfates which generally dries the hair and washes off the natural oils and moisture of the hair. To know the effects of herbal products, we should detox our hair from chemical-based hair oils and shampoos and try herbal products manufactured by trusted brands, suitable for our hair for long-term usage, this will provide results and rejuvenate our hair and make them stronger and healthier.