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A women looking the opposite direction while she takes a shower

The Effects of Hard Water on Your Hair

You’ve tried switching your shampoo, the frequency in which you wash your hair, incorporated a scalp scrub and even a clarifying shampoo and yet your roots still feel greasy, your hair continues to lay flat or always feels dry and dull. Despite your efforts, there’s nothing you can do if you’re showering in hard water. Read below to discover why you may want to invest in a shower head filter to protect your hair, skin and overall health.

How do you know if you have hard water? Most everyone’s water supply is considered hard water unless you have an in-home salt/sodium treatment filtering your water. There are varying degrees of hard water, however, the easiest way to identify the hardness is by the mineral residue left all over your sink and shower fixtures, the funny taste, the inability to lather with shampoo, and the feeling of dry and tight skin. Hard water contains high levels of minerals like calcium and magnesium that cause the hardness. These can leave an ‘unclean’ film on your hair and skin causing it to never feel clean enough, resulting in over cleansing, over showering, and longer hot showers.

Lets discuss the many implications of hard water.

Hair color: Minerals like calcium can react with and change your hair color resulting in brassiness and color fadage. Iron can interfere with other chemical treatments including hilighting, straightening or relaxing services.

Scalp: Excess minerals in your water can dry your scalp, cause irritation and strip it of a healthy amount of sebum.

Strands: The build-up of excess minerals will leave hair dull and lifeless and easily prone to tangling.

Hair loss and thinning: Over-time, continued build-up on the scalp can clog the hair follicle opening and hinder the quality of hair growth.

Skin: Your skin, much like your scalp, can experience dryness, patchiness, irritation and exacerbate skin conditions like eczema. (I can speak to this, super hard water destroys my sensitive skin).

Overall health: Not only are there negative side effects from simply showing in hard water, but studies have shown that breathing-in chlorine vapors are found to be even more hazardous to our overall health. This may be something to keep in mind if you’re the type to basically hot box your shower with steamy hot water temperatures. Also important to note especially if you live in NYC like myself, hot water strips the lead and lime off old pipes making our water super hard.

My number-one tip to counteract the effects of hard water in your haircare routine? An ACV rinse, which is acidic, can help lower the pH of the hair and break up build up. If you live in a home or own your space, I highly recommend a water filtration system that will help with your shower and tap water or a shower head filter if you rent your space. You can find an easy to install vitamin c infused shower head with filter by Vitaclean here.

The immediate differences you will notice when using a filtered shower head include how much cleaner your roots feel and an overall increase in manageability with your hair.

Let me know if you’ve already made the shift and are currently using a specialty shower head. Leave me any questions in the comments below.

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