Did you know that hard water and curly hair can be a particularly bad combination, causing havoc that you may not even be aware of? With many people this year opting to embrace their hair’s natural texture it stands to reason that you would want to take care of your locks. With dryness and frizziness atypical of wavy, curly and coily hair types it may come as a surprise to many that these conditions can be vastly improved merely down to changing the type of water in your household.
Why is that?
Hard water is water that has a high concentration of the minerals calcium and magnesium. Depending on the area you live in, your water can have a high or low concentration of these minerals. You may notice that the condition and manageability of your hair can change dramatically when you holiday in different parts of the country and this is all down to the hardness of the water.
Although keratin is the main constituent in our hair, small traces of minerals can also be found in its structure. Water itself can account for around 15% as our hair absorbs not only running water, but also water vapour. Because of this, whenever we wet our hair water is absorbed and the minerals present in it lie within our hair strand.
What happens when I wash my hair in hard water?
The effects of this are pretty obvious. Over time, the minerals on your hair will start to build up and your hair will start to feel dry, brittle, dull, easily tangled and frizzy. The situation can have you switching hair products to no avail in an attempt to control its damaging effects. Hair products, especially those for curly hair, do not come cheap so this is certainly not ideal!
It doesn’t stop there however. The minerals in hard water can also create build up on your scalp that looks like dandruff. These minerals can also interfere with the uptake of chemical treatments such as colouring and bleaching resulting in a brassy coloured finish.
Minerals in hard water can also interfere with the pH balance of your hair and scalp oil. Our hair is acidic with a pH of 4.5 – 5.5 and water is neutral at a pH of 7. This neural PH level means it doesn’t interfere with the hair’s ideal pH. However, hard water is alkaline which disrupts the pH balance of your hair and scalp making it vulnerable to fungi and bacteria. Additionally, the mineral deposits will open the cuticle layers on the hair which make your hair feel brittle, dry, frizzy and prone to breakage from all the friction.
So what can you do if you live in a hard water area?
Installing a water softener in your home is the ideal solution. Not only will you have soft water to wash your hair in, you’ll also extend the life of your plumbing and of your washing and dish washing machines and save money on cleaning materials. Your hair might even feel like it’s had a salon treatment as it will feel soft, shiny and smooth and less prone to tangles.
So if you’re finding your hard water and curly hair are really not a match made in heaven, please get in touch with us to find out more about getting a water softener installed in your home.