I have always enjoyed soft and shiny black hair. I found a shampoo and conditioner that suited my hair and massaged my head once a week with coconut oil and that worked in keeping my hair soft and silky until recently when I experienced severe hair fall and dryness in my hair. The shampoo, conditioner and the coconut oil massages continued so what changed? I recently shifted my residence within the same city and I realised that the only thing that changed was the quality of water. The quality of water hugely impacts how your shampoo and conditioner works on your hair. Also, if the water is chlorinated, fluoridated or even mineralised then that can adversely affect your hair.

Hard water makes it difficult to wash the hair properly. Each hair shaft comprises of little scales. Hard water makes these scales stand up which results in your hair becoming rough and tangled. It is very difficult to rinse out the shampoo if your hair is rough and tangled. Soap or shampoo loses its effectiveness in hard water. No matter how much you wash, there will be soap residues left in your hair in the form of soap film. Washing hair in soft water helps remove the soap residue properly and thus the lustrous property of your hair remains intact.

Home Remedies to Manage Hard Water Hair Issues:

1. Vinegar: To cure hard water hair damage at home, try a simple mixture of white vinegar with water. Mix one teaspoon of white vinegar in four to five cups of purified water. Soak your hair with the mixture. Leave it soaked for approximately five minutes. Rinse properly. The hair may smell like white vinegar after you was it off so do not try this remedy in case you have to go somewhere. Try this treatment over the weekend when you know you are at home or before bed time and then shampoo hair in the morning.

2. Baking Soda: To cure the damage caused by hard water to your hair add baking soda to your shampoo. Baking soda in shampoo helps in getting rid of hard water and soap residue in your hair leaving your hair cleaner. The shampoo cleaning property is greatly enhanced if you add baking powder to it. Mix one or half teaspoon of baking powder in your shampoo depending upon the quantity of shampoo used. Use this mixture just like you use your shampoo every time.

3. Use distilled water: If possible then use only distilled water for washing your hair. If that is not possible then keep a glassful of distilled water handy and use it for the final rinse of your hair. This will help in removing some of the hard water residue from your hair.

4. Avoid heat: The hard water makes your hair dry and hot hard water makes your hair drier. Try washing your hair with cold water. If that is not possible then use lukewarm water instead of hot water. Avoid using blow dryers or anything that is hot on your hair.

5. Do not swim without the swimming cap: Make use of a rubber cap to protect your hair from the damaging effects of chlorine in the water. If you are unable to use a cap then massage little olive oil or coconut oil in your hair before swimming.

Additional Reading:

Essentials of Hair Care often Neglected: Hair Cleansing

How to Deal with Common Hair Problems the Ayurvedic Way

All Natural Hair Care Products