Sorry — A Cold Water Rinse Will NOT Make Your Hair Shinier

You might be surprised at how much of your standard hair routine is practiced under false pretenses. To wit: Contrary to popular belief, a daily shampoo will make scalp and strands oily, while an occasional beer wash will actually make your locks shine. Ahead, I use my stylist background and expertise to decipher what is fact and what is fiction as far as your follicles are concerned. Now you can confidently upend your beauty routine, armed with the knowledge of what's actually right — and wrong — for your locks.

Wearing Ponytails Or Braids Can Make Hair Fall Out. TRUE.
Although a sleek, tight pony won't exactly make your hair fall out, strands may break off as a result of being secured in this way. You don't have to nix this hairstyle altogether though; just don't opt for a pony every single day, and make sure to let your hair out before you go to bed.


Pluck A Gray Hair And Two More Will Grow. FALSE.
Why is it that those gray hairs always seem to pop up front and center in our 'dos? Don’t worry, pulling out an obvious stray strand will not cause more gray hairs to grow in its place. Scientific research shows that plucking one hair follicle will only reproduce one new hair follicle (in its place), so it's impossible to generate two gray hair from pulling out a single one.

Stress Causes Gray Hair. FALSE.

It's merely an old wives' tale that stress leads to gray hairs. If you want to get an idea of when you can expect to go gray, look at your family's timeline; it might be the best indicator of your gray hair expectancy.

Going Outside With Wet Hair When It's Cold Outside Can Get You Sick. FALSE.
Stepping outside when temperatures are low will chill your body and can definitely cause your hair to freeze, but it won’t make you sick. Head colds are caused by viruses and bacteria in the air, not cold temperatures alone. If you can, let your hair dry before walking outside when it's freezing — it's just the more comfortable option.

Cold Water Makes Hair Shinier. FALSE.
Here's the thing: Although a cold shower may feel great post-workout or serve as an early morning wake-up call, it will not promote shiny strands. Because your hair does not contain living cells, it can't react to various water temperatures. The best way of creating shine is to use conditioners and styling products that contain silicones and oils that will smooth the hair cuticle.


Prenatal Vitamins Will Make Hair Grow Faster and Thicker. FALSE.
Research suggests that vitamins are vital for hair growth, so if a woman who is not expecting begins taking a prenatal vitamin, it may be better than not taking a vitamin at all, but it's unlikely that she's suddenly going to find herself with a long, full head of hair. While many pregnant women show increased hair and nail growth, it's merely a result of hormonal changes and has no correlation to prenatal vitamins supplements.

Using The Same Shampoo Repeatedly Will Stop It From Working. FALSE.
It's important to use shampoo suited for your particular hair type and texture. Since it’s often hard to find the perfect lather for your locks, when you’ve tried and tested a variety and finally found one you love, I would suggest sticking with it! Switching up your favorite shampoo with another just for the sake of trying something new will most likely not benefit your hair in any significant way.

Comb Hair With 100 Strokes A Day. FALSE.
There is a saying that brushing hair with 100 strokes a day is healthy because it creates natural oils and stimulates scalp circulation, but over-brushing is actually harmful to your tresses, causing cuticle damage and breakage and weakening each individual strand. You should really only brush your hair when you're detangling and styling. Opt for a wide-toothed comb as opposed to a heavy-bristle brush whenever possible to prevent breakage.

More from Hair

R29 Original Series