Daily Hair Care
( Originally Published 1936 )
The best thing for the hair is combing and brushing it. To make this effective, however, it is important that the comb and brush be clean and antiseptic. They should be washed frequently in soap and water, or ammonia, and dried in the sun, if possible. If the sun is not available they may be wrapped in a clean towel and placed on a window sill where the fresh air can reach them.
The daily care of the hair is the best preventive for dandruff. A stiff brush should be run all over the hair and scalp until all the scales are loosened, using a scrubbing motion in going over the scalp. Then the head should be held down, the hands run through the hair, slapping the scalp, and the loosened scales shaken out. The hair should then be brushed again thoroughly. This should be accompanied by a thorough massage of the scalp to bring good circulation to the hair papillae and to stimulate the nerves.
For hair which is becoming thin and which is also affected with dandruff, pulling out the hairs is a good form of treatment. Grasp the hair and pull out as much as will come without causing pain. This will only take out dead or dying hairs, which will be replaced by new hair if the roots are healthy. Massaging should also accompany this. It is a good thing to get rid of these dead and dying hairs, for if they are left in they weaken the hair papillae and the new hairs that grow, come in less vigorous.
Three minutes a day should be devoted to the normal scalp. More time will be required if there is dandruff or thinning of the hair.
Children should be taught brushing of the scalp as part of the daily routine as emphatically as they are the daily brushing of the teeth.
If daily care is practiced the disease of dandruff, which begins in most cases at the age of puberty, will not come on.
A great many women complain that their hair is of uneven length. This is a perfectly normal condition and to be expected. Each hair has a certain length of life, varying with different individuals. After its normal life it falls out and nothing can prevent this. This need not be a source of worry as, in a healthy scalp, a new hair is waiting to take its place.
Splintering and breaking of the hair ends is usually a result of too vigorous brushing of abnormally dry hair. This does not indicate any disease. The idea of singeing the ends of these split hairs because it closes the pores of the hair and keeps the oil in is nonsense. There are no holes or pores through the center of hairs and no oil circulates inside the hair itself.