Gleaming, shining, smooth as silk – your hair can be one of your most beautiful assets!
Ever have those days when you look in the mirror and your hair just seems lifeless, dull, even boring? What’s the difference between your day-to-day hair and all those models in the pictures with their highlights and super shine?
Sure, it helps to have professional treatments and styling – and a retouch artist to fancy up your photos. But you can have ‘picture perfect’ hair without spending a lot of time and money in a salon. We have a number of recommendations for optimal Do-It-Yourself hair care in upcoming blogs.
One real answer to beautiful hair is in how you treat your scalp.
It’s not something you may think about a lot unless your scalp gets irritated or you develop scalp problems like dandruff. For many people, scalp health is just an after-thought – a quick shampoo, maybe some conditioner, and then it’s wash-and-go.
But if you really want healthy, beautiful hair, then giving a little extra TLC (Tender Loving Care) to your scalp can have a real payoff.
Diagnose and assess. A first step is to take a close look at your scalp in a mirror – you may want to get a friend to help. With a comb, part your hair to reveal the skin beneath. Notice whether it looks dry, splotchy, or if there are any unusual lumps or bumps. Do you see any flaking, peeling, or differences in color from one section to another? If you’ve been out in the sun, did your scalp get sunburned?
Look along your hairline. This is an area where you can develop skin irritations or even infections but they are relatively easy to see if you look closely. Dirt, dust, and chemicals can also accumulate along the edges of the hair. It’s also an area where the pores of the skin can get clogged – you may see whiteheads or blackheads that need attention.
Deep clean and massage. Press on various points on your scalp and you may feel a variety of sensations; you might feel a knot of tension, a sense of release, maybe even a little pain. Like muscles and tissues elsewhere in your body, your scalp can hold tension. Press and squeeze on pressure points found all over your head to help release tight muscles and help to get blood flowing more freely.
Whenever you shampoo, you can turn a simple wash into a scalp massage treatment. Use your fingers to press and pull. Part and separate your hair so that the shampoo reaches down to the roots and the follicles anchored in the skin. Your hair and your scalp will both be cleaner.
Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) identifies acupressure points on your scalp that relate to other organs. Use two or three fingers at a time to press and make circles wherever you feel a point of sensation on your scalp.
Tone and refresh. Paying attention to the condition of your scalp can make a big difference to your appearance. Like skin everywhere on your body, your scalp needs nutrition and stimulation to improve circulation. You want it to be very clean but at the same time, you don’t want to strip of its natural oils and sebum produced by the sebaceous glands just under the skin. Harsh soaps, shampoos, styling gels, hairsprays, and hair dyes can upset the natural balance. We recommend use of a scalp toner like Paul Penders Holy Basil Conditioning Scalp Toner to help rebalance and support the health of your scalp.
Your beautiful hair starts at the right at the roots. Make scalp care an important part of your beauty regimen.
Image courtesy of marin /FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Next in the Series — A Blogger fights Ageing with PP Products
Where does stress build up in your body? Most people will say they feel tension in their shoulders or their abdomen tightening up. Some of us get headaches when times get tough. And recently I’ve had the strangest sensation of my scalp getting tight.
I have a friend from Taiwan who noticed one day that I was starting to frown as a headache started to trouble me. She asked if she could help and had me sit down comfortably in a chair and close my eyes. She placed her fingers on either side of my skull and squeezed. And then I experienced one of the most intense pains of my life — and then, in seconds, it was gone! I felt better than I had in days.
You can go to an expensive hair salon, spa or resort and indulge in a scalp massage. Or you can travel to India where scalp massage is a centuries-old tradition. It is customary for mothers in India to massage their children’s heads. Or you can DIY.
Scalp massage takes many forms from gentle soothing strokes with fingertips or fingernails to deep tissue and oil massages. One favorite technique of mine is to grab fistfuls of hair and gently pull for a few seconds – quick relief after several hours on the computer. Another is to spread your fingers on either side of your head and squeeze for a few seconds, then release. Then move your hands to the front and back and squeeze. Try also pressing on any sore or tense spots and make circles.
In the course of researching this article, I learned a new term: trichology – the scientific study of the hair and scalp. Your scalp is made up in five layers that medical students learn with the mnemonic – S C A L P:
C: Connective tissue of fat and fibrous tissue
A: Aponeurosis, a tough dense fibrous tissue layer
L: Loose areolar connective tissue layer of collagen which contains the major blood vessels
P: Pericranium which wraps the skull bones
Getting additional blood to your scalp can benefit your hair. Like other cells throughout your body, the follicles that hold the hair to the head can get starved when tensions contract muscles and blood flow. Massage can improve circulation and increase oxygen in the cells.
Beautiful hair starts with a healthy scalp. When I felt a headache coming on tonight, I happened to be looking through the Paul Penders assortment of hair products trying to figure out what to tell you about them. Two products target cleansing and conditioning your scalp and hair.
Pegaga Scalp Cleansing Treatment naturally treats irritated and flaking scalps and features Australian Tea-tree oil and the tropical herb Pegaga, known in Malaysia as the “Miracle Hero of the Rainforest.” Both possess remarkable antiseptic and anti-bacterial qualities to deep-cleanse and revitalize the scalp while helping control itching and flaking.
I grabbed the box marked Holy Basil Conditioning Scalp Toner. Holy Basil is a spicy, aromatic herb used as a stimulant used to treat headaches. Its anti-bacterial properties cleanse and tone scalp in hair care products and can improve scalp problems by stimulating circulation and balancing sebum production. Applying this conditioning skin toner can calm scalp irritations and even help prevent dandruff.
And I’m here to tell you that it makes a great scalp massage lotion. The clear liquid smells nice and feels cool on my scalp. And I’m delighted to say that after applying it and doing a little squeeze-and-release massage, my headache is gone!
By Teviot Fairservis.
On Saturday, February 27, the annual Langkawi Ironman contest takes place, and – as last year – Paul Penders are sponsoring the now 55 years old New Zealander Leslie McMillan.
We had a Pre-Race interview with Leslie two days ago – it can be read here – but today we will concentrate more on what it means and involves being a sponsor for an Iron Man.
13 hours, 17 minutes, and 22 seconds. This was the time Leslie McMillan was exposed to the burning tropical sun during last years Langkawi Ironman contest.
And it IS tropical sun. Langkawi, in Malaysia, is located only 5 degrees north of Equator. The weather forecast for Saturday’s race promises a sunny day, with temperatures very constant at 30 degrees (86 F) during all day.
It is obvious that a whole day in the sun means an enormous skin exposure to the sun. Sunburns and dry skin would be the inevitable result, was protection not used.
So, to protect against the grueling sun, Paul Penders Herbal Sunscreen SPF22 is applied to Leslie’s face, arms, hands, and legs before the race.
Before applying the Herbal Sunscreen SPF 22, a foundation of Paul Penders Aloe & Lavender A.M. Moisturizer is used on all skin areas. This is to preserve the skins natural moisture level.
Since the contest starts with a 3.9 km (2.4 mile) swim in salty water, the hair is an important thing to care for as well.
Before and after the race, Leslie washes his hair with Paul Penders Time-Release Jasmine Shampoo, and as a conditioner, Paul Penders Herbal Lemon Conditioner is used. This, in combination, is the best thinkable preparation for Leslie’s hair before a swim in the salty water and the following exposure to the sun.
As follow-up treatment of the hair, Paul Penders Holy Basil Conditioning Scalp Toner is used for a period after the race. This is to ensure the correct nutrient intake, and to balance the sebum production, as well as to prevent dandruff, and to repair any damaged hair.
This is how you look after 2.4 miles (3.9 km) of swimming, 112 miles (180 km) of biking, and 26.2 miles (42.2 km) of running – all in 13 hrs 17 min and 22 sec
Finally, after each training session – and there have been a lot of them – before resting, Leslie has used Paul Penders Ceramide Recovery Lipo A, C & E , which is a natural skin rescue treatment that helps retexture the skin’s surface, gives a smoother appearance, and has an immediate firming effect.
Leslie might not win the race, but he will for sure be one of the best protected and well prepared contestants when it comes to personal hair and skincare.
Let us finish off with a few facts about Langkawi Ironman:
This year, Langkawi Ironman has 736 participants from 41 countries (as of 15 February).
There will be more than 1.500 volunteers to help out during the race.
A brisk 20 minutes walk during the day will make you sweaty. Imagine, how more than 13 hours of swimming, biking and running will make you feel…
Leslie will be able to tell. And he will certainly share his experiences during the race with us in an interview on the blog next week.
Only one thing remains, and that is to say: Leslie, all of us from Paul Penders Co are full of admiration for what you are doing, and we wish you all the best on Saturday.
Paul Penders Sponsorship – Interview with an Iron Man (2009)
What is an Ironman?
Ironman – Short Update – Leslie Did It! (2009)
Langkawi Ironman in Text and Pictures (2009)
The Story from an Iron Man (2009)
The Oasis Bar and Restaurant Langkawi (Leslie’s place)