But with hair, the things many of us do to help it are actually hurting it. Most of us treat shampoo as if it's toothpaste for our head- we've got to use it every day. But that doesn't have to be the case. Some people find that their hair has just as much body and shine without shampooing every day (and they like the fact that they can take a break from putting additional chemicals on their head). On the other hand, if shampooing is a Zen experience for you, its calming benefits may well do more for you than its hair-stripping effects, so we can't argue with daily shampoos (you can also use conditioner alone).
Now, here's some information that's going to make your hair stand up. Artificial coloring on your head- whether you're bleaching it or coloring it -is the equivalent of artificial coloring in food: It may make it look as pretty as can be, but it's not always the healthiest thing you can do to your head. There is some suspicion that permanent black hair dye can cause leukemia and lymphomas and some chemicals that are no longer used caused bladder cancer. So the purple Mohawk you're considering? It's probably fine for your health (temporary hair dyes are safer than permanent dyes), though probably not for your next job interview. Bleaching, on the other hand, will really run up your hair bill as you try to salvage damage.
Here's why: The pigment of your hair comes from the inner two layers. When you bleach your hair, you damage the shingles that create the covering of the hair shaft. The dye, which slip though the gaps in the outer layers, swells to give your hair a different color. But the prior or current damage the bleached caused allows the dye to slowly slip out of the hair, so you end up losing the full body of the hair faster than if you just left it alone.
This material came to you from YOU: Being Beautiful, by Michael F. Roizen, M.D., and Mehmet C. Oz, M.D.