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How do I make wispy, sick hair healthy and full again?

My mom's hair is really wispy, especially at the bottom. And it's really rough too. She seems to be really rough with her hair when she washes it, and I'm wondering if that is the problem. If she stops, will that help? Or does she need to try something else...like different shampoo?or conditioner? It's sort of embarrassing. It's really wild and all over the place, and unhealthy.

I would try reading the Wikipedia articles on human hair and conditioners, for starters.

Pay attention to two parts in particular:
  • Acidic hair is smooth, shiny, and lies more flat, while alkaline hair is more wispy and dull, but is also more fluffy and voluminous
  • Moist hair is longer, plumper, and stronger than dry hair
You could increase acidity with lemon juice or with citric acid from a brewing or health food store. (Vinegar would also work, but the smell may not agree with her.) Keeping the hair moist (without regularly dunking your head in water) is more difficult. You may be able to get water-absorbing substances from anti-static dryer sheets. Better still would be to buy a bottle of pure glycerine from the drugstore.

Also, as GuardianFox said, make sure she eats all her vegetables (particularly high-protein ones like lentils) and a good variety of other foods. She made you eat your veggies as a child, right? An ordinary multivitamin supplement couldn't hurt, either.
Short One (author)  NobodyInParticular8 years ago
Thanks. I'm pretty sure she usually takes her vitamins too, so maybe I'll have her try the acidity thing too. We'll be experimenting for a while, probably. Again, thanks.
Try a shampoo designed for dry hair. You don't have to buy a $200 bottle from a salon... a bottle of Head&Shoulders (for dry hair) will do. Wash with that and follow up with a conditioner for dry hair. You can also try a hot oil treatment if you need faster results. You can also try some styling products designed to boost volume and shine to help hide the problem. If all else fails, curls and perms might cover it up. Anyway, the problem might just be her hair's natural way of aging, but it could also be a sign of a missing vitamin, side effect of a drug, or a symptom of illness. In either case, it's not her fault so be nice about it when you broach the subject. She may be aware and embarassed about it and you don't want to hurt her feelings. If she's not feeling herself lately, have her see a doctor or at least a naturopath or dietician.
Short One (author)  DELETED_GuardianFox8 years ago
I'm pretty sure it's been like that for about as long as I can remember. I can't really recall a time when it wasn't like that. Thanks for the advice. I think I'll have her try it sometime.