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5 min read

Cold water myths that don’t work for your hair and the myths that do

Cold water myths that don’t work for your hair and the myths that do

If you’re diligently washing your hair with cold water to make it grow faster and look better but still not seeing results, it could be because cold water has no impact on your hair and scalp.

This myth has been around for a long time, and you probably know people who swear by it, but they might not be getting the results they think they are. In fact, there’s a chance a cold water rinse is bad for your hair.

The cold water myth

Have you heard that rinsing your hair with cold water is good for your scalp, just like it is for the skin on your face? The theory is that cold water will contract the pores on your face, which means it will also seal the cuticles of your hair. You want sealed cuticles to encourage your hair to lie flat and to reflect light better, making it appear shiny.

There’s also the myth that using hot water causes your pores to open up too much and then you will lose hair when you shower. This myth implies that the entire cleansing process for your scalp and hair should be done with cool water.

Finally, you may have heard that cold water is an excellent detoxifier. Because of this, cold water will more successfully remove dirt, debris, and excess oil from your scalp and hair.

All of these cold water beliefs are myths, so let’s look at the reality of using cold water on your hair.

The cold water truth

Using cold water to shampoo your hair is not as effective as using warm or hot water. Loosening dirt that’s trapped in hair oils and rinsing them clear is easier when the water is warmer. If you’d like a demonstration of this, try smearing butter on the back of your hand and then wash it with cold water. Then do the same to the other hand, but wash it in warm water. 

Cold water can actually cause the scalp pores to close, but this opening and closing of the pores do not prompt your hair to fall out or to stay put. But the cold water on your scalp can cause the blood vessels to constrict. This can actually be a bad thing as the constricting of capillaries slows or stops nutrient-rich blood from flowing into the area and keeping your scalp healthy.

The idea that cold water seals the cuticles of your hair is one that’s been embraced all over and for quite a long time. An article in Allure cites the research of TRI Princeton that finally proved that cold water does not make hair look shinier. 

Steam and warmer water can cause the cuticle to raise slightly, but cold water does not close it, it’s up to your conditioner to prompt this reaction. 

The best way to grow your hair and add shine

If cold water is a myth, what is the best way to make your hair grow faster and look shinier? The answer is two-fold, and part of it has absolutely nothing to do with how you wash and condition your hair.

The health of your hair is largely determined by genetics, which you can’t control or change, but what you can control is the way you nourish your body and your hair. The best way to improve the health of your hair is to eat a diet that’s designed to support hair health or add a high-quality vitamin to your daily regimen to ensure your hair has what it needs to grow healthy and strong.

When it comes to cleaning your hair, finding haircare products that are designed to treat your personal hair characteristics is the best route. Use water that is comfortable for you, not too hot and not too cold. 

Beyond that, the American Academy of Dermatology gives the following hair cleaning tips:

Wash as much as your hair needs it

♦ Concentrate your washing efforts on the scalp

♦ Use conditioner after every shampoo

♦ Concentrate conditioner on ends of your hair

Final thoughts

The good news is you don’t need to freeze in the shower anymore while you blast your hair with cold water to make it grow faster and look shinier. This myth has been believed for way too long, and it’s now time to let go of it and focus on what can actually help your hair look its best.

The best way to have healthy looking hair is to actually have healthy hair. There are no short cuts to growing healthy hair, so starting with good nutrition is crucial. 

Eating foods that are great for your hair can require quite a lot of research, and eating foods you may not like. If this seems too daunting for you, then a high-quality supplement can be your answer.

Finally, finding products that are designed to treat your hair characteristics is the best way to manage dry hair, oily hair, flyaways, and whatever other problems you may have. In time you’ll have the hair you always wanted.

At Hair La Vie, we know that your hair is an integral part of how you present yourself to the world and shape your authentic style.

Join our private Facebook Community for a safe, human-moderated space to share your Hair Journey, discover new natural beauty, and take steps towards becoming “you” with the help of an understanding, supportive community.

Join now for instant access to livestreams, discussions, and exclusive access to new products!

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    At Hair La Vie, we know that your hair is an integral part of how you present yourself to the world and shape your authentic style.

    Join our private Facebook Community for a safe, human-moderated space to share your Hair Journey, discover new natural beauty, and take steps towards becoming “you” with the help of an understanding, supportive community.

    Join now for instant access to livestreams, discussions, and exclusive access to new products!

    JOIN THE GROUP