|image source: Malibu Wellness Solution|
"Scientists at the Nuffield Foundation point out that the general chemistry of hard water, with its increased -OH ion content, renders it slightly more alkaline (pH= 8.5) than regular water which has a neutral pH of 7. Hair has a slightly acidic pH, and most hair products are formulated to help the hair maintain its acid mantle. Hard water works against this process. In fact, hard water's elevated pH causes the hair shaft to swell and the cuticle layers to lift more than normal. This regular exposure to high pH water can lead to breakage and cause tangly, unmanageable black hair1."How can I tell if I have hard water?
If your hair...
- Becomes easily tangled shortly after conditioning
- Does not lather much when shampooing
- Sheds and breaks easily even after deep conditioning, treatments, etc.
- or, if your water has an extremely strong to overpowering metal/chlorine odor.
- You can also contact your water provider and inquire as to the level of hardness in your water.
Use clarifying/chelating shampoos
Traditional shampoo doesn't have much effect on removing mineral deposits from the hair. Chelating shampoos chemically bind to hard water minerals and help to lift them away. John Master's Organics Apple Cider
Invest in water filters
A decent water filter can filter out excess dirt and metals from the hair however, salts and minerals cannot. You can simply attach a water filter to your shower head and go! A good water filter could cost anywhere from $50-$100.
A water conditioner can be pretty costly but it will actually remove the minerals from the water and convert them into more gentle sodium ions. This pricey option would be a permanent altercation to your plumbing and again, costly. If you can afford it, go for it! However, if you are as frugal as I am, the next option may be more suitable.
Apple cider vinegar rinse
A simple apple cider vinegar rinse would be the most practical and inexpensive solution for clarifying the hair, as well as restoring your hair's natural pH balance. As scientists have proved, the harsh minerals, metals and chlorine that could possibly be building up on your hair, could be reversed with a simple ACV rinse!
The Nuffeld Foundation 1 FAQs
Malibu Wellness Center: Hair Solutions-Hard Water
Associated Content: Hard Water and Hair Breakage in Black Hair Care