Beautiful hair – whatever your age

Women have always known that hair becomes more difficult to style and maintain with age, but experts now confirm that it does indeed age along with our skin and bodies.

Whenever hair is neglected or abused its strength starts to decline, no matter what your age. However, ageing hair is far more delicate and needs a little extra tender loving care.

Hair actually starts to age after the age of 25. Each strand shrinks 10 per cent in diameter and may become duller due to loss of the colour pigment melanin. Just like prematurely aged skin, hair can also be prematurely aged by abuse and misuse of chemicals and heat styling tools. Signs include weakness or brittleness, dryness, flaking scalp, split ends and an extra fine and frizzy texture.

Ageing hair needs to be strengthened and moisturised by the right combination of products. This can be easily achieved with a daily care regime as well as the right haircut.
Celebrity New York hair designer Philip Pelusi recommends that ageing hair be cut and styled a little differently. He says softer, loose curls or waves make anyone appear younger, whereas sharp angles and severe shapes will have the opposite effect.Pelusi also suggests that ageing hair looks at its best when treated to softer, slightly lighter hair colour with varying tones. Dark, solid shades must be avoided. Hair colour also needs to complement skin and eye colour, so a consultation with a skilled salon colourist is advisable.

Pelusi offers his top 10 anti-ageing tips for hair.

•Use products specifically designed to rejuvenate ageing hair. Dove Pro-Age shampoo and conditioner is specifically made for ageing hair, but your hairdresser can tailor-make a hair care regime for you. Follow the regime consistently for best results.

•Treat your hair to regular salon hair and scalp treatments for deep, intense conditioning.

•Supply nutrients to your hair through a healthy diet and supplements of essential fatty acids. Hair is definitely a reflection of inner health.

•Drink plenty of water to keep skin and hair hydrated.

•Exercise helps maintain a healthy blood flow to the scalp. This will help encourage healthy hair growth.

•Maintain a relaxation programme to keep stress at bay. Stress can take its toll on the health of your hair and skin.

•Get plenty of rest. Proper sleep is very important to maintain the health of the entire body, including the hair.

•Keep the scalp in its optimum healthy state. A healthy scalp means healthy hair.

•Treat wet hair with tender loving care. Apply a detangling product before combing it and use a wide toothed comb only. Never brush wet hair as it will break.

•Sleep on a satin pillowcase to reduce friction on the hair, which can cause breakage.

Picture caption: Hair starts to age after the age of 25.