11 Ways to Fix Over Processed Hair, According to Experts (2022)

11 Ways to Fix Over Processed Hair, According to Experts (1)

Over the past year or two, I've been through somewhat of a hair renaissance. I spent years hating my natural curls, wishing my texture away in favor of a glossier, straighter variety. "You always want what you can't have," was a phrase that plagued my entire existence. Growingup, mymother thought I was crazy, constantly adulatingmy curls and forbidding me from straightening them. Thank god she did because now they're one of my most cherished attributes. I went from straightening my hair to clipping in extensions each day for almost a decade to blow-drying and curling each strand every morning. Finally, I gave up and accepted my fate as a puffy, frizzy-haired human with curls that are anything but uniform. Truth be told, I've never felt more like me (or gotten as manycompliments).

My one vice, though, that remains throughout all of this is my affinity for bright, cool-blonde highlights. I color my hair a lot, and while it's great for my look,it's pretty terrible for the health and definition of my curls. After my most recent appointment, I noticed a ton ofbreakage, split ends, dry patches, and really uneven length. I was distraught—but, what could I do? I reached out to three hair gurus for advice.

Meet the Expert

Keep reading to find out how (with their sage advice) Irevived my devastatinglyover-processed hair.

11 Ways to Fix Over Processed Hair, According to Experts (2)

01of 10

Be Gentle While Shampooing

11 Ways to Fix Over Processed Hair, According to Experts (3)

The first step everyone should take when treating over-processed hair is to be gentle to your strands while shampooing, and avoid scrubbing too harshly. "Repeated behaviors are how you can make or break your hair," warns Reslan. "When you shampoo your hair, you really want to focus the product and your scrubbing action on your roots. If you scrub your ends or rub your hair together too firmly, you will cause damage to your cuticles." Hair can be most vulnerable when wet, so the next time you're washing your hair, make sure to keep Reslan's advice in mind.

(Video) 5 Tips to Grow Out Dry, Damaged & Bleached Hair

02of 10

Protect Your Hair From Heat

Let's face it: As much as we all love the sleek-straight or full-body-volume locks our hair tools can give us, the heat from these devices can be too much to handle. “Hair can become over-processed for a few reasons," reveals Friese. "Damage from chemical services and overuse of heat tools are the most common."

"If heat styling is something that you cannot get away from, I recommend using a good heat protecting product like the Olaplex No.7 Bonding Oil," says Friese. "It is reparative as well as a good heat protectant."

03of 10

Remove Excess Water Before Conditioning

The secret to treating damaged strands includes simple steps, like making sure your hair is dry enough before coating it with moisture. "Squeeze the excess water out of your hair very well before applying any conditioner or mask, and clip it up to penetrate better," recommends Reslan. "Rinse out at the end of your shower."

Using a good conditioner is a must for any hair care routine. "My go-to deep conditioning treatment is Essential Daily Conditioner Masque by Rare El’Ements," says Reslan.

04of 10

Avoid Towel-Drying

Many of us are guilty of drying our hair with a towel after a shower, but Shab advises against this. "Instead, wrap it in a hair turban and allow to dry slowly. That will maintain more moisture in your hair and [it will] dry softer," she says.

Consider purchasing a microfiber hair towel, like Aquis' Lisse Luxe Hair Turban to soak up your hair's excess water after a shower, making protecting your hair that much easier.

05of 10

Restore Your Hair

"The best thing for over-processed hair is to get the elasticity back into it," Bivona begins. "Protein treatments like Milbon Linkage Meu can be done in the salon—it restores proteins and collagen to help rebuild the hair from the inside out."

Afterward, I got a set of four Milbon Deesse's MEU hair treatments andused anampoule each week for four weeks to extend the benefits. And boy, were there benefits. Whenthe month was over, I felt my hair coming back to life. It wassilkier, smoother, shinier, seemingly stronger, and definitely more moisturized. But it wasn't back to its former self just yet.

(Video) Signs Your Relaxed Hair Is Over-Processed & Tips To Fix It | Style Domination

06of 10

Go for a Fresh Cut

11 Ways to Fix Over Processed Hair, According to Experts (4)

"A good haircut will also help hair that has had a bit too much chemical processing. The cut will take off any split ends that may travel up the hair and wreak more havoc," Bivona reveals. So, I headed over to John Barrett Salon for my first cut in almost two years. Yikes, I know, but my hair grows slowly and haircuts make me nervous. Like the angel that she is, Bivona dusted my ends, removing barely anylength. I left with an awesome cut and zero split ends.

Guess who else is a haircut advocate: Friese. "Though it is not the most favorable option, a good haircut is always a great way to help restore a healthy mane," she recommends. "Cutting off the over-processed hair and starting anew with the healthier hair on the head is an option to 'restart' a healthy hair journey. Damaged strands can break and continue to do so along up the shaft making the hair shorter, so often a good snip is the solution."

07of 10

Add Moisture Back

11 Ways to Fix Over Processed Hair, According to Experts (5)

"Getting moisture back is key," Bivona explains. "Replace your daily conditioner with a mask—I love Shu Uemura's Ultimate Remedy Extreme Restoration Treatment. This way, you're putting in the maximum moisture with every wash. I recommend leaving it in up to 20 minutes and then rinsing thoroughly."

Try using your mask in lieu of conditioner each time you shower. It's a total game-changer in terms of hydrating, softening, and strengthening your hair.

After finding such success with the Shu Uemura mask and in-salon treatment, I was addicted. I decided to try a few more beloved offerings in search of even more noticeable results.

08of 10

(Video) Hair Repair Treatment For Extremely, Dry, Damaged & Chemically Burned Hair - Remove Split Ends

Seek a Professional Smoothing Remedy

11 Ways to Fix Over Processed Hair, According to Experts (6)

If you're looking to treat your hair outside of your home, you may consider searching for a salon that offers a professional smoothing treatment. Friese recommends the Keratin Complex Smoothing System, which "can target weak spots, reinforce the hair's structure, and help repair the damage," she explains. "This treatment also helps control frizz and reduce drying time, which in turn, will lessen some of the need for heat styling."

09of 10

Apply Leave-in Conditioner

When a busy work schedule or a tight budget makes it hard to get to the salon, it's vital to find time to treat your hair at home. “At-home hair care is very important every day, but especially when dealing with over-processed strands,” Friese emphasizes. “Regular use of a leave-in treatment, such as the Redken's Extreme Anti-Snap, is agreat option for after shampooing (and conditioning) before styling your hair,” she recommends.

10of 10

Use Oil to Prevent More Damage

"Try using either camellia oil," Bivona suggests, "which is a prominent ingredient in my absolute favorite post-shower serum, or coconut oil daily on wet and dry hair to introduce moisture and protect your hair from any more damage."

After using each of the products religiously, I thought it wise to also put off my next color appointment. To keep my hair bright and my roots at bay, I invested in Shu Uemura'sColor Lustre Cool Blonde Shade Reviving Balm.

It works to balance mycool-toned color and keep brassy tones to minimum in-between highlights. The genius is in the formula, whichsubtly deposits color while canceling out unwanted yellows. Plus, it nourishes hair to leave it even healthier and more vibrant than before. I use it in the shower instead of shampoo once a weekstarting at the mid-lengths and working towards the ends.Then, I keep it in for the rest of the shower (at least 10 minutes) and rinse before toweling off.

FAQ

  • What causes over-processed hair?

    Your hair is over-processed when it's been damaged by heat, relaxers, or hair dye.

    (Video) Hair Mistakes That Age You Faster // SIMPLE FIX TO COMMON MISTAKES! #hairstyle #youthful
  • How can you tell your hair is over-processed?

    The tell-tale sign of over-processing is dry, brittle hair. Your hair can also look visibly another texture—for example, curly hair can have straight, damaged ends. You might also have a lot of frizz and wayward cowlicks.

  • Can you reverse over-processed hair?

    Once your hair has been damaged by heat, dye, or a relaxer, you really can't undo the damage. However, you can make your hair look and feel better by adding deep-conditioning masks, leave-in conditioners, and hair restoration products. You can also think about heading to the salon for a cut and a professional treatment as well.

How to Transition to Gray Hair From Colored Hair

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FAQs

Can over-processed hair be repaired? ›

Can you reverse over-processed hair? Once your hair has been damaged by heat, dye, or a relaxer, you really can't undo the damage. However, you can make your hair look and feel better by adding deep-conditioning masks, leave-in conditioners, and hair restoration products.

Can extremely damaged hair be repaired? ›

For the most part, hair damage is permanent because hair is actually a collection of dead cells, making them beyond repair. The only real cure is time, a pair of shears, and taking steps to prevent new damage.

How do you tame over-processed hair? ›

You can end up with a rough resolve. The taming shampoo from the gold wear range is going to close

How long does it take for over processed hair to get back to normal? ›

Once you've snipped a few inches and used a mask the right way, you'll need to be patient — shocking, we know, but transformations don't happen overnight. Expect to wait four to six months before your hair is in its best shape again.

Does Olaplex work on over processed hair? ›

Kenyon says the product can benefit those who have damage due to other chemical treatments (relaxing, keratin, straightening) and those whose hair is just wrecked from wear and tear from styling tools. As far as different hair textures go, Kenyon says Olaplex works for everyone.

Can Olaplex restore damaged hair? ›

Not only does it repair and strengthen your hair, but it also continues to protect it from damage. Olaplex Hair Perfector No. 3 works with all hair types on a molecular level to repair and restore your hair from broken bonds.

Is coconut oil good for over processed hair? ›

It works incredibly well for repairing damaged hair that's overprocessed, heat-damaged, or just naturally dry. Coconut oil is also an antifungal, making it a perfect natural anti-dandruff treatment and preventative.

What is the best product for severely damaged hair? ›

PureWow
  1. Pureology Nanoworks Gold Shampoo. ...
  2. Moroccanoil Hydrating Shampoo. ...
  3. Nexxus Keraphix Conditioner For Severely Damaged Hair. ...
  4. It's A 10 Miracle Leave-in Product. ...
  5. Shea Moisture Manuka Honey & Mafura Oil Intensive Hydration Hair Masque. ...
  6. Ogx Thick & Full Biotin & Collagen Weightless Healing Oil Treatment.
21 Dec 2021

How do I deeply hydrate my hair? ›

The more moisture for thick, coarse dry hair, the better. So use a rich, rinse-out conditioner after every shower, and follow it up with a moisturizing leave-in spray before styling. Once a week, apply a deep conditioning mask. Allow it to penetrate for five to 15 minutes for a silky, smooth result.

How can I fix my chemically damaged hair at home? ›

Home remedies for damaged hair
  1. Nourish the hair with extra virgin olive oil. ...
  2. Try a “strength session” with eggs. ...
  3. Close cuticles with apple cider vinegar. ...
  4. Thicken your strands with bananas. ...
  5. Smooth your locks with mayonnaise. ...
  6. Condition the hair with aloe vera juice or gel. ...
  7. Combat dry hair with sunflower oil.
22 Aug 2022

How do you fix fried hair overnight? ›

Look for a hair mask with ingredients that can help damaged hair, such as jojoba oil, argan oil, wheat proteins, and keratin. If your hair is extremely fried and damaged, you may want to leave the mask on overnight. Wear a shower cap or plastic wrap over the mask so it doesn't stain your pillowcases or sheets.

How can I get my hair healthy again? ›

7 Ways To Fix Damaged Hair and Get Your Healthy Hair Back
  1. Don't Overwash Hair. ...
  2. Use The Right Brush / Comb for Your Hair Type. ...
  3. Try Natural Home Ingredients To Treat Your Hair. ...
  4. Quit Using the Blow Dryer. ...
  5. Trim Your Hair Regularly. ...
  6. Avoid Exposure From the Sun. ...
  7. Eat Hair Healthy Foods.

Will damaged hair grow back healthy? ›

Does damaged hair grow back healthy? The only way to get healthy hair is to allow your hair to grow without further damage. If you'd damaged your hair by over-styling, too much heat or over coloring with harsh chemicals, the good news is - your hair will grow back healthy.

How long does it take to rehydrate hair? ›

Use lightweight to medium weight conditioning treatments. Rather than soaking your hair in coconut oil for 30 minutes, try a medium density protein rich hair mask and leave in for 5-10 minutes. As a general rule: You probably don't need to leave hydrating treatments in overnight.

How long does it take to repair extremely damaged hair? ›

Using products that are designed to nourish the scalp and hair can definitely speed up this process, but on average you'd be looking at six months to a year to fully see a difference in your hair's condition.

How can I grow my damaged hair faster? ›

8 Expert Tips For Growing Damaged Hair
  1. Cut Your Losses. ...
  2. Keep Heat Styling To A Minimum. ...
  3. Don't Over-Wash. ...
  4. Condition, Condition, Condition. ...
  5. Be Extra Gentle When It's Wet. ...
  6. Eat Your Hair Healthy. ...
  7. Avoid Certain Hairstyles. ...
  8. Try A Targeted Treatment.
20 Jul 2018

How long does it take for bleached hair to go back to normal? ›

Especially for bleach hair, you'll have to grow new hair to get your bleached hair back to usual. The time it would take depends mostly on how rapidly your hair grows, but it might take anywhere from two to three years.

What is a good protein treatment for hair? ›

Healthline's picks for best protein treatments for hair
  • Ouai Hair Treatment Mask.
  • OGX Extra Strength Hydrate and Repair.
  • Shea Moisture Manuka Honey & Yogurt.
  • Hi-Pro-Pac Extremely Intense Protein Treatment.
  • It's a 10 Miracle Leave-in Plus Keratin.
23 Jun 2022

How long does it take for Olaplex to repair damaged hair? ›

If you're short on time you will be able see the results of Olaplex in as little as 10 minutes. However, On their Instagram, Olaplex has said you can leave the treatment on overnight. Just make sure your hair doesn't come into contact with your face or eyes!

What Olaplex should I use for damaged hair? ›

You should use the two-part system, of Olaplex No. 0 Intensive Bond Building Treatment and Olaplex No. 3 Hair Perfector on average once or twice a week. If your hair is severely damaged, we recommend using it three times a week.

Why does Olaplex work so well? ›

Olaplex works on repairing your hair not increasing its density. Olaplex realigns broken disulfide bonds, which helps strengthen the hair after chemical services. This is especially helpful for those who have chemically processed their hair and are dealing with fragile, thin strands.

How many times do you need to use Olaplex 3 to see results? ›

How often can you use No. 3? Once a week is suggested for healthy hair. For those with compromised hair, we recommend 2-3 times a week in combination with your favorite moisture and protein treatments where applicable.

Can you repair gummy hair? ›

The best way to fix gummy, stretchy hair is to use a deep conditioner or hot oil treatment. Deep conditioners and hot oil treatments help to add moisture and shine to the hair.

How can I hydrate my hair naturally? ›

The good news is that there are a few things you can do if you feel like reducing the dryness of your hair.
  1. Get a trim. ...
  2. Take vitamins. ...
  3. Add omega-3s and antioxidants to your diet. ...
  4. Avoid washing your hair every day. ...
  5. Wrap your hair instead of air drying. ...
  6. Cut down on heat styling. ...
  7. Try colder showers. ...
  8. Use essential oils.
5 Dec 2019

Which oil is best for hair? ›

Best hair oils for hair growth and thickness
  1. Castor oil. Rich in vitamin E, this oil is loaded with proteins and minerals, and works wonders for your hair. ...
  2. Coconut oil. ...
  3. Argan oil. ...
  4. Olive oil. ...
  5. Tea tree oil. ...
  6. Rosemary oil. ...
  7. Almond oil. ...
  8. Amla oil.
21 Sept 2022

Can hair grow back after chemical damage? ›

Damaged hair follicles cannot grow new, healthy hair. Once the hair follicles are damaged, it is highly unlikely that non-surgical hair loss treatments will be effective. Fortunately, patients with hair loss caused by chemical damage are typically great candidates for surgical hair restoration.

What is the best homemade hair moisturizer? ›

An olive oil and coconut oil mask is the best concoction for high gloss shine, Abramite says. Both are natural emollients that keep hydration in the hair so it can remain smooth, soft and shiny. Combine olive oil and coconut oil.

What is the best hydrating shampoo? ›

Our Best Shampoos For Dry Hair To Buy Now
  • Pureology. Hydrate Shampoo. ...
  • Biolage Professional. Hydra Source Shampoo. ...
  • Shu Uemura. Urban Moisture Hydro-Nourishing Shampoo for Dry Hair. ...
  • Mizani. Moisture Fusion Moisture Rich Shampoo. ...
  • Shu Uemura. Cleansing Oil Shampoo. ...
  • Redken. All Soft Argan-Oil Enriched Shampoo for Dry Hair. ...
  • Mizani. ...
  • Redken.

What does mayonnaise do to your hair? ›

Mayonnaise contains vegetable oil. According to an article in the International Journal of Phytocosmetics and Natural Ingredients, when a person applies it directly to the scalp as a shampoo or conditioner, vegetable oil increases hair softness, hydration, and strength.

How long does it take for bleached hair to go back to normal? ›

Especially for bleach hair, you'll have to grow new hair to get your bleached hair back to usual. The time it would take depends mostly on how rapidly your hair grows, but it might take anywhere from two to three years.

How do you fix fried hair fast? ›

Home Remedies For Fried Hair
  1. Hair Masks With Moisturizing Ingredients. Save. ...
  2. Cut Down The Frequency Of Shampooing. The chemicals in shampoos can strip away the natural oil from the scalp (3). ...
  3. Start Using Leave-in Conditioner. Save. ...
  4. Air-Dry Your Tresses. ...
  5. Use The Best Hair Oil For Your Fried Hair.
30 Sept 2022

Will your hair ever be the same after bleaching it? ›

Like the texture of our skin cannot be changed after using certain skincare products, after bleaching there is no chance that our hair would grow in a different color. Hair is made up of keratin, which at its basic form is nothing but DNA. Whatever your stylist does to your hair, DNA structure cannot be changed.

Will my hair grow back healthy after bleaching? ›

Bleached hair never returns to normal, so cutting it off is the only way to get rid of it and restore your hair back to its former color for good. As a bonus, you'll also eliminate all the bleach damage, so your hair can grow back strong and healthy.

Can I go back to my natural hair color after bleaching? ›

Bleached hair is the hair that has had the color taken away. You can't get the color back unless you put it on your hair again. So, it will last till the moment you cut off all the bleached length. Or re-dye it.

How can I fix my chemically damaged hair at home? ›

Home remedies for damaged hair
  1. Nourish the hair with extra virgin olive oil. ...
  2. Try a “strength session” with eggs. ...
  3. Close cuticles with apple cider vinegar. ...
  4. Thicken your strands with bananas. ...
  5. Smooth your locks with mayonnaise. ...
  6. Condition the hair with aloe vera juice or gel. ...
  7. Combat dry hair with sunflower oil.
22 Aug 2022

What's the best product for damaged hair? ›

PureWow
  1. Pureology Nanoworks Gold Shampoo. ...
  2. Moroccanoil Hydrating Shampoo. ...
  3. Nexxus Keraphix Conditioner For Severely Damaged Hair. ...
  4. It's A 10 Miracle Leave-in Product. ...
  5. Shea Moisture Manuka Honey & Mafura Oil Intensive Hydration Hair Masque. ...
  6. Ogx Thick & Full Biotin & Collagen Weightless Healing Oil Treatment.
21 Dec 2021

Can you reverse heat damaged hair? ›

The simple answer is no, heat damage is irreversible. Once the protein bonds are broken and the hair cuticles are cracked, the inner cortex is exposed to all types of damage. With the cortex exposed, your hair becomes weaker and less pliable.

How do you fix fried hair overnight? ›

Look for a hair mask with ingredients that can help damaged hair, such as jojoba oil, argan oil, wheat proteins, and keratin. If your hair is extremely fried and damaged, you may want to leave the mask on overnight. Wear a shower cap or plastic wrap over the mask so it doesn't stain your pillowcases or sheets.

How do you rehydrate dry brittle hair? ›

Dry Hair Care: How To Moisturize Dry Hair
  1. Choose a shampoo that is designed for dry hair. ...
  2. Skip the daily shampooing. ...
  3. Avoid extreme weather conditions. ...
  4. Waterproof your hair with a thick conditioner cream before taking a dip in the pool. ...
  5. Ditch the chemicals when taming frizzy hair.

Why is my hair getting frizzy as I get older? ›

As we get older, our hair texture changes dramatically. Hair will slowly become drier, coarser, and thinner over the years. The truth is that as we grow older, the oils that our scalp relies on for nourishment decrease, resulting in drier, frizzier hair.

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