Our increasing stress levels, unhealthy eating habits and sedentary lifestyles are finally taking a toll on our crowning glory – our dark beautiful Indian hair – The pitch black shinny long hair we Indians used to so proudly flaunt. Very few women can confidently pull off a look with gray hair like Indira Gandhi did but I am not so matured so I plan to keep my hair black for as long as I can.
There is a saying in Tamil called “varumun kaapom” meaning stop before the trouble comes. So if you don’t have gray hair yet, eat your greens, vitamins and fish oil. Take regular oil baths and maintain your hair and go easy on the harsh chemicals by washing hair with natural products.
There is a condition called “pitha narai” (bile graying) when the body has too much bile. If the liver is weak and there is excessive production of bile, even youngsters and teenagers can develop gray hair. This can be controlled and even reversed with diet. A very good medicine for this is curry leaves.
Crush 4 – 5 curry leaves in butter milk and drink it first thing in the morning and see how your hair turns black over time.
Curry leaf makes an excellent hair pack too. Grind it with buttermilk and apply it on hair and wash away with shikakai or shampoo.
A few strands of gray hair is not a major cause for concern but if you are experiencing sudden sprouting of gray hair, then your body is indicating that something is wrong. Lack of proper sleep and dietary deficiency could be a few reasons for this.
There was a time when people were ashamed to admit that they were dyeing their hair as it was considered a vain taboo act. Thank God we are coming out of this hypocrisy and now Indians are open to experiment with hair color. But I have heard friends mention that hair coloring causes more gray hair. It could be the chemicals so try natural methods until a point is reached where chemicals have to be used. Henna can also be used to cover gray hairs. Mix a little coffee powder to your henna mix for that chestnut brown color.
Though genes control how fast we get gray hair, it is natural to want to look youthful. We all worry about a bad hair day because deep down we know hair is as important as our face when it comes to looks. Avoiding the use of harsh chemicals, hair sprays containing alcohol that dries hair, frequent heat treatments etc will keep hair healthy. Sometimes medications can cause hair graying and this can be combated by supplementing with vitamins especially vitamin B12.
India is famous for hair oils. Each part of India has its own homemade oil recipe and Amla or Indian gooseberry is an important hair growth and pigment stimulant. Amla can also be ground to make a hair mask.
Take care of your mane and you will never have a bad hair day.
But most important tip:
Never pluck gray hair. It is believed that in the place of one, 7 more gray hairs will grow.
In this area, I prefer to be superstitious.