Victoria’s Secret model Alessandra Ambrosio single-handedly ignited a new hair craze after an Instagram photo of her stylist running an open flame up and down her hair to burn off frizzies and split ends went viral earlier this week.
Called velaterapia, this Brazilian hair treatment has been around for years. But let's get real—that doesn't mean you should try it.
You don’t need to resort to setting your hair on fire to make your tresses look soft and shiny. Why risk potentially burning off a big chunk of hair (and having to endure that gross burnt hair smell) when you can eliminate frizziness and split ends just by changing your diet?
Here's how it works: While the hair that's already on your head isn't technically alive, you can change the composition of the oils your scalp produces. So every time you brush your strands, you'll be calming split ends and coating roughed up hair cuticles. Plus, not only will eating these foods treat your current hair issues, you can virtually guarantee that as your hair grows it will come in stronger, shinier, and fuller.
If frizzy hair is your problem, adding more fatty acids into your diet could be your answer. Gamma-linolenic acid and omega-3 fatty acids help hair follicles repair and prevent your from getting split ends and frizz in the first place. Freshly ground flaxseeds sprinkled over your daily oatmeal and a handful of walnuts as a snack should do the trick, or if you’d really like to double down on your omega-3 intake integrate fish like wild-caught Alaskan salmon and sardines into your meal plan.
If you find your hair breaking and falling out as you wash or style it, your coffee addiction could be culpable. Often drinking too much coffee and caffeine can inhibit vitamin B absorption, which plays a crucial role in rebuilding and repairing skin and hair. Vitamin B12 is can only be found naturally in animal products like fish, poultry, eggs, and dairy, but lots of soy and rice products fortify their foods with vitamin B12. Get the rest of your B vitamins through foods like oats, avocados, and brazil nuts.
Finally, if your hair is feeling thin and brittle, try boosting the amount of protein you’re eating to strengthen the hair follicle as it grows. A simple option is adding a scoop of nutritional collagen to your morning smoothie–collagen is an incredibly important building block in skin and hair that’s easy for your body to digest, and you’ll see results within 6 weeks.
Remember: Healthy hair comes from a healthy scalp. Detergents and chemical agents in some shampoos and conditioners are doing your hair and scalp more harm than good and can cause dryness and irritation. All-natural and sulfate free products are best for your scalp to produce healthy, gorgeous hair. Or for bonus points make your own organic shampoo!
Photo credit: Morgan Sessions via Unsplash