The different parts of the human body are very important for healthy life. These parts require good care and grooming so that they can function properly. You need to understand how to take care of each of these parts in your good grooming processes.
Healthy and well groomed hair helps to improve your health and appearance. The condition of your hair depends on such factors as good food, heredity and proper care. You should know your type of hair, the materials you need to care for your hair.
Hair combs and brushes
Hair combs and brushes come in different shapes, sizes and colours. The brushes are often made of nylon bristles of different textures. Some bristles are soft while others are coarse.
The base or frame of the brush can be made of either wood or plastic. Combs can be made from wood, metal, plastic or nylon. Some nylon combs tend to have sharp points that can scratch the scalp and split the hair. Such should be avoided.
Points to be considered in choosing hair combs and brushes:
- The length of the hair: Combs and brushes for short hair will not be suitable for long hair.
- State of the hair: e.g. premed and curled hair or plaited/ braided hair, each requires different types of combs.
- The finishing of the comb and brush: They should have smooth finish to avoid damaging the hair and scratching the scalp.
- Durability of the comb or brush: They should be strong enough to last long.
- The amount of money available: Buy the best comb and brush that your money can afford.
Care of combs and hair brushes
Dirty combs and brushes will make the hair dirty. It is therefore important to take good care of your combs and hair brushes. They should not be left to get too dirty before they are washed.
Care of the comb
1) Remove the dirt at the base of the comb using a small brush or short clean broom stick.
2) Form a habit of washing your comb before washing your hair.
3) To wash the comb:
- Soak plastic and metal combs briefly in warm soapy water. Do not soak wooden combs.
- Wash the teeth of the comb and the base using a soft sponge or cloth or brush.
- Remove any dirt at the base of the comb.
- Rinse thoroughly.
- Dry with a clean non-fluffy cloth and leave in a dry airy place for further drying.
Care of the brush
1) After each use, remove the fluff or hair in between the bristles of the brush using a comb.
2) To wash the brush:
- Soak it briefly in warm soapy water.
- Wash the bristles by beating gently in the soapy water until all the dirt is removed.
- Rinse several times until all dirt and soap have been removed.
- Shake to remove as much water as possible and leave in a clean airy place to dry.
Ways of caring for the hair
The hair can be cared for by:
- Washing or shampooing the hair frequently. Short hair can be washed daily while long hair can be washed at least once a week.
- Combing or brushing the hair thoroughly to remove dirt and dry scales (dandruff). It also stimulates the circulation of blood and keeps the hair healthy.
- Oiling the hair regularly to prevent dryness of the hair and scalp. Excessive dryness could lead to hair damage.
Washing or shampooing the hair
- Choose a suitable hair shampoo if you can afford it. Otherwise, choose suitable soft toilet soap.
- Brush or comb the hair properly to remove loose dust and dry scales.
- Wet the hair with clean warm water.
- Apply the shampoo or soap.
- Work the shampoo or soap in thoroughly using your fingertips. Pay particular attention to the crown of the head, fore head and corners of the ears
- Rinse well.
- Repeat steps 4 to 6 until a clean lather is produced especially for dirty long hair.
- Dry the hair with a clean non-fluffy towel.
- Apply hair conditioner if desired. Follow the manufacturer’s instruction.
- Comb out or brush the hair thoroughly.
Boys and some girls keep the hair clean and well groomed by cutting it low and combing it freely. Men generally cut their hair. The hair can be cut into different styles. Hair-cuts are normally given by barbers in their salon.
Plaiting the hair
This is a traditional method of making a woman’s hair in Nigeria and other African countries. Plaiting can be done with thread or without thread i.e. Hair braiding.
Guideline for plaiting the hair.
- Plait the hair once a week or fortnightly to keep it tidy.
- Wash and dry the hair properly before plaiting.
- Oil and comb out the hair properly.
- Part the hair into desired style and sections.
A) Dandruff: This appears as scales on the scalp.
- Simple dandruff is caused by the natural shedding of the dead cells in the surface of the scalp. Dead cells form scales.
- Neglected scales can become infected with bacteria, fungus etc. The result is the production of thick scales and itching.
- Remove as much of the scales as possible by brushing the hair or using a small comb.
- Wash the hair at least three times a week with anti-dandruff or antiseptic shampoo or soap.
- When the hair is completely dry, oil the scalp lightly.
Prevention: Wash the hair regularly and use good hair oil.
B) Hair lice: These are small animals which infest the hair. They are parasites because they live on a person’s hair and suck blood from the scalp. Their bite causes itching.
- Lice thrive in very dirty hair.
- They spread from one person to another through contact.
- Shaving off the hair completely is a good treatment for hair lice. The shavings should be destroyed by burning.
- Where complete shaving is not possible, cut the hair very low. Comb the hair vigorously with a very fine comb that has been dipped in vinegar, to loose the eggs.
- It is also possible to go to a chemist shop and ask for anti-louse ointment. Apply according to direction.
- Keep the hair clean.
- Avoid sharing combs, brushes, scarfs, caps, hats, berets, e.t.c ., with other persons.
- Keep your comb and brushes clean.
- Avoid leaning your head against public seats e.g. in buses, parks, etc. especially if they are dirty. Dirty public seats can harbor lice and other parasites.
C) Ring Worm: This is caused by the growth of fungi between the inner and outer layers of the skin. It shows a central area of skin surrounded by a ring of small round spots. The affected area is bald i.e. without hair.
- Shave the hair.
- See the doctor.
- Always keep the hair clean.
- Do not use other people’s comb, brush or any other articles used for the hair and do not lend out your own.
- Keep all tools used for the hair very clean.