Long Hair Care Tips 6 benefits of hair clarifying shampoo By: Dani Arthur * Totally-long-hair.com Have you ever had a favorite shampoo or conditioner just not leave your hair feeling fabulous like it once did? Most likely your long hair is suffering from product build-up. Using the same shampoo and conditioner regularly over a period of time can leave your hair looking dull and your products no longer effective, advises Cindy Bernacett, a licensed cosmetologist in Davy, FL. One important long hair care tip: Alternate your hair products. Here's the why! 2 Topics: what is hair clarifying shampoo, clarifying treatment, where to buy, conditioner, long hair care The reason product build-up leaves your hair dull and unmanageable is simple. Shampoos and conditioners have ingredients that intend to clean, detangle and moisturize your long hair. Those same ingredients coat your hair and are absorbed into your cuticles. They're doing their job. Hair cuticles, however, also need to be able to absorb moisture to remain hydrated on the inside. If the cuticles become clogged, your hair becomes dry and brittle from the inside, even though you're conditioning your hair. You'll find that you're fighting dry, frizzy hair, or your hair is limp and lifeless. A scalp with clogged follicles can lead to scalp ailments. Excess oils, dirt, dead skin cells, air pollutants and product build-up on your scalp can become a cozy environment for bacteria to grow. This could lead to scalp conditions such as a dry, itchy scalp, dandruff or psoriasis. It can also lead to an unhealthy scalp that would ultimately slow hair growth or cause hair loss. If you notice that your hair is no longer responding to your favorite products, it's time to clean your scalp and hair with a clarifying shampoo. It will improve the health of your hair, plus restore the effectiveness of your regular shampoo and conditioner. What does hair clarifying shampoo do 6 BENEFITS OF HAIR CLARIFIERS Unclogs follicles on scalp, cuticles on strands. Prevents bacteria from growing on scalp. Allows fresh moisture, nutrients to penetrate cuticles. Leaves hair shiny, healthy and manageable. Restores effectiveness of favorite shampoos, conditioners. Restores natural pH balance of hair. Hair clarifying shampoos will take everything off your scalp and shaft, by stripping away oils, dirt, and product build-up. It'll unclog hair follicles and cuticles allowing fresh moisture and nutrients to penetrate into your hair. The proper pH level will also be restored to normal. A normal scalp pH level is slightly acidic with a range between 4.5 and 5.5. By cleaning your scalp, you'll protect and preserve your hair and scalp vitality and health. Above all, a healthy scalp will help you grow long hair. It's important to remember that a clarifying shampoo is like a hair treatment, says Cindy Bernacett. You do not want to use it all the time! Too much usage dries out the hair, she advises. If the build-up is really bad, try using a clarifying shampoo once a week, suggests Bernacett. When your hair returns to normal, then reduce the usage of a clarifying product to once or twice a month. If you use a lot of hair styling products, such as mousses, gels, hair sprays, on a daily basis, you may need to consider a clarifying treatment once a week. It depends on the condition of your hair. Where to buy hair clarifying shampoo You can buy excellent clarifying shampoos online at Amazon.comor in stores. They will frequently be labeled as a 'purifying' or 'clarifying' shampoo. You'll find clarifying shampoos that specially treat normal hair, grey hair -- even for kids and swimmers. If your long hair is particularly dry, look for clarifying shampoos that are sulfate-free. Sulfates are cheap, harsh detergents that cause shampoos to lather, but are particularly hard on hair strands. One caveat: Since clarifying shampoos cleanse away all impurities, natural hair oils will also be stripped away. So make sure to follow up with a quality conditioner, or your hair will be difficult to comb through and feel dry. Read 10 fast steps to clarifying hair to completely treat your tresses right! Pinching pennies? Try making some cheap homemade clarifying treatments using ingredients straight from the pantry. Some recommended clarifying ingredients from licensed cosmetologists include: From Jenny Hadinger, licensed cosmetologist and 10-year salon manager, Indianapolis, IN Try using Dawn dish detergent. Wet your hair and apply about a quarter-sized amount to your hands. Rub your hands together, and work up a lather. Work through your scalp and hair. Rinse thoroughly and follow up with a regular shampoo and conditioning. From Lisa Plappert, specialty licensed cosmetologist of GracefulStrands.com, Ocala, FL Try mixing one teaspoon of baking soda into two teaspoons of shampoo. Wet your hair. Rub the mixture between your palms, working up a lather. Gently massage the mixture on your scalp and through your hair. Rinse thoroughly and follow up with a regular conditioning.