Buro. Beauty Day: Lush’s haircare inventor, Daniel Campbell, solves our readers' hair woes
Perhaps one of beauty's sustainability trailblazers, Lush has graced our lives with cruelty-free products that smell heavenly (oh, the stores!) and are super nourishing. Suffice to say, their brightly-coloured and lovingly-crafted products has earned them a cult-like fanbase. Their renowned hydrating masks and glittery bath bombs aside, Lush has an entire range of products for our locks. From hair moisturisers (what's that?), conditioners, shampoo bars –– yes, you read that right –– to hair masks, Lush's repertoire of haircare is impressive to say the least. Even better? We nabbed one of Lush's haircare product inventor and cosmetic scientist, Daniel Campbell, for you, our beauty readers, to grill about all things hair.
On Buro. Beauty Day, readers asked Daniel a plethora of hair questions and, boy, did the questions come flooding in. Daniel, in turn, gave us a chemistry lesson, shared some practical hair advice, along with his go-to hair products. Hint: Wasabi Shan Kui and Roots were named a handful of times.
Interested to know Daniel's scalp-soothing and shine-inducing tips? Here, your guide to achieving luscious locks:
Shampoo bars without SLS?
Question 1 from Woon Chian: For the traditional shampoo bar, I have noticed that they contain SLS, which can be rather drying for my hair. Do you have other recommendations, apart from the Avocado co-washes? Thank you.
Daniel Campbell: We launched a shampoo bar called Posh which is a shampoo-conditioner, it's half gold and half black, that is an SLS free shampoo bar. It's the first one that we've done, so if you like the form of a shampoo bar, that is a really good place to start. And because it's got conditioner in there as well, it will gently push your cuticles back down, help keep it nice and smooth and enhance shine.
We've also got some liquid shampoos that has ammonium laureth sulphate in there. But I think one of the things you wanna do if you're concerned about the level of sulphate, particularly SLS, is not just look if it's in there, look how high it is on the ingredient list as well. The higher it is, the more concentrated it is. So, if it's right down at the bottom or half way down, it's going to be less of it in there. If you find that it is irritating your scalp, then you can use a product with either lower ingredients or you can even lather the shampoo bar between your hands and use the lather to wash your hair with it so you don't rub the bar directly onto your hair. Some people have contact dermatitis when it comes to things like SLS so the Posh shampoo bar is one to look out for, formulated for those people.
Help, dry scalp and hair!
Question 2 from Li Yen: What products would you recommend for dry scalp and hair?
Daniel Campbell: Let's deal with the scalp and the hair separately. The scalp is skin and you have skin on your face and skin all over your body. Often, the thing to do is trying to connect what's going on with the skin around your scalp so around your hairline and on your face and what's actually going on in your scalp because they're interconnected. So, you treat it as you would if you have sore skin or anywhere else on your body. The skin is the largest organ of your body so it needs to be looked after –– so, a good diet like plenty of water, fruits and vegetables, you know all that kind of good stuff [helps]. But if you do have irritated scalp, scalp masks are really lovely. Things like olive oil are really good because that will increase the tensile strength of the dry or broken skin. Oat milk is incredibly anti-inflammatory so just maybe put some porridge in some tights, a little cheesecloth, or something like that and literally just dab it on into your hair. That's a perfect home remedy, I think that's fine.
Product wise from us, Roots is one of my favourite. It's absolutely amazing, it is cooling so it'll get rid of the irritation that you feel. Because often, if your scalp is sore, it stresses you out so that with the fresh mint and menthol in there –– would help cool your skin which will help cool your mind. I think things like calamine lotion is really amazing, you just apply to the area that you're suffering with. Just treat it like if you have a sore skin on your body and how you would look after it –– it's the same with the scalp. And don't forget to wash your hair afterwards so it's not going to be stuck in there. That's how I would look after the scalp, gentle cleansing and not using too many products on it. You need to get your skin back into a state of equilibrium.
When it comes to dry hair, it is slightly different. You need to be careful and know the difference between moisture: you think about moisture being water in everyday life, and in hair products when you think about moisture, you think about oil. The scalp, hopefully if it's healthy, is producing oil from the sebaceous glands. The oil travels from the top of your hair down through the length of it. So, when you've got dry hair, you're gonna need it towards the ends. If you've got wispy hair that tends to misbehave higher up, that usually [calls for] a conditioner and it's different. That's when you use an antistatic conditioner, primer, or hair styling product that has something in there to push the cuticles [down]. So, it's not oil that you need up there, it's actually the chemistry of an antistatic to push the cuticles back down. Towards the ends, particularly if you got really long hair at the ends that's where it's gonna take longer for the oil to get to the end. So, if we're using olive oil or [an] oil base treatment, we need to make sure we use them right at the ends because that's where it's gonna take the oil longest to get down there.
And, if you wash your hair with oil products it's not going to get down to the end, that's why you need to supplement it with products. But be cautious with oil as you can use it quite easily and if the product has got heat protection in there, never put coconut oil and a hair dryer on top of it because it's like frying your hair. Make sure you look for things that have heat protection because the amount of time I've seen people on the internet saying, "Just put coconut oil through your hair and dry it", please don't do that.
So, dry hair and hair that [juts] out are two slightly different things: for smoothing and making your hair nice and sleek it's antistatic. For the other condition, look for things like cetrimonium chloride and methyl ammonium chloride. It's two technical names that you can find in Candy Rain. It's got behentrimonium chloride as well which is an antistatic. So, look for those kinds of ingredients because that will help smooth the hair down but [look out] for oil through the ends.
Hair treatments versus conditioners?
Question 3 from Tsia Ruqian Deborah: Hi, I've got a question to ask too! I've never really tried hair treatments and masks, and I'm really curious to know how it works differently from a conditioner?
Daniel Campbell: Well, there are like a couple of different types of hair masks –– so, there are masks that you put on when your hair is dry, then there are the ones that you can drop in after shampoo as like a more intensive conditioner that you leave on for longer.
Now, the ones that you put on dry I think are probably closer to face masks and tend to be focused on particularly the ones that we formulate are the ones that are designed to look after not only your hair but also your scalp –– which is why we put them on dry because if your hair and scalp is logged with water it kind of acts as a barrier and dilutes the actives that we put into the product. I have Roots because it's my favourite it's just amazing, so that is one that you would put on dry.
Then, I have one of our hot oil treatments which I have done a video on my Instagram about how to use and these are ones that you use after you've shampooed. You melt them with hot water and then you apply them while they're warm and they're more about having a conditioning and moisturising effect.
You can, as with all hair products and masks, you can get treatments that are focussed on your scalp, or you can get ones that are focused on building strength, or you can have ones that are for colour protection. I've got one called 'Yuge' which is a volumising one here, so they all have different effects depending on what you want. You know, they're really good.
With conditioners, conditioners tend to be focussed primarily on smoothing your hair down, making it nice, and sleek getting rid of kind of the static effects of the shampoo. With a conditioner it's kind of like a quick in and out, I've got my antistatic, I'm smooth and sleek, and ready to go. But with a treatment, it's something that you leave on a little bit longer –– but as with all things in life, the more we treat ourselves, the better we feel. A lot of times, people say, "Oh, don't use this too much or, you know, don't overuse that!" I think with the majority of the treatments that we have, the more regularly you can use them, the better [it gets]. It's sort of like your fresh fruits and vegetables –– the more you eat, the better the biology is. They're great, they're really easy to use, they just sit in, add that on for like 10 to 15 minutes before, and shampoo and condition them out.
What I like to do with a treatment, with either myself or with a client, is to just put it, leave it on for like 20 minutes, we'll rinse it off, and then we'll look at the hair and see, "Okay, so how's the comb-ability, how's the body, how's the movement. Okay, we need to shampoo, or we don't need to shampoo."
One of the things I think is really good is to try and get out of the habit of shampoo, conditioner, hair oil –– doing the same thing all the time. One of the great things about having hair is that you can do different things with it. So, try different products in different ways. You know, you can use a co-wash or you can just use a conditioner to wash you hair with just see what it's like. If it works for you, brilliant! If not, don't do it again –– it's fine.
Shampoo bars versus conventional bar soaps?
Question 4 from Qistina Tajuddin: Hi Daniel! How do shampoo bars differ from conventional bar soaps?
Daniel Campbell: Soap is a different type of detergent. So, a shampoo bar is pressed surfactant that has a negative chemical charge. Your hair, underneath the oil, has a negative charge. So, when you use the shampoo bar to clean the oil off your hair, the negative charge of your hair meets the negative charge of the surfactants and they push each other away like two magnets, which is why your hair feels really squeaky clean when you use a shampoo.
When you use soap, that doesn't happen. The soap stays on the hair which is interesting if you want to thicken your hair but it makes your hair feel like you've got soap in it, because you've got soap in your hair. So, the shampoo bar, because the base of what they're made out of is in liquid shampoos, that's why we know they clean the hair, but with soap, they don't. Sort of like washing your hair with oil –– it doesn't have the ability to push the soap out of the hair. So, you can wash your hair with soap and we used to before surfactants were invented but it doesn't feel very nice.
Products for dandruff prone hair?
Question 5 from Aberdeen Seet: What causes dandruff and what products would you recommend for dandruff-prone hair? Thank you!
Daniel Campbell: Dandruff is caused by a microorganism that eats your natural oil that comes from your sebaceous glands and breaks it down into sebum –– the oil that you produce is broken down by this microorganism to produce high levels of oleic acid, and oleic acid is the thing that causes your skin cells to shed immaturely. They shed before they have a chance to knit themselves together.
So, it's a microorganism. It's a fungus. You can get rid of it quite easily, there's lots of lovely products [and] you want something that's anti-fungal. Things like salicylic acid, zinc pyrethrum, which I think is active in the Head & Shoulders, piroctone olamine, that's really good as well. So, there are some good synthetic materials in there that will help with that. The thing to bear in mind is like if you're using these they're very very powerful chemicals so they will kill the microorganism that's causing the dandruff. But the thing is once the dandruff symptoms start to dissipate, stop using it straight away.
When I developed anti-dandruff shampoos and anti-dandruff products, I gave them out to try. They used it for three weeks, the dandruff symptoms disappeared after a week, but they carried on using the product and then they got dry scalp because the actives are so concentrated, they dried the scalp out. It's like how you wouldn't continue taking medicine after you got better. So, when you're better, stop using it. We have 'Superbalm', we have 'The Hair Doctor' which uses lots of seaweeds and salts as active [ingredients] to help disrupt what's going on with the microorganism but I think cleaning your hair really well using quite a high activity shampoo is a good place to start.
Then, don't overly product your hair. There are good products that we do, but like Head & Shoulders is good as well. Once the dandruff goes, whatever medicated dandruff approach you take, my advice that I can give is no matter if you use Lush stuff or whatever it is, use it until it's gone and then stop using it –– because if you carry on, you'll get dry scalp.
Is shedding hair normal?
Question 6 from Renee: Hi Daniel! I'm really curious if we go through phases where we shed hair? Am I the weird one that's shedding hair or is that normal?
Daniel Campbell: I mean, it depends on your biology, it depends on what's going on in your life. I think that the ladies from Singapore have a lot of hair and it's very thick, and I think you can perhaps notice that you're shedding more than somebody Western like me –– like, I haven't got any hair.
We all go through cycles and I think if there's anything that you're worried about –– if you're worried about your hair dropping –– the key is to look after your scalp. The key is to stimulate your scalp. Use regular self-scalp massages and use products that stimulate blood flow around the scalp. So, things that have mint in there, cynamon, cloaf, menthol, caffeine. I don't know if you've got this shampoo, this is amazing, this is the Wasabi shampoo. I was worried about those things affecting me so I made this for me –– so this is fresh Wasabi root which I boil for about 20 minutes and then the roots are mashed down and that's literally pushed into the product along with the sea salt, epsom salt, caffeine, and olive oil.
It's got menthol, it's got everything that you need to help keep hold of your hair. I really like that people like this because this is one of those times I did a product selfishly. Everything in here is what I needed for my hair and it looks like the majority of people want that as well. So it's a great product and I don't want to be here overly plugging Lush because it's more about me giving advice but if you're worried about your hair dropping, you're worried about thinning hair, you're worried about lack of volume, or anything like that, this is the shampoo to go for.
Benefits of sea salt on hair?
Question 7 from Lilian Ho: Hi Daniel, I've noticed that many Lush shampoo products have sea salt in them. For example, Big and Wasabi Shan Kui. Wanted to find out what are the benefits of using sea salt on hair as I don't see this in many other brands. Thank you!
Daniel Campbell: We use a small amount of sea salt in quite a few of our shampoos and our shower gels as it helps thicken the products –– it prevents it from falling through your fingers. One of the other things that sea salt does is when you put salt in water it dissolves, so it separates out sodium chloride. When we put them in water, they separate out into a positively charged sodium ion and a negatively charged chloride ion.
The positively charged sodium ion is attracted to the negative charge of our hair, so that sticks to the top of our hair. So, we almost get this little very fine salty film over the top of our hair. This fine salty film increases the density of our hair, making it look thicker and fuller. For health and volumising hair, salt is really great because it literally sits on the hair and makes it look like you've got more hair than you have. That's why we use it in Big and the reason why I used it in the Wasabi is that I wanted that effect.
But what I found was that if you use an epsom salt, which is magnesium sulfate, which in water separates out into magnesium ions and the sulfate group. The magnesium, again, being positive is drawn to the hair but what the epsom salt does which the regular sea salt doesn't is that it doesn't rob you of your condition.
Sometimes, if you oversalt your hair, your hair can go a bit like a scarecrow, like wispy. It's like you've got volume but it doesn't look very sleek. By using epsom salt, that again deposits on the hair but it seems to give you this effect where you get more like a textured swirl to the hair rather than like a crazy wild volume which is perfect if you just wanna make your hair look thicker and fuller, but not necessarily massively tall like scarecrow 'Robert Smith from the Cure' type hair. So, we use salt to deposit onto the hair and we use different types of salt to get different volumising effects.
How to apply hair conditioner?
Question 8 from Su Wai: Hi! I would like to know is there a specific method to apply conditioning so as to ensure it gives the maximum effect on the hair?
Daniel Campbell: Yes, there is. Like with all products, use where you need them. Depending on how long your hair is, that will determine where and how much conditioning you need. Typically if you wash your entire hair, your oil from the sebaceous glands is gonna start coming down from your scalp through to your ears –– that will usually give your hair enough oil and definition. You don't need conditioner up there, usually from the ears and below is my rule of thumb. But it really depends what you've done up there.
If you've used fluoride, if you've used colouring ingredients around the top of your hair, you start to break the integrity of the hair above your ears. You might need a conditioner there but I would say use a liquid conditioner below your ears and then just before you dry your hair, if you use a primer or something like antistatic serum, then you can apply that root to tip.
But if you're trying to build volume up –– the classic thing I get asked is, 'I want volume up top but I want it to look sleek and smooth down the bottom'. If you want volume up top, you don't want be using too much conditioner because the conditioner will push your cuticles back down and that destroys volume. So, it's almost like you have to leave the roots alone and then condition from the ears downwards. But have a play around with it, you know, distributing it from the ears downwards is usually the place to start.
Minimising hair loss?
Question 9 from Amy Leong: I'm a huge Lush fan and try to collect them globally when I'm in Japan, Thailand, United Kingdom for face and body but I've never used Lush for hair! Since being at home extensively, my boyfriend is complaining of the sheer amount of hair fall/ loss around the house. Will Lush hair products be useful to minimise aforementioned problem?Thank you!
Daniel Campbell: First, you should tell your boyfriend to stop complaining, he should be grateful to be able to be in the same house with you. Second, Roots scalp treatment –– use that on dry scalp and dry hair. Massage it right into the scalp leave it on for 10 to 15 minutes, shampoo it out with Wasabi –– this is what works for my hair so this is basically just my routine.
Wasabi Shan Kui as your shampoo –– the menthol, the salt, the peppermint and the caffeine, is gonna help with that. Be careful on using heat on your hair and be careful how you style your hair.
Say, you're 25 years old and you've been styling your hair since you were 15, so it's 10 years of doing the same movements potentially in the same way. If you're pulling your hair and putting heat on it you're gonna be doing the same 3,650 times over those 10 years –– if you have had your hair the same way. So, if you don't need to style your hair everyday, don't do it. The straightening, the pulling and all that kind of stuff, your hair is locked into your scalp but if you're using too much heat on it, if you're putting too much strain on it, it will fall out. Don't have your hair up all the time. The amount of time I can see people particularly with long hair with a line across the back where they have their hair up, that's pulling strain on it to keep it in that position. So, be kind to your hair.
Any solutions to hair loss after childbirth?
Question 10 from Peon Yang: Hey Daniel, I noticed that my hair started dropping a few months after childbirth, I'm wondering if there's any solutions for such concerns?
Daniel Campbell: That's really common because your body stops shedding hair as much when you are pregnant. And then when you give birth, all the hair that you've kept hold of, drops out. That's why when you're pregnant you usually have such an amazing hair and it's so full because your hair isn't shedding at the same rate when it did when you weren't pregnant.
Then, when you have your baby, all your hair plays catch up and you go, "Oh god, it's all falling out!" –– but it will balance itself out, it always balances itself out. If you've got really strong concerns, talk to your doctor about it. It's common, it happens all the time. That's the nature of our biology.
Again, like anything, stimulate the scalp –– the more you can stimulate the scalp, the better because that's the area you want to push the nutrients towards. So, warm masks, cold masks, contradicting like hot against cold is always good. If you're using something cold, ther's something minty like Roots. You can use like warm [water] and you get that contrast of hot and cold and that's what helps dilates the blood vessels around the scalp. That's what helps oxygenated blood reach up to the follicles, and that's what will help your follicles keep hold of the hair taht you've got and also keep producing new hair. Yeah, it's really common and it's really nothing to worry about but if you are a bit stressed out about it, a lovely hair mask will help but I would go and see your doctor as well because it's always good to get a second opinion.
Managing oily scalp?
Question 11 from Isabelle Foo: Hello Daniel! I'm having trouble managing my oily scalp. Do you have a routine to suggest?
Daniel Campbell: Don't over stimulate your scalp. One of the things that's really common is when people wash their hair so much, it strips the oil from the scalp and your sebaceous glands starts to panic. It starts to produce more and more oil, so it's a balancing act.
If you think about skin care, people with oily skin want dry skin –– or they think they do –– and people with dry skin, want oily skin –– or they think they do. You don't, you just wanna be in the middle, you want to be balanced so it's about using ingredients that help balance the whole production of cells; things with lavender, berry, rosemary, all those kinds of herby ingredients are lovely.
We do a shampoo bar called Jumpin Junipe which is basically a surfactant and all of those ingredients. It's like number one, it's amazing. We do shampoo called Rehab which has all of those essential oils in the perfume, along with amazing fruit juices which help to keep your hair nice and clean but they're not so stripping that they dry the hair out.
It's a tricky thing: masks are really good as well, the Hair Doctors, masks with all the clays in there will help absorb excess oil. Dry shampoo is a good option as well, any clay-based dry shampoo will help absorb excess oil from there. But be kind, don't go too full on –– that's the thing when we have a problem with our skin and have a tendency to just go, "I've got to wash it". It's not.
Wash it and see how it reacts and wait a little bit more, slow and steady. Learn how the issue is coming about and learn what manages it because I can give you all the advice in the world but nobody knows your hair better than you. So, it's important to watch your hair and listen to your scalp. Lavender, berry, peppermint. So anything herbal and balancing like roses are really lovely for the scalp, very anti-inflammatory. Anything like that will really help but don't strip it too much because if you wash your skin or your face too much, it gets tight and then you get shiny halfway through the day. That's exactly what's going to happen to your scalp, so just go steady.
Should I avoid switching shampoo often?
Question 12 from Anita: Hey Daniel, people say that one shouldn't switch shampoos too often. Your take on this?
Daniel Campbell: I think you should do whatever you want. Nobody should tell you what to do. You should just have a good time with your hair. One of the things you should think about is what is the key benefit of your shampoo? So, if you're using a salt shampoo –– as the salt builds up on the hair, the difference that you'll notice from where your hair started to where your hair is now will get less each time.
Sometimes, it's nice to do a cleanse and remove any excessive products that's in the shampoo, so if you're using a protein shampoo, you don't wanna use it too regularly because the protein will build up and make your hair brittle.
So often, it's not the actual cleansing of the shampoo that your hair gets used to, it's the active in there –– the thing that gives you the effect. And the reason that your hair gets used to it (or you got used to it) is because you're using it all the time so you just see the effect again and again and your hair just starts to be, perhaps, overloaded with those ingredients. It's like exercise, you don't want to exercise every single day. You do need a rest day to allow your muscles to recover, it's the same with shampoo. If you wanna see the effect of it, sometimes you have to go right back to the blank canvas, do something that will completely remove all of the ingredients and then start to build this up again.
I often do that with the Wasabi. I would use something like Rehab or I'll use any shampoo that we've got just to get rid of any product built up from my shampoo, my conditioner and my styling product, and then I can start again.
Often when you start with that blank canvas, that next wash, all of the effects from the first time you used the product and you fell in love with them are back again because you got rid of the build up. You know, in order for a product to be effective it has to be able to do the things that it does. If you've got salt on the hair and then you put another layer of salt, your hair will start to get away from that sweet spot. So, it's always good to use some products to maybe break down the build up of your favourite products.
It's like you would do a face mask maybe once a week to get rid of the evil from your face or your skin depending on what you've been up to –– it's the same thing with your hair. It's nice to take yourself back to the start and build up those products again because that's when you notice the biggest effect. With your hair, using the same products –– if your hair is performing and if you're happy with it, keep using the products. But what I always try to advise my clients is to look for the ingredients in the shampoo that's giving you the effect you like, and if you find a new shampoo or maybe wanna switch shampoo, look for that ingredient in another place in your hair care routine. Whether a conditioner, or in your mask, in your primer, in your mousse, or whatever product you're using, find that ingredient again because you know that it works for your hair. You might just need to try delivering that ingredient into your hair in a different way.
Do I need to change my haircare routine in accordance to climate change?
Question 13 from Fang Fang: Hi Daniel, as I travel often, do I need to change shampoo/ conditioner due to climate change? Thanks!
Daniel Campbell: You might find that your shampoo and conditioner performs differently if you're in a hard water or soft water area. If you have mineral deposits on your tubs, in your kettle, or anywhere in your pots and pans, it's probably that you have higher mineral content in the water there. So, whether at home or travelling, if your hair feels different but you're using the same products, it's usually because of the water.
You might find in hard water areas –– hard water is really good for fine hair because the minerals in the water builds up on the hair but for thicker hair, it can lead to a loss of texture and a loss of shine. Your products may need to change depending if you are travelling to somewhere, where there is a different water source or if you're travelling to somewhere where you've got high humidity or low humidity. I'm sure in Singapore this happens a lot –– you get humid hair, where your hair starts to loose definition. This is caused by the water in the atmosphere and hydrogen bonding to your hair. So, each hair strand is chemically bonded together with hydrogen bonds –– which is why when you swish your hair, it kind of moves together and stays together. Which is great –– it allows you to define your style but what it also means is that the hydrogen bonds in your hair can grab hold of the water in the atmosphere, which is why the humidity starts to pull the definition of your style apart.
If you are travelling to somewhere where there is high humidity or if you live where there's high humidity, you need something that can push the moisture in the atmosphere away.
Look for ingredients that are... if you use 24-hour foundations or longwear foundations, they contain a lot of ingredients that push the moisture away. Things like silica are really common, the dimethicone family, all the silicones, they will do that. In our products, we use a material called ethyl macadamiate to push the moisture in the atmosphere away. It's in the Candy Rain conditioner, it's in Super Milk, it's in quite a lot of the new haircare I formulated. And that is an ingredient used in a 24-hour foundation to keep the moisture in the atmosphere away. That will help eliminate any of those wispy bits. If you travel to somewhere where there's less humidity in the atmosphere, you're less likely to see that but it's always good to have it because you may have less humidity in the atmosphere but eventually it will get to your hair. So that ingredient is good.
How to deal with dry scalp and ensure it doesn't end up oily?
Question 14 from Imen Basrai: Hi Daniel, we're in the tropics. How do we service a dry scalp and ensure it doesn't end up being oily –– this is quite a precarious situation given our weather!
Daniel Campbell: I think if your scalp is getting congested, or if you feel it doesn't breathe very easily... and I think because you've got loads of hair and the individual strands are quite dense, so it's almost like your hair is designed to keep heat in, and you live somewhere that's really hot.
It's often a bit of a tricky thing to negotiate. I think it's gonna be a balancing act between using things that will help cleanse the scalp without overly drying the hair out and also things that will help moisturise the scalp without overly congesting the hair. It's almost like you need to go between two approaches, like our Roots and Wasabi Shan Kui are the type to cleanse the scalp and allow it to breathe and cool it down, so that looks after that side. And then for dryer scalps, it's things like olive oil, oatmilk –– anything like rose, essential oils like lavender essential oil, those ones will help look after the sore scalp.
You kind of need to dance between these two approaches. And I think that wearing your hair to allow your hair to breathe is often a difficult thing as well because if you want to build volume up top, you're going to make your hair taller and dense –– that's where you want to get heat out of.
Also, from a purely mental point of view, just putting something cold –– just on the back of your neck where the main blood vessels of your brain are –– will help cool you down. So, whether it's a little bit of toner water, or just an ice cube or something like that will help. Because the way you feel about your scalp and hair, it's in your brain as well as your hair as well. So, if you've got scalp that's stressing you out, if you can just do something that cools your irritation mentally, that often will help.
You know, your brain and body are interconnected. If you can actually relax a little bit about it and put something that makes you relaxed, that will help loads because it will help make you feel better and then you can approach your scalp issue in a more sensible way rather than being like, 'Why is this happening to me'. So, I think even home remedies, you know like a cold mint tea poured as like a final rinse is lovely.
There's loads of really great natural ingredients that you can use because that's what I do with our products. I just find things that are, "Oh that's nice!" or "That would be nice there!"
"That's cooling, that's warming, that's stimulating!" and bang it in there. There are lots of lovely home remedies. It's a case of healing the scalp when it's sore and cleansing it when it's feeling congested. And it will be kind of jumping back in between those two things. There will be no hard and fast rule, you'll have to be looking at your scalp all the time but with hair you should always be doing that, you should always be reassessing what's going on and changing or not changing depending on what results you get.
Routine for oily scalp with curly dry ends?
Question 15 from Huiqi Wong: Hi Daniel! I've tried a few products from Lush but haven't quite found the Eureka! product or combination of products for my hair type. What would you recommend for oily scalp with curly dry ends? Also looking for products which might help with hair loss. Thanks!
Daniel Campbell: You need to look after your hair in two ways. If you've got curly dry ends, we're gonna need to treat that in a different way. We need to be using cleaning up in order to get rid of the excess oil but also some sort of balancing, and some products that will help promote the movements of the oil from the top of the hair down through the bottom and potentially put some extra oil at the end.
Let's start at the top, to deal with an oily scalp you gonna need to be using a nice cleansing shampoo something like Rehab is a good place to start, or I quite like the Honey Fairly Traded –– that's really lovely because with hair that has a wave to it, that tends to give shine, it gives body, it gives volume, but it does it in a really gentle way. And honey is amazing –– it's natural antiseptic, it's naturally antibacterial, it's soothing so it will be great to use it around there at the top of your hair. It's basically half honey, half shampoo, it's brilliant. So, that would be a good one to use because that would gently cleanse the scalp because it's got a lovely essential oil bend that is really healing but it's also great for shine and help promotes style from the top. I always think if somebody tells me they want hair like Kim Kardashian where it's big here at the top, that's the shampoo that I always go straight to because it's a really good place to start.
When we come to the ends and particularly if you've got curl to it, it's gonna take longer for the oil to travel down because it's like a slide –– with a wave, it's gonna take longer. So I think probably from the ears to the jaw line, you need to be using predominantly conditioner I would say, rather than oil purely because that would help keep the curl together and allow the oil from the sebaceous glands to travel down more easily rather than loading it up with oil, I think we just want to use oil right at the ends. So, I would think probably something like Candy Rain conditioner is probably a good thing to be using.
Candy Rain is a bit more antistatic, and what the antistatic is gonna do is that it's going to help define your curls and allow the oil to travel from your scalp down the hair more easily, and then right at the ends I've got some lovely R&B, lovely to use right at the ends, but use it on dry hair that hasn't got anything with heat protector in, so don't use heat on it. Or just you know, a little bit of coconut oil, a little bit of olive oil just right at the ends, that's where you need it. So we're gonna go cleaning here at the scalp area, conditioning here at the ear and neck area and a little bit of oil at the ends.
Caring for damaged hair by constant bleaching?
Question 16 from An Lin Loh: Hello Daniel! I've been a (short) hair model for Toni & Guy for the past five years –– crazy rainbow colours and an intimate connection with bleach. So, I have decided to stop, go back to au naturale, and grow out my hair. I was wondering: How should I take care of my scalp/ hair that has been, perhaps, damaged by constant bleaching and hair colour? What do I need to do to help my hair to grow out stronger? and what products should I look towards using, especially from Lush?
Daniel Campbell: If you've got burns from bleach or chemical damage from bleach application, I think firstly make sure –– I'm sure you've got an amazing hairdresser –– but just make sure they are being super careful when applying it. I think if anybody is thinking about bleaching their hair, please get a professional to do it. Don't do it yourself, you will mess it up, I know from personal experience.
Anyway, use these things that if you have sore skin on your face, it's the same type of thing. You know the olive oils, the clays, the calamine, oatmilk, all of those things that we've been talking about already that will help heal the skin. So once the skin is healed, then that's great. What we need to do in order to encourage healthy hair growth is again to be able to stimulate the blood vessels around the scalp, so to dilate them with mints and menthols and to stimulate them with cinnamon and those kind of materials. So that's going to get our hair growing and scalp healed.
When it comes to repairing the damage, it depends on how far along your grow-out is. If it's just below the ears then that's different. Whereas, if you've only got an inch of regrowth and got quite a lot of hair to heal, then have treatments throughout –– especially things with protein in there.
So, when you bleach your hair, you break down the protein inside your hair in order to change the colour, that's how it works. And the brighter you've gone or the closer to white you've gone, the more you've broken the proteins down so the more repair you're going to need. So, things like the #Gains product, that is a protein spray that you use after you've conditioned your hair before you dry it. That's got hydrolysed vegetable protein and amino acids that are the building blocks of your hair. The things that are going to be small enough to penetrate into the cortex of the hair and hold it together.
But anything like hydrolysed vegetable protein, rice proteins, soy proteins, wheat protein, you see them in quite a lot of products so look for that. And the higher up in the ingredient list they are, the better because there's more of them in there.
So, by destroying the integrity of the hair to change the colour, putting those vegetable proteins will help build them back together and then looking for ingredients that will coat and protect the outside of the hair, again protein-based ones. Things like soy lecithin is really good, tofu, we use aquafaba from chickpeas. The water from chickpeas is really protein-rich like canned chickpeas, we use that in some of our products. The H'suan Wen Hua has got hydrolysed vegetable protein in it, that's got antistatics in there, that's got some aquafaba in there –– that would be a really good one to go for and you can definitely get that from Lush Singapore.
And then it's a case of not using too much heat on your hair, nothing over 185 degrees. If you start to use heat over 200 degrees celsius, that starts to damage the protein bonds inside the hair when you use heat on it. If you've already broken down the protein bonds through chemically colouring, and then you put a really hot hair dryer on it, you're more likely to get excessive heat. So, 170 to 185 degrees celsius is the sweet spot for heat styling, anything hotter than that and you'll start to damage the bonds inside the hair and particularly, if you've chemically coloured your hair, your bonds are already weaker anyway.
Use your heat temperature lower and also use products that offer heat protection like the #Gains that I mentioned or Super Milk or macadamia that I was referring to earlier for pushing the atmosphere away. That also offers you heat protection for your hair as well. And that is probably it! It is a long process to repair your hair once you've coloured it and it can always be tempting to do more stuff to it. But I think it's just lots of treatments, lots of gentle shampoos, lots of light but intensive conditioners and just keep going with it.
Editor's Note: Five of you have won yourself a personalised set of Lush haircare products each! Do check your email inbox for our team has dropped by with a winning email.