The Best Water Temperature For Your Hair Goals

The never-ending list of hair care rules is long enough to make our heads spin. Lather, rinse, repeat. Don't apply conditioner to the scalp. Use a microfiber cloth to dry. Don't apply shampoo to the ends. Phew! We could go on. And those rules only apply to hair washing day! Throw in the golden set of rules for what you should (and shouldn't do) after your shower, and it's no wonder many choose to neglect their crown entirely.

While they may be confusing to keep up with, these abundant tips and tricks exist to promote healthy hair, in turn, promoting overall health. After all, the state of your hair may be a direct reflection of what's going on with the rest of your body, per Everyday Health. Whether your hair is brittle and gray, or falling out and thinning, those areas of concern could directly correlate to a health issue within your body that might need attention.

Not only that, but who doesn't live for a good hair day? You could be the poster child for perfect health and still have hair that's not as voluminous, shiny, full, and lustrous as you would like. The reason? You probably aren't paying much attention to some of those cardinal hair-washing factors to avoid. And one of them has to do with the water temperature at which you should be washing your hair, which could ultimately make or break your hair goals.

Should you wash your hair with hot water?

Warm water for hair washing day is a go-to for most people, as taking a comfortably hot shower is relaxing for the body. And if you tend to use a lot of hair care products and are looking for ultra-clean, hydrated, and voluminous hair, you may want to turn the heat up.

According to The Health Site, hot water is a major help in thoroughly cleansing away dirt and oil from the scalp. This is because warm temps dilate the pores and cuticles, thereby allowing the water to fully penetrate the hair, providing a deep clean. Plus, hot water is great for those who could really use some fluffy volume and longer-lasting hairstyles (via SkinKraft).

While washing your hair with warm water can promote longer, softer, and fuller hair, there are a few long-term effects to consider. For starters, if the water is piping hot, it could do more damage than good. Severe dryness, hair loss, breakage, and inflammation are all symptoms of a scorching hot hair wash, per Health Shots. Not only that, but if you use warm water to wash your hair frequently, it can eventually dehydrate the hair. 

Is cold water the temperature for you?

Even though the thought of taking a cold shower may induce a cringeworthy shiver, the benefits may outweigh any temporary discomfort. In fact, cold water is a tried-and-true beauty secret for many — and for good reason. According to trichologist Simone Thomas, who spoke to Refinery29, cold water "gives your hair a better chance of staying shiny, healthy, and frizz-free."

Since hot water opens your cuticles, what does cold water do? It keeps them closed! In turn, those naturally produced oils in your hair are kept safe and sound, giving your locks an extra boost of shiny moisture, per SkinKraft. Additionally, if you have curly, damaged, or fine hair, cold water may be the temperature for you, as it keeps breakage at bay.

But that's not to say everyone would benefit from washing their hair in cold water. Since it is effective in keeping all that moisture intact, it can give the hair added weight, which isn't ideal for those who prefer extra volume. Plus, taking a cold shower is just an uncomfy experience that many are not down to put up with often. However, cold showers can really change your life, and may be worth it for that extra shine!