Philip Kingsley’s daughter reveals things you didn’t know about hair

Scientist daughter of hair guru Philip Kingsley shares ten surprising tricks to improve your locks – from snacking between meals for growth to ditching white wine to beat dandruff

  • Anabel Kingsley has revealed the surprising things many don’t know about hair
  • Now works at her late father’s clinic in Mayfair where she carries on his work  
  • Trichologist explained that snacking is important because it gives cells energy 
  • Also shared that it’s important to use brush with plastic, rounded prongs

If your hair is your crowning glory you might be tempted to splash out on expensive potions and products, but simple tweaks to your daily routine could be the real key to an enviable mane. 

Anabel Kinglsey is the daughter of the late hair guru Philip Kingsley, and has followed in his footsteps by becoming an expert trichologist, or hair scientist. 

She now works at her father’s clinic in Mayfair in west London and has shared ten unexpected tricks that will overhaul your hair with Femail. 

Speaking to coincide with the launch of the limited edition Pomegranate and Cassis version of the Philip Kingsley Elasticizer, a product originally formulated for Audrey Hepburn, Anabel reveals how your white wine habit could be giving you dandruff, as well as the perfect hairbrush to use. 

Anabel Kingsley, the daughter of hair guru Philip Kingsley, has followed in his footsteps and become a trichologist 

Hair cells need energy to promote growth so Anabel suggesting snacking on fresh fruit or whole wheat crackers between meals (file photo)

1.Snacking between meals can help keep up hair growth

The energy needed to form hair cells, which are involved in growth, diminishes four hours after eating a meal, so snack between meals to boost energy levels. 

The best energy-producing between-meal snacks for hair are complex carbohydrates, such as whole wheat crackers, crudité and dips and fresh fruit.

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Hair cells are the seconds fastest growing cells the body makes, so their energy requirements are massive! 

Your strands need a steady supply of energy and nutrients in order to remain in the growth (anagen) phase for their optimal length of time. Skipping meals or not eating enough can cause extra hair shedding. 

2. Use products with sunscreen in them to avoid discolouration

To avoid your hair discolouring and becoming lighter in the sun, use styling aids with sunscreens. 

This is also very important in order to avoid damage and dryness – UV rays act on hair protein much like bleach. 

Grey hair often needs added protection from sun exposure as it lacks protective pigment cells (melanin). 

To look after your tresses, use a brush with plastic, rounded prongs – other types can damage the hair cuticle and weaken your locks

Anabel, pictured with her late father, spoke to Femail following the launch of the limited edition Pomegranate and Cassis Elasticizer

3. Brushes with plastic, rounded prongs are best to avoid cuticle damage 

Brushes are wonderful styling aids, but you need to be careful when you use them. 

Anabel’s 10 tips for better hair 

1. Nibble on healthy snacks between meals to promote growth

2. Use products with sunscreen to protect your colour

3. Use a paddle brush with plastic rounded prongs

4. Avoid white wine, champagne and cheese to beat dandruff

5. Use a toner to beat flakes and oiliness

6. Use as much conditioner as you like, but rinse it well

7. Only brush your hair when needed

8. Don’t add oil if you suffer from dandruff

9. Shampoo daily to beat dandruff

10. Dilute your own shampoo with purified water for a gentle cleanse 

Incorrect brushing, and the wrong type of brush, can cause damage to your hair and scalp such as vigorous brushing can remove some of your hairs’ cuticle – the hair’s outer cell layer – which weakens it and causes breakage. 

One of the most common causes of brittle hair is over-zealous use of boar bristle brushes. 

Being quite scratchy (try running one over the back of your hand, or over your favourite sweater), they can tear away sections of your hair’s outer layer. 

This can seriously weaken strands as your hair cuticle is your hair’s main defence against environmental assaults and moisture loss. Instead, choose a paddle brush that has plastic, rounded prongs.

4. Drinking white wine, champagne and snacking on cheese is bad for dandruff 

Winter can spell trouble for those who are prone to dandruff. Sufferers who drink white wine, champagne and snack on cheese platters often find their condition triggered and made worse.  

Cheese is very hard for the body to digest and can cause an inflammatory response in certain people. 

The yeast and sugar content in white wine and champagne can also make the scalp cranky, exacerbating itching and flaking. 

Rule of thumb: foods that often trigger skin break-outs, can be similarly aggravating to the scalp. Stress that accompanies the holiday season can also flare-up a problematic scalp. 

The hair expert has said that there’s no such as over conditioning your hair, and that limp hair can result from not rinsing properly

Using a facial toner to keep skin conditions in check seems obvious – but now there are toners for your hair that help ward off flakes and oiliness throughout the day (file photo)

5. It’s not just your face that needs a toner – so does your hair 

Just like your face, your scalp benefits from daily use of a toner. It helps to balance the micro-flora of the scalp and ward off flaking and oiliness throughout the day. 

After shampooing and conditioning your hair towel-drying your hair, apply a scalp toner to your scalp in one-inch partings from ear-to-ear. 

6. There’s no such thing as ‘over conditioning’

There is no such thing as ‘over conditioning’ your hair. Limp or dull hair results from using the wrong conditioner, or not rinsing properly.

Conditioner is necessary for all hair textures as it smoothes the outer hair cuticle to lock-in moisture. It also adds shine and helps remove tangles.

You only need a small amount. Simply work it through the mid-length and ends of your hair, gently comb through with a wide-tooth comb (starting at your ends an working up) and rinse.

7. Shiny hair 

The secret to shiny hair is a smooth, healthy outer hair cuticle. The cuticle is composed of tightly packed scales that overlap like tiles on a roof. 

When these lie flat, strands reflect light incredibly well. However, when the cuticle scales are raised or damaged, hair looks dull. 

To attain immediate shine, use a conditioner and lightweight smoothing styling products. These help to flatten the hair’s cuticle. 

Long term, take steps to prevent damage to your cuticle; be gentle when you style and only brush your hair when needed – not simply because it feels satisfying. 

While everybody loves a tipple at Christmas, your hair doesn’t. Drinking white wine or champagne can trigger dandruff as the yeast and sugar content can aggravate hair (file photo)

Bad news for dandruff sufferers – while modern shampoos and treatments can effectively treat it, it cannot be cured completely (file photo)

8. Dandruff is usually oily – not dry

Dandruff is not dry scalp. Dandruff is usually oily, so don’t rub in oil to remove it – you’ll only get oilier flakes. 

Do not confuse common dandruff with other forms of scalp flaking. If anti-dandruff shampoos do not help, visit your doctor; you may have psoriasis or eczema.

9. You can’t cure dandruff 

You cannot cure dandruff forever. It’s a skin condition — it doesn’t mean that you’re dirty, or that it’s contagious, which is a common misconception.

If you are prone to it (and over 70 per cent of the population is), you can only control it. But modern shampoos, treatments, and tonics made for this purpose do so very effectively but don’t shy away from not shampooing. 

Think of any skin condition – like acne – you need to apply topical products daily to see results. If you aren’t shampooing, you aren’t removing the dead skin cells. 

10. Baby shampoos aren’t better for your hair

Baby shampoos are specially formulated so as not to sting the eyes. But they are not better for your hair – or baby’s. Quite the contrary. 

The best ‘baby’ shampoo is your own shampoo diluted: one part shampoo in four parts of purified water.

It’s a common myth that baby shampoos are better for adult hair as they are milder – but in reality the best baby shampoo is just your own diluted (file photo)

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