Is Hard Water Damaging Your Hair?

hair fall due to hard water

Just moved into a new house? Started noticing your hair behaving slightly different after every wash? It could be the hard water in your area. Yes! The water you’re using to wash your hair might be the reason for your hair issues.  

What is Hard Water?

It’s water that contains a high amount of minerals and salts, such as calcium and magnesium. It is responsible for scaly white build-up in your shower head, bucket, vessels, bathroom tiles etc. 

Does it Affect Your Hair?

Following are some of the signs/symptoms you may experience:

  • Hair breakage and thinning
  • Dryness in scalp
  • Tangled hair
  • Dull hair
  • Frizzy hair
  • Faded hair colour

Your hair is somewhere around a pH of 4.5 to 5. Meanwhile, hard water is 8.5 or sometimes even higher. That’s not taking into account the pH levels of your shampoo, conditioner, etc. If the pH gets above a 10 or so, the hair fibre swells, and it may cause irreversible damage to your hair. 

However, it’s not the only reason for hair fall; your genetics, hormones, medications and many other factors affect your hair significantly. Talk to a doctor to find out the exact reason and hair fall solution.

How to Combat Hard Water Hair Damage?

To protect your hair from the harsh minerals, you can follow the given below tips and techniques:

Opt for a Water Softener

You can choose a water softener (a hard water filtration unit) that can help offer soft water. Otherwise, you can use a RO which is equally useful to purify your water and provide soft water. Though, you need to remember that these can be a bit expensive and require regular maintenance. If that’s okay, you can go ahead with any of these. 

Install a Shower Filter

A bit cheaper than the water softener or RO. It helps get rid of chlorine and several other harmful chemicals, offering you clean and soft water. 

Use the Right Shampoo & Conditioner

Choose a shampoo that’s mild and has no parabens, sulphates, colour and fragrance. Once in a while, you can use a clarifying shampoo to remove the mineral build-up. Apply conditioner every time you shampoo to protect it from getting frizzy and dry. 

Natural Remedies

Use Hydrating Hair Masks

There are several natural ingredients such as honey, hibiscus, fenugreek and aloe vera that you can apply to your hair as a hair mask. They can help make your hair smooth, soft and healthy. Though, store-bought hair masks are also an option. Choose as per your convenience. 

Lemon & Amla Hair Rinse

Take fresh amla juice and add lemon juice to it. Apply this on your scalp and rinse after 20 minutes. 

Summing Up

There’s no option to skip washing your hair because that’s how you can ensure your hair stays healthy and clean. However, if the water that you are using to wash hair is hard, that in itself is a major damage-causing agent. The harm caused by this water may start small and turn more extensive over time. Hence, it’s hard to ignore it. 

There are ways to deal with the situation, such as installing water softeners, shower filters or using appropriate shampoo. You can select the one that seems comfortable for you. Apart from that, ensure to offer your hair a little extra protection and care. For any doubts or queries, check with a dermatologist for guidance. 


The natural remedies mentioned in the blog are the widely popular ones. It is in no way a substitute for medical advice, treatment or diagnosis. Avoid using these if you have sensitive skin or are prone to allergies. 

Before trying any natural remedy, always test a small quantity on your skin to check for any adverse reactions or allergy to any particular ingredient. In case of emergency or any reaction, immediately connect with a doctor who can offer the right treatment.


  1. Is it possible to reverse hair loss caused due to water?

You can reverse your hair loss caused due to hardness in water, but it would also depend on hair condition and the extent of the damage. You can get your hair evaluated by a dermatologist to understand if it is a possibility or not.

  1. Can hard water be a reason for hair fall? 

Washing hair by using hard water caused mineral build-up, dryness and hair loss. It makes hair frizzy and brittle, leading to hair breakage.

  1. Is it good to use hard water for bathing?

Like your hair, it isn’t good for your skin either. Using it continuously can make your skin dry and rough.

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Chaitra K

I’m a Skin Care Enthusiast from Bangalore, a writer here @CureSkin teamed up with Expert Dermatologists to spread awareness on the right kind of skin and hair care for men and women. Inspiring people to explore the skin and hair care that suits their need and help them look and feel beautiful is my full-time job. Skin & hair problems affect every person's self-esteem and confidence. Hence I love helping people by giving them the best information about skin and hair health with my writing, driven by the BEST Dermatologists.