Why Is My Hair So Damaged Underneath? [5 Causes To Know]

Why is my hair so damaged underneath? It all has to do with the way that our hair grows.

The hair on the underside of your head is often more susceptible to damage from everyday activities like brushing and styling. This is because this part of your hair is often more delicate and prone to breakage.

In this post, I will take a look at the causes of hair damage underneath your hair and how to identify them before it becomes too late.

So read on to learn everything you need to know about the damage lurking underneath your locks.

Key Takeaways

  • The hair underneath our visible hair is just as important, if not more so than the hair on the surface.
  • Damaged hair on the underside can lead to scalp problems
  • Depending on your hair texture, the damage might not be as noticeable.

CHECK: Navy Hair Products Review

What Causes Damage Underneath The Hair?

There are a few different things that can cause damage to the hair on the underside of your head (which gives you that bad hair day look every day). Let’s take a closer look:

1. Dryness

It’s no secret that dryness damages your hair. It sucks the moisture out of your strands, leaving them BRITTLE and SUSCEPTIBLE for breakage. It could leave your scalp just as dry and cracked as desert soil.[1]

women with dry hair wondering why is the underneath of hair so damaged

But did you know that dryness can also cause damage underneath your hair? When the scalp is dry, it can lead to inflammation and irritation. This can cause the hair follicles to become INFLAMED, ultimately leading to hair loss.

In addition, dryness can also DISRUPT the natural balance of oils on the scalp, leading to dandruff. So if you’re noticing more flakes than usual, it might be time to look closely at your scalp health.

Pro Tip: Start using a mild shampoo and conditioner that won’t strip away oils to help keep your scalp healthy and hydrated.

2. Over-styling

Ever heard of the saying, hair is stronger than steel? Well, as much as scientists have proven this fact time and time again, our hair is NOT entirely indestructible.[2]

You might not realize it, but your daily styling habits can cause long-term DAMAGE to your hair.

When you use heat-styling tools or chemicals, you WEAKEN your hair’s inner structure. This leads to dryness, frizz, and breakage. Over time, the heat damage can become permanent, leaving your hair dull and lifeless.

Although it can be tempting to use a flat iron on wavy hair or get a perm to achieve that perfect curled look, try to limit the use of these styling tools and opt for the least damaging hair straightener or gentler methods instead.

READ MORE: Does Damaged Hair Take Longer to Dry?

3. Harsh Chemicals

Hair products are loaded with chemicals that can be damaging to your hair. Sulfates, for example, are a type of detergent that’s commonly found in shampoos.

While they’re effective at removing dirt and oil, they can also STRIP away oils, leaving your hair dry and brittle and leading to hair breakage.

Other chemicals, such as parabens and phthalates, are added to products to extend their shelf life. However, these chemicals can also disrupt the natural balance of hormones in the body, which can lead to scalp problems like dandruff.

Pro Tip: Look for products labeled “natural” or “organic,” which will be gentle and lead to healthy hair.

4. Stress and Bad Habits

You might not realize it, but stress can take a toll on your hair. When you’re stressed, your body goes into “fight or flight” mode, which causes an increase in the hormone cortisol.

According to the NIH, cortisol is a stress hormone that can interfere with the hair growth cycle, leading to damaged hair.[3] In addition, stress can also cause inflammation of the hair follicles, which can lead to scalp problems like dandruff.

Bad habits, such as smoking and not getting enough sleep, can also contribute to hair breakage. These habits can cause a buildup of TOXINS in the body, leading to inflammation and scalp irritation.

A POOR diet can also contribute to hair loss by depriving your body of the nutrients it needs to stay healthy.

5. Environmental Factors

Environmental factors can cause damage to the hair textures and lead to dryness, brittleness, and breakage. Like the skin on your face, the scalp is prone to DAMAGE from various environmental factors.

Here are some of the most common environmental factors that can cause damaged hair:

  • The sun’s ultraviolet rays can cause damage to the hair shaft, making it more likely to break.
  • Wind can also be drying and damaging, especially if you already have dry hair.
  • Chlorinated water can strip away oils, leading to dehydration, even wet hair.
  • Saltwater can have a similar effect, causing the hair to become tangled and difficult to manage (especially curly hair).

Pro Tip: Protect your hair from the sun by wearing a hat or using a leave-in conditioner with SPF.

Why Is This Area Underneath Your Hair So Important?

The hair strands located on the nape of your neck (your underneath hair) are essential because they’re the most VULNERABLE part of your hair.

This area is more susceptible to damage because it’s often EXPOSED to the sun, wind, and other environmental factors. In addition, this area is also more prone to tangles and knots.

women wondering why is the underneath of hair so damaged

To keep your underneath hair healthy, you must use a leave-in conditioner or serum to help protect it from damage. In addition, be sure to use a wide-tooth comb to detangle your hair gently.

Pro Tip: When styling your hair, be sure to start with the underneath hair first. This will help prevent tangles and knots.

How To Heal And Prevent Damage Underneath The Hair?

If your underneath hair is already damaged, there are a few things you can do to help heal it. Let’s take a closer look at how to fix damaged hair:

1. Use A Leave-in Conditioner or Serum

A leave-in conditioner or serum can help to add MOISTURE and protect the hair from further damage. Look for products that contain natural ingredients, such as shea butter, coconut oil, or jojoba oil.

women using a serum on her hair's end

Pro Tip: If you have oily hair, be sure to use a lightweight leave-in conditioner or serum. This will help to avoid weighing down your hair.

2. Use A Wide-Tooth Comb

A wide-tooth comb can help to gently DETANGLE the hair without causing further damage. Start from the bottom and work your way up.

3. Eat A Healthy Diet

We all know the saying, “you are what you eat.” And while that may not be entirely true, the foods you consume impact your overall health – including the health of your hair.

Just like the rest of our bodies, our hair and scalps need to be NOURISHED to stay healthy and free from damage.

Eating a BALANCED diet is one of the best things you can do for your overall health – including the health of your hair. Be sure to include plenty of fresh fruits, vegetables, and lean protein.

4. Avoid Chemical Treatments

When it comes to hair care products, less is more. Choose products that are GENTLE and free from harmful chemicals.

And when you do use styling products, be sure to wash them out THOROUGHLY to avoid buildup on your scalp.

Chemical treatments, such as coloring, straightening, and perming, can also cause damage to the bottom layer of hair. If you use these treatments, follow the instructions carefully and take breaks in between to allow your hair to rest.

Pro Tip: When you visit your hair stylists, be sure to let them know about your concerns.

5. Get Regular Scalp Treatments

Just like getting a facial or a massage, regularly treating yourself to a scalp massage or treatment can do wonders for your hair health.

Scalp treatments help UNCLOG pores and promote circulation, leading to healthier, stronger hair. A deep conditioning treatment can also help to MOISTURIZE the hair and scalp.

6. Avoid Tight Hairstyles With Hair Ties

Tight hairstyles, such as ponytails and buns, can put unnecessary tension on the hair shaft, causing damage. If you must wear your hair up, be sure to use gentle hair ties that won’t pull or tug at your hair.

Tight hair ties can lead to traction alopecia, a condition where the hair follicles are damaged from too much tension. If you notice thinning or balding in the affected area, be sure to seek medical attention.

Pro Tip: If you have fine hair, try using a fabric-covered hair tie to avoid damage.


Why Is The Underneath Of My Hair Shorter?

If the underneath of your hair is shorter than the rest of your hair, it’s likely due to damage. The most common damage caused is by a curling iron, such as straighteners or irons. Over time, these hot tools can weaken the hair shaft and lead to breakage.

Why Is The Underneath Of My Hair So Dry?

There are a few reasons why the underneath of your hair might be dry. One reason is that the sebaceous glands, which produce natural oils, are located at the base of the hair shaft.
This means that the hair at the bottom of your strand doesn’t get as much natural oil as the rest.

Why Is The Under Layer Of My Hair Frizzy?

The underneath of your hair is more likely to be frizzy because it’s often exposed to the sun and wind.
In addition, this area is also more susceptible to damage from heat tools (such as curling irons). To help control frizz, use a leave-in conditioner or serum.


All in all, it’s important to remember that your hair underneath is just as important as the hair on top. By taking care of your scalps and roots, you can prevent a whole host of problems – and keep your locks looking their best.

I hope I have covered everything you need to know and given you the answer to your question, “why is the underneath of my hair so damaged?”

If you’re still unsure how to take care of your roots or are experiencing scalp problems, don’t hesitate to consult a professional stylist or dermatologist.

women wondering why is the underneath of hair so damaged

So, what’s the plan? Are you going to consult a professional? Don’t forget to let me know what he says!


  • 1. Why Do I Have Dry Hair? [Internet]. Healthline. 2019. Available from: https://www.healthline.com/health/dry-hair
  • 2. Combing Over What Makes Hair So Strong [Internet]. Science Friday. 13AD [cited 2022 Dec 5]. Available from: https://www.sciencefriday.com/segments/combing-over-what-makes-hair-so-strong
  • 3. Research Matters N. How stress causes hair loss [Internet]. National Institute on Aging. 13AD [cited 2022 Dec 5]. Available from: https://www.nia.nih.gov/news/how-stress-causes-hair-loss
About Sylvia K

Sylvia is one of the most joyful people you’ll ever meet. She is a high advocate of self-love and encourages women to take care of themselves both mentally and physically. She loves girly talks especially salon talks (a little gossip doesn’t hurt) and spends most of her free time on skincare or hair care. READ HER LATEST ARTICLES. Find her on LINKEDIN. Learn more about her HERE.