Your hair's style and condition is one of the first impressions people get of your appearance; in a social or professional setting, well-kept hair can give observers a favorable impression of you. Long thick hair requires special care and maintenance to keep it looking neat and clean, as opposed to messy or unkempt. Hair care, especially for longer hair, involves a mixture of proper brushing, shampooing, trimming and styling. Human hair can be delicate and only gets more delicate as its length increases; therefore, you have to pay more attention when you attempt to care for it. If you've previously worn your hair short, wearing it long introduces more factors to keep in mind.
Long thick hair should be washed every other day at a maximum; when you wash hair, it removes lubricating oils from the hair and scalp. Washing every day causes hair to dry out and become brittle, which makes it prone to breakage. Purchase shampoo and conditioner that matches your particular hair type; for example, straight hair may require a volumizing shampoo as lacks the volume, or body, that curly or wavy hair has. Wash hair once by massaging a small dollop of shampoo gently into the scalp and allowing the water to carry the shampoo down the rest of your hair's length; scrubbing the ends can cause them to break.
Brushing long hair requires special care, especially when the hair tangles, because long hair tangles easily. Start brushing at the ends of the hair and work your way up, keeping one hand pressed on the roots of your hair to prevent it from pulling out in the brush. Sectional brushing, such as one side and then the other, can make long thick hair easier to untangle. Hair of any length should be brushed when dry; water weakens the hair and makes it easier to pull out. A wide-toothed comb works best on wet, conditioned hair.
After washing and brushing your hair, you have to consider how it should be styled. A ponytail is one of the quickest hairstyles to create, and you can use clasps or elastic hair ties to restrain long thick hair. Use elastic hair ties without the metal band, and never use a rubber band. Metal clasps and rubber bands can catch hair and rip it free when you remove the hair tie. When you make a ponytail, avoid pulling hair too tightly against its roots; allow some slack.
Trim your hair once every three months to reduce split ends. Once the ends begin to split, the separation in the hair strand can travel up its length and cause the hair to break off entirely. Split ends also make long thick hair look unkempt.