Winter is here! The festive season has been bestowed upon us, and you know what that means: ‘tis the season to consider some new looks for your hair! I don’t know about you guys, but for me, winter is the best season for showing off my tresses. But it comes with a price. Winters are not only harsh on your skin; in fact, they are harsher on your hair, even though this is less evident. There are a few factors responsible for this, which we will cover through means of this post. Long story short, it’s time to take better care of them curls, girls!
A common question I’ve come across is this. “How do you protect hair from lack of moisture? You can moisturize your skin when it’s cold outside, but what do you do to your hair and scalp?” Let’s see how to get your hair to that A-grade level of perfection.
1. Reduce the frequency of washing your hair
This is for all the ladies in the house that shampoo their hair every day. Keep the number of washes to a minimum during the winters, it has proven to render effective. Shampooing your hair 2-3 times a week should suffice: it cleanses your scalp and hair, while preventing your hair from drying out too much. Minimize the use of your shampoo as well, as this focuses on cleansing your scalp.
2. Load up on conditioner
Conditioner is a must, and is something I recommend to anyone I know, but must be given special importance during the winters. There is a dire need to understand the dryness that comes with winter, and must be combatted with deep One way to do this is by doubling up on Conditioner after shampooing. If this feels weird, I recommend you use some leave-in conditioners, and use it constantly whenever you feel flaky on the head.
3. How to use conditioner the right way
As evidenced, conditioning your hair during winters is of utmost importance in order to maintain a healthy hair care routine. Now this is apart from the normal hair oils, leave in conditioners and deep conditioning packs that you may use throughout the week. At the end of it, you must wash everything out with a conditioner, post-shampooing. So once all the lather has been rinsed out, apply the conditioner from the middle section of your hair, and apply it downwards, focusing on the ends of your hair strands. This is essential because the ends are the oldest (and most likely the most damaged) parts of your hair. For best results, leave the conditioner in for a few minutes before rinsing it out with cool or lukewarm water. Cool water is what I’d suggest because this ensures the moisture to seep into the scalp, after which your hair is left feeling ever so smooth and silky.
4. Keep your bathing water’s temperature lukewarm
I know how terrifying this piece of advice may seem, but trust me, it is very effective. There’s nothing more soothing than a long, hot shower on a cold winter morning. But as it turns out, exposure of hot water to your skin or scalp is defective, in that it dehydrates your skin and hair. Picture steaming the moisture right out of your skin. How weird is that? In order to help regulate your use of hot water, try maintaining the same position of the water heater throughout the year. More importantly, hot water strips away any natural oil that may be present on your scalp, protecting and nourishing your hair. Ensure to at least apply a leave-in conditioner to keep your hair in a healthy state.
5. Oil it up
The most important tip is to keep your scalp moisturized. Sadly enough, there’s no moisturizer that can be applied to your scalp. What you can do, however, is increase the frequency of oil massages. Winter is accompanied by major scalp dries, which further lead to scalp irritation, or even worse, dandruff. If the trend continues, you may even experience hair fall (which is pretty much the worst case scenario). Don’t forget how much your hair yearns for oil in order to keep it moisturized. I would suggest that you incorporate this into your weekly activities; maybe try to squeeze in a hair treatment mask once a week (or even twice, if you have damaged hair) in order to keep your locks lively.
6. Olive oil treatment
Olive oil is great for your skin and scalp. An olive oil treatment can render beautiful long tresses. Here is what you must do: warm up 2 teaspoons of olive oil and apply it on your scalp. Following this, slowly massage it, which helps in penetrating the oil through the deep roots of your scalp. What results is a moisturized scalp, and increased blood circulation. This treatment also ensures that your follicles get the sustenance it requires, while preventing hair fall. Oil massages can also be used as a deep conditioning treatment, wherein the oil is coated entirely on your hair and left to sink in. After this, rinse it out with shampoo and conditioner.
7. Keep your room at an optimal temperature
Whoever thought that the temperature you dwell in has an indirect effect on your hair. What this means is that, try to avoid the sudden change in temperature (otherwise known as temperature shock) when you come back home, or while going out. If the temperature at home is warmer than outside, this can lead to scalp and skin irritation. Try not to turn up the heat too much during winters.
8. Ensure your hair-drying techniques are on-point
There are many ways to dry your hair; but when it comes to drying it in the winter, I’d suggest you stay away from fancy apparatus like blow dryers. While it is the most sought after tool to style your hair to perfection, it only leads to further drying up of the scalp. The heat is responsible for making your scalp flakier than usual (which already happens due to the cold). If you do wish to use your dryer, however, then ensure to use a heat protecting serum before drying it out. It is almost as important as actually blow drying your hair.
9. Instead, air dry your hair
If at all, this is an option for you, consider it. It is the best for the health of your hair. Limiting the use of dryers and flat irons will only contribute to the fruition of your hair’s health.
10. Don’t go out with wet hair
Having said that, do not go outside directly with wet hair. This is very harmful, as wet hair in cold weathers causes your hair to break (after freezing). So if air drying your hair is consuming too much of your time, then by all means, blow dry it. A great tip would be to use the cool setting on the blow dryer, so as to ensure the minimal amount of negative impact caused to your hair, should there be any. Again, remember to use pre-styling hairspray that is heat protecting, and you’re good to go.
11. Trim your hair on a regular basis
While most people don’t think about the importance of cutting hair, it’s essential to keep in mind that harsh, cold weathers can result in the ends of your hair rendering dry and brittle, even. Hence, getting trims on a regular basis is crucial in order to retain your hair in a good condition, and holistically bring down the chances of split ends arising. I would strongly recommend a trim or haircut every 6-8 weeks, but that does also depend on the current situation of your hair. If you get split ends often and have damaged hair in general, then go with the lower limit of this range. Getting a haircut or hair trim once a month would also be effective, but may be unnecessary in most cases.
12. Don’t forget your hat
That’s right, before stepping out into the biting cold, throw on a hat to keep you nice and warm. This is particularly when the winds are whistling, and you feel the cold biting on your face. Most people do not like the idea of a hat, because this essentially means kissing goodbye to that fabulous hairdo you just spent an hour concocting. But don’t worry, because there are some great looks that a hat can promote, in some cases, even add a little edge to the look. My only tip would be to ensure the hat frames your face. Let’s face it, not all hats suit everyone. Additionally, the use of a hat means covering your crown, which keeps out the cold and prevents your hair from freezing and eventually breaking (ouch). If you have longer tresses, then best you use a scarf to lock in the moisture in your tresses, further leading to the prevention of it breaking.
13. Let’s tie it up
A great tip this winter would be to tie up your hair, either into a bun or a ponytail. The lesser your hair is exposed to the biting cold, the better. Also ensure to tie up your hair, especially when exercising. This tames frizzy, static-prone hair.
14. Fighting the flakes
…and by flakes, I don’t mean snowflakes. Winters are great, magical times, but they also mean itchier and drier scalps. This is due to the lack of moisture in the atmosphere, so we have to try our best to keep it hydrated. As mentioned earlier, the lack of special care will further lead to dandruff or even aggravated scalp itchiness, which ultimately leads to hair loss (oh, the horror!) Some people find that they develop dandruff during winters, out of nowhere. To those of you, I say, do not panic, it is very easily treatable. As mentioned earlier, an oil massage should do the trick. Now, olive oil is not the only remedy, coconut oil works too. A great addition to this would be a teaspoon of lemon juice (it works miracles). Ensure that the mixture is heated ever so slightly, so that it becomes warm, and then apply it on your scalp, leaving it so for about half an hour (at max). After this, rinse it off with cool water, shampoo and conditioner. Tip: Avacado and almond oil actually do wonders to your hair as well. Ensure you know if you’re allergic to any of these products before applying them on your scalp though.
15. Saying goodbye to the frizz factor
If you’re one of those girls who has to worry about bringing down the frizz, you know how horrible winters are in terms of static. Also, high-five for feeling the pain. Taking off a sweater is a major pain in my butt, and don’t even get me started on beanies. For some reason, I feel like they all collaboratively gang up on me, leaving my hair in a messy rut. Lucky for you, I’m here to help. A vented hair brush can do wonders if you’re a fellow frizz ball, which is essentially composed of plastic and boar bristles that combs through your hair effortlessly.
16. Lastly, stay hydrated and eat a balanced diet
One of the easiest ways to ensure a healthy state of your scalp and hair is eating the right food. A healthy diet, rich in vitamins might just be the way to get this: your hair and scalp looking and feeling healthy. Keep yourself constantly hydrated; drink lots of fluids, even though the winters seldom make you thirsty.