The winter period is an amazing time of year, with an abundance of woolly jumpers, hot chocolate, over-eating and most importantly Christmas. Whilst Christmas is over, many people are still fighting against the cold weather and its number one side effect, Dry Hair. As I’ve mentioned in my previous blog post curly hair is the most fragile susceptible to breakage, damage and cold weather can have a serious impact. In the winter, there’s no moisture in the air (and with central heating to stay warm indoors) and your hair will dry up and shrink more than ever. The scalp is more prone to dehydration with the cold weather and intense indoor heat, which can result in a dry scalp and brittle hair. Winter can make the moisture level inside your hair drop to around 10% or lower. Through my own personal trial, errors, YouTube and research I have compiled 5 hacks to help you help beat dry winter hair.
Deep conditioning is a great way to care for curly hair on a regular basis but to combat dryness, a more powerful tool for combatting weather-related dryness can be hair masks. In my personal experience, deep conditioners are just slightly thicker conditioners. On the other hand, hair masks can be extremely strengthening and help to replenish dry brittle hair, especially protein-based hair masks. You should definitely buy masks that contain ‘silk protein’ as this penetrates the hair cuticle better. These types of masks are also thicker to give your hair the moisture it needs, and to help it withstand breakage. If you don’t want to go out and buy a hair mask it is so easy to make one at home. Check out these easy DIY Hair masks from AndreasChoice on YouTube.
If you don’t do this already, now is a great time to start. Co-washing is when you wash your hair with a ‘cleansing conditioner’ and I learnt about it reading the Curly Girl: The Handbook, Lorraine Massey. It is a great method for people with curly or colour treated hair as it doesn’t strip the hair of oils like regular shampoos. Many people swear by co-washing claiming it helped to reduce their split ends, If your hair is dry this will help to give it the added moisture it needs to stay healthy. Always beware of silicones in your chosen conditioner as these aren’t water-soluble and can make it difficult for the conditioner to wash out causing product build-up on your scalp. Use a clarifying shampoo every 4-6 weeks to help get rid of any build-up caused by co-washing.
This is a MUST, I swear by satin pillowcases and only use a cotton pillowcase when I sleep at someone else’s house. Some people prefer to wear a satin bonnet but this is a good way to make sure you don’t get a mark on your forehead and if you find your bonnet slips off in the night. Satin pillowcases are amazing at keeping your hair healthy because they don’t suck out all of your hairs natural moisture. Cotton pillowcases can make your hair even drier especially after it had to deal with the cold outdoors and can make it brittle and dry and that’s something you don’t want. For those of you who don’t like sleeping on anything synthetic, silk can be a good alternative to satin because silk and satin pillowcases are both undoubtedly better than cotton ones. Some people prefer silk over satin, mostly because it is a natural fibre, however, satin still has some advantages.
Your hair is made of keratin, which is a type of protein. Proteins are built from amino acids, which are formed as a result of the reaction of cell enzymes and biotin. The biotin in your body contributes to the production of healthy hair and nails, by providing an essential ingredient in the process of hair growth. There are many ‘vitamins’ that promote hair growth and health such as Sugarbear hair, Perfectil and Hairburst. These include important ingredients such as Biotin which help improve hair growth and strengthen hair. I have used biotin pills before, however, one of my friends showed me there is some other alternative (cheaper) vitamins that can improve hair health, strength and growth such as fish oil pills. The essential omega-3 fatty acids nourish hair at the follicles, where each strand connects to your scalp and can help strengthen the hair reducing breakage and dryness. Your hair is impacted by your diet the same way your skin is, you can find out more about the best foods for your hair here.
Try to keep your hair in a protective style for as long as possible – the less stress on your hair at this time of year, the better. Some naturals choose to wear their hair in plaits, cornrows, braids, weaves and wigs and all are great ways of protecting your hair. Just remember to make sure it isn’t too tight, keep your scalp clean and don’t neglect it just because it’s in a protective style it still needs moisturising. Get creative with different protective styles there are thousands of videos to choose from. Here are a few…
If you’re like me however and love wearing your hair out while you’re in public, make sure when you get home you plait your hair as soon as possible to help it recover from being out in the elements. Not only will this method help you lock in moisture, but you may also notice your hair grow faster because you are retaining its length.
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– Paris x