How to Protect Your Hair from the Cold

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How to Protect Your Hair from the Cold
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“Winter is coming” – it is basically these three words that worry everyone when they think about the state of their hair in the winter months.

Or when they think about Game of Thrones, either or.

The cold, the wind, the snow, and the mixture of all three make you think about what you could do to solve the problem.

Just when you think you’ve finished dealing with split ends and dryness of your hair as a consequence of the summer sun, soon enough comes the time to think about how to save your hair from the detrimental influence of cold weather.

What does the cold weather do to your hair?

Frizzy hair on woman

Generally, the condition of your hair is something you have to pay attention to year-round, that’s certain. However, winter months are particularly hazardous. The humid and dry weather alternate, creating a perfect environment for the appearance of split ends and dandruff, and nobody wants that, now do they?

Winter frizz – the never-ending battle

When you think of the winter frizz, and let’s be specific, not the intentional one you sometimes get at the hair salon, but the one you get in the cold weather, you probably think of never walking out of the house again.

Most women have experienced the frizz, but few of you know the real cause behind it. You would expect it in the summer months due to the effects of the constant changing of hot and humid weather, but never in the cold months.

But you’d be dead wrong.

The cold and dry air make the cuticles of the hair strand lift, which affects the moisture of the hair. Namely, due to that lift, moisture quickly escapes the hair shaft, making it dry and frigid – thus, the frizz awaits.

Why can’t the word tangled only remind us of the animated movie?

The question we have asked ourselves frequently.

Well, those of us who adore the movie.

The winter winds can seriously affect the state of your hair. All the girls with thick, curly, long hair know this, because it makes their hair extremely tangled and almost impossible to comb. If they try to comb it, breakage happens and split ends show their ugly heads even more.

The struggle is real, girls, we feel you.

Dyed hair problems

Dyed hair is generally drier than natural hair, and needs more care.

It needs even more care in the cold weather because the dryness becomes more evident. The harsh winters and the annoying wind make dyed hair lose vibrancy and shine, and that is why more attention needs to be paid on solving the problem. As we’ve already said, dyed hair is very dry as it is, even without the cold weather and the relentless wind adding to the problem.    

Protecting your hair from the cold

Taking all these problems into consideration, it seems that you will have to add some more steps to your hair routine if you want to protect it from the influence of the winter weather conditions.

So let’s start from the beginning.

Always, always wear a hat

Woman in snow with hat

No, this is not the time to think about whether the hat is going to destroy the look you have been preparing for hours. It is important to wear one because it will stop the process of excessive drying due to the air, snow, rain and wind and actually keep the moisture in.

However, you have to remember that there are fabrics you should avoid, which cause split ends and actually put your hair through even more suffering, like wool or cotton. Those materials mixed with dry air cause friction which causes static and breakage of hair strands. So, it would be a good idea to use hats with a silk or satin underline in order to protect your hair from additional breakage. If a hat doesn’t have one, try wrapping your hair with a silk scarf to protect it from outer harmful influence.

Don’t wash your hair too often

Yes, during the summer, you are used to washing your hair frequently due to sweating. Especially if you are at the seaside and you need to rinse the salt from your hair.

But, you’re not at the seaside anymore, so please give your hair a break.

Excessive washing in the winter months only deepens the problem with dryness, leading to problems with itchy and flaky scalp, which then cause the appearance of dandruff. And no one is particularly fond of that problem, are they? Over washing your hair will remove the natural oils from its surface, and they are essential for keeping your hair moisturized and protected.

If you have troubles with this, and you don’t know how to reduce the number of times you wash your hair a week, try to slowly move the timeline – for example, if you washed you hair every two days, try extending it to three days.

To keep this number at a necessary minimum which will help your hair, try using dry shampoos between washes to make you hair smell good and look fresh until it is time for another wash.

Choose your shampoo and conditioner wisely

In this day and age, it is almost impossible to find a product that has only organic and natural ingredients, free from chemicals that can ultimately cause more harm than good.

But, the key word here is almost.

In order to choose a proper shampoo for the winter months, you have to look for the ones that are free from sulfate. This is because sulfate will devoid your hair of beneficial oils it needs to stay hydrated and moisturized.

This will maybe seem as an impossible endeavor, since almost every single shampoo on the market has sulfate as an ingredient. However, be persistent and don’t give up, you can find a couple on the shelves at the store, only if you look.

As for the conditioner, you need to be prepared to invest a bit more money in a good, rich, thick and moisturizing conditioner. It is best to choose the ones that have fatty acids and humectants, as well as soy protein and panthenol. These amazing ingredients can restore the moisture in the hair and preserve it.

Also, never forget the golden rule for proper washing – wash your hair only in lukewarm water! Washing your hair in hot water will only boost the dryness. The best thing to do is to wash it in lukewarm water and then put some cold water at the ends to close the hair cuticles.

Deep conditioning is the cure

Woman combing conditioner through hair

As you have seen, the main idea around keeping your hair healthy and shiny during the winter months is keeping the moisture from leaving the hair cuticles.

That is why it is essential to use a leave-in conditioner weekly to preserve the moisture and fight the detrimental effects different things have on your hair in the winter months.

Pick a good leave-in conditioner and help your hair stay hydrated. Use this conditioner once a week, and you will see the difference in no time. Soon, your hair will restore its former glow and volume.

Hair masks save the day

If you are aware of all the benefits a regular face mask has on your skin, then there’s no reason you should avoid this.

Weekly hair masks can mean a world of difference in this long and hard battle against the harmful effects the cold weather has on your hair. They can be applied to any type of hair, even hair that has already sustained significant damage.

There is no such thing as a lost cause here.

They are extremely beneficial because they reverse the effects of dryness and protect your hair year-round. That’s right, these masks are beneficial at any given moment of the year not just the winter.

As with shampoos and conditioners, it is best to choose a mask with organic ingredients, with as less chemical ingredients as possible. Try to find the one that suits your hair type, so remember to read the label carefully. What suits your neighbor, doesn’t necessarily mean will suit you. Try a couple of different ones and choose your favorite.

DIY masks seal the deal

As for the people that like to experiment, there is a plethora of perfect DIY hair masks you can make in the comfort of your own home, with the ingredients you probably have lying around somewhere. 

For example, there is a mask that is close to our hearts because of its wonderful effect on the hair, which helps it look like it came out of a magazine.

It is an amazing honey-rosemary mask that you can make by mixing ½ cup of honey, 4 drops of rosemary essential oil, and a couple of tablespoons of olive oil, depending on whether you hair is normal, oily or dry. The hydrating features of olive oil go perfectly with honey which boosts the shine of your hair, making this mask a perfect combination for the winter months. You can also try replacing olive oil with coconut oil.

The intensive dry hair treatment will do wonders for dull, winter hair you may be struggling with.

Get a regular haircut

Having a haircut every four to eight weeks is necessary for maintaining your hair healthy and strong.

By cutting off an inch or two, you will solve the problems with split ends and help your hair look fresh. A regular trim is essential for preserving your hair, so don’t be lazy and get one!

No heat styling in winter

Woman straightening hair

Heat styling adds to the already existing dryness of your hair, making it look worse, so avoid doing this too often in the winter months.

It may look nice on the day you decide to do it, but, trust us, you will regret it the day after. It only causes more split ends to appear and results in extreme breakage and damage to your hair. Give your hair a break and embrace your natural hair.

Instead of torturing your hair with heat, you could try styles that are actually recommended for this period of the year because they preserve the hair strands and minimize the winter breakage: braids, buns, twists and ponytails will help your hair stay strong and healthy.

Leaving the house with wet hair? – Bad idea

Not only do you risk getting a severe case of the sniffles if you decide to do this, but you also risk damaging your hair further.

 If you go out with damp hair, the cold weather will cause it to freeze and break. Although blow drying is not a perfect solution, it is still better than risking more damage and even your health.

So be wise, and simply don’t do this!

Hydrate daily

Apart from using a weekly hair mask, it is essential to hydrate your hair with an oil or a serum overnight.

During the night, the air tends to get extra dry, which leads to removal of all of the moisture from the root of your hair and the cuticles. That is why it would be best to use some oil and apply it to your hair every night.

If you are thinking about the ruined sheets, have one pillow that will serve as a hydration pillow, and use it when you apply the overnight oil.

Drink a lot of water

Water is extremely important for maintaining our health.

The same applies to hair.

Water shortage that your body is perhaps going through will undoubtedly reflect on the state of your hair. Hair is made of 25% water, so if you want to hydrate your hair, the hydration process has to start from within. Drinking enough water a day will provide you with a healthy scalp, with no problems with dryness, dandruff and itchiness.

Drinking enough water solves the problems with brittle hair, and makes your hair look shiny and radiant every day of the year!

Keep an eye on what you eat

Foods rich in natural oils, minerals and vitamins will boost the health of your hair, making it glow and look well-nourished.

Your diet needs to be rich in Vitamins C, A, E, and iron, so you can boost your immune system which will ultimately lead to your hair looking healthy and radiant!

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