If your someone like me that struggles with keeping hair long and lush and you may also like myself be struggling a bit more than usual in these colder months. Cold days, wind and frost as well as central heating and wooly hats can all lead to problems including dryness, breakage, flakiness and/ or grease. I'm one of those unlucky people with fairly fine wavy and a little bit straggley/ flyaway hair that does'nt like to be long much to my dismay. Throughout the winter I do see some degree of all these issues and now that I finally have hair with some length that I am determined to take care of and keep I thought I would share here what I have tried to keep my scalp, hair and head all happy and healthy in the winter and so here it is- a list of my top tips to keep those locks healthy and happy in the chillier weather.
1. Cover HAir in very cold weather/ wind or snow
I am a big beanie hat lover and have always worn one constantly though winter to keep me cosy. In extreme weather such as high winds, snow, frost and rain then this would be the right thing to do as your head/ hair and scalp will all benefit from the extra protection from the elements. This cold weather causes extra stress on your hair that it can really do without in the already drying winter. You can use a silk/satin scarf to cover hair or line a hat if you want to avoid static or friction that wool and cotton materials can often cause.
However I have recently learnt that actually constantly wearing a hat throughout winter can be detrimental to hair and scalp health- which leads me nicely to point no.2
2. Don't cover hair on sunny days
Your scalp will benefit hugely from getting some rays on it so on sunny days (even those that are still quite chilly) its better to leave the hat off and instead opt for ear muffs or I wear a huge scarf. The sun gives us vitamin d which plays a vital role in our overall health- keeping our immune system strong. A lot of scalp problems such as dandruff or scalp psoriasis are linked to autoimmune issues so getting as much vitamin d is likely to help prevent flair ups if you suffer with these issues. Vitamin D is also thought to help with the creation of new hair follicles leading to thicker hair so more reason to uncover that head.
3. wash hair less often and Use warm water
The cold weather might make it tempting to turn the taps up for hot showers and baths but be warned that hot water can remove the natural oils and moisture from your hair which will make it dry. It may also lead to a dry scalp and cause flakiness. Try to always wash your hair with lukewarm water and blast with cold water at the ends to help seal the hair cuticles. This can also be said for your skin especially the delicate oils on your face that don't need to be completely stripped with hot water.
And its also extra important to avoid leaving the house with wet hair. Hair that is wet is more vulnerable and prone to breakage. This is because the water droplets left in hair can enter the hair shaft and when the water temperature reaches freezing it can swell the shaft. This in turn means that the cuticles can move from where they should be, leaving hair exposed to the elements without its usual buffer. Wet hair plus wintry weather can also fade your hair colour faster and harden hair strands, leading to a higher likelihood of breakages and split ends.
It is also very important not to brush hair or comb hair when its wet as this will most likely cause more breakage as hair is extra fragile when wet. Really you want to minimise hair washing as much as possible to allow your hairs natural oils to work their magic- and always try to avoid using any harsh products containing SLS or phelates- you can shop our amazing range of shampoos and conditioners that all fit the bill under haircare
4. Moisturise hair (tips and Scalp)
Though you might not see much of your scalp, it needs just as much care as your hair. In winter the drying duo of central heating and frosty weather can strip away moisture, creating a dry, flaky scalp. And, as you turn the taps to hot in your shower in the colder months this extra heat can over-wash hair and strip it of its natural oils too. As these oils are what ordinarily keep your hair protected and looking healthy, taking care of them is even more crucial for your winter barnet. Using a hair oil once or twice a week will help with this
5. do a hair mask- aim for weekly
I remember years ago when I was in a big bleaching the barnet stage of life my hairdresser telling me to try to do a mask once a week to add the protein back into my hair. She recommended sticking with the coconut based masks I'd been using but also adding ingredients such as avocados, eggs and honey. Apple cider vinegar is another great conditioner for the hair that can help to balance scalp and hair.. I think it is fascinating that hair can absorb the proteins it needs topically and it also another great chance to take a minute and give your hair and scalp a good massage to boost circulation. There are loads of hair masks available but as always its best to keep it natural and simple. Use ingredients you know and play around with combinations that will suit your hair and its needs. This week I've tried this very simple 1/2 Coconut and 1/2 cinnamon mask to help stimulate growth and improve circulation- taken from good housekeeping. I used around 5 grams of each and it smelt so good I wanted to lick the bowl
You can check out this one and 6 other simple DIY hair masks below
6. Eat healthy and stay hydrated
And of course it is as important as ever in the cold harsh weather to keep your fruits and veg up for your overall heath but also for your hairy health. A healthy diet will help keep hair strong and shiny and help prevent hair loss- you need to make sure you are getting a good balance of essential nutrients such as zinc, vitamins, proteins and fatty acids and zinc. Nuts, avocados, sweet potatoes, spinach, berries and eggs are all good foods for a happy head of hair.