Unless you’re a real powder hound or ski bunny, chances are your goal is to make like a tortoise and get through winter as quickly as possible.
But if you’re not careful when you finally do poke your head back out come springtime, you could be looking at a serious case of winter weather damaged hair.
Natural hair repair secrets for cold damaged hair
Keep the dry frizzy hair at bay with these lovely locks secrets to winter hair repair.
1. Turn down the heat:
If you’ve been battling the bitter winter cold with super-hot showers, your hair is paying the price. Hot water strips away the natural oils that keep your hair healthy, shiny and strong.
Take too many hot showers and you’ll end up with lackluster, dry locks and split ends. Keep your showers tepid to warm instead.
Can’t give up the hot water? Put your hair in a towel and finish up with a soak in a hot bath.2.
2. Shampoo LESS often:
Unless your work or play activities make you particularly sweaty or grimy… or your hair tends to be very oily… there’s really no reason to shampoo daily But there’s a very good reason not to do it.
Every time you shampoo you strip away those naturally moisturizing oils we mentioned earlier. And with that layer of protection gone, you’re risking dry, damaged hair.
Try skipping a day between shampoos and see how you feel. If that works well extend the days between. The goal is to reach a once a week cleansing during the winter. Then when you do wash your hair, be sure to use a gentle, moisturizing shampoo instead of one with harsh chemicals.
Look for products labeled sulfate-free (a harsh chemical detergent) and while you’re at it check out the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep Database for tips on choosing a safer shampoo as well.
To add extra moisturizing power to your shampoo try adding a few drops of your favorite oil. Argan and avocado oils are light options that work well in shampoo.
3. Condition MORE often:
Now that you’re shampooing less often don’t make the mistake of skipping out on conditioning your hair regularly. In fact, in the cold weather months you should make sure to condition at least two to three times a week to avoid winter damaged hair.
When the temperatures drop outside try switching to a heavier conditioner than you use during the summer. Look for one that’s labeled humectant, which means it helps draw and lock moisture into the hair follicles. Or try going all natural and condition with heavier oils, such as coconut or olive oil.
Massage your conditioner into wet hair at the beginning of your shower, and leave it in until you’ve finished bathing, then rinse well.
4. Deep condition once a week:
Even if you’re conditioning several times a week, you’ll still want to treat yourself to a homemade deep conditioner once a week. It will seal in moisture while helping to repair your damaged hair.
After your weekly shampoo, combine one half a cup of honey with two tablespoons of olive oil. Massage into your scalp, and gently spread throughout your hair, paying special attention to the ends. Dip your fingers in warm water if needed to help with spreading the mixture.
Cover with a shower cap and let it sit for 20 minutes before rinsing thoroughly. The moisturizing olive oil penetrates deeply into each strand while the honey—a natural humectant—helps lock in the moisture.
5. Try essential oils:
It’s not just your hair. Your scalp takes a beating during the winter months too. Which can leave it dry and flaky.
For affordable, effective dandruff relief try several drops of essential oil in your conditioner. A few to choose from are…
- Peppermint: A natural antiseptic, peppermint provides a soothing cooling sensation to calm your itchy scalp. Helps to eliminate flakes, too.
- Lavender: Both an anti-fungal and an anti-inflammatory, lavender battles the fungus behind many cases of dandruff while reducing inflammation and itch.
- Tea tree: This triple threat oil is an antibacterial, antiseptic and antimicrobial. In other words, no matter whether its germs, bacteria or yeast that’s behind your itchy flaking scalp tea tree oil can help. Like peppermint, tea tree cools and soothes while it works.
- Rosemary: Rosemary is a natural antifungal so it can attack the root cause of dandruff while its anti-inflammatory action helps soothe inflammation and itch. Plus rosemary can help boost circulation to your scalp promoting new healthy hair growth to replace your weather damaged hair.
6. Don’t forget your diet:
When the winter weather blasts your hair from the outside, be sure to take care of it from the inside. Vitamin A, B-5, biotin, vitamin D and protein are all vital nutrients for a healthy head of hair.
You’ll find most of these in eggs, nuts and veggies. And then talk to your doctor about a vitamin D supplement during the short winter days.
Don’t let the frigid temps turn your hair into hay. Battle dry, lifeless, winter damaged hair with these natural hair repair tips.