Donna Kim-Brand

For most people, winter wreaks havoc on their tresses. Between frequent temperature changes from warm to cold both indoors and outdoors along with exposure to sunlight and freezing winds, regular hair care just doesn’t cut it. Your hair can end up looking flat and lifeless or frizzy and fly-away. Neither is flattering!

And yet, most of us have not been taught how to both protect and replenish our hair during winter months to be assured of lovely locks come springtime. So let’s get a jump on that right now.

As someone who grew up in the wild snowy cold of western New York state and now lives in a tropical climate, one of my worst winter hair memories as a child was ‘hat hair’. Not only the stupid style that resulted from smushing my hair under a tight wooly hat- and I had long hair down to my waist much of my youth- but the static electricity on taking my hat off  that gave shocks to anyone within twenty feet and made the outer layer of my hair stand to attention. Not pretty with long hair…It made me look like one of those bridge troll dolls we grew up playing with!

So here’s what you’re advised  NOT do during winter months:

  • Don’t over-wash your hair, as natural oils can be stripped out of both your hair and scalp resulting in both fizzy strands and the dreaded dandruff
  • Don’t over-dry your hair, with either a dryer or electric straightener
  • Don’t expose your hair too long to bright sunlight or freezing temperatures
  • Don’t use styles that pull hair too tight as dry hair is more prone to breakage

And now here are a few tips for making the best of winter hair:

  • When you wash your hair, use cool water to wash and cold water to rinse
  • For touch ups between washes, use powders for a ‘dry wash’ to absorb oils
  • Use replenishing oils or deep conditioning lotions for your scalp and hair several times a week
  • Use conditioners with good SPF you can leave on if you are going out in the elements
  • Use a hat or head covering when outside to avoid direct exposure to sun, cold and pollutants
  • Get a trim more often to rid yourself of split ends and allow fuller absorption by healthy hairs
  • Eat a healthy diet, with plenty of water, protein, Vitamins A, B & C in fresh fruits and veggies
  • Exercise, as it keeps your blood and hormones flowing right up to the top of your head

I’ve taken the more drastic step of a shorter hair style this winter, knowing it can grow it out by summer if I choose. Taking good care of my winter hair allows for a double whammy- compliments on both my new style and how vibrant my hair looks. Now that’s an instant pick-me-up, and one you can take advantage of too!

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