Winter naturally comes with beautiful thoughts. Thoughts of twinkling lights, hot chocolate, cozy sweaters, and holiday tunes. However, the thought of how static your hair will become, how tangled and snappy it will be each morning, leaves us wishing that winter would just be a memory. Seasons come and go, and winter isn’t the friendliest to natural hair.
The rate at which moisture is lost from your hair leaves it tangled up and messy. Not to mention, dry hair is prime for breakage and split ends. But don't fret-- I have some good news for you, and no, hibernation isn’t the solution. Read on to find out!
- Weekly Deep Conditioning
Deep conditioning provides a friendly environment for the absorption of all the healthy nutrients that your hair so desperately needs. It's important to deep condition with heat to open up the cuticles and ensure the product penetrates the hair strands. Uniformly distribute your conditioner by working with sectioned hair. Apply the product generously from the roots all the way to the tips. Cover your hair with a processing (shower) cap and sit under a hooded dryer for about 15 minutes (or use a steamer with no cap). Alternatively, you can wrap your hair with a warm, damp towel to encourage the heat from your scalp to do the work. Your hair will be soft, easy to manage and most of all, full of moisture!
- Use Moisturizing Creams
You may have to retire your summer hair lotions in favor of heavier creams. Now you don't have to slather your hair--that will weigh it down! However, opting for cream moisturizers that feature butters like shea and oils like olive oil may help your hair hold on to the moisture a bit longer.
- Don't Skip The Sealing!
What good is all of that added moisture if it's just gonna evaporate after an hour? Be sure to seal your hair after adding moisture to ensure your strands stay hydrated. Use the LOC method (liquid-oil-cream) or LCO method (liquid-cream-oil) with your favorite leave-in, hair cream, and oil. If you use a hair lotion, try sealing with a butter--when using cream, you can seal with an oil. Experiment a little to see how your hair responds. Personally, my hair loves the LCO method.
A note about moisturizing and sealing: It's important to know your hair's porosity in order to chose the right products. Read more about how to determine your porosity level here!
4. Use Protective Styles
Protective styling is an awesome way to give your hair a rest and protect it from the elements. Deep condition and moisturize & seal right before an install to lock in moisture. Full wigs, sew-in weaves, and braids (especially crochet braids) provide up to 100% coverage of your hair, virtually eliminating its exposure to the elements. But be sure to continue to add moisture to your hair underneath, and try using hair oil to nourish your follicles and encourage growth. You may just be surprised at the length when it's time to take down your style!
What are your winter hair care tips?