* Guest Post from Aaron Gabrielse*
There’s no stopping it – you can’t run and you can’t hide. It’s coming for you and it won’t rest until its ravaging is complete.
No, I’m not talking about a serial killer or a disease. The ruthless monster I speak of is winter and its victim is your hair.
Those of us who live in dry, cold-weather climates know all too well the harmful effects that winter can have on hair. Although there’s no fighting Mother Nature and her blustery fury, there are many helpful tips that can keep locks lustrous in the winter months.
Winterize Your Hair with These Easy Tips
1. New Cut & Color
Frequent trims are a must during the winter. Cold temperatures and indoor heating zap hair of moisture, leading to split ends and breakage. Heading to the salon for a trim every 6-8 weeks combats frayed ends and keeps hair looking healthy and fresh.
As for color, try to stay away from lightening hair during the chilly season. Dying locks a lighter color usually involves peroxide, which further dries your already-thirsty hair. Instead, try going for a warmer color or add lowlights for depth. Save the golden highlights until summertime.
2. Hat Hair
Anyone who’s lived in colder climes knows the horror of hat head. In order to win the hat battle, try to avoid synthetic materials – instead choose wool, cotton or other natural fibers. For shape, go for loose, slouchy options over tight beanie-type caps. Also, build up lots of volume before donning your hat. This will help counter the inevitable flattening effect.
The major culprit of winter hair woes is dryness. That’s why you need to really up your hair moisturizing game when temps drop. There are a staggering amount of moisture-rich options out there – from deep conditioners to hair masks to oil treatments. Your choice will depend on your hair type, but at the very least you should be conditioning every time you wash, and using a deeper treatment once a week.
4. Home Remedies
A couple of quick, dry-hair fixes are surely already in your arsenal. Both hand lotion and olive oil can do wonders for dry winter tresses. A little goes a long with both products. Rub a small amount of lotion on hands and then smooth lightly over dry hair to add softness and fight frizz. Your average kitchen olive oil is a great secret weapon against dryness and dandruff, which is the result of a dry scalp. Warm up a couple teaspoons and massage into scalp and hair for a few minutes before rinsing.
5. Cool Rinse
You probably shiver just thinking about a cold shower in the winter. While I won’t direct you to do such a cringe-inducing thing, I will recommend at least rinsing conditioner out with cooler water. Warm water is all right for shampooing, but the cold rinse will help seal in moisture and keep hair soft and shiny.
Avoiding alcohol is not just wise for your holiday office party – it’s a must for winter hair health. Products with high alcohol contents will just further deplete your hair of its precious moisture. Check out the ingredients of products you’re thinking of buying and even the ones you already have. You may have some that should be put away until warmer days return.
7. Cool Down
If we actually thought about what we were doing each time we picked up the blow dryer or flatiron, we’d go au natural forever…well, maybe not forever, but at least more frequently. Because hair is already suffering from indoor heating and dryness, it’s a good idea to keep heat styling to a minimum. To reduce drying time, press excess moisture out with a towel or clean t-shirt and let hair air-dry for as long as you can or. You can also try switching your routine by showering at night, so that you can allow your hair to air-dry completely.
8. Shampoo Sins
Put down the shampoo and step away. Over-shampooing is a major winter no-no. When you wash, you rid hair of all of its natural oils, or nature’s conditioner. If you’re addicted to your shampoo, try just skipping it every other day. Instead, use a dry shampoo to soak up excess scalp oil. Alternatively, you can always get hair wet and just add a little conditioner. It’ll make you feel fresh without robbing your locks of moisture.
9. Say No to Static
Dryness + sweaters + coats + hats = static electricity. Let’s not talk about how you look like you just stuck your finger into an electrical outlet…let’s just say it’s not a good look. Carry a couple of dryer sheets in your purse and rub lightly over fly-aways in a pinch. Also, avoid too much brushing, which can just make the problem worse. Instead, style with fingers that are dampened with just a bit of clean water or light hairspray.
10. Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate
You can help keep hair moisturized by hydrating inside and out. Make sure to drink lots of water, and consider using a humidifier in your home. The steam helps balance the dry air that results from indoor heating systems.
This winter, don’t let your rosy-cheeked beauty be diminished by a brittle, dull ‘do. Be aware that your hair care routine might have to change a bit, but that it’s all for a good cause. With a few of these tips and tricks, you can maintain a luscious, lovely look even when the weather outside is frightful.
About The Author:
Aaron Gabrielse is the owner of Cosmetic Laser Center, which has 8 locations around Wisconsin. With over 15 years of experience, he brings to the field a passion for educating consumers and treating patients through the use of cutting-edge technologies. As a fellow in the American Society for Lasers in Medicine and Surgery, he is a renowned and respected leader in the field. For more information visit http://www.cosmeticlasercenterswi.com/.