Friday, November 23, 2012

Spare your Hair this Winter: Tips to keep hair healthy and shiny

We all want to have beautiful, shining, flowing hair; except for Old Man Winter it seems! In the winter, everything is much colder and the air is much dryer, sucking the moisture straight from our hair and skin. Sometimes, you’ll get caught outside where your hair gets whipped into tangles, or the stray hairs that escaped into the snow seem to freeze into popsicles! No matter the problem, following these few tips will 
help keep hair in tip top shape so you’ll be looking great, no matter the temperature! 

Forgo the Blow: Walking around the house with wet hair isn’t always the most comfortable thing in the world. Walking out into the freezing cold with it is even worse! During these times, we rely on our blow dryers more and more, but truly, they could be killing our hair! Try to step away from the blow dryer or use it only when absolutely necessary. If you must blow dry, don’t let your hair fry! Using a leave in conditioner or an anti-heat serum on your hair will help protect it from drying out and frying in the hot air. 

Shampoo Wisely: While it may not be a bad idea to wash your face and body daily, washing your hair daily had little to no benefits depending on your hair type. Switching from washing your hair every day to washing it every other day (at most) will help your hair and scalp retain more of your natural oils and nutrients as they are not being stripped away by harsh shampoos. If you have hair (like mine) that starts looking oily after even just 12 hours of not washing, try using a dry shampoo on those off days. Dry shampoo works by absorbing all of the excess oil. Apply it as directed and brush through hair to remove excess oil. Some dry shampoos can leave white residue in hair; be sure to read product reviews to ensure that you are purchasing a good one! 

Keep the Stresses Off those Tresses: When outside in the cold, dry air, be sure to wear something over your hair. Winter gives us a great excuse to accessorize; don a great knit cap, scarf or cute hood to keep hair safe and intact while still looking like a true fashionista! Lengthy exposure to the elements during winter time can cause major breakage! I would exchange a cute new hat for hair breakage any day! 

Shower Power: When showering, temperature means everything! If that water is scalding hot, you are opening up your hair’s cuticles allowing them to dry out as water evaporates in the cold air once you step out of the shower, sucking all of the moisture with it. Using water that is too cold, however, will not dissolve and remove product build up, dirt and grease. Using warm water will cleanse hair without putting your cuticles at risk. Doing a final rinse with cold water will also seal moisture into cuticles and make hair shinier. Depending on your hair type, it can also bring out highlights!

Permission to Condition: To keep hair silky, moisturize and soft, don’t forget to condition! In addition to normal conditioning, using a deep conditioning mask once a week will help replenish moisture and nutrients that the winter air has zapped from your hair. To get the most of deep conditioning, apply the mask to your hair, put hair in a shower cap and blow dry the cap (with hair in it) until your hair is mostly dry. The warm air from the blow dryer will open up cuticles so the moisture and nutrients can get in. Rinse with cold water which will close cuticles, trapping the moisture and nutrients within. Also, it is always a good idea to use a leave-in conditioner if hair is going to be exposed to the cold and dry winter air! It helps nourish and protect hair from the harsh air outside.

Follow these tricks and you will definitely help retain your hair’s natural beauty! Keeping it healthy and beautiful now just means that, come spring and summer time, your hair will be simply radiant in the sun! But for now, just keep looking forward to all of that snow sure to come our way.