If you live in the northern hemisphere of this beautiful planet, it's time to get serious about your winter hair routine. It's never too late to ramp up your hair care regimen -- even if the snow has already begun to fall -- but the earlier you prepare the better. Last winter was something fierce here in Toronto. I was introduced to a chilling phenomenon called a polar vortex (they couldn't have come up with a scarier name) in which the frozen air chewed vigorously on my delicate tresses. Temperatures were often below -30ºC (-22ºF) and humidity was high, which meant moisture could easily seep into each hair strand... and then freeze! Having never heard of deep conditioning back then, it's no wonder I experienced so much breakage. This year I am older and wiser. Here's a list of preventative measures I'm taking to keep my hair strong this winter.
- CONDITION - I just applied my first ever DIY leave-in conditioner the other day, and it STILL feels amazing. Not only did it make installing my bantu knots a much smoother and happier process, but it has also kept my hair moisturized despite the howling winds outside.
- PROTECT - No more loose hairstyles! Okay, maybe I'll allow myself the odd twist-out here and there, but I'm definitely going to cut back on exposing my ends to the cold. I'm no pro yet, but my protective styling skillz are definitely improving. Winter is an awesome time to practice installing protective styles because if you royally mess up, you can always hide it under a cute toque!
- COVER - Speaking of toques, why not don one even on a good hair day? This is pretty much the only time of year when you can get away with sporting knits and fleece regularly, so enjoy it while you can! Not only does it give you a chance to switch up your look, but you'll also be saving your natural hair from the elements.
- WASH - Regardless of your hair type, you probably don't need to wash your hair as often in the winter as you do in the summer. One reason is that you're sweating less throughout the day. This means it takes longer for oils and products to accumulate on your scalp. I find that if I wash my hair with the same regularity in the winter as I do in the summer, my strands dry out and my scalp begins to flake.
- SEAL - When you do wash your hair, be sure to seal your cuticles and ends by rinsing with cool water at the end and coating your tresses with butter or winter oils. This will ensure the moisture stays locked into your hair.
How do you prep your hair for cold weather? Share in a comment below!