Yes, it’s that time of the year again. During the transition to winter, it’s extremely important to start maintaining a routine that guards against the cold, drying effects of winter.
Due to less humidity in the air, ethnic hair is striped of the extra moisture that boost hair growth and overall healthy hair. Finding the right mix of ingredients to lock in moisture will be helpful to maintain your natural hair. It’s not difficult once you get to know what your hair needs on a regular basis.
Personally, I use to be a product junkie but now that I understand what works in my hair, I’m less tempted to purchase new products out of curiosity. Life has become less complicated not to mention less expensive.
There are a few helpful reminders that will prevent breakage and allow your hair to thrive during the Winter.
The Basics of Natural Hair Care
The L.O.C. method (Liquid, Oil, Cream) is the best way to hold in moisture.
Simple Breakdown of Staple Products: Find What Works For Your Hair Type
Shampooing: Make sure it cleans, but does not strip the hair of essential oils. The key is finding an extremely moisturizing shampoo that works well with your hair which does not include sulfates, parabens, alcohol and other damaging ingredients.
Deep Conditioners: Make sure it moisturizers and detangles. Adding your favorite oils is a great way to enrich your product. One to try is castor oil. Since it’s a heavier oil, it works best in conditioners or hot oil treatments that will be eventually washed out of the hair. It aids in growth and great for volumizing limp, thin hair.
Natural Oils: Olive, avocado, grapeseed, Vitamin E, Almond, Jojoba, Coconut, Flaxseed, Jamaican or Regular Castor, Moraccan, Argan
Creams: Shea butter, Hairdressing creams (non-petroleum based) or hair smoothies. Thicker creams works best, especially for coarse hair.
Water, water and more water!
Steaming the Hair
Since oils solidify in the winter due to cold air. The oils are less fluid so it’s best to make sure natural oils penetrate the scalp to the ends. Steaming replenishes the moisture back into the hair shaft. It’s best to use prior to washing the hair to open the hair shaft which is similar to steaming your face to open your pores.
Protective styles is one of the best ways to protect your hair in the winter months as long as you properly moisture the hair. Women tend to get complacent when they are wearing protective styles and find out that their hair was severely damaged because of lack of daily maintenance. Weaves are still not the best protective style because you cannot ensure all of the hair sections is being fully conditioned. Washing hair less frequently, but ensuring that hair is kept clean and well maintained will boost hair growth.
Conditioning sprays are the best products for braids or cornrows. Make sure your conditioning spray includes natural oils and no alcohol. A little tip is adding some glycerin in the water which maintains moisture. Glycerin tends to be a heavy substance as a stand-alone, so it’s best to dilute it and mix with water or your favorite conditioner for best results. Adding a few drops to your water bottle is all that’s needed. You can also use rosewater and glycerin as an alternative. Glycerin is also known as a humectant which draws in moisture to your hair. However, it’s not the best ingredient to use during cold winter months because it tends to dry the hair out.
Caution Wearing Accessories
It’s important to protect your hair from the damaging effects of wool, cotton or acrylic hats including scarves and other winter items that will rub against your hair and suck the oils right out of your hair. It’s always best to wear a silk or satin scarf or bonnet under your winter gear to guard against breakage.
These helpful tips and reminders will be beneficial to guard against the harsh elements that batter delicate hair and prove to heal your strands while we anxiously await to see the first hints of Spring once again.
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