Winter is hard on our natural tresses. From the cold to the dryness to clothing we ruffle against our tresses to keep warm, we inflict friction and harshness on them almost daily. This does not mean your hair has to suffer. This just means you need to step up your moisture and protection game.
I've been slacking on my trims, and deep conditioning treatments this fall and winter and I have no one to blame but myself. The ONLY thing saving me is a stellar list of faves that have been keeping me afloat as I neglect my hair duties. I've enlisted some amazing tricks and products that keep my tresses healthy, hydrated and protected and want to share them with you so you too can be masterful at moisturization!
Use Clarifying + Moisturizing Shampoo RegimenI've been using my clarifying + Moisturizing shampoo regimen monthly or as needed and I got this hella great tip from the folks at Myavana. Myavana first hair care recommendation system that tells you your hair type, hair porosity, what your hair needs and the best products for your hair. While I knew a lot about my hair (already knew I had high porosity strands) I did not know just how important clarifying was and my need to use it more. They take your strands under a microscope to tell you more about it and what I found out was scary.
I had build-up all over my head! Yes, my hair seemed and felt clean but there was build-up and the expert told me to start clarifying my hair. *holds head in shame*. I'm a natural hair blogger so this was a hard blow to my ego, but I picked myself up, dusted myself off and and tried the tips she suggested. First off, I need to rinse my hair more and start using a clarifying shampoo + moisturizing shampoo to fully cleanse and moisturize my strands.
5 TIPS FOR ROCKING WASH & GO NATURAL HAIR THIS WINTER
She suggested rinsing my hair well before washing (2 minutes or more!) before clarifying with Design Essentials Oat Protein Henna Deep Cleansing Shampoo, rinsing and then washing hair again with Design Essentials Honey Creme Moisture Retention Shampoo. The latter shampoo is a gentle non-stripping formula that detangle, smooths hair cuticles, honey conditions and restores moisture balance. My hair appreciated the tip and is thriving and not dry! I do monthly (or a tad bit less) or whenever my hair is really dirty! I thoroughly rinse my hair afterward too.
The takeaway of this tip is to properly cleanse and moisturize your hair BEFORE you even start to condition it.
Use a Leave-In Conditioner!Conditioning is crucial to keeping hair healthy when we are in harsher seasons like winter. You may neglect to do vital haircare routines like deep conditioning during spring and summer but nixing them during winter can cause you to find brittle strands or even breakage. I am a conditioning fiend and believe in a leave-in of some kind once I've washed and deep conditioned my hair on washday. I've recently talked to a reader who was suffering from massive dryness and when I started digging in her business, I found out she wasn't using a leave-in.
NATURAL HAIR AND WINTER WORRIES
Big mistake! Leave-ins impart that much needed moisture our hair craves along with added conditioning and helps with styling. It's also great as a refresher during the week and added protection against damage like heat (if you are heat styling). While many products are leave-ins, I prefer using regular conditioners as my hair needs a thicker consistency. Now, I use ones that also double as a leave-in like SheaMoisture Manuka Honey & Mafural Oil Intensive Hydration Conditioner or SheaMoisture Raw Shea Butter Restorative Conditioner. Now, there are some traditional leave-ins that I use like the Curls Blueberry Bliss Reparative Leave-in Conditioner or Kinky-Curly Knot Today. They both are thick enough to give my hair the proper conditioning and moisture it craves but shop around to find what works best for your strands. Some women need a lighter leave-in or can just get away with a natural oil like coconut oil as their leave-in. I add a few drops of SheaMoisture Raw Shea Butter Reconstructive Finishing Elixir or JANE CARTER® Complex 4 Replenish & Repair Oil to my leave-in to help seal in the moisture and curl definition.
The takeaway is you will need some kind of leave-in as a barrier against dryness and the elements that also acts as a sealer to keep your hair's moisture levels intact.
Style With Protection In Mind
Styling your hair is just as important during winter months. While many naturals opt for protective styling, I live a wash and go lifestyle year round with no problems. I attribute my lack of issues to me never using direct heat and protecting my hair at every stage in my haircare including styling. Styling is what most naturals fall in love with but how well it LOOKS has to do with the cleansing and conditioning of your hair.
3 BEST OILS FOR WINTER SKIN & HAIR CARE
Think about styling when you are washing and conditioning your hair and do them well and with protection in mind. That allows for styles to last longer, look better and to behave properly. I rock the wash and go most of the time so I rake through (thoroughly) Kinky Curly Curling Custard (styler) after my cleansing and conditioning and allow hair to air dry. When styling your hair, make sure hair is fully detangled, fully dry before touching and never rush the process!
Invest in satin pillowcases, bonnets, hats with satin-lining and spray bottles for refresher concoctions to help protect your hair and the style. All of these items are components in your styling and should be at the ready to ensure you look great but your hair is also being treated well.
The takeaway is to protect your hair as much as you style it with essentials outside of your styler. Make washday optimal so your style lasts and you are less in your hair (which means less manipulation and breakage!)
Winter months never have to create havoc in natural hair if you make each component important. Simply use what's necessary to have beautiful hair that stays healthy. If you are finding after winter your hair is in worse condition than before, then you need to re-evaluate your steps (cleansing, conditioning, styling) and always keep these three words in mind:
Cleansing (properly clean hair)
Conditioning (fully condition hair)
Moisture (retain moisture!)
Protection (protect your strands)
Keep those words in mind and your hair will be more than ready for fun in spring and summer!
Do you have a specific plan for winter haircare? Share below!
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