As the temperatures plummet during winter, so do humidity levels in the air, leaving your hair dehydrated. Harsher weather conditions like cold wind and snow further weaken and damage strands—making them more brittle and prone to breakage.
“The dry winter air can result in very thirsty hair, leaving it vulnerable to split ends, lack of volume, and for those with textured hair, limp curls,” says Dr. Dendy Engelman, a Manhattan-based board-certified dermatologist. This is why hair care experts emphasize on keeping your tresses as moisturized as possible during the colder weather.
“Moisture is such a key component to healthy hair in such cold and frigid temperatures,” says Nai’vasha, celebrity curl expert and founder of Curl Queen. “My recommendation is to use an intense moisture mask once a week,” she adds.
In addition, try using hair oil to further seal in moisture in your hair. “I recommend this to all my clients. It helps regain strength, repairs and gives moisture to the hair which is so important,” says Renato Campora, celebrity hairstylist and artistic director at FEKKAI. “You can see the difference it makes when you wash your hair the day after and even the weeks after if you do this continually,” adds the hairstylist whose clients include Amanda Seyfried, Emily Blunt and Gal Gadot.
Campora also recommends washing your hair with lukewarm water instead of hot water to further protect your locks and keep them hydrated.
Moreover, avoid putting a lot of heat on the hair as it can suck out moisture from your strands and damage the keratin proteins in your hair—leaving them more brittle and susceptible to breakage, says Takisha Sturdivant, celebrity hairstylist and founder of TSD Hair.
If you have curly hair, Sturdivant recommends adding a moisturizing conditioner and a hydrating serum to your hair care routine. Also, “it’s important to thoroughly cleanse your hair so your conditioner can penetrate deeper,” says Nai’vasha. In addition, “twist or braid your hair at night and use a silk scarf or a silk pillowcase to keep them protected when you sleep,” suggests Sturdivant.
The Best Products To Keep Your Hair Healthy and Hydrated All Winter:
Here are seven expert-approved haircare picks to help you keep all your winter hair woes at bay:
Nai’vasha recommends this hair mask that’s packed with hydrating heavy-hitters like shea butter, watermelon, plum seed oil and olive oil to repair damaged locks with healing moisture and tame frizziness—giving your hair a softer, smoother feel.
“For those who struggle with dry hair, this is the perfect product to have at your fingertips,” says Dr. Dendy Engelman. Its lightweight formula is enriched with proteins and nourishing oils to lock in moisture, seal split ends and reduce the signs of hair damage—leaving your hair soft and silky smooth.
Campora recommends this multitasking oil that features broad-spectrum CBD to soothe stressed-out skin and scalp. In addition, it’s infused with aloe, quinoa protein and other hydrating ingredients to deliver a shot of lasting moisture and protect your hair from the damage caused by sun, pollution and heat styling.
If you have curly hair, Nai’vasha suggests using this shampoo that’s enriched with ultra-hydrating coconut oil to detangle and tame frizz with a boost of reparative moisture —leaving your curls soft and manageable.
Sturdivant recommends this shampoo from her eponymous hair care line that’s supercharged with hydrolyzed keratin, argan oil and provitamin B5. “It’s intensely hydrating and restorative. Plus, it’s formulated without any harsh ingredients,” says the haircare pro.
This ultra-hydrating pre-shampoo treatment is packed with proteins and superfoods like chia, mushroom and sweet almond oil that work to replenish weak, brittle and damaged hair. “It strengthens and bonds strands, shielding them from harsh elements and environmental aggressors. And as a major plus, it smells amazing!” says Dr. Engelman.
Enriched with ultra-hydrating rice water, this reparative mask infuses hair with healing hydration and seals cuticles for a lasting repair. “It gives strength and elasticity to your locks and is especially great for those who have naturally dry hair,” says Campora.