Winter Hair Care Tips
by: Damien R. von Dahlem
It’s that time of the year when people stop me on the street to ask what cold weather precautions they should take for their hair, and during the conversation share the things they have heard or read on-line. So before I tell you what to do, let me first debunk some of the latest hair voodoo that I have heard and read.
1. Don’t go outside with wet hair. It can freeze and break off.
Nonsense. Our bodies have hair to protect us from the weather elements. Hair is perfectly suited to deal with cold weather and hot weather. Hair is also very strong and not likely to break easily, even in extreme weather. Having said that, it probably still isn’t a good idea to go outside in the cold with wet hair as it may lower your body temperature a bit and thus lower your core temperature by a degree or two.
2. Wash or rinse your hair in luke warm or cold water. It helps close down the hair cuticle and locks in shine.
More nonsense. Acid closes your the hair cuticle down not water, and hair is rough and thus not ‘naturally’ shiny. Hair gets shine from environmental contaminants such as grease in the air, or from glossifier agents applied at home or in the salon. Some shampoos and conditioners also contain such additives.
3. Don’t blow dry your hair. It is unhealthy for your hair and causes breakage.
Yet more nonsense. First of all there is no such thing as healthy hair. Hair is dead, or it would hurt when it is cut. For our purpose, hair is manageable, or unmanageable, but it is never healthy or unhealthy. Secondly, hair is designed to handle heat. It serves the very purpose of protecting your scalp from the sun, and creating an insulation barrier for your head to vent heat. Hair deals with heat all day, every day. Blow dry to your hearts content, just be careful not to burn your scalp. Lastly, blow drying your hair does not cause breakage. Some of the things that do cause hair breakage are; chemically over processed hair, cheap brushes or combs with sharp edges, cutting hair with dull shears, rubber bands, and hats and scarves that are too tight.
So what should you do for your hair in the Winter? Nothing really that you don’t do all year. The cold is not all that damaging, but the wind can be, so make sure you use a good hair conditioner, and if your hairstyle will allow it perhaps a leave-in conditioner, especially if you are going to be hitting the slopes.
Now go enjoy the fun of Winter.
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