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Tired of dull hair? Once the dry winter months roll around, you’ll do anything to protect your hair from the elements. Luckily, there are many tried and true ways women can keep their styles smooth and flawless in the wintertime. Here are four ways – with the help of Health – to keep your hair smooth and shiny all winter long.
Angela Lamb, M.D., an assistant professor of dermatology at the Icahn School of Medicine, tells WebMD, “Hair produces natural oil called sebum, and shampoo is an emulsifier that captures and traps excess oil, dirt and product residue.” Lamb stresses that it’s okay to have some dirt and oils in your hair. In fact, oils are important because “they provide moisturizing and a protection barrier for the skin and hair,” says Carolyn Goh, M.D., assistant clinical professor of medicine at UC Los Angeles.
NYC based hairstylist Nunzio Saviano tells Health, “Skip a day or two between sudsing to give your strands a rest … Before washing, apply conditioner from mid-shaft to ends (the hair that’s been hanging around the longest and is the driest). Then lather up at the roots only, letting the suds trickle down, to lock in moisture while still cleaning strands.”
READ MORE: Why Feminists Should Use Men’s Shampoo
Dry and brittle hair absolutely loves moisture. For frizz-free hair, try using a leave-in conditioner after you shampoo and before you create a style. According to Health, every two weeks you should “comb in a deep-conditioning mask; it works like spackle, filling the holes along the cuticle to strengthen hair.” Let that mask sit for at least 20 minutes so that the conditioner has enough time to work its magic.
Remy Soft Pro Haircare also writes, “Hair with the proper amount of moisture will look beautiful and healthy and won’t experience many of the problems typically associated with dry hair, such as breakage, split ends and frizziness.” Moisturizers also help increase hair elasticity and detangles to prevent breakage.
Split ends getting you down? Try a few drops of replenishing argan oil. “The ends of your hair will benefit most from an oil treatment because they’re super porous,” states Los Angeles hairstylist Jenny Cho via Health. Argan oil contains vitamin E, an antioxidant that helps repair and build tissue. When you apply argan oil to your ends and scalp, Livestrong says you are sure to experience hair growth.
Also, don’t forget to get a regular trim at least once every eight weeks, especially if you have chemically treated hair or are trying to have longer, healthier locks. While trimming doesn’t make your hair grow faster, Womens Hair shares that “regular trims will prevent your hair from breakage and split ends.”
Don’t overdo it when it comes to styling products. Too much product can cause hair to wilt. “Stick with one product that’s a bit on the dry side, like a texturizing spray or gel,” Saviano says.
Allure stresses the fact that heat is very damaging to the health of the hair. Jeni Thomas, a principal scientist at Pantene says, “If your blow-dryer hurts your scalp, it’s too hot [and] the combination of heat and pulling action really weakens your hair.”
If you absolutely must style your hair with heating tools, use a heat-protectant styler. According to Allure, “Most contain some combination of silicones, cetyl alcohol and quaterniums, all of which help the iron glide along the hair shaft without tugging.”