A Guide to Winter-Proofing Your Natural Hair

If you’re like me, it’s easy to slack on your natural hair regimen and forget about keeping your hair healthy, soft and moisturized during the winter. However, even if you’re a student or a young, busy professional, it is important to prepare and adjust your natural hair regimen for the winter. Here are a few easy tips to help you to keep your hair healthy during the colder months.

Practice Self-Care

Self-care is an important component of your mental and physical health and nothing is better for your hair, than a healthy and happy you. Not getting enough sleep can even cause hair loss, while eating a balanced diet with iron and essential vitamins is associated with strong, healthy, dandruff-free hair and moderate hair growth. So make sure to eat well, exercise and get plenty of sleep all winter long. Your hair will thank you.

Use a Sulfate-Free Shampoo

It is vital that you use a shampoo that will keep your hair from drying out. Shampoos that contain lauryl sulfates are very rough on type 4 natural hair and often do more damage than good. Here are a list of black-owned Sulfate-free Shampoos that will gently cleanse your hair and maintain its moisture.

Moisturize, Moisturize, Moisturize

The importance of moisturizing is no secret in the natural hair community. Investing in a good deep conditioner and some coconut oil or cocoa butter will do wonders for your hair. Olive oil in particular, is known to prevent dandruff and promote hair growth. If store products don’t work for you, consider making your own DIY hair cream with a few simple ingredients like avocado and argan oil. However, although it’s tempting to slather your hair in oils and creams, avoid overusing products. Instead of relying strictly on creams, try steaming your hair more often or skipping the shower cap next time you shower.

Don’t Skip Your Hair Appointments

Going to a natural hair professional frequently will ensure that your trims are done properly and your protein treatments are done safely. Trims are important for getting rid of split ends and it’s a good idea to get them every few months. While they won’t make your hair any longer, they will help to keep your hair healthy and happy.

Use Protective Styles

Protective styles are a natural’s best friend. They keep the ends of your hair protected even during winter months and can help retain hair length. Moreover, they reduce the time you spend styling your hair. Braids, crochet, wigs and cornrows are just a few examples of the protective styles you can get done. However, not all protective styles are created equal. While a simple bun can be a protective style, it may lead to hair breakage if you leave your hair in this style for too long or pull the hair tie too tightly.

Invest In a Good Satin Cap

Type 4 natural hair is more dry, brittle and fragile in the winter months and sleeping on cotton pillows will only make it more dry! Not only do you need to be gentler with your hair, but wearing a satin cap or bonnet will keep your hair protected and hydrated while you sleep.

Stay Away From Heat

While you really should stay away from heat as much as possible all-year round, winter in particular is the season to give up the blow dryers and flat irons. Excessive heat removes moisture from your hair and breaks down the proteins that protect your hair. Instead, you can try styling your hair when it is damp or wet, or using some product to help keep your hair in place. If you must use a blow dryer or flat iron, make sure it’s a high-quality dryer with multiple heat control settings so you are still in control of how much heat touches your hair.

Grace – “While some have described her as overly opinionated, Grace much prefers the terms headstrong and passionate. She is a voracious reader, a dog-lover and a self-professed pop culture junkie. Her other hobbies include watching sappy romantic comedies, consuming too many strawberry-filled doughnuts and people-watching. Grace currently attends university, where she is working towards a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and Pre-Law.”


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