Seasons change

Hey all. So today was the first day it actually felt like fall in my neck of the woods. I actually don’t mind fall that much. I love all the different colors of the leaves as they fall from their trees. I also love the warmth and comfort of wearing sweaters and sipping hot chocolate. The thing is though, I have to re-evaluate my hair regimen with the change of seasons. Winter in particular is a problematic season for my hair, as the air generally contains less moisture which results in dry hair if I’m not careful. Using some of the same products that I used in warm weather won’t work as the weather turns colder. A lot of people may think it doesn’t make a difference, but I can tell you from experience, that it really does. In particular, any product containing a humectant has to go. Examples of humectants are glycerin and propylene glycol. They work by attracting the moisture from the air into your hair. The air generally tends to be more humid in the summer in many places, so those ingredients work fine in keeping your hair moisturized. However, in the winter, the air tends to be drier, so since the air lacks moisture, those ingredients end up drawing the moisture away from your hair, which makes it dry. No bueno. Actually I tend to use products where if they contain humectants, they aren’t too high up on the ingredient list as they tend to make my hair poufy and I only like that look when I’m not at the office. So no humectants.  I need to use heavier, creamy products in cold weather as my hair will need all the moisture it can get. A lot of gels tend to have a lighter consistency and tend to contain alcohol, which can rob your hair of moisture and dry it out, so they’ll have to go as the seasons change too.

As far as styles for the winter, I’ve already declared that I’m laying off most protective styles as they’ll either stress my fragile edges too much or they just don’t look good on me. I don’t use direct heat on my hair very often because of the potential for damage, so blow drying will be kept to a minimum. However, doing a wash and go and stepping out the door with wet hair in 0 degree weather ain’t happening. I have a friend who does that and she once told me she’s gotten icicles in her hair. Um, no. I know scientists say that walking around with wet hair in cold weather doesn’t cause illness, that viruses do, but I’d rather not take any chances. I need to invest in a diffuser before this month is over. The heat is less concentrated so there’s less potential for damage. Whether I retain length by keeping my hair out the majority of the winter is another matter. Many naturals will say that I won’t, but I don’t have the dense, thick hair that’s needed to make many protective styles look decent, so rather than try to force my hair to look like something it’s not, I have to do what’s best for me and work with it. That’s all you can do when it comes to your hair, period. I have to do some experimenting in the next few weeks in order to see what will work for the next few months. I’m actually looking forward to it and seeing it as a challenge. Don’t ask me about snow, though.

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