Winter Curl Tips|Natural Hair Care
During summer months, maintaining healthy natural hair is a breeze. However come fall/winter, Wind and cold/dry air suck moisture out of your hair, leaving it brittle, weak, and more prone to breakage. Lately, I've been dealing with tons of shedding and breakage from not giving my curls the routine TLC they deserve. In order to save my curls from further breakage, I've created a list of tips that worked for me in the past. Long, dead, thin hair doesn't look good on ANYBODY no matter the hair type.
1. Moisturize Moisturize Moisturize
Use a moisturizing conditioner to co wash once a week. I especially love Aussie's "Moist" conditioner and Shea Moisture's "Coconut & Hibiscus" Conditioner. Both choices offer great slip for detangling and leave hair super soft.
For extra dry, limp hair try an Apple Cider Vinegar rinse before shampooing. ACV helps hair retain moisture to improve conditioning. It also helps combat dry, itchy scalp caused by the dry winter air.
Pre-Pooing aka moisturizing hair with conditioner or oil before washing, combats breakage and helps with detangling. Check out this article on NaturallyCurly.com all about pre pooing. I like to divide my hair into 4 sections, spritz with warm water and layer on a mixture of melted Shea Butter, Olive Oil, and Coconut oil.
Try adding the Green House Effect to your nightly routine. Spritz your hair with your favorite leave in followed by your oil of choice then put on a shower cap and your bonnet/scarf. The next morning you'll wake up with moisturized hair. I do this 3 nights a week during the winter. More information on the GreenHouse Effect or "Baggy" Method can be found here
2. Hair Masks
Deep Conditioning is a major key to healthy hair. Year round it's a good idea to DC every wash day or atleast every two weeks. During the colder months for really dry or color treated hair you should step up your Deep Condition game to once a week.
Sitting under a hooded dryer for 20-30 min is the ideal way to DC. Before I had a hooded dryer at home, I would simply place a shower cap, a plastic bag, and two beanies on my head and walk around the house. I did this for about an hour doing chores or whatever and boom DIY hair steamer. We're all allowed to be ratchet in the comfort of our own homes LOL
I've found one of the best options for a good hair mask is sitting right here in our kitchens. I'm a big fan of DIY hair recipes and one of my all time favorite is a Banana/Yogurt/ Olive Oil concoction. Check out this article on Bustle.com for more recipes
If you're short on time and opt for the store bought way, I personally like Shea Moisture's JBCO Deep Conditioner or Aussie's 3 minute reconstructor. Both work great and will leave hair smelling amazing.
3. Thick Oils
Coconut oil is usually my go to oil. However once it gets cold out, Coconut Oil tends to leave white flakes in my hair. I've switched to thicker oils such as Olive Oil, Avocado Oil, and Jamaican Black Castor Oil.
Adding the LCO method to your hair routine is a great way to lock in moisture. The method goes as follows L(Liquid aka water or Leave in conditioner) C( Cream/Heavy Butter), O (Oil). Use a mixture of Jamaican Black Castor Oil and Olive Oil as a sealant. JBCO reduces hair damage and eliminates dry hair, while Olive Oil aids JBCO in penetrating the hair shaft.
Combine the LCO method with the GreenHouse Effect for extremely soft, moisturized hair.
4. Protective Styles
A big way to ensure healthy curls is to put them away and "protect" them for the harsh winter air. Braided styles tend to be a go to hairstyle but there are so many other great options. From weaves/wigs, drawstring ponytails, and crochet braids; there's a style for every personality. Follow my Pinterest board for more natural hair inspiration
The key to protective styles is to protect, not neglect your hair. Make time to consistently wash hair weekly or atleast spritz with water and oil scalp daily.
Head Wraps are also a great protective style. They cover your hair completely while also being stylish, thanks to the variety of prints and colors available.
Year Round Hair Tips
Drink Water: Moisture comes form within
Trim when needed: If your ends don't curl the way they used to even after a good deep condition its time to chop them off (atleast every six months)
Maintain a healthy diet: Protein and Omega Fatty Acids found in fish and dark leafy greens aid in hair growth.
Listen to your hair: Excessive shedding and single strand knots are signs your hair needs some TLC
What protective style will you be rocking this winter ?