Hair Care

Why Your Hair Gets Dry in Winter (and 7 Tips How to Keep It Healthy)

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If you’ve landed here in search of answers for why your hair gets dry in winter, you’re not alone. I totally get it.

I’ve also asked myself countless times why my hair is so dry in the winter months. It can be super annoying, especially when you need to look professional at your job.

But fear not!

In this piece I’ll share tips from hair experts and published studies that will help you say goodbye to dry winter hair and hello to luscious, easy-to-manage locks.

Main Causes Why Your Hair Gets Dry In Winter

Discover what causes hair dryness in winter and learn how to pamper it with love and care. 

Dry Air and Its Icy Grasp

So, I was reading this swell article in The New York Times where they interviewed a couple of hair care experts and dermatologists. It says there that it’s not the cold that makes our hair dry and frizzy in winter.


It’s the moisture in the air. Or lack thereof. Winter’s bitter cold air is not only harsh on our skin but also leaves our hair feeling parched.

The lack of humidity in the air robs our strands of precious moisture, making them dry and brittle. It’s like a desert for your hair, where hydration evaporates into thin air!

Heat Styling Also Causes Hair Dryness

We’ve already talked about how winter air is as dry as a desert, right? So there’s no reason to make matters worse by heating up your hair in the chilly season.

This will only cause the moisture in your hair to decrease all the more, in fact, even regular hair dryers, can cause damage to our hair, according to research published in 2011.

We all love the allure of heat styling tools, but their frequent use can leave our hair high and dry. Blow dryers, curling irons, and straighteners may work wonders for styling, but they unleash havoc on our tresses.

Chemical Treatments

All hair treatments, from coloring to perms, have varied results in the colder months.

This one is so obvious it’s ridiculous. If you’ve recently transformed your hair color, undergone perming, or opted for straightening treatments, your hair’s dryness might be a consequence of these chemical processes.

When planning a perm for the winter, it’s ideal to do it with healthy, well-maintained hair. While these treatments can enhance our beauty, they also strip away natural oils, leaving our hair gasping for moisture.

Health Conditions

Sometimes, our hair situation goes beyond external factors. Underlying health conditions such as diabetes can also wreak havoc on our precious strands.

A 2019 study indicated that the causes of hair loss are unknown, however, type 2 diabetes may increase the incidence among African American women.

It’s always wise to consult a healthcare professional if you suspect an underlying condition causing your hair’s dryness.

READ NEXT: Hair Trends To Wear This Season

Winter Hair Secrets to Keeping Your Tresses Happy

Embrace the Art of Washing

You know it’s super important to stay clean, right? But did you know that excessive washing might remove the healthy oils from your hair? Hair can get dry and brittle, that’s for sure.

Dr. Iris Rubin, a dermatologist in Washington, D.C., and the founder of Seen Haircare recommends minimizing hair washing for dry scalps to protect the scalp’s natural oils and moisturizing qualities.

Frequent hair washing may be necessary for individuals with oily scalps, despite the desire to wash less often. Instead of washing it every day, try every other or third day.

That way, you give those awesome natural oils a chance to do their thing and keep your hair looking fabulous!

Moisturize, Moisturize, Moisturize

In an article for Forbes, Nai’vasha, the celebrity curl expert and founder of Curl Queen, explains why keeping hair moisturized is essential in the icy winter months.

Eliminate the problem of lackluster and lifeless hair through the utilization of a specialized shampoo and conditioner formulated explicitly for dry hair. These miracle products infuse your locks with the hydration they crave, leaving them silky, shiny, and oh-so-soft.

Embrace the power of moisture and wave goodbye to frizz and damage.

Indulge in Luxurious Deep Conditioning

Treat your hair to a weekly deep conditioning session to revive its vitality and suppleness.

So, according to published study by Indian Journal of Dermatology, deep conditioners are like supercharged hair conditioners that you leave on for 20 to 30 minutes.

They are typically applied to excessively dry hair as well as before chemical treatments like dyeing and waving.

Look for deep conditioning treatments at your local drugstore or salon, packed with nourishing ingredients that replenish moisture and nutrients lost during the harsh winter days.

Handle Heat with Care

When it comes to heat styling tools, moderation is key.

If you must use them, opt for the lowest heat setting and always apply a heat protectant spray beforehand. This shield against excessive heat ensures your hair stays healthy, lustrous, and free from frizzies.

Also, according to a 2011 study published online, using a hair drier at a distance of 15 cm with continuous motion caused less surface damage than natural drying.

If you really must use a blow dryer, exercise extreme caution.

Leave-In Love

According to a 2015 article, hair cosmetics like leave-in conditioners reduce friction, water pick-up, and combing forces, restoring hair cuticles and preventing breaking.

Don’t let the elements wreak havoc on your precious mane. Shield it from the cold, dry air by applying a leave-in conditioner after washing.

This superhero product seals in moisture, acting as a protective barrier against winter’s wrath.

Nourish Your Hair from Within

A 2021 scientific article revealed that a person’s nutritional state is directly correlated with their hair’s thickness and health.

Beauty starts from within, and the same holds true for your hair. If you want luscious locks, you gotta feed your body the good stuff.

I mean eating lots of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. So, munch on those delicious goodies and watch your hair shine.

Essential Oils Combat Hair Dryness in Winter

Nature’s wonders hold the secret to hydrated hair, even on winter’s harshest days. Essential oils are your allies in battling dryness, offering natural moisturizing, soothing, and stimulating properties.

Consider these essential oils for a luscious and healthy mane:

  • Lavender Oil: Delight your hair and scalp with the hydrating prowess of lavender oil. In addition to effectively hydrating dry hair, its remarkable anti-inflammatory properties provide soothing relief to individuals suffering from an irritating scalp.
  • Tea Tree Oil: Combat dryness and keep dandruff at bay with tea tree oil, a natural antiseptic. Its bacterial-fighting properties protect your scalp from unwanted irritations.
  • Rosemary Oil: Stimulate hair growth and invigorate your senses with rosemary oil. This aromatic wonder contains antioxidants that shield your hair from damage.
  • Jojoba Oil and Coconut Oil: Avoid scalp irritation by diluting essential oils with jojoba or coconut oil. Massage the diluted mixture into your hair and scalp, or add a few drops to your shampoo or conditioner for a fragrant and effective treatment.
ALSO READ: 10 Healthy Hair Tips To Apply To Bring Your Hair Back To Life

This winter, don’t let dry hair dampen your spirits! Stop wondering why your hair is so dry lately and embrace these expert recommendations that will help maintain your hair healthy, moisturized, and shiny.

Welcome a nurturing hair care routine, avoid excessive heat, nourish from within, and pamper your tresses with the goodness of essential oils. Bid farewell to dryness, and let your hair reign as the crowning glory of the winter season!

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