How To Take Care Of Your Curly Hair In The Winter

I’m just going to put it out there: Winter weather is brutal for our beauty routines. We all know it messes with our skin (hello, dry and itchy face, knees, and elbows) but it’s easy to forget that the cold effects our hair, too. Between the air, the wind and the snow, our strands can end up brittle and dehydrated… And that’s not even taking to consideration all of the heat we end up putting on it by blowdrying and straightening. As all of us curly girls know, our hair is a particular beast of its own, especially when it comes to getting dry and freaking out when the weather turns. So what can you do to protect curly hair in the winter?

To put it simply: Protect, protect, protect. With products and with actual physical coverage, it’s important that we keep our hair covered from the elements that torture it. I spoke to Miko Branch, the CEO and cofounder of Miss Jessie's hair products for natural hair, who shared his tips for how to keep curly hair healthy in the winter. Because even though beach season (and real life beach hair) is still a few months away, our curls still deserve to be pampered.

1. Keep it Covered

Night Cap Curl Bonnet, $5,

Not only is it important to protect your hair with product, but you need to physically protect it, too. “Keeping your hair healthy during the winter months requires you to keep your hair covered and protected as much as possible — especially at night,” says Branch. “During the day, the most essential rule is to keep your hair covered when exposed to the bitter cold.” If you don’t sleep with a hair bonnet any other time of the year, you should at least make sure to do it in the winter. And yes, you can use this as an excuse to buy a cute new beanie for daytime, too.

2. Don’t Go Out With Wet Hair

Ultra Chi Pop Pink Dryer, $99,

You definitely know this because your mom has been yelling at you about it since you were a kid, but it really is important! If you want to avoid the blowdryer, wash your hair at night and let it dry naturally while you sleep.

3. Go Deep

Leave in Condish, $11,

Since going outside in the winter is pretty brutal, you may as well treat yourself to an at-home spa treatment while you Netflix and Chill. “Winter is the perfect time to pamper your curls with moisturizers that add shine and luster as well as deep conditioning treatments that heal and repair winter-worn hair,” says Miko. For an all-natural option, try coconut oil — your hair will be it’s most luxurious looking ever.

4. Hydrate From The Inside

With all of the dry air your hair is subjected to during the winter, hydrating with products can only do so much. It’s important to start hydrating from the inside by drinking lots (and lots, and lots) of water. “Make sure to drink eight cups of water per day,” says Branch. Warm water with lemon is a great winter treat that will keep you warm and hydrated.

5. Eat The Right Foods

Super foods = super hair. “Your hair cannot be healthy unless you are healthy,” says Branch. “Stock up on kale, chia seeds, eggs, salmon, almonds, quinoa, broccoli and kidney beans. Super foods will give your hair a boost during the winter months.”