Winter can be a really trying–and very drying–time. You may have be spending more time indoors than you would like due to cold temperatures and as a result of the season, you have to deal with more itching, dryness and peeling on your hair and skin.

pictured: @goldynaps

If your hair has dry, moisture-depleted, and straw-like qualities from the winter’s frigid air, the following 7 things can be done to win the battle.

1. A moisturizing deep conditioner

A deep conditioner is always important if you have curly, coily, or kinky hair types, but deep conditioners are absolutely essential in the winter time. Thicker, creamier deep conditioners, like the Alikay Naturals Avocado Moisture Repairing Hair Mask or Curl Junkie Hibiscus & Banana Deep Fix Moisturizing Conditioner, usually work best at this time of year and it is not unusual to find that your staple deep conditioner does not work as well at this time of the year as it did in the summer.

Try to increase the frequency of your deep conditioning sessions, but if you find that this is not possible due to your lifestyle and schedule, at least ensure that you aren’t skipping any of your usual deep conditioning session. Skipping a session is a sure-fire way of getting super dry hair (and no one wants that”>. Deep condition at least once a week. If you aren’t experiencing any current issues with dryness, twice monthly sessions may suffice. Whatever the frequency, pay attention to your hair and adjust either the frequency or the product accordingly.

2. Steam

Deep conditioning with moist heat will ensure that your hair gets all the goodness your deep conditioner has to offer. If you have a steamer or heating/deep conditioning cap make sure you use it religiously. If you have neither of these items, then break out the shower cap, plastic cap, or grocery bag and a warm towel. Steam will greatly help your hair absorb the ingredients of your deep conditioner and in doing so, your hair will become more moisturised than ever.

3. A rich, creamy leave-in conditioner and moisturizer

Winter is not the time for the watery leave-in conditioners. As may be the case of your staple deep conditioner, your usual leave-in or moisturizer may not pack enough of a punch to knock out winter hair dryness. You may need to go in search of a thicker product in order to provide your hair with the moisture it craves. These leave-in conditioners are affordable and a good place to start if you are on the hunt for a creamier leave-in.

4. A thick oil or heavy butter for sealing

Castor oil or lots of shea butter is just what the doctor ordered this winter. Thick oils and butters are always great for keeping moisture locked in and this is paramount during the colder months.

5. Cute satin-lined beanie or winter hat

Hat hair may not be cute, but dry and breaking hair is even less so. Hats are pretty essential in winter to help trap heat and keep the head warm. If your hat is not satin lined it will not only help to dry the hair out, it can also be abrasive enough to cause damage. Wearing a satin scarf or bonnet beneath your favorite, non-satin lined winter hat will keep your hair protected while your hat keeps your head warm.

6. A go-to protective style

Whether you put your hair into a bun or twists, having a style that protects your hair and in particular your ends is particularly important in this winter. Out styles are out the door in winter if you want to maintain your hair’s moisture levels, health, and length.

7. A gentler cleanser

This may mean using a milder shampoo, like the Mielle Organics Babassu Conditioning Shampoo, co-washing (cleansing with conditioner”> instead of shampooing or just co-washing more frequently. The right option for you will depend on your usual regimen and or products, so take some time to determine which option is right for you.

What are your tips for keeping your hair in top condition during the winter?

Sound off below.

This post was originally published in December 2016.

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