Frizz is curly hair’s worst enemy.
We comb, moisturize, style, and then look at the humidity index to inform us as to how many pounds of additional product we’ll need to keep our curls healthy and in place. It really can be a headache.
So why is it that when we spend so much time fighting humidity, we end up needing it in our own homes?
It’s because dryness is our enemy as well! And no matter where you live — hello from super-humid Austin by the way — winter has a way of sucking up all the moisture from the air. In addition to that, as we’ve discussed in so many seasonal hair-care and deep-conditioning articles, the dry, heated air inside our homes poses a hair-hazard as well.
I could go into how the rise of cookie-cutter housing lead to homes being built to suit a certain cost-cutting mold (instead of working with the weather in the area they were built in) helped to create this hostile environment, but this isn’t quite the right arena for that rant. What I will say, though, is that dry, cold air outside our homes and dry, warm air inside them can combine into a force for breakage that we all have to reckon with.
Enter the humidifier.
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I actually bought a little bitty one for my constantly swollen airways more than anything, but even with one of the small units, I did notice that my skin was improving along with my breathing—and that extended towards my edges as well!
Being the line where hair products, facial soap, dandruff, and sweat all meet is hard on everyone’s baby hairs, but I noticed mine were healthier and less, well, crusty than normal with regular water vapor exposure! Breakage was down, growth was up, and I was both glowy in the face and soft in the strands! The cool mist models pretty much work like a constantly firing, extra-fine spray bottle, and it’s honestly been pretty great. Bonus, it’s a lot easier to breathe now. Finally having the ability to use my lungs to their full capacity HAS to be good for growth too, right? Right.
So are there downsides?
The biggest concerns are mold and general dampness, but unless you get an industrial one meant for health or greenhouse purposes, your home’s not going to turn into a rainforest overnight, so don’t worry. What you might need to watch for, though, is incidental drippage (easily solved with a nice tile or plate), not keeping it clean (easily solved by taking an interest in your house), and keeping it close enough to your bed that you knock it over onto all your electronics while reaching for your glasses (easily solved if you’re not...me).
Some humidifier brands only take distilled water, and some can deal with it straight from the tap. Some brands require you to swish out the tank with a bit of rubbing alcohol, and some need actual, manual hand power. If you get a variety that you can add scented oil to, only put in a few drops, and make sure you’re only using pure essential oil. Thicker carrier oils are going to do things like mess up the components keeping the water where it’s supposed to be (and that I do say from accidental experience). And if you want to feel extra fancy, a little rose, mint, or orange water (all fine, as they’re hydrosols and not juices) up in there is going to take you from humidify to humidiFINE very shortly. Trust me.
As long as you read and follow the instructions, you’ll be good to go!
Does this list make you down with the mist?
Let us know in the comments below!