Fortunately, hair care routines in Winter, in a typical Australian winter are not quite as severe as those required in some other parts of the world!
Even so, Aussie winters present a hair care challenge and we need to be alert to the issues arising.
What winter does to hair
It’s amazing how many Australians don’t think about this because snow is very restricted to a few upland areas around the country and sub-zero temperatures are very rare. However, the winter can have a very significant, if unexpected and indirect, impact on our hair and hair loss.
This is mainly for four reasons:
- we might tend to heat our homes;
- we’ll be more inclined to wear hats and caps for insulation rather than just to keep the sun off as in summer;
- our use of hairdryers;
- windy conditions.
Why do these things matter?
On cooler days and nights, we may put the heating on.
There’s nothing wrong with that but central heating can be very drying and can suck all of the moisture and humidity out of the atmosphere. That’s very bad news for hair thinning and what makes it worse is that in summer we might anticipate it but in winter, our guard can go down.
The solution is easy – use a humidifier. If that’s not possible or even if it is, remember to also increase your usage of hair and scalp moisturisers and specialist shampoos.
Hats and caps
There’s a lot of arguing on this one but many hair health experts suggest that snug hats and caps are a potential disaster for hair. The problem is, they snag hairs and pull them out as we move around.
That’s particularly a risk if your hat or cap is of the variety that comes with elasticated grips, as many do.
True, this isn’t just a winter issue but whatever the season, try to wear looser-fitting hats or use a bandana/hoodie with plenty of space for your head to move without leaving your hairs behind it as it goes.
In summer and excluding specialist stylings, most males are fairly relaxed about blow-drying their hair. That’s because any residual dampness will evaporate off fairly quickly.
In the cooler winter months though, we might all be a little more inclined to turn the dryer up a few notches and really lay into our hair to get the damp out of it before we venture outside.
Generally speaking, lots of hair drying at higher temperatures is not great news for our hair. It can make hair brittle and lead to dry, flaky scalp.
So, ease off on the heat even if it’s a bit chilly outside. It’s perhaps a real hair loss solution in itself.
Many parts of the country might not experience particularly low temperatures but do see a lot more wind during the winter.
Wind can be very damaging for hair. Again, that’s largely to do with its drying effect.
There’s not a lot you can do to stop the wind from blowing but you can help protect your hair by using a hat (of the loose variety!) or other head cover. Above all, you can up your use of those hair and scalp moisturising products to compensate for the drying effects of wind.
Going abroad during our summer?
If you’re going into the northern hemisphere during their winter, remember that in large parts of Europe and North America, conditions are often much harsher than ours during winter.
The hair thinning and care considerations that arise if you’re travelling to somewhere at say -6C are very different to what we’ve been discussing above.
We’ll come back to this one at a later date!