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Care for your hair this winter

Winter can create a number of problems for our hair, including dryness and lack of shine. Whatever your hair type, here's our advice.

If you have… dry hair

Thankfully, there are a number of ways to help improve hair's hydration. Firstly, be careful to only use shampoo on your roots – and never shampoo without following up with conditioner. Intensive conditioners are essential for dry hair for extra care, try leaving them in for a few minutes before rinsing.

Throughout the day (or before you go to bed), you can also apply a few drops of a hair oil to the ends of your hair to help keep them healthy and prevent breakage. Regular trips to the hairdresser are also essential to keep on top of split ends and try to limit your use of styling tools as much as possible.

If you have... a dry, itchy scalp

First off, it's important to work out why your scalp is dry and itchy. It could be a reaction to one of your haircare products, you might be shampooing too often or it could be that you need to spend more time ensuring you have thoroughly rinsed out all of your shampoo and conditioner.

The weather might also be playing its part. As the humidity drops, the skin everywhere on our body dries out – including the scalp. Opt for short, warm showers (rather than hot) and turn down the temperature on your hairdryer too.

Woman with curly hair sitting outside cafe

Treating your hair according to its type will help you get the best results.

If you have… greasy hair

Over-washing can make hair greasier so try to stretch your washes to every other day rather than every day. In the meantime, headbands are a fashionable way to disguise greasy roots.

Secondly, try to avoid touching your hair. Every time we play with our hair, we transfer oils from our hands to our hair, making it greasier. It also pays to keep your brushes clean; wash them regularly and remove all loose hair after brushing.

If you have… curly hair

Curly hair tends to have two problems – dryness and frizz. As a result, ensure your haircare routine includes an intensive conditioner and a leave-in styling product – like a hair oil – to improve shine and reduce frizz.

Curly hair types will also benefit from using a hair oil as a pre-shampoo treatment. Simply run some of the oil through your hair 5-10 minutes before heading into the shower, then shampoo and condition as normal.

Swapping your normal pillowcase for one made of silk can also help to reduce frizz (and reduce breakage) – or try wrapping your hair in a silk or satin scarf overnight.

Static hair?

Rub a drop or two of hair oil between your palms and then smooth down your hair (avoiding the roots). If hats are the problem, go for one with a silk or satin lining.

Feed your skin from within

Finally, whatever your hair type, the importance of diet cannot be underestimated. A rainbow of fruit and vegetables, plenty of high-quality protein (including oily fish) and healthy fats (think avocados, nuts and seeds) should be part of your regular diet to look after your hair as well as your body.

Many people also use a supplement to give their hair and nails extra care and ensure that their nutritional needs are being met day in, day out.

Joanna Dyer is a content writer and editor at Healthspan.

Nothing beats a healthy, balanced diet to provide all the nutrients we need. But when this isn't possible, supplements can help. This article isn't intended to replace medical advice. Please consult your healthcare professional before trying supplements or herbal medicines.

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