CARE OF LONG HAIR IN WINTER

SHAHNAZ HUSAIN

Long hair actually needs more care. This is more so in winter, especially if you want to leave your hair loose. Long hair left loose should look healthy, soft, smooth and silky. This means that while washing, comb- ing and oiling long hair, one has to take more care and give more time. The effects of winter are felt more by long hair. For one thing, due to the dry weather, the hair suffers.
Also, winter is the time of year when we like to sit outside and enjoy the warm sunshine. We use hot water for bathing and washing the hair. Such things make long hair dry and difficult to manage. The hair also gets entangled easily, leading to hair breakage and hair fall.
The hair needs external nourishment. This is more so in winter, when the weather robs the hair of moisture and oils. In long hair, the ends really need nourishment. Trim the ends slightly from time to time. The application of oils, like pure coconut oil, provides nourishment to the hair and softens its texture. Apply oil on the ends too.
Avoid rubbing the hair. Apply it with a light massage on the scalp, using only your finger tips. This helps to stimu- late and improves blood circulation and nutrients to the hair follicles. Massage the scalp gently with oil, using only the finger tips and move the scalp in small circular movements.
After washing the hair, avoid rubbing with your towel.
This can make long hair get entangled. Instead, wrap the towel around the head and allow it to absorb excess water.
Avoid using a brush on wet hair. Use a wide toothed comb, to comb out all the tangles. Start from the ends of the hair and go upwards towards the scalp. If you apply a little leave on conditioner or hair serum, it helps to disen- tangle the hair without any breakage. Avoid ironing the hair to straighten it, especially if it is dry and brittle.
Regular conditioning is extremely important in winter.
Hair conditioners and hair serums help to soften the hair and improve its look and texture. They also coat the hair and help to protect it. After shampoo, apply a creamy con- ditioner, taking less quantity and massaging it lightly into the hair. Apply on the ends too. Leave it on for two min- utes and rinse off with plain water. You can also apply a “leave-on” type of conditioner or hair serum. Apply it the same way, but do not rinse off.
Avoid tying the hair back tightly as a matter of habit.
This causes tension at the roots and leads to hair loss in front, near the forehead. Tie the hair loosely. Avoid the use of rubber bands. It can cause hair breakage and split ends.
When sitting out in the sun, cover the head.
Diet is extremely important for the hair. Include fruits, raw salads, sprouts, leafy green vegetables, curd, paneer, peas, dals, beans, eggs, in your daily diet. Along with a nutritious diet, daily exercise, relaxation, adequate sleep and a healthy lifestyle are required for healthy hair growth.