How To Care For Curly Hair In Winter

Taking care of curly hair can be challenging, especially during winter. The low temperatures and harsh cold winds can leave your hair dry. Therefore, you may need to change your curly hair care routine during the cold winter months. Just like skincare, taking care of your curls during this season should be a priority. In this article, we’ll explore how winter affects curly hair, moisturizing tips, and how to adapt your curly hair care routine in winter.

Why Does the Weather in Winter Affect Curly Hair?

The effects of winter can be extremely harsh on curly hair. The air is dryer and the humidity is lower because of the low temperatures. As a result, your curls tend to get dryer than usual, becoming fizzy and unpredictable.
The adverse effects of these extreme weather conditions can be damaging to curly hair. The cold dry air in winter lifts the hair cuticle of your strands, which leads to loss of moisture through the hair shaft. This makes your hair brittle and prone to split ends and even breakage. Additionally, factors like high wind and wearing hats when your hair is in a fragile state cause your curls to snag, tangle, and break.

Moisturizing Tips for Curly Hair in Winter

Unlike straight hair, curly hair is naturally drier. The twists and turns in the curls make it difficult for the natural oils in the scalp to reach the ends. This results in dry and frizzy curls. That’s why extra hydration and moisture are necessary for your curls during winter. Here are some moisturizing tips that you will find helpful for curly hair during winter.

Rinse Hair with Cooler Water

While a hot shower is what you need when it is completely cold outside, using hot water on hair can strip moisture, leaving your hair dry and prone to breakage. Instead, use lukewarm water to wash your hair and finish with a cold-water rinse. Cold water helps seal the hair cuticles, which locks in moisture and adds a beautiful shine to your curls.

Use A Humidifier

Having a humidifier in the room helps add moisture to your space. This helps your hair retain its natural hydration even when the weather is dry and cold.

Use Steam Treatment

Steam is a great way to add the needed moisture to your hair during winter. It has warm, airborne water particles that can penetrate your hair strands easily, keeping them hydrated. While heating is not recommended in winter, steaming your curls can ensure moisture retention.

Turn Down the Heat While You Sleep

While it helps to have a thermostat in your house, turning down the heat while you sleep can be beneficial. It will help make the air less drying on your hair and scalp.

Curly Hair in Winter

How to Adapt Your Hair Care Routine in Winter

To minimize the effects of cold and dry air during winter months, it is essential to adapt to a winter curly hair care routine. With a good hair care routine, you will maintain the health of your hair even during the coldest time of the year. Here are 10 helpful tips to incorporate into your winter hair care routine.

1. Avoid Frequent Hair Washes

Washing your hair too often can strip off its natural oils, causing more dryness. Extending the time between washes is a great way to protect your hair from moisture loss. It is recommended you wash your hair weekly or biweekly. Also, ensure you use a gentle sulfate-free shampoo to maintain the natural moisture balance.

2. Use A Leave-In Conditioner

Colder temperatures and lack of moisture in the air in winter dry out your curls inevitably. You can replenish and keep your hair hydrated by spraying your hair often using a water-based leave-in conditioner.

3. Minimize Heat Styling

Curly hair craves even more hydration during the winter months. Limiting heat styling as much as possible is important as excess use of heat on your hair can leave it dry and brittle. Use a heat protectant spray when using heat styling tools to protect your hair from damage.

4. Use Natural Oils and Anti-Humectant to Seal in Moisture

Anti-humectants are products such as butter or oil that help lock moisture into your hair. They ensure your hair does not dry out in the cold winter air. Natural oils like jojoba oil, olive oil, and argan oil can help nourish and moisturize your hair without weighing it down.

5. Trim Your Hair Regularly

Regular trims are necessary to get rid of split ends. Your ends are extremely vulnerable during the winter and are prone to breakage and split ends. As soon as you notice split ends, cut them off to maintain healthy hair.

6. Protect Your Hair at Night

Securing your hair at night with a silk bonnet helps retain scalp natural oils and hair moisture. You can also use a satin pillowcase when you sleep. While it may seem like an expensive investment for hair, silk is soft and smooth on your curls and can help prevent frizziness and breakage.

7. Wear Protective Hairstyles

Protective hairstyles keep the ends of your hair tucked away and reduce manipulation from daily styling. It is best to avoid styles like wash-and-go-go during winter. The cold air and wind suck the moisture out of your hair leaving it brittle, weak, and susceptible to breakage. Wearing protective styles such as braids, or twists helps keep your hair protected.

8. Deep Condition Your Hair

Sometimes it is easier to skip deep conditioning, especially in cold weather. However, deep conditioning your hair with hydrating products is crucial in retaining hair moisture. Deep conditioning treatments provide the nourishment and moisture that your curls need. During the colder winter months, aim to deep condition your hair twice a week.

Curly Hair in winter

9. Use Gentle Products

Staying away from oil and moisture-stripping products is important during winter. Many products contain harsh ingredients that strip your hair of moisture and natural oils. Before purchasing or using any product, go through the ingredients carefully. Make sure the products you use on your hair are beneficial and do not cause more damage. Avoid products that have ingredients such as parabens, silicones, sulfates, synthetics, and artificial fragrances.

10. Cover Your Hair While Going Outside

Your hair becomes stressed when exposed to dry wind, cold, and snow. Covering the curls with a scarf or a hat helps protect your hair during winter. Remember to wear scarves or hats made with satin or click materials to avoid hair breakage. The friction from woolen or cotton materials can rub against your curls and cause frizz.


Keeping your curls moisturized is always the key to having healthy hair. However, the harsh wind and cold temperature in winter can make it challenging to care for curly hair. With the right hair care practices such as using gentle products for your hair, deep conditioning, wearing protective styles, and washing your hair less often during winter are often effective. Incorporating these tips into your curly hair care routine in winter will keep your hair moisturized, healthy, and beautiful throughout the season.

Profilbild Laura
About the author

I've been a curly girl since I was little. 💝 But it wasn't until I discovered the right curl care for me that I learned to understand my curls. I'm happy to pass all this on to you - so that you too can learn to love your curls.

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