5 Common Winter Hair Problems Solved

Winter's harsh conditions can really wreak havoc on our hair-from frizz to dry scalp to limp, windblown strands. Here are five common hair problems solved, so you can sport healthy, luscious-looking locks even during the most brutal of seasons!

1. Cold-Induced Frizz

Winter's dry, cold air and high amounts of static electricity causes hair to spread, twist, fly away, and (gasp!) frizz. You can tame tresses by investing in a hydrating, smoothing shampoo and conditioner as well as a silicone-based finishing product to seal in moisture. Also, refrain from over-styling your hair with blow-dryers, curling irons, or flat irons, as too much artificial heat damages the cuticle and leads to more frizz.

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2. Dry Scalp

Biting temperatures outdoors and central heat indoors strip skin cells of moisture, including those on your scalp. You can save yourself the trouble (and embarrassment) of brushing off dry skin and dandruff from your shoulders by investing in a shampoo and conditioner with tea tree oil (like Paul Mitchell's Tea Tree line, $15 each for shampoo and conditioner at Folica.com). Why tea tree? A recent study published in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology found that "shampoos containing five percent standardized tea tree oil improved dandruff and reduced itchiness associated with dry scalp in 41 percent of patients." Home remedies like messaging lukewarm olive oil into your scalp and letting it soak for 30 minutes can also relieve dryness.

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3. Limp Locks
Hair has a tendency to head south for the winter, thanks to hats and scarves that flatten tresses. Avoid lifeless locks by stashing a travel-size root-boosting moose or hairspray in your purse and using it when you need an on-the-go lift (we like TIGI Catwalk Root Boost, $7 at Target). Also, consider using a texturizing paste, such as Bed Head Hard to Get Paste ($19 at HSN), to add thickness at the roots. Finally, if you're really serious about breathing life back into strands, use three to five Velcro rollers on the front and top parts of your hair in the morning for at least 30 minutes.

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4. Split Ends
The combination of cold, dry air, static electricity, and everyday use of heat-emitting styling products typically results in brittle, frayed ends. However, you can save your strands (and valuable time) by shampooing less often, which gives your hair much-needed room to absorb its natural oils. Bonus: The less you wash your hair, the less you have to subject it to hot styling tools like a hairdryer. Treat your mane to a deep-conditioning mask, such as Ojon's Revitalizing Hair Mask ($34 at Beauty.com), which you can tuck in a shower cap and leave in overnight, one to two times a month. And finally, stay on top of your scheduled hair trims-most hairstylists recommend cutting your ends every 4 to 6 weeks during winter months.

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5. Dull Color

Inadequate sun exposure can leave your tresses looking dull and lackluster-and you washed out. Consider getting a professional glaze treatment, which rejuvenates and brightens hair by adding gloss and a hint of semi-permanent color. If you'd rather not spend the $75 to $100 for salon service, try an at-home glaze like John Frieda's Luminous Color Glaze ($10 at CVS).


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Reprinted with permission of Hearst Communications, Inc.

Photo credit: istockphoto.com

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