We've officially entered the depths of another winter, with its freezing temps and dry, smoggy air.
Here in the desert, year-round moisurizing is an absolute must for both skin and hair, but it's especially vital in the winter if you want to avoid scaly skin, parched lips and dull hair.
Here are a few tips to keep your hair shiny all year long, and they may come in handy as you're looking to shimmer this New Year's Eve.
TAKE IT EASY ON THE HEAT
Sure a hot shower feels good, especially in the freezing months, but hot water opens up the hair's cuticle, making it more porous and dry. Rinse hair with warm or cool water instead.
Switch your blowdryer to the lowest heat setting possible, and limit use of tools like flat irons and curling irons.
When you do use heat producing tools, protect your hair with a heat activated spray or gloss that is formulated to protect your hair from heat while still locking in moisture. This one, by Alterna, protects hair up to 450 degrees. (Available at Ulta)
TAKE IT EASY ON THE CHEMICALS
It's no secret that chemicals like color, bleach and permanent wave solution really do a number on damaging the hair. Wait as long as you can between these processes or opt for less damaging options like weaving color through in pieces rather than allover color.
Select haircare products with minimal chemicals. Sulfate-free shampoos won't lather as much when you use them, but they'll still do the trick. And if a product smells like alcohol, chances are it's full of it, so look for a more natural option.
INVEST IN A GOOD HAIR MASK
It's common to condition your hair every time you shampoo, but take it one step further and deep condition with a hair mask at least couple times a month. Deep conditioners and hair masks have a thicker consistency than regular conditioners. Apply a fair amount from root to end and allow it to sit for five minutes, then rinse.
DON'T BE AFRAID OF HAIR OIL
Applying hair oil doesn't mean it will automatically look dirty and greasy (unless, of course, you apply more than is necessary or suggested.) Oils and glosses come in especially handy for dry and dull hair that's in need of extra shine, and a little bit goes a really long way.
Most oils can be applied to wet or dry hair, and they're great for finishing your look and taming split ends and flyaways. Apply just a couple drops to your hands and gently comb your fingers through to the ends.