Home Hair Best Products For Natural Hair In Winter

Best Products For Natural Hair In Winter

by Evenes Ruth Mafupa

It is winter time now in Southern Africa and with the cold weather, comes with the need to alter a hair regimen. This may include how you wear your hair most times, the products you use and the number of times you wash your hair. This may be confusing for some, especially if you are still new to the healthy hair journey or it just slipped your mind and you are not sure what to do. Here, I want to focus on the choice of products you need to be making to have great hair every day this winter.

Things to avoid

I mentioned in an earlier post that it is important to avoid humectants in winter although these are great for our dry hair in warmer wet weather. What are humectants you may wonder? Well, these are products that attract water from an area of high concentration to an area of  low concentration.  So when used in winter, they tend to draw moisture from our hair into the atmosphere because the air is dryer. Simple science right.  Okay. Now that is out of the way, wait a minute would you want me to list these humectants that are often present in hair care products to attract moisture thereby helping your hair retain moisture for longer? Okay, here they are

  • Honey
  • vegetable glycerine
  • Aloe vera juice
  • hexanetriol
  • Butylene Glycol
  • Dipropylene glycol
  • Glycerin
  • Hexylene Glycol
  • Panthenol
  • Phytantriol — enhances moisture-retention, increases absorption of vitamins, panthenol, and amino acids into hair shaft, imparts gloss
  • Propylene glycol
  • Sodium PCA
  • Sorbitol
  • Triethylene glycol
  • Polyglyceryl sorbitol
  • Glucose
  • Fructose
  • Polydextrose
  • Potassium PCA
  • Urea
  • Hydrogenated Honey
  • Hyaluronic Acid
  • Inositol
  • Hexanediol beeswax
  • Hexanetriol Beeswax
  • Hydrolyzed Elastin
  • Hydrolyzed Collagen
  • Hydrolyzed Silk
  • Hydrolyzed Keratin
  • Erythritol
  • Capryl glycol
  • Isoceteth
  • Isolaureth
  • Laneth
  • Laureth
  • Steareth
  • Trideceth

Although it may be close to impossible to avoid all these, it may be worth your while to check the ingredients of your moisturiser, hair food or leave in conditioner so that you use less of humectants and more of products that penetrate your hair shaft or help with sealing moisture effectively. I also avoid using coconut oil as a sealant on my hair in winter because from past experience, it makes my hair hard and straw like, which is what I do not like most of the times. You see, coconut oil solidifies at low temperatures and although it may melt in your hand when applying it, it will still solidify after application but does not become white on your hair. The shine stays. I do not think this will damage the hair but it just does not feel very good. It does give you the best twist-out though so if you don’t mind how your hair will feel to the touch, go ahead and use it.

My recommendations

I am a self confessed DIYer if there is a word like that. So any recommendations I can make will be based on that. I mainly use base products or products that I know all the ingredients that are in it. Well three quarters of the time. We are going to start from washing hair.

Shampoo: You will want to use a shampoo that cleanses while not stripping your hair too much. More like a gentle shampoo. If it is pH balanced, that’s a bonus. Keeping it as natural as possible is always my first pick. Clays like Rhassoul clay, Bentonite clay, African black soap is what I use. Any shampoo that is gentle to your hair and your scalp does not react badly to it is great really. Always condition hair after washing. Finding a good conditioner with good slip helps to keep crazy tangles and knots at bay. Making a cool to cold water rinse afterwards and then an ACV rinse will close your cuticle just fine and give you pH balanced hair that shouts “Healthy” from afar because of its shine and lustre.

Deep Conditioning: Whip up a real moisturising deep conditioner in your kitchen. Just make sure to keep sweetness out of it this time though. I mean honey. It is a humectant and so, it can sweeten your hot chocolate only for now. NOT your hair or face. Egg yolks, Olive oil, Avocado oil, Castor oil and Grapeseed oil should do the trick this time. Oh I forgot mayonnaise for a good protein treatment. Clays stated above do a great job at conditioning hair as well. Other products to try are banana mask, coconut milk and avocado. These are all very potent hair moisturisers. If you need to include a humectant at this stage, keep it at a minimal and it should not cause any problems for your hair

Sealing Moisture: The best moisture that your hair can get in these winter months and always is the wash day water. Much effort therefore needs to be put into retaining this moisture on the hair as much as possible. That is why it is so important to seal after washing your hair. If you don’t seal, you will find out that your hair will dry much quicker but it will be very brittle and difficult to style without causing significant breakage. Sealing is so important to your hair so that you don’t lose all that moisture too quickly. I use the LOC method, explained already on this blog. For a leave in, this formula should work but I would limit or leave out completely the Aloe Vera juice since it is a humectant. You can also get a good leave in off the shelf which is more natural and has less of humectants. This might be quite hard to find actually and I have no suggestions to make as well. The main reason I resolve to mix my own which is flexible as far as ingredients are concerned. For those with much thicker hair that is not easily weighed down, heavier oils like olive oil and castor oil may be used. For finer hair textures, lighter oils like jojoba oil, grape seed oil and argan oil may be used independently or mixed with heavier oils.  Remember, a little goes a very long way as far as oils are concerned. As for the cream or butter, there is wide selection. Shea butter, mango butter, avocado butter or mafura butter can all be used on thicker coily textures. All these butters can be mixed with oils and whipped to make them lighter and easier to spread on the hair, making them also suitable for finer hair textures.


My rule of thumb is, “If it is working, no need to change” and  “More of a products does not mean better results. ”

With this, I leave you to device what works better for your hair because no two heads are exactly the same.

Keep cosy this winter

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