Expert warns that the cold weather can cause your hair to fall out – and offers tips to prevent this
Experts have warned that this winter could bring unexpected damage: hair loss.
Dermatologists explain that the cold, dry air sucks moisture and natural oils from the scalp, causing hair to break off in unusually high numbers.
Additionally, freezing temperatures cause damage to the cuticles – the protective covering that surrounds individual hair strands.
‘Dry hair and a dry scalp together can cause breakage, thinning and hair loss,’ Abbas Kanani of Online Pharmacy Chemist told Click. The sun.
‘The scalp can become more susceptible to dryness due to the cold weather and dry heat indoors.’
Freezing temperatures cause damage to individual hair strands, making them stiff and more likely to break
In addition, low levels of vitamin D – which is absorbed through the skin from the sun and is needed for hair growth – can worsen the problem.
Mr Kanani said: ‘The body produces vitamin D outdoors from direct sunlight on the skin, but between October and early March we do not produce enough vitamin D from sunlight.
‘It is rarer, but hair loss due to a deficiency is possible.
‘Deficiencies in vitamins A, B, C, D and E, as well as iron and zinc, have been linked to hair loss.’
But there are some preventive steps you can take to keep shedding to a minimum.
One golden rule is never leave the house with wet hair in winter – it’s a recipe for hair loss
First off, never brave the elements with wet hair.
When temperatures drop below freezing, the water molecules in the hair freeze and expand, making the hair more likely to break. And wet hair is more fragile than dry to begin with.
Stylists recommend a leave-in product to moisturize the scalp during the colder months as this protects the hair from root to tip.
Hair experts also advise against over-washing; damaged hair should be washed about twice a week.
More often than this strips the hair of its natural moisture and oils.
And when you wash your hair, try not to use steaming hot water.
High temperatures can further dry out the scalp.
Dr. Jaishree Sharad, a cosmetic dermatologist in India, shared Fashion: ‘The ideal temperature for a shower is warm, not hot. The recommended temperature range for a shower is between 37°C and 40°C (98°F to 104°F). The duration of a shower should normally be between 5 and 15 minutes, as longer showers can strip moisture from your skin, leaving it dehydrated and dull.’
Hairstylists also recommend that people avoid heat styling, or use tools with a low temperature setting.
Anabel Kingsley, a hair and scalp specialist and Brand President of Philip Kingsley hair products, told DailyMail.com: ‘It’s not just about the heat of the appliance, it’s about how far you hold the dryer from your hair, how long you hold the dryer against certain parts.
“If you hold the dryer against one strand of hair for a whole minute, it’s going to be really damaging.”
And think twice before purchasing a warm, woolly hat before braving the elements this winter.
A 2001 report published in the International Journal of Dermatology suggested that wearing tight hats could accelerate hair loss. Silk scarves and wool blends are gentler on the hair and reduce friction and breakage.