The cold has finally consumed Chi City and my hair seems to be at its wit’s end already. From crazy brittle ends to excessive shedding its well on its way to breakage. So I think it’s time for me to prepare my hair for the long winter months ahead. I usually take two weeks to complete my hair treatments to prevent breakage, split ends, and severe dryness. ?This treatment process usually revitalizes my hair leaving it clean, moisturized, healthy, and protected. My two-week routine really saves my hair from the extreme climate change that comes with living in Chicago. This routine is easy and can be adjusted based on hair type, needs, and product preference.

 

Week One

This treatment week is to focus on the nutrients that my hair may be missing and overall cleansing the hair.

(1)Pre-poo: Usually around this time I have stopped washing my hair weekly so I have a TON of product buildup and sweat residue in my hair. The best way to clarify before my shampoo is with apple cider vinegar. ACV is a great clarifier and helps with dandruff. ?It’s not too harsh but strips the hair of buildup leaving my hair with a natural shine. ?

 

ACV rinse:

1 part ACV

3 parts water

 

I prefer to use a spray bottle to target my scalp directly and to avoid making a mess and getting it into my eyes. I let it sit for 10-20 minutes under a plastic cap after saturating my entire head. Following up by rinsing out with water. *If the ACV seems to be too harsh for your hair, try Bumble and Bumble?s Hairdresser?s Invisible Oil Balm-to-Oil Pre-Shampoo Masque.

 

(2)Hair Mask: Being that my hair has now been stripped of all the dirt build up on my scalp I like to follow up with a protein-based hair mask. Depending on how I’m going to style my hair I have two go-to hair mask. 1) Avocado Hair Mask, 2) ApHogee Keratin 2 Minute Reconstructor. Either mask is fine just depends on if I’m trying to wear a protective style or doing a twist out of some sort.

 

Avocado Hair Mask

? avocado

1 large egg

1 tablespoon of raw honey

*Due to the thickness of my hair I tend to double this recipe to fully saturate my hair.

Let the mask sit for at least 25 min to an hour so all the nutrients can be absorbed into the hair.

 

(3)Shampoo & Conditioner/ leave-in: I follow the mask by washing my hair as usual. Shampooing twice and rinsing the conditioner out with cold water to close the hair follicle without rising out all the moisture rich products. I find that using the shampoo and conditioner of the same brand works well in addition to the mask. Apply leave-in and style accordingly.

(4)Nightly Hair Routine: To give my hair a nightly refresher after being out in the elements all day, I?ve made a conditioning oil to apply to my hair when preparing my hair for bed. Major essential oils that I use for this is shea butter, black castor oil, rosemary oil, sage oil and peppermint oil.

 

Peppermint oil: promotes a healthy balance of oil production within the scalp as well as prevents dandruff and excessive dryness within the hair.

Sage oil: promotes hair growth as well as provides a healthy shine to the hair.

Rosemary oil: promotes circulation within the scalp and hair growth. Has been proven to help those with alopecia regrow their hair.

Shea butter: this is a great sealant and helps soften the hair when warmed and then applied.

Black castor oil: promotes scalp circulation, prevents dandruff, and promotes hair growth.

Week Two:

This treatment week is to focus on the moisture that my hair will need before protective styling.

*Continue with the Nightly Hair Routine to ensure constant protection of the roots and ends from the cold as a means of preventing breakage and split ends.

 

(5)Co-Wash: At the end of the week or based on preference, I usually co-wash my hair. This usually consists of rinsing my hair with warm water and ?conditioner – washing? with my favorite moisture rich conditioner. During this co-wash, I will rinse out the conditioner with cold water. I usually don’t rinse out the conditioner because it helps my hair remain moisturized for a long period of time when it’s left in. I will then follow up my protective styling, either braid, sew-in, or crochets to name a few options.

 

I find this to be the best process when trying to prepare my hair for the harsh Chicago winter weather. This ensures my hair is moisturized and sealed with the necessary nutrients for the two month period I will be wearing my choice of protective style. Now, this two-week regimen can be altered to fit your specific needs based on what your hair needs.