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7 Expert-Backed Ways to Get Healthy Hair This Fall

Negin Mirsalehi. Photo: Instagram/@negin_mirsalehi

After a summer of sun, sweat, and sea (if you actually managed to get away from your desk), you can expect your hair to be in need of some major TLC. Limp locks, split ends, dry scalp. And now fall is upon us. Cue plummeting temperatures and cranked up central heating – hardly conducive to healthy hair.

“I think there’s a trend towards awareness of hair condition and overall hair health,” says master colorist Josh Wood. “After such a long time with no color treatments or minimal styling, people have felt their hair in a different condition, so awareness of damage is greater.”

So, how can we damage-proof our hair as we move into fall? Here, the experts weigh in.

1. Lock in moisture with hydrating products

“The rise and fall in temperature can quickly whip out moisture, leaving hair feeling flat, parched and fragile,” says Michael Lendon, creative director of Aveda. To remedy this, it’s important to integrate hydrating products into your hair care regime and keep shampooing to a minimum. This is where your leave-in conditioners and nourishing overnight treatments come in. Take, for instance, the Aveda Nutriplenish Leave-in Conditioner, which uses a combination of plant-based ingredients to replenish the hair for up to 72 hours. Or the Charlotte Mensah Manketti Oil Conditioner, which blends vitamins, oils and naturally sourced manketti nuts to deliver moisture without weighing the hair down.

A top tip? John Paul Scott, from Salt Studio London, recommends keeping a mini leave-in conditioner in your bag so you can top up throughout the day. For maximum moisture, he also recommends a good overnight mask, such as Bumble and Bumble’s Invisible Oil Mask or the Overnight Damage Repair Masque.

And, if you really want to give your hair a fighting chance, avoid harsh chemicals and silicone-based products. Opt instead for serums and oils like Leonor Greyl’s L’Huile de Leonor Greyl.

2. Invest in a good brush

In addition to your hair being zapped of moisture during the dry winter months, high winds can further damage the hair. “This is especially true for Afro and curly hair,” warns Charlotte Mensah. “When exposed to high winds, hair becomes more easily snagged and tangled. When you brush and detangle your hair, the yanking action of the brush can cause further breakage and split ends.” This is why investing in a good brush is so important. Look for brushes that have some give to them, to prevent further snagging. You can’t go wrong with a Tangle Teezer or classic Denman brush.

3. Take extra care when dying your hair

When it comes to updating your look for the new season, a fresh hair color always does the trick. But it’s important to bear in mind the changing weather conditions, which is why, when it comes to coloring, strengthening treatments are key.

“Most September hair feels parched, which can be different to just normal dryness,” says Josh Wood. “I always like to use a product that is strengthening as well as hydrating when coloring. I’m a big believer in treating the hair at the moment of coloring, to reduce the risk of damage.”

Try the Josh Wood Colour Miracle Shot, which you apply to the hair at the moment of coloring, or the Olaplex No 3 Hair Perfector thereafter.

4. Keep your scalp healthy

Just like you would protect your skin from the outside elements, as we move into fall, it’s essential to protect your scalp, too. “As the weather gets colder our scalps often become dry and hair can become brittle,” says celebrity hairstylist, Jen Atkin, who recommends the OUAI Scalp and Body Scrub.

“Healthy scalp means healthy hair,” agrees John Paul Scott. “There are many scalp exfoliators out there, but during the colder months check for hydrating properties.” Bumble and Bumble Scalp Detox uses salicylic acid to exfoliate the scalp, while micellar water removes excess sebum and panthenol keeps the hair hydrated.

5. Avoid hot water

Though fall weather lends itself to a hot bath, washing your hair with hot water can actually be detrimental to its health. “Hot water can damage the cuticles, and make your hair super dry,” says Masa Ohta, lead therapist at natural hair care brand Leonor Greyl. “Instead, protect the hair shaft by washing it with warm water.”

6. Keep heat styling to a minimum

“It’s really important to invest in a routine and in tools that are going to help preserve the health of your hair,” says Jen Atkin. This means cutting down on heat styling and switching to smart choices. Atkin recommends Dyson’s Intelligent Heat Control range, in particular the Dyson Supersonicᵀᴹ Hair Dryer, Airwrapᵀᴹ Styler and Corraleᵀᴹ Straightener. “These will help to reduce your hair’s heat exposure, in turn reducing the heat damage,” she says. “The unique engineering ensures temperatures can be tailored for your hair type and desired style, while maintaining consistent heat output.”

7. Maintain a balanced diet

When it comes to keeping your hair healthy, it’s important to support it from within, which means maintaining a balanced diet, investing in good quality supplements and staying hydrated with plenty of water.

Vitamin D is key. “One of the greatest dangers the winter months pose to our hair is insufficient vitamin D production, and the subsequent risk of hair thinning or premature hair shedding,” says Kay Ali, expert nutritionist at Beauty Pie. “As we descend into the winter months our ability to make vitamin D from sun exposure is compromised. Vitamin D plays a role in stimulating new hair follicles, so when levels are low it can prohibit healthy hair growth and thickness.” Oily fish, red meat, egg yolks and fortified foods are all rich in vitamin D. Alternatively, there are lots of good supplements, like Beauty Pie’s Like Sun. 

Also important are healthy fats (sources include oily fish, avocados, nuts and seeds). “We use these fats to make and secrete oils from the scalp that help lubricate the hair shaft, locking the moisture in,” says Ali. “This can help support healthier and glossier hair, from within.” Try Beauty Pie’s BiOmega 3 fish oil for the best results.

Read Next: This TikTok Makes a Solid Case for Using Hyaluronic Acid Skincare Serum in Your Hair

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