As someone who works in the beauty sphere, I change up my shampoo with nearly every shower. Of course, there are a few I’m loyal to when I have a big event and need to be sure I’ll have a great hair day (read: IGK’s 30,000 Feet Volume Shampoo, Bumble and bumble’s Thickening line, and Sachajuan’s Ocean Mist Volume Shampoo—noticing a trend?). But for the most part, I’m forever in test mode.
And just like with skin care, I’ve always changed my shampoo with the seasons: When the weather drops and my hair has a tendency to get static-y, I swap out the volumizing formulas with more moisturizing or reparative picks. My boyfriend caught me mid-rotation last week, though, and insisted I was crazy. Then my best friend, who isn’t so far removed from the beauty world, agreed with him. So, do you really need to change your shampoo and conditioner in the winter? Is a winter shampoo even a thing? To prove him wrong, I went to the experts.
“Low temperatures and humidity can dry out hair, making it brittle and listless,” says dermatologist Neil Sadick of Sadick Dermatology, who says the scalp often gets itchy or flakey in the cold, even if you have no signs of dandruff during any other season. “Hair loss also increases during the winter due to nutrient deprivation in the hair root, so regardless of the hair type, extra-moisturizing shampoos and conditioners can lock in hydration and ensure nurturing of the hair.” We like Pureology Hydrate Shampoo, L’Oréal Power Moisture Hydrating Shampoo, and Redken Frizz Dismiss Shampoo.
And, though hair loss is a much less common side effect than, say, static, hairstylist and IGK co-founder Aaron Grenia agrees: “Humidity causes hair to swell and frizz, but the dry, winter climate often makes hair flat and static-prone,” he says, noting that if you swap out your shampoo, you combat static and dryness at the source. One other solution if you’re married to the same shampoo all year-round? Use more moisturizing products when you’re out of the shower: Grenia recommends swapping your entire summer regimen for more hydrating products, like IGK’s anti-static spray, Laid Back—which, I can attest, is great at battling annoying flyaways, but not as moisturizing as an oil—and adding in that a once-a-week mask. If you’d rather an oil or cream, try OUAI Finishing Creme, Bumble and bumble Hairdresser’s Invisible Oil, or Tatcha Gold Camellia Beauty Oil, which works great on hair and skin.
So, even though your hair probably won’t fall out if you stick to the same shampoo, “it’ll have different needs at different rimes of the year,” Sadick says, so pay attention to any increased itchiness of flaking. And if all else fails, you could chop it off into 2017’s must-have haircut.