Static hair isn't the worst hair concern ever but it is possibly the funniest, how can you not laugh at yourself walking around like you've manhandled an electric fence?
Take off your beanie... Pull your sweater over your head... Tie up a scarf... Slowly but surely those strands will rise.
Hair conducts energy and when there is an imbalance of ions (two positive charges that repel each other) static energy causes the hairs to stand on end.
Static energy occurs in dry air conditions, often in winter when the heat is turned up and the windows are sealed closed. Hair has the ability to absorb moisture from the surrounding environment, however, without moisture in the air, the hair eventually becomes dry, making it more susceptible to the conduction of static energy.
Is it Static or Frizz?
Static and frizz are second cousins, not twins. Frizz arises from an excess of moisture within the hair strands, and hair types with high porosity are more prone to frizz, particularly in humid environments (hello wet, hot Auckland summer). Whereas static occurs when there is insufficient moisture in the hair, resulting in an accumulation of energy. Hair types with low porosity have a harder time absorbing water, and the ones with high porosity have it easier.
Here are our tips to bring supercharged strands back down to earth:
Moisturizing the strands is the key to preventing or eliminating static. Level up moisturization using a hydrating conditioner, weekly hair mask treatments and leave-ins infused with moisture-locking elements like sugars and vitamin B5. This approach helps prevent and eliminate static and keeps your hair protected from unwanted electric charges.
Hair oils, Serums and Leave-ins
Leave-in conditioners are an underrated dry hair saviour, if you get dry, static hair in winter now would be the time to include one in your regimen. Apply a small amount of leave-in conditioner, serum or hair oil to the ends of your hair to help lock in moisture and minimize static. Be careful not to apply too much, as this can weigh down your hair.
Limit the use of heat-styling tools such as hair dryers, as they can strip moisture from your hair. If you simply cannot live without your hairdryer (because, winter!), set it to a lower heat setting or use the cool air option and always use a heat protectant. But allow your hair to air dry whenever possible.
Use a natural bristle brush
Swap your synthetic brushes for brushes with natural bristles, like boar bristle brushes. Natural bristles help distribute the natural oils from your scalp throughout your hair, reducing dryness and static.
While we're on the topic, another great hack is to spray a bit of water on your brush. Ever heard of this tip to eliminate static from your clothes? Well, it works the same way with your hair.
Humidify your environment
Keep things moist and increase humidity levels in your home by using a humidifier. This helps counteract the dryness in the air, reducing static electricity in your hair. Alternatively, you can place a bowl of water near a heating source to add moisture to the air.