Why this may be the worst winter for hair

Icy roads, wind chills near zero, heating systems on the fritz - these are just a few of the problems that Arctic Blast 2018 has brought to central North Carolina.

But there's another problem with this cold weather - static electricity and bad hair!

Many of you may have noticed it's been harder to manage your hair the last week or maybe you're getting zapped when walking around the house. That's static electricity.

The Arctic air mass that has gripped the region the last week is not only cold, it's very dry. Humidity levels have been extremely low, even for winter.

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Remember, the colder the air, the less moisture it can hold. So 20 degrees with a relative humidity of 25 percent is a much drier air mass that 80 degrees with 25 percent humidity. And earlier this week, the amount of moisture in the air was about the lowest it'll get around here.

The reason winter days are more shock prone and your hair is a mess has to do with that dry air.

In the winter, and especially THIS winter, more static electricity builds up because of very dry air. Explaining static electricity means delving into positive and negative charges and how they interact, but you probably would rather know what to do to alleviate the problem.

Ideally, in the winter you'd like to see humidity levels around 45 percent. But in the winter it can drop to 15 percent or lower.


Here's a quick way to see whether your house is too dry: drop a few ice cubes into a glass with water. If you don't see any condensation on the outside of the glass in a few minutes, your house is too dry. You may want to invest in a humidifier.

If you're not willing to spring for a humidifier, try a do- it- yourself solution: Try placing bowls of water in rooms around your house. Fill them up as needed, but if you notice the water evaporating quickly, you may need to take the extra step of buying a humidifier.

And as for your hair - try rubbing dryer sheets on it. That should help with static electricity!
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