The Ultimate Guide to Dew Points and Your Hair – Rues Hair

The Ultimate Guide to Dew Points and Your Hair

This is the ultimate guide to explain what exactly dew points are, and how your hair will behave under different dew points. 

Here we go!

DEW POINTS ARE SURPRISINGLY CRITICAL

The dew point of air is the temperature at which water vapor condenses into liquid forming fog or frost depending on the temperature of the air.

Dew points are an accurate representation of how humid it feels outside on a given day.

When most people say it's "humid" outside, they are referring to relative humidity.

For example, the humidity percentage on your weather app is referring to relative humidity:

When you click on the Weather Channel's logo on the bottom left, you can check out the dew point forecast for the day easily.

Relative humidity versus dew point temperature is all dependent on how much the air around you can hold water in different temperatures.

How much water is there really in the air around you?

Here's a simple infographic I made explaining dew points:

PAY RIDICULOUSLY CLOSE ATTENTION TO TEMPERATURE

It doesn't necessarily matter what season you are in.

More so, the temperature you're in matters most when it comes to dew points and air humidity.

Considering how much water is in the air is important when determining the amount of water your skin and hair will be able to absorb or evaporate.

How much water the air can hold all depends on...you guessed it...temperature.

This humidity scale displays how represents a humidity hair forecast using dew points:

Since how much water the air can hold all depends on the air temperature, think about it like this:

If you boil a cup of water, the water molecules expand and turn into water vapor, right?

Because of this, there is more potential for there to be more moisture in the air.

Since evaporation occurs during colder temperatures and condensation occurs during warmer temperatures, water vapor in the air is increased during warmer temperatures.

Since cooler or colder air will evaporate that water in the air it is much better on your skin and hair. 

Extremely cold temperatures will typically have an extreme effect in your hair and skin in that it will dry out your skin since there isn't that much moisture in the air for your hair and skin to absorb.

Takeaway: Your hair will best benefit from 55°F - 60°F dew point.

SHOULD YOU USE HUMECTANTS?

The use of humectants and knowing the dew point of the day can really make or break your whole hair routine for that day.

What is a humectant?

Simply put, humectants helps absorb the moisture that is in the air.

Humectants will also search for and grab onto moisture in your own hair and skin (which is why it isn't the best idea for the winter as mentioned earlier).

Here are common humectants used in products to moisturize dry or damaged hair.

  • Glycerin
  • Propylene Glycol
  • Honey
  • Agave nectar
  • Sorbitol
  • Sodium PCA
  • Panthenol
  • Hydrolyzed silk protein
  • Fructose

Are humectants good for your hair?

In the right conditions, humectants can really help you achieve the perfect curl pattern, along with giving you soft touchable locks. They can also help out with dry brittle hair and make your hair more elastic (thus protecting it from breakage).

The right conditions are typically between 40°F and 60°F dew point, and as mentioned earlier it all depends on what region you're in.

One thing is, when your hair is highly porous (that is, it's damaged and the hair cuticles are fairly exposed) it's generally a bad idea to use humectants in both very cold and very hot weather.

In very high temperatures and high dew point your hair strands will feel a bit overfilled with water and moisture and you will suffer from crazy frizz and hair puff.

In very cold temperatures with low dew point, expect any humectant on your hair to make your hair even drier, therefore frizzy because of the lack of moisture.

The main things to consider and do when you go outside today is:

  • check the weather channel for the most up to date dew point forecast
  • create a plan for which products you want to use when the dew point is high
  • checking the actual temperature to make sure the dew point isn't exasperated by extreme conditions

Takeaway: 60°F+ dew point is where you need to be careful about your humectant use.

A NOVEL IDEA TO SUMMER PROOF YOUR HAIR

Now, here is where it gets really interesting.

Let me tell you, it's definitely not my cup of tea to go out with my hair all nicely styled then maybe an hour in my hair just starts trying to grab onto whatever it deems.

Once it hits around 60°F dew point, most people start feeling super sticky and gross.

 At this point, many curlies will put away their thick and rich conditioner and leave in products for lighter ones.

 I'm not one for leave in conditioners, but I do love using DIY and homemade gels for the hotter days. 

My favorites include flaxseed and aloe vera gel!

Anyway, I digress..

 If you have high porosity hair you might actually benefit from a leave in, because it will keep your hair cuticles tamed when the water tries getting in there. Just don't use it very often.

 

THE RIGHT CONDITIONS ARE KEY

In the right conditions, humectants can really help you achieve the perfect curl pattern, along with giving you soft touchable locks. They can also help out with dry brittle hair and make your hair more elastic (thus protecting it from breakage).

The right conditions are typically between 40°F and 60°F dew point, and as mentioned earlier it all depends on what region you're in.

One thing is, when your hair is highly porous (that is, it's damaged and the hair cuticles are fairly exposed) it's generally a bad idea to use humectants in both very cold and very hot weather.

In very high temperatures and high dew point your hair strands will feel a bit overfilled with water and moisture and you will suffer from crazy frizz and hair puff.

In very cold temperatures with low dew point, expect any humectant on your hair to make your hair even drier, therefore frizzy because of the lack of moisture.

The main things to consider and do when you go outside today is:

  • check the weather channel for the most up to date dew point forecast
  • create a plan for which products you want to use when the dew point is high
  • checking the actual temperature to make sure the dew point isn't exasperated by extreme conditions.

Takeaway: 60°F+ dew point is where you need to be careful about your humectant use.

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