Re-post/Re-published with permission from

We’ve been getting emails lately from people who are terrified of using glycerin-containing products during the winter. Apparently, there is a nasty rumor going around that products containing glyerin + winter weather, automatically equals dry hair. We actually addressed this issue about a year ago in episode 3 of our podcast, suggesting that using just before a [warm, steamy] shower was a great way to ‘winterize’ your use of humectant products. But just in case you missed it, here are some more bullet points to consider. :o)

1. Glycerin is a humectant, which means that it attracts moisture to itself. In a humid environment it helps your hair to attract and retain moisture.

2. In an environment with zero humidity (a desert climate) some worry that the glycerin can pull moisture out of your hair, because there’s none in the air and the hungry hungry glycerin wants some water, at any cost!!

3. All of our products which contain glycerin, also contain water. So there is water within the product available to the glycerin, and all of it helps your hair to remain hydrated. If you are using other glycerin-containing products or making your own, one thing to watch would be to ensure that they contain water as well.

4. To ‘winterize’ or ‘desert-friendly’ your use of humectants, one simple idea is to use the product before a shower. The mist and steam of the shower will be attracted to the glycerin in the products, and the heat will help it absorb into your cuticle. Then you can use an oil-based sealer to keep that moisture in when you go out into the harsh, harsh world.

5. In many climates, the winter is less humid than the summer, but this is not necessarily the case everywhere. Many oyin honeys have zero problems using our humectant sprays or other glycerin containing products throughout the year – the thing to watch is the humidity level, more so than the temperature. don’t assume you can’t use a product in the winter just because it contains glycerin – experiment with using it under different conditions and let your hair tell you what it likes! :o)

Ladies, do you use glycerin in the winter? Does this information inspire you to try winter-time glycerin?

Black Girl With Long Hair

Leila Noelliste, founder of Black Girl with Long Hair (April 2008). Social media, pop culture and black beauty enthusiast. bell hooks' hair twin...

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42 Comments on "Why It’s Okay to Use Glycerin In Winter"

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I see this is old but I just discovered it and wanted to thank you for this article. I just wish I’d seen it years ago as I’d been avoiding my glycerin products during the winter, but from this point on I won’t. In fact, I’d started to plan on using my glycerin containing products way more regularly this summer after I used a moisturizer last week that gave me excellent results. I just wondered WHY I’d waited so long since high humidity had started here about a month ago but live and learn I guess. Thanks again!

I personally don’t like mandy’s hair. I don’t think it does annihtyg for her face and it looks boring. I love bangs; I feel like you always have a “look” with them. Your hair down or up in a pony tail, it’s something trendy. I’m not sure about the blunt cut though. It really depends on your face shape. What about combining bangs with long layers?


[…] sent me this post, I came across this article on that also referenced Oyin: Why It’s Okay to Use Glycerin in the Winter! My hair isn’t really a fan of glycerin. It makes it sticky and I find that I don’t […]


I not only use vegetable glycerin on my hair year round, I use it all over, straight out of the bottle. If you think it feels sticky on your skin, you may want to try applying it while you are still a little wet from your bath/shower. Mixing a few drops into a squirt of lotion/oil or dollop of body cream/butter also works. Applied daily to dry elbows, knees, or feet, glycerin combats dryness and helps maintain smooth skin over time. I’m going to pick up some from Whole Foods next week :-).


To have pretty feet you don’t have alawys gone to the salon. With a small amount of time and effort, now from your tips I can give myself a fabulous feet makeover because for the last two years my feet are going darker and darker, I have also cracked heel problem because I don’t have much time to do care.

Le Le

Ew, I cannot use glycerin straight or without a bunch of water. I don’t know why, but I tried the whole mixing with baby oil and applying to wet skin, and it still felt a little icky (less sticky than by itself, but still sticky). I don’t know why. Maybe it’s my skin type or something. Hmm…


I love glycerin but it’s so damn sticky! I hate how it feels when it gets on my skin.

Le Le

Yes! Fortunately, if you add more water (assuming you us any at all), it shouldn’t feel too sticky. I had to play around with the mixture 1 or 2 times to make it less sticky but also keeping the properties of glycerin water.


I am happy to hear this, but the solutions outlined in the article wouldn’t work for everyone. I do my hair after wetting it while showering.


Yes. The whole “glycerin = dry hair in the winter” theory is a myth. Just because pookies sister says something on the internet doesn’t make it true. Listen to your hair, not unsubstantiated opinion.


This is helpful. I have noticed that my glycerin and water mix worked best when I sprayed it on my hair then went to the gym and later took a steamy shower. The next day my hair would feel great.


I never used glycerin because I always thought it was “complicated”. I put it in the same category as apple cider vinegar. But I guess I should try it with this new information!


I’ll cosign as well. I just bought some glycerin today, here goes everything….


I thought the same thing but glycerin can be easy. I just squirted some in a spray bottle for 3 or 4 seconds then filled the rest of the bottle up with water. I never measured or made a science out of it, just squirt, add water, shake, spray. Hope that helps.


thanks for clearing up this myth for people! i already see people talking about shelving glycerin for the winter.

It really messed me up last year because my hair LOVES glycerin and I decided to avoid it and struggled with dry hair all winter. I was a new natural and it was pretty tough to deal with….I actually broke down and just used it before a shower and noticed a huge difference in moisture. I then checked online and saw my method confirmed! LOL


I never believed the “don’t use glycerin in winter” hype. I use products with glycerin (leave-in conditioner and spritz) all year round with no problems.

P.S. I’m usually in NJ (home) or PA (university).


Great article, I’ve definitely avoided that myth and used glycerin a lot of times myself in the winter and I have hair on my head. But indeed the real key is to have water also present in the mix or else you are asking for trouble. And most certainly doing the steam effect really helps it seep into the hair shaft. I might have to just go make another batch of hair spritz now too.


I brought some more glycerin from the natural food store and got it for a good price 16oz of “Now” Glycerin for $8.99 and I love it. Just mix it with my water and put either some coconut oil or jamican lock their oil mixture and I’m good to go for my hair.


ETA check out this little cutie pie with all of this gorgeous hair.

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Source omgcutebabies


@Lili–yes i have experienced that. I used SheaMoisture products(which have glycerin as 1 of the top ingredients) to style my hair, and my hair was super shiny, coily, defined and bouncy. It was my best twist out ever! the deep treatment’s top ingredients are
1- water
2- shea butter
3- argan oil
4- vegetable glycerin

i used that with the restorative conditioner as leave-in


I’ve noticed that glycerin + water makes my hair bouncy, which is one thing I love about glycerin. Has anyone else experienced this?


[…] guys, I saw this article on BGLH and I thought it was interesting;…inter-is-okay/ __________________ First Big Chop 5/27/09 2nd Big Chop 9/11/2009 Texture: 4a/4b My Blog: […]


Thank you for posting this! The suggestions make sense: apply prior to shower, seal afterwards with oil. Thanks! 🙂


Not only do I live in the desert and love glycerin – I love it in the super dry winter too!

I think of glycerin & other humectants as sponges. Once a sponge is completely saturated it cannot absorb any additional liquid. As Oyin stated, if glycerin is mixed or exposed to enough water, it will bind to the liquid and in turn bind the moisture to your hair (as opposed to pulling it from your strands).

Ms Sassy

I’m in the deep south and our cold isn’t really what some would consider cold. I’m glad to see this because I was worried about using my rose water/glycerin spray. I have been spraying it on to remoist my hair and it has been working well thus far


I know right, I’m down south near Savannah,GA and it wont actually get really cold for us until probably around Dec or Jan. and still then the temps are unpredictable.

Rhonda McKnight

Great information. Thanks for sharing. My hair loves glycerin! Loves it.


This is why I don’t listen to what people say, rather listen to my hair.


Yay! Glad to read this way of applying glycerin based products….so if i wanted to use my beloved Whipped pudding according, to this I should apply while hair is wet, then apply an oil to seal in??


thank you!! i was planning on buying one of their products for a while but then I said let me wait and finish products I already have. Then i didn’t buy it because its becoming winter and of the whole humectant thing. Then I saw that you were selling it and decided that supporting a small business owner is worth it. Now I’m double satisfied with my purchase!


great advice! i read the article and the comments, because i was worried about this too and honestly didnt want to believe the myth anyway. There are too many good products to waste just because of one ingredient. CrystalJ, thanks for the advice! I will keep using it and change the ratio like you, that sounds smart.


Very useful and informative, and makes complete sense!


i use the burnt sugar pomade (a favorite of mine) and the honey hemp year around with no problems. i always apply my creamy leave ins before i step in the shower. it definitely helps it to absorb better into my hair.

Knowledge is power. I use Oyin Honey Hemp (which contains glycerin) all year round with no problems. Glycerin needs to be “fed” moisture in a sense so you just have to find the right ratio of water:glycerin during the different seasons. If I use a glycerin spritz mix in the winter I make sure it’s a 2:2:1 (one part glycerin to every 2 parts water and 2 parts aloe vera); my summer mix is usually 1:1 (glycerin and water). Some peoples hair will hate glycerin no matter what or how they use it, but for me it helps retain moisture… Read more »

[…] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Tyrika C Williams and La Chale, Black Girl Long Hair. Black Girl Long Hair said: The makers of Oyin explain why glycerin doesn't have to be off-limits in the winter time #naturalhair […]


I am so glad they cleared up this myth. I live in Tucson, Arizona. One of the driest climates in the U.S. and I use vegetable glycerin year round in products that also contain water. I have never experienced dryness as a result of using vegetable glycerin.


That’s good to know, I’m in PHX. I was always afraid to use glycerin, because of the dryness here.


Thanks for clearing up the myth!


VERY good information to have! i’m all about education on things, so that was nice to know…i figured putting it on BEFORE a shower was a good idea, I did that with my honey olive oil balm from qhemets, was fine.


La Tina

Yea! So glad to see this article! I make my own mix which contains aloe vera juice (75%) and glycerin (25%), and I will mist this before stepping into the shower. Now, I now that for the winter, I can still do this, and just make sure to seal it in before stepping out the house. This is definitely work trying.


God knows this has helped me tons! I was always afraid to use my glycerin or honey laden products during the cold months and would put them away with sadness until the spring and summer. This clarification is just what I needed to pull out my beloved Burnt Sugar Pomade and Honey Hemp again. Thanks for this post!