Does Wet Hair Really Give You a Cold? We Have the Answer

Amy Lewis

Winter is full of tricky beauty problems. How to combat the drying effects of the weather on your complexion, for example. How to tweak your foundation to match your slightly paler skin tone, now that the sun’s gone into hibernation. Or how about keeping your lips free from chapping and cracking in the bitter chill?

Yes, as much as it really is the most wonderful time of the year, winter is also quite possibly the season with the most beauty challenges to face. One issue we can check off the list, however, is how to air-dry our hair quickly, despite the lack of a warm summer breeze. Yes, it works even in the depths of December!

On that note, if you’re worried about catching a cold after stepping out of the door with damp hair, there’s no need. We caught up with a doctor to finally sort the fact from the fiction on this age-old beauty myth. Scroll down for the truth on whether going out with wet hair can really affect your chances of getting ill this winter…

PHOTO:

Imaxtree

So first things first: Is it all just a beauty myth? An old wives’ tale? According to Adam Simon, MD, chief medical officer at Push Doctor (a rather handy new digital GP service), the short answer is yes.

“You can’t catch a cold from leaving the house with wet hair—let’s put that one to bed once and for all,” he tells us.

So why do so many people believe it might be true? “Some studies have suggested that a lower body temperature could trigger a cold virus that’s already in your body,” Simon notes. “But the only way you can actually ‘catch’ a cold is by being infected with a virus.”

Just to be on the safe side, we also enquired about the ways in which we are most likely to catch a bug this winter, since air-drying our hair to our heart’s content is now on the safe list.

“The common cold is passed on by coming into contact with the virus, either in the air or by touching an infected surface, such as a door handle, cutlery or keyboard,” Simon says. “Person-to-person contact, such as shaking hands or kissing, can also help the virus spread.”

So there you have it, straight from a medical professional. Air-drying your locks to save time and fend off the frizz is far less risky than a smooch under the mistletoe!

Up next! How often do you really need a haircut? We investigate.

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