I am not a big fan of winter. I am a very cold-natured person, and my body does not take well to cold weather.

My hair — which is normally soft and shiny — gets dry and brittle and uncooperative.  My hands — my poor, soft hands — become dry and cracked and alligator-like. And my face — which is sensitive anyways — is extra dry and red. When I look in the mirror, I try to remind myself that it’s not just me suffering from winter beauty blues. But then I see girls walking around campus in the cold with their beautiful, shiny locks and “un-splotchy” faces. I become jealous.

This jealousy has led me to researching for hours about proper winter hair care. After all, these women I see can’t simply be free of winter’s destructive powers. While staying up late one night working hard on my winter skin research, I recalled a book my mother gave me before I left for college. Fast Beauty:  1000 Quick Fixes. I sprung out of my bed and began searching my bookshelf for this “Beauty Bible.” Eventually I found it nestled between The Bombshell’s Manual of Style and The Prophet. I clutched the treasure across my chest and jumped back onto my bed.

Holding the book in my hands, I felt the power rush into my body.  Before me laid a book that would unlock the answers for combatting the winter-time blues.  It was almost too much. After several minutes, I finally cracked the book open to the index.  I searched for the word “winter” and found an expanded list of “hair and scalp care,” “hand and nail” and “skin care.” My heart skipped a beat.  If I followed the guidelines in the book, people around campus would soon be jealous of my hair and skin.

I flipped to the “hair and scalp care” pages.  Then I turned to the “hand and nail” and finally “skin care.” For hours I read the book, soaking in this newly, found beauty knowledge. To combat dry hair and a splotchy face, use plain yogurt with a bit of honey.  Soak nails in warm milk to regain strength. There was so much to learn and take in, and I quickly lost track of the time.

Finally, my eyes darted to my bedside clock. 4:30 AM! I couldn’t believe I had spent three hours researching.  I had to be up in two hours.  I began to freak out when I realized the sleep deprivation would be easy to spot the next morning.   But then I realized the answer laid in my lap. I flipped to the index and began my research for combatting sleep-deprivation.

-Hillary Rose Owens