The three biggest challenges for summer hair are the sun, the chlorine and the humidity: a trifecta of hair havoc. Sun and chlorine can change your hair color as well as cause damage and dryness. Think UV rays only damage skin? Think again. Like the rest of your body, the hair is made up of delicate proteins that require moisture to thrive. However, unlike your skin, hair is not living so it has no way to actively replace the moisture it so desperately needs.
And then there’s our friend, humidity. While it isn’t the cause of damage, it can be the result. Humidity can cause both frizz and flatness – it is a double-edged sword of awful when trying to keep your mane manageable.
If you hair is damaged the additional moisture in the summer air can penetrate the hair shaft and cause it to swell. Result: Frizz. On the other hand, if your hair is fine or thin, humidity can cause the hair to be greasy or limp. Remember, your scalp creates more oil and sweat in the heat and all of that ends up in your hair.
Either way? No bueno.
Here are some things you can do to protect your hair and manage the summer attack:
1. Make an appointment for a trim. Get rid of those ends that are already showing damage so that you don’t exacerbate any existing issues.
2. If you’ve had any sort of chemical processing done wait a full week before going in the water. This way you will minimize any chlorine interactions with the products and your hair shaft.
3. Use a leave-in conditioner. You can apply a small amount to your wet hair to keep it hydrated while outside. Try Phyto 7 Daily Hydrating Botanial Cream from Phyto.
4. Before you go in the water, wet your hair with tap water first. If your hair is going to absorb any water, let it be the chlorine-free tap water. This will let less chlorinated water in once you’re in the pool. Be sure to rinse your hair when you are done swimming as well.
5. Lounge under a big umbrella to keep direct rays off of your scalp, hair and skin.
6. Use a small amount of a silicon-based hair product like Frizz-Ease to control frizz.
7. Hats off! A sun hat does wonders to protect your scalp and hair as well as your face from sun damage.