Ah, summer! It’s almost time to break out your swimsuit, pull back your hair and hit the beach! If you’re like most people, you’ve spent a bit of time thinking about your “beach body.” We all want to look our best as we bare more skin, right? Well, what about your beach hair? Many people don’t pay enough attention to summer haircare. The warm weather (and all that comes with it) introduces hair to a different set of conditions than the cooler months. So, what should you be doing to ensure your hair looks its summer best? Read on for 6 tips and tricks to keeping your hair looking healthy and fabulous all summer long.
1. Sunscreen: It’s Not Just for Your Skin
You’ve always heard that it’s important to apply sunscreen to every inch of your skin, right? After all, the sun’s rays can be very damaging – even carcinogenic – and that tank top leaves you even more exposed to the elements. Did you know sunscreen is equally important for your summer haircare routine? There are many products on the market which are designed to protect your hair from the sun’s harmful rays. Most of these products are convenient spray-on solutions. You’ll apply them just as you do sunscreen for your skin.Others, interestingly, are incorporated into your shampoos, conditioners and even styling products. No matter which you choose, be sure the product is suitable for your hair type. For instance, if you’ve colored your hair, look for a product that won’t turn your hair brassy. You can even find moisturizing products for your hair that contain sunscreen if your hair is naturally dry.
2. Wear a Low-Tension Hairstyle
It’s tempting to pull your hair back into a tight bun or ponytail before you ride the waves. Resist the temptation! Instead, opt for a loose, messy or natural look to keep your hair in its best summer shape.The summer heat can dry your hair, plus the salt water and chlorine can make it even worse. Pulling your hair back tightly can cause damage to your hair. And rubber bands? Just say no! If you must pull your hair back, use a cloth-covered, gentle elastic.
3. Use Professional Hair Colouring
Box mix hair colour is so easy, right? Just put it in, wait 25 minutes and you’re now beach-blonde and ready for the warmer weather. Not so fast! Hair colour that’s not professionally done can have disastrous effects on your hair, particularly in the summer months. Red hues can become a brassy color, and blondes can even turn green when exposed to chlorine! Go see your stylist. Together, you can decide on a hot look for summer that’s easy, low-maintenance and risk free. Whether you choose a subtle mahogany or a daring plum, your stylist’s hair color solutions are just safer for your hair.
4. Consider Going Natural
It could be that you want a new look for your summer vacation. Maybe you’re just inspired by the weather change and want to try something different. Before you visit the salon, consider a summer style that’s uniquely natural, and uniquely you.There are countless reasons you should consider a natural look this summer. One, of course, is because summer can be brutally damaging to hair. The fewer harsh chemicals you apply to your air, the better! Additionally, taking care of natural hair is just easier in the long run. If you plan on going natural or already are, here’s a great list of 30 products for natural hair.
5. Beware of Chlorine
The pools are open, and they’re calling your name. But before you begin to perfect your cannonball, take a moment to consider your hair – and the effects of chlorine on your hair. As mentioned, chlorine can turn dyed hair funny colours. But the chemical has other damaging effects as well. Chlorine is notorious for stripping your hair of natural oils that are essential to your hair’s health. This can cause hair to become brittle and break easily. It can even dry your scalp, causing unattractive dandruff. If you must dive into that chlorine pool, take precautionary measures to protect your hair. Wet your hair with non-chlorinated water before jumping in. Apply coconut or jojoba oil to your hair before swimming. And be sure you wash your hair using a nourishing, protective shampoo and conditioner haircare solution. If you’d really like to go the extra mile to protect your hair from damaging chlorine, you could even wear a swim cap!
6. Change Your Summer Haircare Routine
When the weather’s warm, your hair will be exposed to the sun more frequently. The UV rays from the sun can (almost literally) fry your hair, causing it to look dry and frizzy, and making the hair shaft weak. Minimize the damage to your hair this summer by changing up your routine. When you shower, use a moisturizing shampoo and a nourishing conditioner. Then, use a leave-in conditioner with sunscreen to add a layer of protection to your hair. After you shower, skip the straighteners and hairdryer. These tools expose your hair to even more heat than you’re getting from the sun, opt to towel dry, giving you a more natural look.
If you must style your hair after you shower, use a wide-tooth comb, and skip the brush. A comb will be gentler to your hair, minimizing breakage.
You’ve given a lot of thought to your beach body … it’s time to work on your beach hair! Just a few simple tricks can leave your hair gorgeous and healthy all summer long.
Feature: Star Light – Writing from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Star became a natural hair enthusiast after going natural herself and is now helping woman conquer their hair over at AfricanAmericanHairstyles.org hair care blog, with a focus on natural hair care.