There are a certain special few of us out there who thrive in the summer months. Warm weather makes us smile while everyone around us is wilting in the heat. We love the sun and the sand and the surf and everything that goes along with it. You know who you are. We are the girls that still have remnants of a tan line in February and keep our bathing suits and daisy dukes out all year long “just in case”. We love summer days and summer nights and all the joys that come with them but like all good things, there is a down side. Hair. It hates summer. I don’t care how much you love summer, your hair hates it, especially if its color treated or permed or otherwise chemically altered. The sun and summer elements damages hair and can cause some serious bad hair days if precautions aren’t taken. Have no fear, summer girls, there are ways to protect those tresses from the damaging rays of your beloved sun.
The Sun, much like many ex-boyfriends, is a devious bastard. He makes you feel warm and safe, showers you with his gifts of warm, golden rays and long, productive days, only to rip the rug out from under you when you find out all the damage he’s done when you had your back turned. We know how bad sunlight can damage the skin. The dangers of sunburn and skin cancers are well known. Sun damage to the hair isn’t so well known. Long-time exposure to the sun causes split ends from the breakdown of keratin in weakened, dry and brittle hair. Sun bleaches the color pigments in hair follicles. Black hair turns a bit brown, brown develops a red hue and red hair becomes highlighted with blonde after repeated sun exposure. Hair that is already bleached is especially susceptible to sun damage.
One of the easiest ways to combat sun damage is to invest in several cute and trendy hats and scarves. Make sure to rinse the mask out completely with cool to a fun and sexy compliment to your outfit. Use hats that cover all of your hair. Choose a style that accommodates the activity of the day. For example, beach hats at the beach and ball caps for general outdoor play etc. This goes for swimming too. The salt and chlorine often found in swimming water is detrimental to hair. It strips color and dries out hair. It is best to always swim with a swimming cap on.
Another great way to protect your hair is to keep it hydrated, both inside and out. Drinking the recommended amount of water each day not only helps to keep your body healthy but your hair too. Hydrate your hair from the outside by using shampoos and conditioners designed to moisturize. A deep conditioning treatment once a month goes a long way in protecting against the sun, too. Overnight repair creams and leave-in conditioners also add some extra moisture.
Along with hydration, healthy hair requires nourishment. Vitamin rich foods like fresh fruits, vegetables and proteins help keep hair healthy and shiny. Using a hair mask once a week can also supplement moisture and nourishment. Hair masks can be left on for 15 minutes for as long as overnight. Since hair follicles open with heat, wearing a shower cap and gently applying low heat can exacerbate the benefits. Make sure to rinse the mask out completely with cool to luke warm water and pat dry with a towel. Do not rub briskly or dry with heat.
Advice from the Best Salon in Echo Park
Because many of my readers live in East LA I wanted to bring it local. Rock Paper Salon, arguably the best salon in Echo Park, has a variety of products that can be used to protect hair from summer damage. Conditioners, balms, salves and masks, (Visit www.rockpapersalon.com) all designed to protect from the suns damaging UV rays and prevent color damage and keratin breakdown. Also, atthe best salon in Echo Park, their friendly staff is knowledgeable about their use and effects so you aren’t left in the dark about what to expect. Summer can wreak havoc on carefully maintained hair but it doesn’t have to be that way. Take precautions to protect your precious mane. This is no doubt a major reason why Rock Paper Salon is wildly considered the best salon in Echo Park. Visit their site linked above and see for yourself.