HOW TO SURVIVE HEAT WAVE hair
b+ s beauty editor Kelsey Ferencak explains how you can help your locks conquer sweat, swimming and sun all summer long
When summer hits, do you switch up your skin care but leave your strands in the lurch? The truth is, the seasonal shift can cause just as much chaos to your mane as it does to your face. From swimming and sun damage to sweat, the hot weather can make your tresses behave badly – and no hair type is safe.
“Everyone’s hair is unique in both texture and behaviour, however, summer affects each type in the same way because they’re all made from the same fibrous protein – keratin,” explains Davies. “Summer dries the hair out, making it become porous, weak and brittle.”
But, even though we all experience the same damage, the outcomes vary depending on your hair type. Focusing on a tailored approach will ensure your strands stay healthy and strong.
Thinner hair is likely to suffer more damage from UV rays, heat and salt water. “Thin hair is more sensitive, so can’t cope as well in comparison to other hair types. Avoid a lot of ocean swimming and exposure to the sun,” Garcia explains.
Thick hair is generally drier, which can be exacerbated in summer, so add extra hydrating products to your arsenal.
For curly hair, controlling frizz is your main aim. Nader explains: “The more moisture you provide, the better your hair will behave. After showering, run cold water over your hair to seal the shaft, then blot dry – don’t rub – to help add shine and control, and diminish the frizz caused by dehydration.”
Mature hair lacks moisture and elasticity, so protecting against dehydration and sun exposure is key. “To revive dull, dehydrated hair, switch to a moisturising shampoo and conditioner that is low in alcohol to avoid further dehydration,” says Nader.
Garcia adds: “Use nourishing ingredients and masks, and try to limit heat styling and ocean swimming.”
For men, remember that your scalp is more exposed, so UV protection is essential. Also remember that swimming doesn’t count as a wash! Nader recommends using a conditioning shampoo that both cleans and hydrates.
LOOK OUT FOR THESE MANE MENACES 1 SUNLIGHT
Yes, sun exposure causes colour-treated hair to fade, but the same goes for natural locks. UVB rays penetrate the hair cuticle and break down the pigment, making hair dull and matte looking. But your shade isn’t the only thing being affected, UV exposure and heat cause moisture in your hair to evaporate, drying it out and causing breakage. “UV radiation oxidises and weakens hair in a similar way to bleaching,” says Davies. “It makes hair porous and brittle, leading to breakage and split ends.” Protect your hair with some sunscreen for your strands as well as a hat.
The chemical is intensely drying to both your hair and scalp, and contributes to weak strands and colour fade. “It damages the hair structure, leaving it coarse and brittle,” explains Davies. “Before swimming, rinse your hair with water – your hair works like a sponge and if it’s already wet, it will absorb less chlorine.” Another option is to coat hair in a plant oil, such as coconut. “It acts as a barrier and protects hair,” says Garcia.
3 SALT WATER
Hair that’s fresh from the ocean sounds good in theory, but in reality you’re left with crunchy, straw-like strands. “The sea has a high salt content and it’s osmotic, meaning it can leave hair dry, parched and brittle,” explains Davies. As with chlorine, rinse your hair before swimming or apply an oil. Rinse off excess salt after swimming, too.
“Focusing on a tailored approach will ensure your strands stay healthy and strong”