Summer is shining down upon us. We may be excited…and even though it may mean more fun for us, summer can bring with it many hair challenges. Let’s just say it can take its toll on our hair… and that’s something nobody wants. Hair stylist, Alex Lapira, gives us some essential tips for protecting our hair from the hot summer sun, chlorine, and salt water. He also suggests treating our locks to natural homemade hair masks and treatments to get it into tip top condition.
PROTECT YOUR HAIR FROM SUN DAMAGE
We all know how damaging the sun can be to our skin and I’m sure you’re all wearing sunscreen every day or staying out of the sun as much as possible. But are you doing the same for your hair? Excessive exposure to the sun breaks down the cuticles, causing weak, dry and brittle hair, whilst also causing your hair colour to fade. Use masks to maintain moisture and wear a hat when possible. When combining the damage caused by the blazing sun with some of the other issues mentioned below, you can end up with damaged hair which is almost impossible to repair.
CHLORINE AND HAIR DON’T MIX
Chlorine is necessary for keeping a clean pool, but it won’t do your hair any favours. Long sessions in the pool can easily result in blonde hair turning green. It’s a look that results from a combination of chlorine and hard metals. The real culprits are the heavy metals which are attracted to the hair such as copper and iron. It’s these mineral deposits from the swimming pool which get oxidised by chlorine and grab hold of your hair, leaving those greenish tones behind in your hair. Before entering the pool, make sure you soak your hair in tap water. This coats the hair, not allowing the oxidised minerals to grab on to your hair so tight.
The chlorine in pool water can also really dry out your hair so you can put on some conditioner before entering the pool, and make sure you condition your hair properly as soon as you exit it. I can recommend an unconventional trick that will fix the greenish tint straight away. It involves ketchup, or a simple toner which will cleanse off the unwanted green tones. Saturate your hair with ketchup, massage it through effected areas and let it sit for several minutes whilst wrapped in thin foil. Wash and condition normally. There are also special products in the market which can help your hair with this issue – just make sure you opt for a trusted brand.
SALT IS GOOD IN MODERATION
Salty hair, don’t care? Maybe you should. We often get some of the best curls after we’ve been swimming in the sea. Those sea salt curls are what I try to recreate during winter with sea salt spray products. However, when you go swimming as much as I do and without washing your hair in between, that salt can take a toll. When the hair becomes dehydrated, you will notice changes in the way it feels and behaves. Over time, salt water damage gives your hair a very hard texture, making it break easily, and become dull and hard to manage.
I don’t mind letting the salt water dry in my hair – unlike chlorine which I really have to rinse out. Sometimes I leave the salt there and really appreciate those beach curls. However, I always make sure to rinse it and condition it properly before heading out into the sea again. This is the key point here; salts are okay in moderation, but you have to make sure that you’re rinsing your hair and conditioning properly for it not to become too dry. Also, apply a rich leave-in conditioner after a day at the beach to safeguard your hair as much as possible.
NATURAL REMEDIES TO REPAIR SUN DRIED DAMAGED HAIR HAIR MASKS
To restore moisture to sun-damaged strands, use deep conditioning masks at least once a week. Try these hair masks at home which are all natural, simple, and easy to make.
An amazing and simple remedy to treat your scalp and hair is by using aloe vera. Take some fresh aloe vera pulp and mix it with a few drops of lemon. Apply this to your hair. Wash your hair after 15 minutes with lukewarm water.
Take a ripe banana and make a hair smoothie by adding a table spoon of honey to it. Apply this mask to your hair for 30 minutes and then wash it off. This is a very simple remedy to nourish and condition your hair.
Hot oil treatment
Take half a cup of olive oil and three capsules of Vitamin E. Warm this mixture in the microwave for few seconds. Massage the oil on your scalp and hair. After 15 minutes, wash it off and repeat this treatment once or twice a week for shiny, soft, and healthy hair.
Eggs are very good for the hair. They contain protein that nourishes and repairs damaged hair. If you have oily hair, then use only eggs whites. If you have dry hair, use only the egg yolk, while if you have normal hair you can apply the whole egg. Beat an egg with 1 tablespoon of honey and a tablespoon of olive oil. Apply this mask to your hair for about 20 minutes and rinse the mask off with lukewarm water. Shampoo and condition properly.
Stop using blow dryers or hair straighter on your hair. Give your hair a break from hot, styling tools in summer.
Use a light leave-in conditioner which helps to moisturise your scalp and hair. I would recommend buying those conditioners which have a reconstructive property.
OTHER TIPS TO TAKE NOTE OF
1. After shampooing, rinse your hair with beer or apple cider vinegar to get bounce back and shiny hair.
2. Trim your hair every 2-3 months. This prevents the hair from splitting, dries ends, and also encourages hair growth.
3. Stay away from bleach, hair dyes and semi-permanent colourants until you repair the damaged strands.
BEST FOODS FOR YOUR HEALTHY HAIR
Foods rich in Vitamin A
A natural antioxidant, vitamin A provides protection for your hair from environmental toxins. It also helps produce sebum, oily secretions in your scalp that act as a natural conditioner, encouraging healthy hair growth. The recommended dietary allowance of vitamin A is 700 to 1,300 micrograms per day for women and 900 micrograms per day for men. Sweet potatoes, carrots, spinach, cantaloupe, kale and broccoli are all rich sources of vitamin A, so including them in your diet can encourage the development of healthy locks.
Foods rich in Biotin
Foods rich in biotin – a member of the vitamin B complex – may help prevent hair loss, which can help you maintain a head of healthy, strong hair. All B vitamins help with healthy growth and development and a lack of biotin can lead to scales on your skin as well as hair loss. The adequate intake of biotin is 30 to 35 micrograms per day. While many animal products are a rich source of biotin, avocado, raspberries and raw cauliflower are good fruit and vegetable sources of this hair-benefitting vitamin.
Foods rich in Vitamin E
Vitamin E, like vitamin A, is a natural antioxidant. It can help protect your hair from becoming damaged from sun exposure as well as exposure to environmental toxins. The RDA of vitamin E is 15 to 19 milligrams for women and 15 milligrams for men. In addition to being rich in biotin, avocados are also rich in vitamin E, as are spinach and carrots.
Foods rich in Vitamin C
Like vitamins A and E, vitamin C is a natural antioxidant, providing protection for your hair from toxins. It also helps you produce collagen, which is necessary for hair production. The RDA of vitamin C is 75 to 120 milligrams per day for women, with pregnant and breast-feeding women requiring more vitamin C. The RDA for men is 90 milligrams per day. Smokers of both genders require more vitamin C than other adults, with 110 to 125 milligrams as the RDA. Citrus fruits, such as oranges and grapefruits, including juices, are good sources of vitamin C. Others include kiwi, strawberries, tomatoes, red peppers, spinach and broccoli.
© 2018 – VIDA Magazine – Alex Lapira