Wandering in scorching heat during daytime can mess up your hair. It will not only just spoil their appearance but also damage them internally. The magnitude of damage depends directly upon how much sun exposure you have gained. We all are eager to protect our skin from direct sun-rays but we don't pay much heed to protect our hair from it. Just like our skin, our hair is also affected by them. If you can't prevent it then you ought to at least treat them in time to prevent any permanent damage.
How does it happen?
When sun rays hit your hair, they target the outermost layers first which are called cuticles. There are several cuticle layers present. The main purpose of these layers is to safeguard the inner core from external conditions. The outer layers get the most intensive radiations. As a result, the proteins or amino acids are disturbed. The protective capability of the layers is reduced to a minimum. When the core is no longer protected, it is vulnerable to radiation. Eventually, the cells and cell membranes start rupturing and cell-structural impairment occurs. This is how your hair gets damaged by the sunlight.
Signs and symptoms
The signs may vary from person to person. So, we have narrated down some general symptoms to see if you can relate or not.
- Get weak and become easily breakable.
- Lose hair pigments which ultimately lead to hair-color dissipation.
- Lose shine and reflection.
- Look relatively rougher and drier than before because of reduced water content.
- Have more split ends
- Look frizzy, brittle and thin.
If you can relate to these conditions then it's probably bad news for your hair.
Prevention from sun damage
Prevention is indeed better than cure as preventing a condition from happening is a lot easier than to cure it afterward. Even after getting proper hair treatment and cure, there is a chance that your hair won't look the same as they were before.
We have enlisted some tips to prevent hair damage.
- Use hair treatments just before the summer season starts. There are plenty of homemade treatments that you can get benefit from such as vinegar treatment, egg and mayo treatment or Onion and organic treatment.
- Covering your head may be the best possible way to avoid it. You can use a hat or head cover to shade your hair from direct harmful sunlight.
- Try scalp treatments often as healthy scalp leads to healthier hair.
- Your hair and scalp produce oil which protects you from rays naturally. Applying shampoo daily to your hair in the summer months can leave your hair vulnerable. So, it is advised to use dry shampoos that are readily available in the market.
- You can apply direct nutrients or vitamins to your head to give food to your hair.
- Stop using iron curlers on your hair. They can make the outer layers weaker which will leave the core of your hair defenseless or unshielded from outside radiations.
- If you are a swimmer then you may want to rinse and wash away all the chlorine from your hair. The chlorine and salt present in the pool water can make the conditions worse.
And before going swimming you should apply coconut oil on your hair and scalp, it will save you from the pool chemicals.
How do we treat sun-damaged hair?
Finding the best-suited treatment for the damaged hair is certainly a hard job. So, to save you from this challenging task we have put together some information which may help you.
1) Use of hair masks: If your hair has been sun-scorched then they may be in a desperate need of nutrients. The use of hair masks will provide the nourishment your hair needs for the repair. It will not only fix the fizziness, brittleness, and dryness, it will also protect you from further damage. Out of a variety of hair masks present in the market, we have mentioned the best-reviewed ones including:
- L'Oréal Professionnel Serie Expert Solar Sublime Sun Masque
- Kérastase Masque UV Défense Active
- Matrix Biolage Sunsorials Sun Repair Treatment
- Aveda After Sun Hair Treatment Masque
- Philip Kingsley After-Sun Scalp Mask
2) Use of right shampoos and conditioners: Using right shampoos and conditioners with the right instructions can help your hair repair faster. For example, you can choose shampoos which have essential oils in it. You can go for argon or coconut one. Not all conditioners and shampoos are good for your hair. Use the ones which are appropriate for your hair type.
3) Massage your scalp: Self-massaging your scalp will help increase the blood flow which will aid in the repair. You can simply massage your scalp with fingertips while shampooing. The tip here is to do it gently otherwise you will mess up the roots.
4) Avoid further damage: Avoid going into direct sunlight as long as your current condition prevails. To prevent further damage, stay away from heat styling, hair straitening treatments, hair gel styling, bleaching and hair coloring products that have harmful chemicals in them. Go for styling techniques that do not cause any major damage like no-heating styling.
5) Use moisturizer and stay hydrated: Reduced water content in the hair is the main cause of hair loss and weak hair. Use shampoos that are built-in moisturizers. Or you can apply moisturizers directly. Consume water and stay hydrated, as dehydrating your own body will not make anything easier. Consume at least 8-18 glass of water daily.
6) Go for wide-tooth comb: To avoid breakage instead of using normal hair comb you should use a wide-tooth comb. It will deal with the tangles without further tearing. Also, avoid over-brushing.
7) Restorative oil treatments: Salons offer oil treatment services that can restore your original hair. Or you can simply create your oil treatment at home by mixing warm olive oil or coconut oil and vitamin E capsules. Apply the mixture directly to your scalp with your fingertips and massage gently. Do it twice or thrice a week and you will see the result in no time. These were some tips to deal with sun-damaged hair. If your hair condition remains unchanged then you should see a doctor immediately.