Monday, 17 August 2015

Hair Tip Monday: Quick tips to protect your hair from Sun Damage

Ah! Summer is in full swing; and this means you’ve been soaking in the sun and of course hitting the beach.

Similarly, as your protect your skin from exposure to the sun: it’s important to also sun-proof your tresses.

There are three categories of light waves that the sun emits: Ultraviolet A, B and C
UVA rays can penetrate the hair’s cortex causing damage to the cells and reducing its elasticity. This occurs as a result of these rays acting as a form of ‘bleach’ thus lightening the natural colour which contributes to fading, premature aging, break down of the hair’s protein and moisture depletion.
UVB rays quite similar to UVA rays penetrate the cortex and also help to fade the colour.
As for the UVC rays, they are absorbed in the atmosphere and don’t directly contact the Earth. Thank God, as these rays are the strongest and our hair would be doomed!
Just like heat damage, sun damage is very much real. But how will I know if my hair is sun damaged?

I’m happy you asked. Below, I have listed eight signs of sun damage.

Signs of Sun Damage
1. Scalp burns
2. Hair feels brittle
3. Lacks elasticity
4. Colour has faded (related to virgin and dyed hair)
5. Is lifeless
6. Has more split ends
7. Disturbed growth cycle
8. Thinning hair

By no means does this suggest that you should avoid the outdoors but adapting a few tricks to protect your mane will make a world of a difference.

Prior to hitting the sun
1. If you’re choosing to let your hair rock and wave loosely in the sun consider walking with a large sun hat to cover your head. The sun is believed to be the strongest between the hours of 2:00pm- 3:00pm that hat will come in handy.
2. Look for products with ingredients such as vitamin E and/or grapeseed oil for they serve as photo-protectors (shields) against sun damage. Shea butter is also a great option for it has an SPF (sun protection factor) of 6-10.
3. Which ever product you chose use it as a heat protectant/sealant after moisturizing your hair.

After exposure:
1. Use a sulfate shampoo. If you’ve been at the pool or at the beach you want to get rid of the chlorine from the pool water or salt from the beach that has absorbed into your hair.
2. Replenish your hair with a store bought moisture/protein balanced deep conditioner or a diy: coconut milk treatment. Coconut milk helps to restore dry/weak hair, soothes the scalp, adds softness, stops breakage, prevents premature hair aging and boosts growth. Sounds like an amazing remedy to sun damage huh?

Your hair is your crown and glory; protect it and wear it well as you enjoy these hot days.

Natural sunscreens and their spf

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