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July 13th - The summer sun will dry out your hair and scalp!!! Use proper products to keep your head moisturized to avoid itching, irritation, and embarrassing dandruff. We have listed some preventative measures as well as some remedies for the symptoms of sun damage. Stop by to consult one of our professionals to reduce and prevent the sun's harmful effects on your hair and scalp.
What effects do the sun have on the health of your hair and scalp?
· Hair loss
· Thinning and frizzing of hair
· Dry and brittle hair
· hair discoloration (lightening)
· Dry, itchy scalp
· Embarrassing dandruff
· Skin cancer
Who is vulnerable to the effects of the sun on hair and scalp health?
The short answer is that everyone is vulnerable to the damaging effects of UVA and UVB sun rays, especially those with lighter color and thinner hair. Despite having thick, dark hair, the sun will still damage your hair and the will still reach and damage your scalp. The sun’s rays cause irreversible chemical reactions that cause short-term discomfort and embarrassment as well as long-term health risks. It is important to note that while SOME of the effects of the sun are not immediate, unprotected exposure to the sun can exacerbate and accelerate your body’s natural aging process. That is why it is important to be aware of the possible effects of the sun and do what you can to preserve the health of your hair and scalp and prevent serious conditions in the future.
How can you prevent the damaging effects of UVA and UVB sun rays?
While avoiding the sun as much as possible is the best alternative, it is not practical. Educated prevention techniques can help to improve the immediate health of your hair and scalp and can also greatly decrease serious long-term effects such as thinning, balding and skin cancer. Here are some easy tips to protect yourself…
· Use sunscreen on the parts of your head covered with hair. A common misconception is that hair blocks the harmful rays from reaching the scalp. This is not true. When applying sunscreen, remember to massage it into your scalp.
· Keep your hair moisturized – use quality, moisturizing hair care products. Although cheaper products are economically efficient, you may be doing serious damage to your hair. Avoid products that are alcohol based.
· Only wash your hair 2-3 times per week – washing your hair removes natural vitamins and oils that protect your hair and scalp from the sun. Y
· Rinse your hair before and after going swimming – rinsing your hair with clean water before swimming will saturate the hair leaving less room for harmful chemicals in pools and other bodies of water to penetrate the hair and scalp. Pools with chlorine are especially damaging to hair.
· Massage your scalp when using quality hair and scalp products – massaging your scalp will increase blood flow and energize the scalp which will help your body’s natural defense mechanisms
· Eat healthy – starchy and fatty foods contribute to dry hair and scalps. Eating more fruits and vegetables will boost your body’s immune system.
· Avoid “sun-activating” hair coloring products – these products contain harmful chemicals that dry and thin your hair.
· Avoid peak sun times, if possible – the sun’s rays are at their strongest and most damaging between the hours of 10:00 – 3:00.
How do you deal with the damaging and irritating effects of the sun?
· Use lukewarm water when you shower – hot water can agitate the irritation of sunburnt scalps and decrease the moisture in your hair.
· Use dandruff relief shampoo – these products can reduce embarrassing dry flakes.
· Avoid using blow dryers – the heat from blow dryers can dry out your hair and agitate irritable scalps.
· Avoid alcohol based hair products – inexpensive hair care products tend to be alcohol based and can be damaging to the hair and scalp and they typically do not help to protect against exposure to the sun.
· Use “after sun” shampoo – these shampoos are designed to help reduce the effects of the sun and replenish oils and compounds that protect the hair and scalp.
· Apply apple cider vinegar to your head – mix apple cider and water in a 1:1 ratio and apply in to your hair and scalp after you have shampooed and conditioned your hair. Let it sit for about 15 minutes and then rinse. The acid in apple cider vinegar will help to relieve the irritation from exposure to the sun.
· Apply green tea to your head – make a cup of tea using 2 green tea bags. Let it cool to a lukewarm temperature and apply it to your hair and scalp after shampooing. Let it sit for about five minutes and rinse. The antioxidants in green tea will help to reduce irritation from exposure to the sun.
· Apply COLD 2% milk to your hair – soak a washcloth in the milk and rub into your head for about five minutes. The coldness will help alleviate the irritation and the enzymes and proteins found in milk will help to heal damage done to the hair and scalp.