Warm temperatures, swimming, outdoor activities, festivals, cookouts.
Humidity, sweat, frizz, chlorine.
I love summertime, but it is not good on hair, and as a hairstylist, I get lots of questions about the best way to care for locks in the heat.
Here are my top 5 tips for coping in the summertime.
1. Moisture, moisture, moisture.
The elements are harsh on our hair in the summertime and we frequently need to re-hydrate. Summer heat calls for more moisture, so use a good conditioner. Leave in conditioners are a great idea. You can put a good cream based leave in on the ends of your hair when it is wet and let it air dry. Also using a spray leave in is a great way to protect it before going to the pool or the beach. And remember: shampoo is for your scalp, conditioner is for your ends. You don’t need to slather conditioner on your roots, it can be too heavy.
2. Ease up on the heat styling.
Go for more casual styling, like air drying or braiding. If you shampoo at night you can sleep with your hair in french braids and when you take them out in the morning you’ll have some fun texture. If you already have tons of texture, embrace those curls! Try not to blow it out all the time. And give the flat iron a rest. If you are going to heat style (blow dry, curl or flat iron) please use a heat protectant product.
3. A little product goes a long way.
Oils like Argan, Moroccan or Roucou are really great for taming frizz and adding moisture. My most favorite ever is Oi Oil by Davines. The key for fighting frizz is silicone based serums and oils. Put them in when wet and then leave your hair alone! The more you touch curly or wavy hair, the bigger and frizzier it gets.
Spray detanglers are great for pool or ocean hair. My two favorites are DeDe by Davines or Moisture Kick by Schwarzkopf. A few spritzes and a wide-toothed comb or Wet Brush will get those tangles out without shredding your hair.
Clarifying shampoo is an absolute must if you or your kids spend a lot of time in chlorine. Next to heat damage, chlorine is the worst thing you can do to your hair. A good clarifying shampoo will remove the build-up that makes hair feel gummy and sticky and makes blonde hair turn green. Also, if you get your hair wet with tap water and apply a cream based leave-in conditioner BEFORE dunking your head in chlorine, your hair won’t absorb as much of the pool water.
4. Think twice before chopping it all off.
My opinion on optimal hair length in the summer is that it either needs to be short enough that it is totally off your neck or long enough that you can pull it all up. That mid-length can be the kiss of death. And with really thick hair, unless you buzz it, short won’t necessarily make you feel any cooler because the density of your hair is what makes you feel hot, not the length.
5. Sunscreen- for your hair!
Yep, that’s right. For those of you wanting extra protection for your color, there are hair products that protect from UV rays. Su Hair by Davines has an entire line that helps protect your hair from the sun.
Finally, talk to your stylist! Ask questions and remember that prevention is better than cure.