When we think of that summer sun blazing down on us, we think of protecting our skin. But what about our hair? If summer sun protection for your hair isn’t on your radar yet, it should be.
The sun is an equal opportunity scorcher. It does what it does and it’s up to you to protect your body – including your hair – lest you pay the price: dry, brittle, damaged hair. And if your hair is already a victim of abuse (frequent coloring, flat or curling irons, etc), it’s especially at risk of sun damage.
Minimize the sun damage to your hair with these tips:
- Trim it: Of course you probably want long flowing hair for summer, but already damaged ends can look way worse after a long, hot summer. Keep your hair trimmed to minimize the damage.
- Avoid excess heat: Likewise, relying too much on hair dryers and irons can, well, dry your hair out. Getting in the sun is like a second round of blow drying, so opt for air-drying in the warmer months.
- Nourish your hair: Just like you need to eat right for your skin, your hair loves the same attention. Lots of healthy fats, foods rich in biotin, and of course, copious amounts of water help to keep hair healthy and shiny.
- Swim smart: If you dive into the pool as soon as Memorial Day rolls around, you’re going to want to invest in a good swim cap. As unflattering as they may look, they do protect your hair from the chlorine (or salt) damage.
- Cover up in direct sun: A hat is going to provide some protection from the sun, but for long hair, not so much unless you tuck it into your hat or wrap it in a scarf.
- Condition, condition, condition! As in turn the water off, get out of the shower for half an hour and THEN rinse the conditioner out. You can also include a deep conditioning hair mask once a week or every other week to boost hydration and keep your locks looking healthy.
- Reduce washes: You’re probably washing your hair too much already. But in summer? You can cut the washing way down. In fact, you can simply just condition your hair a few times a week and wash it only once or twice a week. Unless you have a specific scalp condition that requires frequent washing, a good conditioning should be all your hair needs during the hot days of summer.
Check out our favorite deep conditioners for hair:
Coconut Calendula Conditioner
Maca Tonic Hair Crème
Olive Black Seed Conditioning Cream
In a world where we’re constantly bombarded with options for pretty much everything, managing your go-to beauty must-haves can be a tall order. But be sure to add neem to the list—even if you’ve never heard of it–because this ingredient is a full-on game-changer.
Like many botanicals, neem has a long history of use for numerous health benefits. Prized in India for its external and internal benefits, neem is nothing short of a miracle of nature.
Native to Southeast Asia, neem has been used as antifungal, antiviral, and antibacterial agent, as well as a contraceptive and a sedative. When applied topically, typically as the pressed oil of the neem plant, it holds many natural benefits for skin, scalp, and hair.
Neem Uses and Benefits
- Reduces Acne: While there’s no miracle acne cure, neem might be rather close. It’s loaded with vitamin C, which can help in clearing up skin problems like pimples. Because of its antibacterial properties, it may help to heal acne and prevent outbreaks as well.
- Balances Oil: Seems like no matter what the weather, our skin can get oily for no reason. Neem may be effective in balancing oil production by controlling sebum production, preventing that extra shine.
- Balances Dryness: Just like it can help prevent oil, it can also help to restore oil, or moisture to the skin for those who experience excessive dryness (especially on the scalp).
- Skin lightening: Acne scars, redness, etc can all leave the skin discolored. Using a powdered neem concoction applied like a face mask (with a little water) may help to speed the healing of discolored skin.
- Relieve skin conditions: Eczema, psoriasis, and infections on the skin are no fun and should be addressed with a medical professional. But adding neem-oil containing products may help to relieve the itching and scarring associated with such conditions.
- Reduce dark eye circles: Because of neem’s skin lightening effects, it may help to balance the pigmentation under the eyes where some are prone to dark circles.
- Hair miracle?: Hair loves neem, and it seems, neem loves hair just as much. Not only is it an effective conditioner, but it enhances your hair growth (really!) and can treat numerous scalp issues (buh-bye, dandruff!). Simply massage a small amount of neem oil into the scalp and hair.
Check out our favorite neem products:
Calendula & Neem
Neem & Bay Leaf
image: dinesh valke