Beat the Heat: Your Summer Guide for Healthy Hair
Get longer, stronger and more healthier hair this summer with a dedicated Summer hair care routine. Read on to see how and what changes you can make to your hair care rituals to guarantee you'll retain those inches and keep your hair in tip top shape all Summer long!
If you've never shifted your hair care rituals as the seasons change then you're probably wondering why it might be necessary. Whether it’s sweating through your camis or freezing your behinds off, the change of seasons affects how you dress, eat, and even travel. It should also change how to you take care of your hair, I've touched on Winter, Spring and Fall hair care here on the blog. If you're in an area experiencing milder or colder weather be sure to check those out to learn how to tweak your routine for those seasons.
Although the warmer months can generally be more gentle on your strands, you still need to be mindful of protecting your hair from the sun and heat damage. With warmer temperatures, chances are that you'll be outside more and the Sun can be especially harsh on natural and textured hair that is already prone to dryness and dehydration.
1. The first step in your new and improved Summer hair care routine is scalp care and keeping your hair and scalp clean. The hotter temperatures mean more perspiration, more sweating means your scalp will have more dirt, grime, oil and bacteria that needs to be removed so that you don't end up with a clogged and congested scalp.
An unhealthy scalp can interfere with hair growth, hair appearance, create dandruff, and become itchy or dry. Your scalp, which is the birthplace of your hair is also responsible for the health of your hair follicles, (the holes your hair strands grow out of). Remember, your hair is a plant and your scalp is the fertile ground that your hair is growing from which is why a cleansing product is so important.
Constantly ONLY co-washing (especially if it’s not a cleansing co-wash) can put a damper on the health of your scalp. If shampoos have scared you away in the past, opt for a milder shampoo or one that has more conditioning properties. Cleansing is an extremely important part of any healthy hair regimen and even more so in the Summer.
You should also clarify your hair with a clarifying shampoo at least once a month if you have normal porosity hair and normal product usage. If you're heavy handed, use more products, and or low porosity and deal with build-up accumulating faster, clarifying shampoos are a must to make sure your hair and scalp are completely clean.
Clarifying shampoos are a type of deep cleansing shampoo to perform a through cleansing, removing hard to reach dirt, dander, and environmental build-up. Shampoos with chelating ingredients can also help to reduce minerals build-up from hard water. They're also great to use after those days at the pool.
As we sweat more in the summer, this can build up on our scalps and lead to issues down the line if not treated correctly.
2. The second step in your new and improved routine is hydration, inside and out. The Summer heat can easily dry out natural/highly textured hair, so not only should to take a look at your current products but you should increase the amount of water you are physically drinking! When it comes to your strands, conditioning, deep conditioning, and your leave-in products will be how to increase and improve your hair's overall hydration and moisture levels. (because there's a difference between hydration and moisture remember?). But just in case you're not ready to stop reading this post, here's a quick reminder:
Hydrating the Hair- The process of using humectants, proteins, amino acids and critical vitamins that penetrate the hair fiber infusing and improving the absorption of water and nutrients so that the hair holds and retains moisture.
Moisturizing the Hair- The process of using butters, oils, and other film-forming ingredients to coat the OUTER surface of the hair fiber sealing and locking down the hair shaft so moisture can not get in or out of the fiber.
The key to maintaining hydration in new Summer hair care routine? It's all in your product choices. If your hair is feeling and looking dry, always reach for water, or a water based liquid leave-on conditioner. Our Milk & Honey Mist is perfect to rehydrate your curls and rebalance your scalp. which is lightweight enough to not weigh down your hair, but will leave your hair feeling soft, healthy, and conditioned.
If your hair is feeling and looking dry, use products that contain fruit or vegetable sugars pectin, beet root. Products with moisture attracting ingredients like aloe vera, hydroxypropyltrimonium honey, agave, and ___. Be sure to include a weekly deep conditioning treatment in your hair care rituals.
3. Conditioning will play a big part in your new Summer hair care rituals. Not only should you be deep conditioning weekly, but if you are experiencing extremely dry and dehydrated hair, adding a co-wash to rebalance and rehydrate your hair is the perfect Summer pick me up for your strands. Remember though, co-washing should not be a complete substitute for cleansing your hair.
4. Did you know that the UV radiation from the Sun can damage your hair if you are outside for long? Your fourth step is all about protecting your hair from the sun, because it can also potentially burn your scalp and even discolor your hair! There are leave-in conditioners that has SPF in them or you can cover your hair if you think you'll be outside for an extended period of time.
Depending on where you live you might be dealing with dry heat or aired temperatures or humidity. Knowing the type of climate you live in can help your best choose which types of products/ingredients to add to your Summer hair care line-up.
In arid environments, the dry air can suck moisture from your hair like a wet sponge drying out. In dry environments, your hair is more prone to dryness and tanglesIn these types of environments, you’ll want to use anti-humectants to protect your hair from drying out. Anti-humectants products with moisture blockers to prevent the hair from trying to absorb moisture from the environment. Mango butter, olive oil, triglycerides, esters, silicones & shea butter are types of ingredients to look for in your anti-humectant products.
If you live in a humid climate, use humectants which draw moisture in from the air to moisturize your hair. Some humectants are honey, sorbitol, sodium PCA and glycerin. However, if you aren't a fan frizz, don’t use humectants even in humid environments. You can though, use frizz to your advantage and embrace the volume of your natural texture! Let that Fro fly free!
Step 5 is for the box braid natural! Summer time is when many of us naturals try all the different braid styles. It's like there's a new one every week that makes you go, hey I want to do that next! While protective styles are a great way to give your hair a break from the summer heat, you need to be mindful that you're still cleansing, conditioning and taking care of your hair while it's tucked away. Using a waterless cleanser instead of shampoo will make taking care of your braids, wigs, and weaves so much easier. Our Cocomint Purifying Scalp Cleanser is the perfect way to keep your scalp free of congestion and clean. click here and get more details on how to make protective styles work for you.
High temperatures, humidity, flash storms, chlorine, salt water and that beautiful, bright sun can and will do a number on your coils. By rethinking your Summer hair care using the steps above, you'll power through this Summer prepared to take better care of your hair.