Tips and Tricks for Great Summer Hair

Shiny shimmering bob and sunshine
With summer upon us, it’s time to adjust your hair care routine to both adapt to the different climate of summer, and to look your “Summer Best”.
We easily adapt our wardrobe and other grooming habits for summer (by pulling out the antiperspirants and sunscreens) but many people forget that your hair needs to be treated a little differently as a result of the demands of hotter weather. Let’s take a quick look at some tips to maximize your hair care for the summer.
Cleansing and Conditioning
As always, you need a good shampoo and conditioner that’s chosen for the specific needs of your hair. And the shampooing and conditioning process is pretty universal season to season. However, for those of you who spend a lot of time out of doors or in the pool, you may need to adjust your shampoo and conditioner choices.
For instance, if you spend an inordinate amount of time in the sun and don’t want to ruin your color, look for shampoos and conditioners with sunscreen included. Likewise, those of you who live for the swimming pool or the beach in summer, look for swimmers’ formula shampoos and conditioners to help combat chlorine and heavy minerals from pool water and seawater.
You outdoorsy types should also remember that many leave-in conditioners are great to protect against the drying-out that can come as a result of direct sun exposure. A number of these also contain sunscreen agents that can protect your hair and scalp from the sun more effectively.
If you’re not one who shampoos daily, then you may find that the summer heat brings you new problems. It’s hot and you sweat, you sweat and your hair gets musky, after a day that “musky” smell sours and you find yourself needing to shampoo more often just so your hair will smell clean. The answer is to look for a “hair deodorizer” that can help you eliminate the odors in your hair without weighing it down and making it seem oily.
There are a number of products available, and you can even make your own. There is African Pride Fresh Hair Deodorizer which was designed to freshen and eliminate odors in braid styles for those who wear long-term braided hair. It comes in a variety of fresh and light fragrances. If you prefer to be more “hands on” in making your products, try buying and blending your own fragrance oils to get the scent that tickles your fancy. Of course, there are a number of people all over who claim that they’ve been using Febreze on their hair as a way to bypass having to shampoo their hair after a workout at the gym.
Color is something that many people tend to get “stoic” with. We’ve all seen them – the women who select a hair color and stick with it through thick and thin, summer and winter, for years and years, and sometimes have traumatic episodes when “their” color is discontinued by the beauty company. They like their hair to be the same.
The trouble is that natural hair color doesn’t stay the same. In the summer, when days are longer and we are in the sun more and more, our hair naturally becomes lighter. And in winter, with longer nights and less sunlight from further angles, our hair’s natural color grows out. We should keep this cycle in mind when we are coloring our hair. Go one or two shades lighter in the summer, or add subtle highlights to brighten your existing color. Even a minor shift in the color can do wonders to make you look and feel younger and more vibrant.
Just remember when you color your hair, be extra careful in the sun with your chemically treated hair.
Many women naturally adjust their styling habits in the summer, but these changes are generally born of convenience or comfort and generally address the short term, rather than making a more dramatic shift. But summertime is the perfect time to try out that shorter style. Lose some length, let go of some of the weight and make sure your hair is all set to make you look and feel your best.
It’s also the perfect time to give your hair a break from all the styling stresses. If you have naturally curly or wavy hair and are using a flat iron to straighten the hair every day (or if you curl your straight hair daily), maybe you should consider letting your hair have the summer off. Talk to your hairdresser and discuss simpler, low-maintenance looks that take advantage of your hair natural texture and wave. When winter arrives, you’ll find your hair is in much better condition after a well-earned vacation.
Finally, remember that many of the classic summertime hair accessories may not be the best thing for your hair. Ponytail holders that are wound too tightly, or barrettes that are overloaded, can both damage the hair and cause breakage. Instead, use combs and clips that are designed to hold the hair gently. Even hairpins are preferable to having to deal with a halo of broken strands from a ponytail that breaks the hair while trying to confine it.
And as a bonus, for those women who want to enjoy the summer air (driving with the windows down, sunroof open, or in a convertible) a scarf is your best friend. Get yourself a silk-type scarf and stow it in your glove compartment. You can use it to wrap your hair and enjoy the blowing wind without wrecking your hairstyle. There is a wide variety of scarf tying techniques that can make life infinitely more interesting and even combat a bad hair day.
Stacy - Hair Stylist     ©
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