What the Sun is Really Doing to Your Natural Hair ☀️

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Did you know that most of the damage your hair sustains is likely caused by UV radiation? Natural hair is pretty susceptible to the elements. Even under the best conditions it still requires a lot of TLC, and if you live in a sunny clime you must take extra precautions to avoid frizz, dryness, and even bleaching (unless you're striving for that look, in which case a hair coloring product might be a healthier option).

Ultraviolet radiation weakens the external part of the hair shaft, which is made of a protein called keratin. Keratin is sensitive to UVB rays and thus begins to degrade when overly exposed. You might notice your hair isn't as shiny anymore, and it may seem less elastic. Not only is this bad news for the structural integrity of each hair strand (hello split ends!), but the accompanying UVA rays can also strip the hair of melanin, which is responsible for giving hair its colour. The ultimate result is dry, brittle hair that looks fried.

Luckily this damage can be avoided. Here are a few tips to keep your hair safe while you have fun in the sun:

  • Moisturize regularly. Spritz your hair with water, aloe vera juice, or a water-based product before you go outside, and seal in the moisture with a light oil such as coconut or jojoba.
  • Wear a head wrap or a hat. The wider the brim, the more skin you'll protect too.
  • Tuck away your strands in protective styles. Braids, cornrows, and twists are awesome for limiting how much of your hair gets exposed. You may want to avoid buns, though, because you'd still have all your ends facing right up to the sun!
  • Try UV-resistant products. There are serums and conditioners that can filter out the UV rays from your hair and scalp while delivering and locking in moisture.

    How do you keep your hair sun safe? Tell us about it in a comment below!

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