Though we welcome the warm weather and the opportunity to spend more time outside, UV rays, salt water, chlorine, air conditioning, and humidity are just some of the environmental factors of summer that affect our hair. “Think of your hair as susceptible to the weather the same way your skin is. So, for example, you wouldn’t go to the beach without sunscreen on a 100°F sunny day,” says celebrity hairstylist Bradley Leake.
During the summer, frizz and dryness are the most common hair-related complaints. “The sun itself and extended sun exposure can fade your hair color, burn your scalp, and even dry out the hair cuticle. The hair also absorbs chlorine from the pool like a sponge,” says Leake. That’s why it’s essential to load up your beauty cabinet with haircare staples that pack a powerful punch and infuse dry, brittle strands with a dose of much-needed moisture to combat frizz and breakage. “Switch out your regular hair products with the changing seasons because the hair has different needs — just like your skin,” says Krysta Rojas, stylist, colorist, and owner of Base Salon.
For those with light-colored, curly, or textured hair, it’s even more important to focus on implementing hydration and strength: “Healthy, hydrated hair reflects light best, creating the most shine and healthy-looking hair,” says Rojas. Include vitamin C in your hair care routine to protect against environmental aggressors, hyaluronic acid to lock in moisture, and collagen to fortify and strengthen the hair.
Meet the Experts
Bradley Leake is a celebrity hairstylist.
Krysta Rojas is a stylist, colorist, and owner of Base Salon.
Knowing that your hair is covered, in every sense of the word, allows you to kick back, relax, and enjoy summer without stressing over damaging your strands. With the help of these must-haves, your hair is better equipped to stay in tip-top shape all summer long.
Sunday Riley Clean Rinse Clarifying Scalp Serum
Healthy hair starts at the scalp, and if the scalp is bearing the signs of summer, chances are your hair isn’t going to look its best. “If you do not shampoo your hair often and worship dry shampoo, you’ll likely experience some buildup. And if you don’t remove the buildup from the scalp, it can prevent the hair from growing properly,” says Rojas. Rather than allowing oil, dead skin, and product buildup to take up residence on your scalp, reach for this alpha hydroxy acid- and beta hydroxy acid-infused serum, which instantly clarifies the scalp. This exfoliator also gets big points for its micellar water base, so you may not need that much shampoo to rinse it thoroughly. And, it is gentle enough to use a few times per week, depending on the level of exfoliation your scalp requires.
Playa Natural Endless Summer Spray
Although Velcro and hot rollers are making a comeback, summer still calls for effortless waves that mimic a day spent at the beach. This alcohol-free, easy-to-use spray features California-harvested sea salt that creates natural-looking waves and texture without feeling dry or crunchy. Just a few spritzes of the marine collagen- and chia seed-rich formula renders the hair soft, shiny, and full of volume. You can even apply it to the scalp to protect against sunburns and UV damage.
Cuvée Beauty GoBalm Conditioner
A bottle of bubbly and summer go hand in hand — and now your haircare can get in on the action, too. This first-ever waterless conditioning balm is a blend of skincare-grade ingredients like ceramides, resveratrol, avocado oil, pea protein, and champagne extracts (known to encourage hair health). Formulated for all hair types (and safe for color-treated hair), apply it after your regular shampoo, and then massage it into a creamy lather for moisture from root to tip.
Curlsmith Vivid Tones Vibrancy Shampoo
Summertime’s sun and water exposure can suck the life and vibrancy out of your hair color. “Not using SPF can do it too,” adds Rojas. So rather than resorting to hours at the salon for more touchups than usual, start with a color-safe cleansing shampoo that will whisk away the impurities that dampen bright, beautiful color. This gentle formula contains natural ingredients like pineapple and lemon feel that safely cleanse hair while maintaining its vibrancy. Also, since dry hair absorbs water quicker than wet hair, water can strip out your color, Rojas recommends this tip to prevent color fading further. “Apply a leave-in conditioner to wet hair before entering the pool to create a barrier between the water and your hair.”
Olaplex No. 9 Bond Protector Nourishing Hair Serum
If you don’t know the drill by now, protecting your hair against the summer elements is critical to its health, and this leave-in, antioxidant-rich serum is the perfect partner in crime. Great for all hair types, it provides up to 48 hours of defense against pollution, heat (up to 450°F!), and free radicals for shiny, more manageable hair.
Briogeo Farewell Frizz Rosehip, Argan & Coconut Oil Blend
Fans call this hair oil treatment “magic.” Of course, no hair type is immune to summertime frizz, but dry and coarse hair types tend to be most affected by it. This cult-classic, naturally derived oil counts argan, coconut, and rosehip oils as its star ingredients to impart a smooth, frizz-free finish. Though nothing can completely repair split ends (sorry), a few drops of this oil seals the cuticle to reveal soft, shiny hair.
Pureology Superfood Strength Cure Superfood Treatment
According to hairstylist and Pureology Global Artistic Director Jamie Wiley, summer is when we see the most amount of fading hair color. So think of this mask as a vitamin shot for your hair and scalp to encourage a glossy shine and vibrant color. The secret to this weekly treatment is goji berry and avocado oils, which provide proteins and deep moisture to strengthen and prevent damage. The more you use it, the stronger and better protected the strands are from future damage.
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