You’d think summer hair products would be relegated to conditioners and hair masks. But there’s a good amount of prep work to be done to really protect your strands from the season’s heat, damage from the elements, and of course, replenishing what’s been lost while swanning around the ocean and pool.
These summer hair products take everything into account, from before you hit the water to when you wind down for bed. Because what’s summer for, if not for tossing your hair back and letting those glossy locks shine?
Wet your hair before your swim
Saltwater has a dehydrating effect on the skin and hair. Before you head into the sea for a swim, wet your hair thoroughly with fresh water, says South African Celebrity Hairstylist, Daniel Sibata. By saturating your hair with fresh water, you limit the amount of seawater it can absorb, limiting its ability to dehydrate your hair.
Protect your hair from UV rays
Wear a hat or headscarf when spending time outdoors, as this offers physical protection from the sun’s UV rays. When it’s not possible (or if you’re simply keen to show off that mane), spritz your hair with a protective spray.
Hask Keratin Protein 5-In-1 Leave-In Spray, R220
This spray smoothes and controls frizz, provides thermal protection, hydrates, softens and detangles to prevent breakage and boost shine.
Use a detangling product
When hair is exposed to seawater, the cuticle on the outside layer of the hair swells, says Sibata. Paired with a sea breeze, this may leave your hair tangled and knotted. We recommend applying a detangling product before attempting to comb the knots out.
Tip: Never use a brush, as its bristles may break fragile hair – rather invest in a wide-tooth comb.
Nilotiqa Detangling Cream, R119.95
Try this for curly hair. Its unique formula, which contains shea butter and coconut oil, replenishes hair’s lost moisture, hydrating and detangling it.
Marc Anthony Grow Long Strengthening Leave-In Conditioner, R200
For straight hair, opt for this. It contains a caffeine, ginseng and vitamin E formula to promote longer, stronger, healthier hair with shine and helps to detangle locks while repairing split ends and breakage.
Use colour-protecting products
If you colour your hair, you’ll need to invest in a range of colour-protecting hair care products to help preserve your hair colour.
OGX Blonde Enhanced + Purple Toning Shampoo, R209
If you lighten your hair, then this is for you. It helps protect all shades of blonde (and grey) with its ultra-hydrating, colour-correcting formula.
Marc Anthony Colour Bond Instant Colour Sealer, R209
Works for any hair colour. It makes use of anti-fade technology to maintain colour vibrancy on all shades and seals the cuticles to lock in moisture.
Soothe your scalp
Saltwater can be irritating to the skin on the scalp. It’s drying, and a dry scalp can lead to itchiness, discomfort and even flaking. Give your scalp some extra attention to ensure it stays fresh, healthy and moisturised. Plus, those of us with braids need extra scalp love.
The Body Shop Ginger Scalp Serum, R250
Get that instant ‘aah’ feeling with this soothing serum that absorbs fast and refreshes your scalp. Made with ginger essential oil from Sri Lanka, white willow and birch bark extracts.
Nilotiqa Shea & Coco Anti-Itching Hair & Scalp Spray, R99.99
Got braids? If your scalp is prone to irritation, try this. Rich and creamy, it provides natural hair with optimum moisture from the root. It soothes a dry and itchy scalp for up to 48 hours.
A weekly or bi-weekly hair mask is a good idea, no matter what climate you’re in. If you’re spending a lot of time at the beach, a hydrating or moisturising mask once or twice a week will help maintain your hair’s moisture levels and keep it soft and shiny.
The Perfect Hair Mango & Marula Detangling Deep Conditioner, R70
A creamy and rich conditioner, it’s enriched with mango butter and marula, coconut and castor oil to condition and soften the hair with an intense moisture boost.
OGX Coconut Miracle Oil Extra Strength Hair Masque, R219
If the humidity makes your hair prone to frizz, try this ultra-nourishing blend of coconut oil, vanilla bean extract and essence of Tiare. It helps calm frizz and tame fly-aways, leaving hair with a silky, soft bounce and shine. Perfect for reviving dehydrated hair that requires restoration.