Just like our skin, our hair is directly exposed to weather conditions, especially the sun, temperature, and humidity. Hair, being a protein fiber, may undergo physical and chemical changes with the changing environmental conditions. As we move into summer, consumers are frequently engaged with outdoor activities e.g. traveling, swimming in pools, or the ocean. Exposure to these weather conditions can affect health of our hair. Various scientific studies have discussed the impact of weather conditions on our hair manageability, its gloss, and in general its overall quality.
In today’s blog, we will review the impact of these weather conditions, specifically with summer. We will discuss the role of solar radiation, high temperature, humidity as well as the influence of swimming pools or ocean water on our hairs. Furthermore, we will search out the products specifically formulated to help preserve hair against the harsh summer and minimize its impact on our hair.
Interaction of solar radiations with the hair fiber
Solar radiations are a source of electromagnetic radiations of various energy, frequency, and wavelengths. These radiations possess enough energy to initiate the degradation of hair protein and color fading. Hair proteins undergo chemical reactions by absorbing light energy from solar radiations and as a result, various chemical bonds in the hair structure are broken. This weakens the structure of hair fiber, hair becomes fragile, loses its mechanical strength, and surface properties are completely changed. This degradation process is accelerated by repeated and prolonged exposure to solar radiation. The more you stay outside directly in the sun, the more damage it can cause to your hairs. Therefore we must protect our hair from the intense solar radiation especially during summer as light intensity is stronger in summer compared to the winter season.
Prevention is better than cure; therefore we need something to coat the hair’s surface that will prevent the absorption of solar radiation. Just like we need sun protection for skin; our hair needs the same protection. Before stepping out, please ensure you have applied a leave-in containing organic natural solar protectors. Our Bounce Curl Moisture Balance Leave-in Conditioner is an ideal blend for this purpose. Its formulation comprises 5 natural oils Egyptian Neroli oil, Jojoba, Olive, Fenugreek, and Argan oil along with Ethylhexyl Palmitate and Tocopheryl acetate (Vitamin E). This leave-in protects hair against photodamage, preserves its structural integrity besides improving hair lubricity. The product does not contain any synthetic UV blockers or silicones.
UV Mediated Protein loss
Ultraviolet radiation poses a threat to hair fibers. These radiations are part of the solar electromagnetic spectrum. Certain locations have a higher UV index and hence have more intense UV radiation. These radiations interacting with hair proteins generate highly reactive free-radical species. In chemistry, free radicals are highly reactive, short-lived chemical species that react and oxidize hair proteins. This oxidation reaction is highly detrimental which breaks the hair chemical bonds and converts proteins into smaller water-soluble molecules, which then come off during the rinse-off stages as a result hair losing its proteins. This loss in hair protein has an immense impact on hair health. Hair becomes frizzy, porous, and difficult to comb.
We recommend staying indoors, especially during noon times to avoid the high intensity UV radiations. UV-damaged hair is fragile and any further exposure to harsh chemicals or excessive physical abrasion can cause hair breakage. Please don't use sulfate-containing shampoo during summer, they remove hair proteins and its natural oil lubricant leaving the hair’s surface rough. We suggest using our Bounce Curl Gentle Clarifying Shampoo, a sulfate-free formulation comprising sugar-based surfactant "decyl glucoside” blended with natural oils and biotin. We also recommend using Bounce Curl Pure Silk Moisturizing Shampoo to maintain the hair’s moisture level. It is a sulfate-free product infused with some hair conditioning agents and moisturizers.
Bounce Curl Ayurvedic Deep Conditioner is an excellent product to help recover photodamage of the hair fiber. It restores hair mechanical strength, imparts intense shine, and improves fiber combing for both wet and dry hairs. These combinations of our Bounce Curl products offer a strong protective shield against UV-induced hair damage.
Hair Color Fading
Besides protein loss, intense heat and solar radiation can also fade hair color. Natural virgin (non-chemical treated) black hair becomes brown and even grey with continuous and repeated exposure to the sun. Hair contains melanin colorants responsible for our hair color. However, under summer conditions, melanin undergoes degradation by breaking its various chemical bonds and converting melanin into smaller molecules that come out of hair fiber during the washing/rinse off cycle.
Hair fibers colored with temporary or permanent hair color undergo photo-degradation even quicker and the color lasts a few days during summer. This is due to the smaller size of artificial colorants and the nature of their molecule. Your hair needs protection to minimize color fading and this requires customized and special formulations designed for summer times. Scientific data suggests sulfates can easily dissolve hair colorants and accelerate color fading. So, a big No to sulfate shampoos. Bounce Curl Pure Silk Moisturizing Shampoo is a gentle, mild, and moderately foaming formulation that can preserve and improve color retention. Furthermore, we recommend using our favorite Bounce Curl Moisture Balance Leave-in Conditioner which is rich in natural emollients/lubricants. These lubricants (water-repelling) molecules inhibit water uptake, minimize frizz, and forms a coating at the hair surface minimizing color bleeding.
Chlorinated Pool Water & Ocean Water
Swimming pools are regularly treated with chlorine to control mold and bacterial growth. Chlorine treatment maintains the quality of pool water and keeps it suitable for swimming. However, chlorine molecules can get absorbed by the hair during swimming and can turn blonde hair into a greenish color. This may initiate chemical reactions on the hair’s surface which accelerate under the sun. UV radiations along with chlorine may trigger free-radical chemistry leading to oxidation of hair proteins.
Similar chemistry is involved with ocean water, as it contains a significant level of inorganic metals, calcium, and magnesium. These metal ions bind to amino acid sites on the hair’s surface and are known the alter the physical and chemical properties of hair.
How to avoid this problem? We recommend using Bounce Curl Moisture Balance Leave-in Conditioner before heading to swimming or the beach. This formulation forms a water-repelling coating on the hairs surface boosting hair hydrophobicity. This minimizes the chances of having chlorine penetration or metal binding with hair.
Moreover, wash your hair with clean water after swimming or dipping in the ocean, as you need to remove these unwanted chemicals and metals from your hair. Bounce Curl Gentle Clarifying Shampoo is our first choice for this, as its gentle sulfate-free formulation cleanses hair and scalp. You may also use our Bounce Curl Hydra-Drench Cleansing Conditioner which cleanses and conditions at the same time. Its sulfate-free formulation is infused with a number of emollients to detangle and define your hair curls simultaneously.
We also recommend our Bounce Curl Light Creme Gel for traveling, as it helps your hair with definition and hold.
The scorching heat during summer causes you to produce a significant amount of sweat. Human sweat is mostly made up of water along with lipids, minerals, and organic odor-producing molecules. Sweat debris can form deposits on the scalp’s surface and hair shaft leaving an undesired aesthetic feel and odor. To help remove these materials from your hair, our anti-residue Bounce Curl Gentle Clarifying Shampoo is the ideal formulation for this job followed by the Bounce Curl Ayurvedic Deep Conditioner or Super Smooth Cream Conditioner to hydrate your hair restoring its natural gloss and texture.