A day at the beach is a joyful thing, but there’s nothing worse than getting home from a relaxing day of sun, surf, and sand to find that your hair is in ruins.
Many of the best things about beach life – sun, salt water, sand – can be hard on your hair and result in pretty serious damage. But luckily there are plenty of things you can do to protect your hair while you surf the waves or lie back on a lounger.
So if you are planning an exotic cruise to a paradise island next year, explore the tips below and keep your lovely locks in tip-top condition. Then, check out this cruise packing list to know how to pack and you’ll be all set!
Great advice in general for a day in the sun, but drinking lots of water and staying hydrated isn’t JUST important for your overall health. It is a great way to keep your hair healthy too! Dehydration isn’t only a problem for your body, it can make your hair vulnerable to damage. Sun and saltwater are GREAT at sucking the moisture out of your hair, which makes it dry, brittle, and breakable. So keep your water bottle topped up and ensure your hair is protected!
Use a leave-in conditioner
A leave-in conditioner is like a gorgeous, hydrating mask for your hair, slathering creamy, moisturizing goodness all over it and keeping it safe from the trials and tribulations of a day at the beach. A good leave-in conditioner will ensure your hair is constantly moisturized, all day long, and will end up being absorbed INSTEAD of the salty water which can cause so much damage.
Oil it up
A similar approach to using a leave-in conditioner is to apply oil…lots of oil! Your hair’s natural oils are its best defense but can be damaged or washed out by constant immersion in water. Adding a layer of jojoba, coconut, olive, or argan oil will create an extra barrier to keep your hair silky-smooth. It is worth noting that you will need to stay in the shade or wear a hat until the oil is fully absorbed, otherwise you risk literally frying the top of your head on a hot day!
Use the right shampoo
A day under the sun and in the water can leave your hair incredibly frizzy. This is largely due to the humidity that comes from having constantly wet hair, and the heat of the sun. Dealing with frizz is often just a matter of using the right shampoo, as there are plenty of products that can combat humidity and give your hair a headstart against frizz after a day at the beach. Think about something that also detoxifies your scalp, as you are likely to need all the protection you can get if you are putting your hair through its paces with sun, sand, and salt!
Wet your hair with fresh water
This might sound like slightly weird advice, and a very odd thing to do, but wetting your hair with fresh water before getting into the salt water of the ocean can be a great way to protect it. The key to this method is, again, preventing the damaging salt water from being absorbed into your hair follicles. The fresh water works in the same way as the conditioning mask does, forming a protective layer that is absorbed into your hair first and stops the salt water from getting in! Your hair will soak up the clean, harmless, fresh water and stay safe and moisturized for longer!
Treat your hair right in advance
One of the best ways to protect your hair from the beach is to treat it right in general! Good hair care overall will mean that you have stronger, healthier hair that is better equipped to stand up to occasional harsh treatment. On the other hand, if your hair is in poor condition – thin, brittle, full of split ends, frizzy – then it is only going to get worse after a day on the beach.
So, do all the good things that you know you SHOULD be doing for your hair anyway. Avoid intense heat treatments that will leave your hair burnt, brittle, vulnerable, or even damaged. Don’t blow dry your hair too often (and certainly not 24-48 hours before heading to the beach). Try not to use strong chemicals or damaging color products that can make you hair weaker.
Shower as soon as you get out of the water
One of the best ways to avoid damage from salt water (and chlorinated water if you’ve spent the day at the pool, as well) is to shower as soon as you get out of the water. Washing the salty or chlorine-filled water off your hair as soon as possible means that it has less time to absorb into your follicles and will cause less damage. Just a shower with fresh, cold water is fine, but if you do decide to use shampoo make sure it is gentle, and ideally moisturizing as well. You want something that cleans and nourishes without stripping any nutrients from your hair.
Wear a hat
This might sound obvious, but wearing a hat is a great way to protect your hair. The sun (specifically the UV rays) can cause significant damage to your hair, bleaching and drying, as well as burning your scalp. But with a good hat, you’re good to go! Plus you’ll avoid heatstroke and keep the sun off your face. A double bonus feature!
Wear a cap
An extreme approach, and one more suited to serious swimmers than casual beach bums perhaps, but nothing protects your hair better than not getting it wet in the first place! A well-fitting swimming cap like the pros wear will keep your hair dry and prevent any damage from sea water at all.
A day on the beach doesn’t have to be dangerous for your hair. With the tips above you can enjoy all the sun, sea, and sand you want safe in the knowledge that your hair will look gorgeous afterwards!