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Summer Care for Your Hair

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SUMMER HAIR
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Have you ever left a t-shirt or beach towel out in the sun, maybe for a few days? Whoops. Faded.

That happens to your hair, too. The color fades in sunlight. Sometimes, we like that and call it "sun kissed," returning to work from a vacation with gorgeous natural highlights. Maybe we coax it along with some lemon juice or another treatment. But if we've just spent a bunch of money on a fresh color, we want it to last.

There are ways to protect your hair from the sun. Simply blocking the rays with a hat provides the closest thing to impermeable protection, and more people are wearing hats to protect their scalp and face from harmful and even dangerous rays that might trigger skin damage and cancer. Options for our skin include sunscreen and there are sunscreens for hair, too. There are a variety of products and a great place to start is with your stylist. When you next get your hair done, ask for recommendations.

Bright sunlight is just one challenge of all the summer fun. Mothers Day is right around the corner and a clear signal that summer is fast approaching. What do we do? Head for the salon to get a lighter, brighter look. Maybe our ombre needs refreshing with some honey tones. Particularly if we're moving from a darker shade, like a deep, romantic winter auburn, getting those warmer, golden shades typically requires chemicals to lighten your hair, peroxide and bleach, that also damage and dry it out. Or maybe we're looking enviously at this new, beautiful trend of crayon colors. Celebrities, like Nicole Richie and Katy Perry, have recently dyed their hair bright shades of orange, purple and green... Your turn! But these vibrant, playful colors may also require some peroxide or bleach to do the magic.

All this summer sunlight, outdoor fun and chemical treatments for those summer looks can leave your hair dry and even a little scaly, feeling a bit like straw. Part of the solution is to use plenty of nourishing conditioners and oils. This is something you should do anyway but now is the time to up your hair care game.

Natural oils will give your hair beautiful sheen and healthy weight and texture. The crayon colors, in particular, look so much better when the hair is nourished and healthy. But this is not solely a matter of appearance. Your hair will look great and it will feel great to the touch. Your hair will also be more flexible, less brittle and fragile. You'll have fewer kinks and split ends. These oils can also help nourish your scalp, which can be dried and damaged by peroxides and bleaches.

Another wonderful, seasonal trend is that we all get outside more in the warm months. We're hiking, biking and swimming. Getting ready for that outdoor lifestyle, we may be hitting the gym more, too. That means we're probably washing our hair more often. Yes, we need to clean out the dirt, stinky perspiration and sunscreen but it's no surprise that we'll lose some wonderful, healthy oils that need to be replaced.

Want to know the best strategy? Again, ask your personal hair stylist, maybe while you're on that Mothers Day trip to the salon. No one has a better view of your hair and scalp than your stylist. He or she can recommend a regimen of great hair care products and suggest a simple schedule. Hair care is very much a matter of behavior and we should take care of our hair with regularity and goals in mind. We may have overlooked or accepted the poor condition of our hair over time, not really recognizing the damage done. Poor hair health can be an insidious deterioration, and that's when some added attention can make a sudden and dramatically beautiful difference.

Summer is a time to have fun outdoors, try new hair styles and move toward lighter shades. Don't overlook the health of your hair in the race to look great.

As always, be open to change!