Vacationing on the beach is definitely something to look forward to; the effects on our hair and skin, however, are not. The water and general climate at the beach may have damaging consequences, especially on dry skin and dry or chemically treated hair. Make your vacations as stress-free as possible with the following tips and products.
Condition as much as possible. Before you begin your day on the beach, spray a leave-in conditioner. Skip the styling products; adding gel, mousse, or even hairspray can dry out your hair even more when exposing it to the salty air and water. Go product-free and spritz in only a little bit of leave-in conditioner. Not a fan? Find an alternative sun-protectant spray that shields your hair from sun and sea damage. After your day of fun in the sun, do not comb or brush your hair. Instead, wash it first, and condition it well before attempting to de-tangle. For best results, and to minimize the potential of breakage and frizz, use a wide-toothed comb and de-tangle only after conditioning. It may be even easier to comb through while the conditioner is still in your hair.
Chemically treated hair should always be meticulously cared for, especially when exposing it to coastal elements and chlorine. If swimming caps aren’t your cup of tea (let’s face it, most of us don’t wear these), take extra measures to make sure those dyed, permed, or relaxed locks look as good, or even better, when your beach vacation ends. After taking a dip in the pool or ocean, rinse your hair right away. This gets out most of the chlorine or salt water, and prevents your hair from soaking it up as it dries. For even more protection, start your day off by spritzing your hair with a protectant such as Alterna Bamboo Protective Shine Veil. It acts like sunscreen for your hair, blocking out damaging elements brought on by sun and water.
For my fellow blondes (natural or colored), protect those sunny locks from turning green! I asked my hairdresser about my potential swimming pool options, and, after the look of horror left her face, she gave me the following advice: always use a leave-in conditioner. She recommends to keep reapplying each time you get in the water. Regular conditioner works even better. Thanks, Damaris!
Redheads and brunettes, you have not been forgotten! To keep your locks looking as sultry and color-rich as the start of your vacation, use a shampoo and conditioner to restore and protect your color. Redken’s Color Extend Total Recharge is a great product to prevent brassiness and color fading, and will keep your vibrant color, protecting against color fade.
- Do not exfoliate. While this routine is great a few times per week in fall and winter months, it’s important to skip this step when your skin is exposed to lots of sun and salt water. Instead, take along a gentler cleanse for post-beach and pre-bedtime. Cream cleansers are great alternatives; deep clean your skin while moisturizing it at the same time. LUSH’s 9 to 5 is a personal favorite year-round.
- Hydrate. Keeping ourselves hydrated is important for keeping our skin from drying out. It’s especially important if your permanent address is not in a hot state, as your body and skin are not used to the high temperatures and blazing sunlight. Hydrating often will make a big difference!
- Keep lip-balm on hand. Our lips can dry out so easily, whether in the harsh sun or freezing temperatures. Stock up on your favorites (mine are EOS and Burt's Bees) and keep one in your purse, your car, carry-on luggage, and beach tote. Make it a habit to reapply each time you reapply sunscreen at the beach or pool, as well as after each meal or brushing your teeth.
- Invest in hydrating, day-and-night moisturizers. Whatever your favorite brand may be, make it a habit to apply your daytime moisturizer when you wake, and your nighttime moisturizer before bed. Are both necessary? During my time at a cosmetic counter in a major department store, clients would pose this question all the time. “Can I just buy one and use it in the morning and night?” Daytime and nighttime moisturizers each offer benefits the other cannot. Daytime moisturizers, depending on the brand, will usually contain some form of SPF. It is a lighter formula, as to not weigh down and feel heavy on your skin throughout the day. Nighttime moisturizers are usually a little denser, as these are formulated to be a lot more hydrating and restoring as you rest. These do not contain SPF, but are instead richer in vitamins and essential oils which re-hydrate your skin to repair the elemental damages brought on by the day.
Do you have any items in your beach tote you absolutely cannot live without? Share them with us; we’d love to know!
*Special thanks to Damaris at L’Shear Hair Salon in Houston, TX.
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