Simple tips to maintain hair colour during summer

Simple tips to maintain hair colour during summer
Photo by Anthea Simms

“It’s almost that time of year again,” states Les Haverty, Artistic Director of FHI Heat. “The beach, swimming pools, and many outdoor activities can wreak havoc on your hair’s moisture and colour.” But thanks to great products and Les’ savvy hair tips, you can protect your hair against damage and maintain your hair’s brilliance all summer long. Here’s how:

Shampoo with hydrating, colour safe, sulfate-free shampoos. “These are usually the safest for daily use because they don’t contain the harsh sulfate detergents that are responsible for degrading colour or lowlights.”

Condition hair with an acidifying conditioner. “These are usually citrus-based conditioners with a pH value between 3.0 and 3.7. Acidifying conditioners help seal the cuticle around the colour molecules on the hair shaft and allow for the colour to last longer. If you’re unsure of your conditioner’s pH, call the brand’s 1-800 number. I would also try a hydrating conditioner once every two weeks to maintain softness. For extremely dry and brittle hair, try keeping a comb in the shower. After applying conditioner to your ends and mid strand, comb the conditioner through the hair. This makes sure that the area of hair which needs the most help absorbs it.”

Wash hair with tepid or lukewarm water. “Use tepid or lukewarm water when shampooing. Washing with really hot water opens the cuticle, removing the hair’s natural moisture and further drying out the hair. It also contributes to colour loss. Wash daily if you have oily hair, but if your hair is dry, every other day is better. On in-between days, use a natural bristle brush and brush the hair from scalp to ends allowing your hair’s natural oils to cover each strand. After all, this is your body’s custom conditioner for your hair.”

Wash hair right after pool and ocean time. It’s very important to shampoo immediately after swimming. Chlorine and bromine used in today’s pools can strip hair and discolour it. In the summer, the sun can amplify these chemicals increasing stress to the hair—leaving it very brittle. The ocean contains massive amounts of salt, which can cause your hair colour to fade as well. Add the sun’s solar energy into the mix and you will start to see a bleaching effect on hair. At the very least, rinse your hair off with tepid fresh water after swimming.”

Style hair with alcohol-free and silicone-free products. “Some manufacturers claim that alcohol dries the product and not the hair, but if your hair is already on the dry side naturally, stay away from mousses, gels, and sprays containing alcohol. The non-alcoholic products work just as well and are non-damaging. For styling products, use serums that don’t contain silicone. Silicone leads to brittle hair, and when heat is applied, the silicone melts and embeds itself into the hair shaft, causing colour to repel from the hair!”

Finish hair with UV enriched sprays. “Use a spray or pomade that has a UV protectant and use just enough to get the desired look. With pomades in summer months, be careful not to apply too much as it weighs hair down and the sun’s heat may actually make hair look greasy.”

For a “beachy” hair effect at home. “Boil 2 cups of bottled water. Add 4 tablespoons of SPF 40 or higher sunscreen (lotion or cream works best). Stir until well emulsified. Let cool. Put into a clean spray bottle with sprayer nozzle. “I use this on my hair at the beach and also my skin to battle the suns harmful UV rays. It also gives my hair that nice shiny look!”

Use gentle heat styling tools featuring far-infrared heat. “Blowers, flat irons, curling irons, all hair tools that utilize ceramic, tourmaline, and far-infrared heat can help prevent heat damage. Stay away from metal irons and blow dryers that produce infrared heat (non-healthy heat). Ceramic heaters produce a soft, smooth heat wave pattern known as far-infrared heat which is very gentle to the surface of hair. Add the semi-precious gemstone tourmaline to the mix and you now have an ionic effect on hair that helps it retain moisture and look and feel much shinier after even one use. FHI Heat products are available at fine hair salons and online at

Zdenka Turecek


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