Are holidays bad for your hair?

July 29, 2016 1:57 pm

Everybody takes suncream for their skin on holiday, but protecting your hair and colour is just as important. Maintaining your colour and hair condition is something you invest in throughout the year, so why not protect it during your holiday? We’ve spoken to our colour expert Nathan Walker (Trevor Sorbie International Technical Director) about if and why holidays and bad for your hair, and what can be done to keep it safe.

Are holidays bad for your hair?

It’s a myth that all you have to do to protect your hair in the sun is cover it with a hat or scarf. It’s actually a combination of free radicals (or aggressive oxygen) and heat that can cause damage and your colour to fade. So what are free radicals? These are unstable molecules that are in the atmosphere all around us that attach to other molecules, destroying their structure. In hair terms this means that they attach to the colour molecules meaning your colour fades quicker, and attach to proteins making the hair weaker. The sun and heat can act as an accelerator, but it doesn’t just have to be sunny for these aggressions to be affecting your hair. There are also more free radicals in coastal, hilly and mountainous areas as the atmosphere is more turbulent.

What do you recommend to protect my hair?

Thankfully, both colour and hair care manufacturers have got some fantastic solutions to help combat this. At Trevor Sorbie we use L’Oréal Professionnel colour which is specifically designed to resist fade, and when coupled with hair care (such as our Salon X-Clusive range) which contains UV filters, we can offer a level of protection to keep your hair your crowning glory. Some of my other favourite products are:

  • KeraStraight Sun Protection Spray which helps protect not only your KeraStraight Style Solution (or Brazilian Blow Dry), but also works to protect your colour from chlorine and sun damage.
  • Pureology – I love the fact that everything in the Pureology range is all created with an anti-fade complex which is ideal for coloured hair.
  • Salon X-Clusive Caring Shampoo and Conditioner – on holiday you’ll find you need to wash your hair more often, so I recommend using the gentlest formulation you can find.

Should I colour my hair before or after my holiday?

For most of my clients I answer in this way: ‘would you put your make-up on before or after a big party?’ Always mention your holiday to your hairdresser, because there are some tricks we can do to help you. Your colour can be refreshed in a way designed to make it last even longer, or hair can be made slightly lighter for a more summery feel. We can also put together a hair plan for your return, such as understanding whether you’ll be looking to go darker, lighter or change your style upon your return.

Do you have any other tips for protecting my hair on holiday?

  • Think of your hair as a sponge. Before you go in a pool or the sea, fill it with fresh water by rinsing your hair thoroughly until it’s completely saturated. This sponge effect therefore means that the hair isn’t able to absorb damaging salt or chlorine water. When you come out of the water rinse it thoroughly again, refilling your hair with more fresh water. Doing this prevents you ‘baking’ damaging elements into your hair while out in the sun.
  • Masks or conditioning treatments really love the heat, so if you’re sunbathing all day try leaving a treatment on your hair and cover with a hat or scarf. Simply rinse out at the end of the day for incredibly soft, shiny hair.
  • Before you go on holiday have an appointment already booked with your hairdresser for your return!