Many times you walk in the streets and find people exposing their hair to the sun, all the while trying to protect their faces; but did you know that your hair, just like your skin, needs sunscreen?
Sun exposure can weaken hair and make it brittle, leading to hair breakage and split ends.
Hair is made up of keratin, an extremely strong protein which is also a major component in skin and nails. Rays from the sun break down these proteins and destroy hair pigment, which is why both natural and coloured hair can fade in the sun.
“Colour extending” and “anti-breakage” product descriptions are designed to protect your hair from sun damage.
Leave-in conditioners, hair gels, and styling creams work the best because you can coat the hair strands more evenly. Popular brands include Garnier Colour Shield, Kérastase Soleil cream, Nexxus Dualiste and Redken Colour Extend.
However, here are some cheaper and natural alternatives that work just as well:
It is a succulent plant with jelly-like transparent substance in between its leaves. This plant can be found almost everywhere. Aloe vera blocks the harmful UV rays from causing any sun damage to your hair. You may take some jelly from the plant leaf and apply it on your hair 15 minutes before taking a bath. Wash it off with cold water.
This natural sunscreen for hair is a very good moisturizer and it conditions your hair well.
Tea leaf extracts
This is one of the most inexpensive and safest natural sunscreen that protects your hair from sun damage. This homemade sunscreen will also prevent your hair from drying. Green tea is preferable. Tea extract forms a layer on your hair that protects it from the harmful rays of the sun. It also adds a reddish tinge to your hair.
Henna coats the hair with a semi-permanent protein which clings to our hair and protects it from UV damage. It is also a very good hair dye.
Rub 5-6 drops of sesame oil on your comb and pass it all through your hair. It blocks sun rays and makes hair smooth and silky. For an even more effective homemade sunscreen, you can also mix in a few drops of coconut oil or almond oil.
Take 2-3 Vitamin E tablets in a spray bottle and add some water to it. Mix it well and spray it all over your hair after a shower. This vitamin acts as a natural sunscreen for hair and protects it from damage.
Do not forget that just like your skin, your hair needs to be moisturised from the inside out. Make sure you stay hydrated by drinking more water. The water you consume will benefit your hair from the inside out.
If you part your hair, or your hair is fine and/or thinning, do not forget to put sunscreen on your scalp. Gel formulas evaporate more quickly and are less likely to make your hair look oily.
For years I have protected my hair through these inexpensive methods, and my hair continues to be strong even when it is thinning due to age.