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How to protect your hair from summer damage

Sunbathers on Bondi Beach in Sydney, Australia
Sunbathers on Bondi Beach in Sydney, Australia
Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images

While summer lasts but a few months, damage to the hair caused by long days in the sun, swimming in chlorinated pools, and other summertime activities can take several months to repair. Fortunately, by following a few basic rules, you can easily protect your hair from the ravages of summer.

One of the most common complaints during summer is premature fading of colored hair. Frequent shampooing, along with exposure to UV rays from the sun, can cause hair color to fade. During the summer months, it is a good idea to switch to a sulfate-free shampoo or a shampoo especially formulated for color-treated hair, and to avoid shampooing every day. Those who feel the need to shampoo every day might want to consider rinsing the hair with water and using a lightweight daily conditioner. Simply rinsing and conditioning the hair will sufficiently remove most dirt and residue, while still giving you that "freshly washed" feeling.

In order to prevent color fading and moisture loss caused by sun exposure, look for hair care products that contain sunscreens and offer UV protection. One such product is Kenra Daily Provision, which is a leave-in conditioning spray that protects hair from UV and thermal damage.

Chlorine can also wreak havoc on your hair, resulting in loss of sheen, reduced manageability, and discoloration. In order to protect hair from chlorine, wet your hair down with ordinary tap water and comb a nickel-sized dollop of conditioner through the hair before getting into a chlorinated pool. The conditioner will seal the hair's cuticle, preventing chlorine from penetrating the hairshaft.

Finally, don't neglect going to the salon for regular trims. Split ends can be prevented by trimming your hair every six to eight weeks. Regular trimming is perhaps the most important, yet most neglected, secret to beautiful, healthy hair.

By following these basic and simple rules your hair will be well-protected, no matter how high the temperature soars.