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Summer Hair Secrets

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Summer Hair Secrets

Now that summerâ??s here at last, so are those summer stressors for your hair. These stressors include chlorinated water, salty sea water (and sweat), increased air pollution (on those hot windless days) and long days of heat and sun. Knowing the dangers might motivate you to give your hair some extra pampering..

Now that summer’s here at last, so are those summer stressors for your hair.

These stressors include chlorinated water, salty sea water (and sweat), increased air pollution (on those hot windless days) and long days of heat and sun. Knowing the dangers might motivate you to give your hair some extra pampering.

Did you know, for example, that your hair can get sunburnt? Once this happens, your hair loses its shine and breaks easily. Sunburnt hair can be avoided by wearing a hat or shunning the sun when you are taller than your shadow. In most places in Canada the sun is easiest to tolerate before 10:30 am and after 3:30 pm. The farther north you live, the longer the mid-day time period of peak sunburning hours.

Let’s assume that you eat well and that you have lots of brown rice, dark leafy greens and adequate proteins in your daily diet. (Getting enough protein in your daily diet ensures that your body–including your hair–can carry out needed repairs.) You drink enough pure water each day, remembering to make up for losses from perspiration. Lots of organic vegetables and fruits means that your hair, skin, nails, bones and muscles have enough silica to maintain healthy structure. The internal needs are taken care of.

Kitchen Conditioners

Now, for the treatments that help heal and maintain healthy hair. What can you do when your hair is already damaged from sun, chlorine, salt water and other bad guys? Seek out the deep-conditioning hair products found in your local health store. If you’re a do-it-yourselfer (or your kitchen cupboards are well stocked), then I have some recipes for you to try.

Blend together 125 millilitres of mayonnaise and half of an avocado. Massage this mixture into wet hair and scalp. Cover with plastic wrap and leave on for 20 minutes. Rinse, then style as usual.

For extra dry or damaged hair, add five mL of either jojoba or coconut oil. Oily hair benefits from the addition of a few scant drops of essential oil of lavender, or of five to 10 mL of fresh lemon juice.

This deep conditioning blend can be used once a week and revitalizes hair to an amazing degree.

To keep your hair from soaking up too much chlorine in the swimming pool, wet it before swimming. After swimming, rinse your hair well.

Here’s an after swim conditioner to remove chlorine and its after-effects. Blend together 30 mL of baking soda, 62 mL of fresh lemon juice and five mL of mild shampoo. Massage this into your wet hair and leave on for 30 minutes. Then shampoo and condition as usual. Use this recipe as often as needed.

Another conditioner you can make is simple, but very nourishing for your hair. Mash together a banana with 15 mL of unpasteurized honey. Massage well into your wet hair and scalp. Cover your head with an old towel or plastic wrap, and leave this conditioner on for 20 minutes. Rinse well, shampoo and condition as usual. My hair loves this one.

Everyone should know about the wonders of eggs for stronger and healthier looking hair. Remove the white pieces from the clear part of the egg. Whip the egg with 125 mL of tepid water. Massage into wet hair, using only cool to tepid water to avoid cooking the egg. (Nobody likes picking out those little white pieces of cooked egg from her hair.) Rinse very well and style as usual. Your hair will shine and feel fuller than normal. Adding an egg to your usual shampoo works very well, too. Just remember to wash and rinse with tepid water.

My personal favorite for everyday use might not appeal to everyone, but believe me, this one restores a healthy shine while it strengthens and revitalizes hair.

After shampooing, rinse your hair with 62 mL of pure apple cider vinegar added to 185 mL of warm water. (The pickle smell doesn’t last!) The apple cider vinegar restores the proper pH to your scalp and hair, making it a great remedy for reducing and eliminating dandruff. This recipe cuts through any dulling build-up of shampoo and conditioners. I often add a few drops of lavender, jasmine, rose, geranium or even lemon to this one. The vinegar smell fades and your hair is left with the delicate scent (and benefits) of your favorite essential oil.

How about your own home-made hair gel to stop your braids and elegant hairdos from wilting in the heat and humidity? Put 30 mL of flax seeds and 250 mL of water in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, then turn off the heat. Let this sit for 15 minutes. Strain and then let cool completely. Add some drops of essential oil, like lavender, jasmine, rose, lemon, mint or your personal favorite. Pour this gel into a clean jar. (Leave off the lid until the gel thickens from cooling.) Use as you would any other styling gel, on either dry or wet hair. Enjoy!

This summer, pamper your hair with natural and nourishing blends. Make your hair the real crowning glory it was meant to be. And accept those compliments graciously. You’ll be hearing a lot of them.

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