What do SUN + SWEAT do to your hair?
What does sun do to your hair? Why does the sun make hair lighter and lose its shine?
Photoaging and degradation is not just a concern for skin but also for hair. Just like skin, hair is primarily composed of keratin protein. Excessive ultraviolet radiation in the 254-400nm wavelength range can lead to hair shaft's structural damage. This degradation leads to hair protein and pigment loss. Just as UVA and UVB cause different damage in the skin they each contribute unique damage to the hair. UVB impacts the hair cuticle and is responsible for hair protein loss while UVA penetrates deeper and enters into the cortex causing color changes and hair pigment degradation, also known as melanin. The hair shaft absorbs the radiation or energy which impacts the amino acids (smaller building blocks of protein) and their breakdown leads to free radicals. As we talked about in our last article, oxidative stress caused by free radicals can damage the hair shaft, hair cuticle, hair follicle, and even the scalp impacting the structure and hair growth.
Hair lighter because of sun damage
The hair has some defense against photo-induced oxidative stress by using melanin. Melanin absorbs the radiation and dissipates it in heat form while also preventing free radicals from entering the keratin matrix. However, the hair’s natural defenses can become overwhelmed and the photo-induced amino acid oxidation in the hair leads to the hair yellowing, also called photoyellowing.1 This explains why light colored and gray colored hair, which contain little melanin pigment, still changes color in sun exposure. The hair will also become dry, brittle, rough, stiff, and lose luster. Excessive sun exposure can also decrease the lipids in the hair leading to that coarse straw-like texture. The sulfide-sulfide bonds also photodegrade causing hair to lose the amino acid cysteine and increase in cysteic acid resulting in increased porosity and decreased strength. It reduces the intercellular cement between cuticle cells as well as thins the hair cuticle. As the hair cuticle becomes damaged your hair is compromised and more susceptible to other damages such as hard water, chlorine, and mechanical, thermal stress, and chemical stress. The damage becomes compounded.
Do UV rays affect your hair growth?
Unfortunately, UV damage goes further by impacting the hair follicles and scalp. The scalp, even when covered by a full head of hair, is impacted by UVA and UVB. UV radiation has been shown to induce cytotoxicity in hair follicles, decrease hair shaft elongation, reduces melanin synthesis, increase apoptosis (cell death), and stimulate premature catagen development. This means UV radiation negatively impacts hair growth and causes cellular death therefore your hair doesn’t grow as long, falls out faster, and changes color.
How do sweat and hard water affect your hair?
If UV damage wasn’t enough to worry about, consider hair damage from chlorine at the swimming at the pool, hard water from the shower, salt from the beach, and sweat from your workouts. Chlorine creates oxidative stress, discolors the hair, and erodes the hair cuticle. Hypochlorous acid in the pool penetrates through the cuticle to the hair cortex where it oxidizes and degrades the melanosomes responsible for melanin production. It causes epicuticle swelling as well as cuticle damage leaving your hair a tangled, dry mess. Hair exposed to heavy metals, including copper found in hard water, loses protein with sun and coloring exposure. Sweat contains salt that can dry out your scalp, reduce hair growth, unbalance your scalp’s microbiome, and fade colored hair. Sweat also contains glucose, or sugar, which over time can lead to glycation, when the hair's keratin hardens. Glycation can make the hair feel stiff, brittle and lose its flowy bounce.
How do you protect your hair from the sun?
Our solution to your hair woes this summer while sunbathing, relaxing in the pool, or running on the beach is SAVE ME FROM Sun + Sweat. This hair reboot is a sun buffering, chlorine blocking, and hard water fighting reboot that soothes scalp and both protects and repairs hair. You can apply a little as a leave-in treatment to your hair before your swim, run, or sun-drenched adventure to prevent damage or apply liberally after as a rinse-out to repair damage. It helps improve strength by up to 83.6%, hydrates hair up to 125%, increases shine up to 40.3%, improves hair flexibility up to 140.6%, and reduces split ends up to 89%.
KEY INGREDIENTS for Sun + Sweat
A type of rhododendron, Rosebay is a beautiful, resilient plant.
It decreases sebum and sweat accumulation, reduces flaking, soothes scalp irritation, and rebalances your scalps microbiome. This means a healthy, flake-free and balanced scalp.
Soy + Rice Micro Proteins
Our micro protein blend reduces hair surface damage caused by numerous stressors including UV to provide long-lasting strength. It works as a vegetable alternative to keratin. It also protects hair from copper induced damage by reducing copper binding – making it helpful against hard water and chlorine damage. It repairs the hair from within while also providing protection on the hair surface. Hair is stronger and more manageable when repaired with soy and rice micro proteins.
Japanese Ume Apricot
Not only does this plum-like apricot help fight many signs of UV induced damage, it has also been shown to act as an anti-glycation ingredient for the hair, helping to revive dull and stiff hair. By helping to inhibit glycation in the hair, hair becomes more elastic, bouncy, flexible and softer.
Studies have shown that applying caffeine, a potent antioxidant, topically can reduce UV-induced skin cytotoxicity and cell damage. It can act as a photoprotectant to hair follicles helping preserve your natural hair growth while stimulating hair growth by reducing 5- α-reductase activity.
This cinnamon derivative, which gives Sun + Sweat a slight cinnamon aroma, is a substantive UVB absorber that’s been shown to improve hair comb-ability and hair strength while preventing disulfide bond breakage within the cortex.
It's worth noting that Creatine is found in all SAVE ME FROM Tip to Root Hair Reboots. Creatine is not only an ingredient for body building, it been shown to act as a bond builder, helping to bridge broken electrostatic bonds, making hair stronger.
It is worth mentioning our amazing reparative Fenugen technology with Ayruvedic Fenugreek. We identified fenugreek as a plant possessing rich concentrations of specific, bioactive compounds (medium and long chain fatty acids, terpenoids, polyphenols, phospholipids and vitamins A, C and B variety vitamins). We included bio-boosters like Coenzyme Q10 and organic karanja and MCT’s derived from coconut. This technology improves the scalp's health as well as every aspect of the hair, root to tip.
Make your hair flawless, bouncy, and soft again by including this summer essential into your routine! It will be a nice way to enjoy post-quarantine life!
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