Our crowning glory -- and Samson's source of strength -- human hair has long been a fascination and an obsession. What a shame that summer can reduce this glorious body adornment to ruins. What's the worst that can happen -- and how can you "head off" or heal the damage?
WebMD spoke to experts to get tips for coping with five summertime hair problems.
Problem No. 1: Sun Scorching
Without hesitation, Phillip Wilson, once voted the best hairstylist in 100 years and president of the Angles & Collections Salon and Day Spa, tells WebMD that the sun is the biggest enemy of hair during the summer.
Wilson, who often journeys to the Sundance and Cannes film festivals to tend to his movie star clients, says not only in Hollywood do 85% of women have color-treated hair. "That's the figure nationwide," he says. "Sun dries hair out. If it's already processed, it's already depleted and can become dry straw."
To combat this, Wilson says, "the coolest thing on the market" is leave-in conditioners. "If not overly used," he adds, "they start the styling for you, adding volume at the roots."
David Bank, MD, director of the Center for Dermatology, Cosmetic, and Laser Surgery, in Mount Kisco, N.Y., also recommends a pretreatment with an SPF spray made for hair. "We see some skin cancers of the scalp and these not only protect hair, but guard against those," he says, adding that SPF sprays are a light mist. What level of SPF? "Whatever you can get your hands on -- 15, 30," Bank says.
Hats can also protect hair from the sun, but there is a trade-off -- hat head.