How to prepare your hair for fall

With summer winding down and kids & teachers getting ready to go back to school, we find ourselves preparing for the upcoming season in many ways... but what about our hair? It might sound strange to prep your hair for the fall season but hear me out... our hair takes quite a beating over the summer between swimming in chlorinated or lake water, spending hours out in the sun, or even just neglect since we are often out of our normal haircare routine during the summer months.

I want to share with you some ways to help heal the summer damage and bring that lack luster hair back to life!

I always say that everyone should be getting a haircut at least once per season (if you have short hair, it will likely be more often to maintain the shape). The end of summer or the start of fall is a great time to get your "fall haircut" because your ends are usually in pretty rough shape after the summer months.

The heat from the sun does the same thing to our hair that over using our hot tools does, it dries out and damages the hair to the point where it eventually splits and breaks off. Now, I'm not saying its bad to be out in the sun, but the ends of our tresses are the most fragile, so they are even more susceptible to the sun's damaging rays- and we all know that once the hair starts to split, it will continue to split up the hair strand until it breaks off. Do those ends a favor and get a healthy fall trim and cut them off before they split off.

Another thing you will want to is do clarify and condition. This is ESPECIALLY important during this time of year because it does two things: the first is that it clarifies and removes any buildup or impurities on the hair. When we swim in chlorinated or lake water, the chemicals and minerals from the water deposit into our hair strands which makes our hair feel rough and appear dull and dry. Buildup and mineral deposits also make our hair more difficult to style, hold a curl or maintain volume. A good clarifying shampoo will remove any impurities from both the inside of the hair strand as well as its surface. After the hair has been clarified, it is now the ideal time to do a deep conditioning treatment, which brings me to my second point.

A deep conditioning treatment restores any protein and moisture to the hair that has been lost over the summer. As I mentioned before, the sun dries out our hair so it becomes brittle and thirsty. Conditioning treatments help the hair to rebuild it's strength, integrity and restore shine. If you've ever had a conditioning treatment, I'm sure you've been able to feel the difference immediately afterwards! Your hair will thank you for it because it will style so much better and feel nice n' soft again!

Many of my clients are surprised when I tell them that the sun also treats our hair the same way that a bleach lightener does. The UV rays from the sun don't just burn our skin and dry out our hair, they also lift and strip the color out. This is why we sometimes get those gorgeous, natural sun-kissed highlights that some of us lust after, but for my blondies and color treated friends, it's not always the most desirable look.

Since the sun strips out both natural and artificial hair color, it does not always fade to the most appealing tone. This is especially true with blondes. If you are an icy blonde or you like your blonde more neutral, beige, or a little on the cool side, you probably have noticed that your hair turns warm, brassy or yellow toned over time. This is because the sun is lifting out not just your natural pigments, but also any toner that may have been used to counteract warmth at your last blonding appointment. The solution? Along with clarifying and conditioning your hair, refreshing your toner is a must. A toning gloss/refresh is the best way to maintain that perfect shade of blonde that you desire, without having to add more highlights or lightener to your hair. I recommend coming in for a toner in between your highlighting sessions in order to fight back against warmth and make those blonde locks look bright and fresh!

Unfortunately it is not just blondes who experience color fade from the sun. If you have color treated hair either to cover grays or as a fashion color, the sun strips and dulls your color, leaving you with a lack luster shade. Just as blondes require a toning gloss, any color can be refreshed with a color gloss. A color gloss does exactly what its name suggests, it refreshes your color while adding a glossy shine. This is a great way to add vibrant pigment and richness back into your color while giving it a healthy shine.

If you don't lighten or color your hair, it can still fall victim to the sun's harsh rays. Yes, even those with the most gorgeous natural hair color can turn dull and get washed-out from the sun. A clear gloss is a perfect option if you don't want to color your hair but want the shine and vibrancy that hair color provides without altering your natural shade.

Now is the time of year where most of us need to make an appointment for some hair TLC and some serious self-care. Have you booked your fall cut, condition and color yet??

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