I’m a global hairstylist – here's how the heatwave could be wrecking your hair, and what you can do to protect it | The Sun

WHEN we talk about sun damage, most of us quite rightly worry about the impact on our skin. 

But one hair expert has issued a stark warning about the dire impact the current heatwave could be having on your hair – and offered her tips to stave off any damage. 

Kimberley Michelle is the Creative Director and Educational Director at Jack Winn Pro, a haircare company focused on supporting experienced stylists who can recommend the top products to keep your locks looking lush. 

And she says those who’ve spent hundreds achieving their perfect colour should take extra caution given the current weather.

“The sun functions as a natural bleaching agent, brightening everything it touches, including hair colour,” Kimberley explains. 

“While it can serve as an option for lightening your hair if you've missed a salon appointment and want to harness the sun's effects, it also carries the potential for damage. 

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“If you've invested significant time and money in achieving the perfect shade for your locks, relying on the sun can turn into a hair disaster.”

According to the hair whizz, it’s because the sun’s strong UV rays break down the chemical bonds present in hair dyes, meaning that the colour fades quicker.

What’s more, Kimberley adds, “the heat in the air can actually dull your hair too, causing it to lose shine and vibrancy”. 

“UV light causes colour fading, dries out hair and makes it more porous,” she explains. 

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“Grey hair is particularly at risk because it lacks melanin, the protective pigment. 

“It’s important to note that hair can undergo damage from UV exposure, just like your skin, even though you might not feel it.”

Redheads also ought to take extra caution, as “their vibrant hues tend to fade rapidly and bleach out more quickly.”

She says that “brunettes have a tendency to fade to those unwanted red and orange tones, while blondes can expect brassy orange and yellow shades.”

Intense UV rays can also lead to a change in hair texture, Kimberley adds. 

“The natural oils produced by our scalp typically do not travel along the lengths of curly, coily, or coarse hair strands, which are inherently prone to dryness. 

“When you add sunlight and humidity to the mix, it can make hair incredibly brittle, and prone to breakage. Sunlight can damage the hair cuticle itself.”

The good news is that the rays do have some positive effects. “Sun exposure helps the body produce Vitamin D,” Kimberley adds, “which is essential for healthy hair growth.”

And by following a few simple rules, you can make sure your wig stays protected through this Indian Summer. 

First off, says Kimberley, “always wear a hat when you’re outside – this is the best way to protect your colour from breaking down”. 

Secondly, use a UV protection spray specially made for hair. It helps reducing the negative impact of the sun while adding texture and shine. 

If you have coloured hair, your best bet, sadly, is to dodge the pool or lido. 

“Chlorine will bond with the artificial colour and draw it out quickly,” Kimberely adds. 

“When chlorine bonds with copper, it creates a chemical compound that is known for its bright, blue-green hue, which can lead to your tresses turning pale green.”

And finally, leave a bit of extra time for deep conditioning. 

“Try to avoid heat styling, and if you do use a hot tool, make sure to saturate your strands with a heat protectant,” Kimberley says. 

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That way, both you and your locks can happily and healthily enjoy the rays. 

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