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Okay, You Damaged Your Hair. Now What?!

Summer can be incredibly tough on my hair. I love it when the weather warms up, my friends invite me to the lake, and I start to get tan. One of the first things I do is book a balayage blonding appointment at Hair Etc. Salon and Spa. The blonde highlights enhance my tan and fully bring out my summer confidence; to me, they are a must.

With the summer heat, I usually just let my natural hair flow, which means more frizz. As someone with blonde, brittle, and (summer) frizzy hair, I’ve found that exposure to the sun, chlorine from pools, and salt water can leave my hair feeling dry and damaged. We all know it is the best feeling to come back from a day of sunbathing, rinse off, and get ready for dinner. However, if you’re like me, the hair is always a problem. Do I wash it? Do I let it air dry? Do I just throw it up?

And the absolute worst thing is when you wash and dry your hair, and it comes out brittle. There's nothing quite like naturally sun-kissed hair that looks and feels incredibly healthy. People will wonder how you spent the entire day in the ocean and still have silky smooth hair.

So, here’s how I tackle my summer hair with the best products I've used. 

The why behind my lifeless hair:

  • The sun and chlorine strip my hair of moisture. 

  • UV rays and chemicals cause color-treated hair color to break down the chemical bonds

  • The sun can damage the hair’s cuticle (outer layer), making it super easy to break off when you rip your brush through your hair after a shower. Or even at night if you are not sleeping with a satin pillowcase

There are a lot of damaging things you may be doing, such as the ripping of your hair. I recommend taking a look at this video that our stylists made. There might be a few minor things you can switch up in your routine that will help in the long run.

Now. My Favorite Summer Hair Treatments 

  1. K18 Treatment

K18 Biomimetic Hairscience leave-in molecular repair hair mask

Why It’s Essential

The K18 leave-in molecular repair mask is a lifesaver for me. It repairs keratin chains damaged by the summer sun and pool chemicals, restoring my hair’s elasticity and strength. I love how it makes my hair look healthier and feel more resilient. This product is among my favorites because the peptide treatment repairs hair damage from inside the hair's core, reconnecting the broken polypeptide chains to strengthen hair elasticity. Here is a graphic that explains the science behind K18. I think this is important to understand so that you can self-assess what is occurring with your hair.

graphic explaining how K-18 molecular repair works

Side note: This product has over 22 million video reviews and comments on TikTok. And YES I can attest to the hype, it does work. Not to mention, Alix Earle and Simone Biles both use K18 and have very different hair types. So this goes to say, K18 works across the board. 

How I use K18

1. Shampoo my hair really well (sometimes I will double shampoo if I have been in the ocean) 


3. Apply 1 Pump of the K18 Mask to microfiber-dried hair.

3. Wait 4 minutes, then I will style as usual.

2. L'Oréal Metal Detox Product Line

L'Oreal Metal Detox haircare product line

Why This One?

Metals in water can accumulate in my hair, causing breakage and color shifts. The L'Oréal Metal Detox range neutralizes these metals, protecting my hair fiber. The pre-shampoo treatment, shampoo, and mask work together to refill micro-breaks and deeply hydrate my hair. Another common issue with blondes, ESPECIALLY my hair is it turning the dreaded orange color.

before and after photos of blonde hair before metal detox

Here is what MY  hair looked like before and after a metal detox... CRAZY! 

How I Use It

1. Pre-Shampoo Treatment: Apply to wet hair before shampooing.

2. Shampoo: Cleanses hair while removing metal particles. I let this shampoo sit for a few minutes to really solidify into my hair.

3. Mask: Provides intense hydration and protects against new metal deposits.

3. Redken Acidic Bonding Concentrate

Redken Acidic Bonding haircare product line

Why It’s Essential

This treatment strengthens my hair bonds, improving overall hair integrity. It provides intense conditioning, making my hair smooth and frizz-free, which is exactly what I need after a summer of sun exposure. What I love most about this product is it makes my hair super soft without being greasy. 

This one is just like a deep conditioner so:

1. Apply to damp hair after shampooing.

2. Leave on for 5-10 minutes, then rinse thoroughly.

before and after acidic haircare application

Summer is a season of joy and sun-kissed adventures, but it can take a toll on my hair. From embracing balayage blonding for that perfect summer glow to navigating the challenges of frizz and dryness, my journey with summer haircare has been a learning experience.

The sun, pool chlorine, and salt water can leave my blonde hair feeling brittle and frizzy. Despite the temptation to rinse off after a day in the sun, the struggle with maintaining healthy hair is real. Should I wash it? Air dry it? Or simply tie it up?

Nothing compares to the feeling of having naturally radiant, silky hair after a day spent outdoors. It's about finding the right products that not only protect but also rejuvenate my hair. Products like the Redken Acidic Bonding Concentrate have become essential, strengthening bonds, improving integrity, and combating the effects of summer elements.

Understanding the impact of UV rays on colored hair and the importance of moisture retention has reshaped my approach to hair care. It's not just about appearance; it's about maintaining hair health against all odds. With the right products and a few tweaks to my routine, I've found a balance that keeps my hair looking and feeling its best, no matter what summer throws at it.

By investing in effective products and mindful care, I've discovered the secret to maintaining vibrant, resilient hair throughout the summer months. Here's to enjoying every sun-soaked moment with hair that shines as brightly as the season itself.

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