Is Sun Good or Bad for Your Hair?
Since we’re in the height of summer, you’re undoubtedly catching some rays. Most of us know to put on sunscreen to protect our skin from damage and skin cancer. But should you also be protecting your hair from the sun? While the vitamin D you can get from the sun is great for your hair, exposure to the sun’s rays without protection can quickly cause serious damage.
Why is the Sun Good for Your Hair?
Research suggests that the sun helps provide you with the nutrients your body needs to sustain a complete hair growth cycle. According to this study published in the Journal of Oncology Practice, hair loss is a symptom of vitamin D deficiency. Where can you get vitamin D? From the sun! But it’s important to note that you can also get vitamin D from supplements, vitamin D-fortified food, and foods that are naturally rich in vitamin D.
While your body naturally produces vitamin D when you’re in the sun, UV rays are also a major cause of melanoma and other skin cancer. Sun exposure can also damage your hair, which we’ll discuss below. We agree with the American Academy of Dermatology’s recommendation that vitamin D should NOT be obtained from unprotected exposure to UV radiation. Instead of exposing your vulnerable skin and hair to the sun, take vitamin D supplements and eat more foods rich in vitamin D. This way, your hair will continue to grow well without the risk of skin cancer or hair damage.
Why is the Sun Bad for Your Hair?
While vitamin D may support hair growth, the sun can seriously damage your hair. This study published in Collegium Antropologicum states that excessive sun exposure is the most frequent cause of structural impairment of the hair shaft.
Your hair shaft is the part of your hair that sticks out of your skin from the follicle. Sunlight can degrade your hair proteins and pigment, and can even lead to hair protein loss. The result is weaker hair and duller looking hair color. The sun can also take moisture away from your hair, leaving it drier, frizzier and rougher in texture.
If you have thinning hair, you are even more susceptible to getting sunburned on your scalp. Excessive sun exposure to the scalp can lead to skin cancer. Any inflammation or damage to your scalp can potentially cause even more thinning.
How to Protect Your Hair from the Sun
We all know that we should protect our skin with sunscreen when we’re out in the sun. But how do we protect our hair? Here are a few things you can do to keep your hair healthy:
- Cover up your hair and scalp with a hat.
- Stick to the shade when possible.
- Avoid the sun from 10 am to 4 pm, when the rays are the strongest.
- Use hair products with UV filters. Here’s a list of sun protection hair products that Fashionbeans recommends.
- If you have thinning hair, make sure to apply sunscreen to your scalp.
For full, lively and vibrant hair, you need to protect your hair from the sun. If you have any more questions about why the sun is good or bad for your hair or what type of vitamin D supplements you should purchase, feel free to contact The Limmer Hair Transplant Center. Our practice is dedicated to hair restoration and health so that you can have the hair of your dreams!