Summer’s here and it’s time to head to the beach. As a stylist, I think about what happens to your hair when you expose it to the combination of sun and salt water or chlorine. Summer hair care can be a challenge.  

Salt water from the ocean is acidic and the sun’s rays are alkaline. When the sun’s alkaline rays hit the acidic salt water a chemical reaction happens and your hair gets lighter. That’s how those sun-in products used in the eighties worked. Remember the orange, brassy hair that resulted instead of the gradually lightened and natural looking hair as promised? We all want to avoid that dreaded “beach hair” look.

Here is what I recommend to help your hair look and feel good during the beach season: 

  • PLEASE use a conditioner. A lot of us do not like conditioners because they make our hair flat. I too am guilty of that. But if you apply a good conditioner with UVA/UVB blockers to just the mid-shaft and ends of your hair, you can maintain healthier hair with fullness at the root. Still not liking conditioner? Have you tried a leave-in? There are many leave-in conditioners on the market that are light-weight and great for protecting the hair in the sun. My favorite is Michael Anthony Salon DC The Conditioner. You could also pamper yourself with an in-salon treatment to help very thirsty locks.
  • Wear a hat or use an umbrella when outdoors. Blocking the sun rays and protecting color from fading too quickly is the key here.
  • Remember to shampoo and condition the moment you leave the beach or get out of the pool. This will help to prevent the unwanted build up of salts and chlorine in your hair that will create further dryness.summer-hair-care-mickey-bolek
  • Speaking of pool water, the best way to keep chlorine build up from happening is to make sure you thoroughly wet your hair before getting in the pool and rinse well after exiting. Some think chlorine will turn hair green. Not so. Chlorine build up appears in the hair as looking very “glassy” and feeling hard and dry even when wet. If this occurs, make an appointment to get a clarifying treatment and while there ask about clarifying shampoos suitable for home use.

I hope these tips help you have the best hair you can this summer.

As always,

Enjoy your hair!


Michael Anthony Salon DC, a Michael Anthony Select Salon, is considered by many to be the best in the entire DC metro region. We are passionate about doing hair and work with each and every client to create the look that is right for them. Led by Mickey – aka Michael Anthony – each of our stylists is a highly trained professional. Schedule an appointment and find out for yourself!