Typically, your hair does help shield the scalp from some of the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays, more so with longer, thicker hair but shorter styles will also give some initial protection. However, where you part your hair or if you have places that are thinning will be completely vulnerable to the UV rays. The scalp is just as vulnerable to the sun as our skin is, especially if you have red hair or freckles and are on certain medication that makes your skin more sensitive to the sun.
As a general rule of thumb wherever your scalp has the least amount of physical protection (from your hair or clothing) you are more likely to get sun damage. Typically for women, this is only around the hairline and where you have parted your hair. These two areas are very exposed to the UV rays and to prevent sun damage UV protection is essential.
Our top tips for protecting your scalp:
If in doubt, put a hat on. This is the easiest way to prevent sun damage and probably the easiest. There are so many hats to choose from and one for almost every occasion. But sometimes wearing a hat just doesn’t work out so we recommend using an oil-free and water-resistant UV product. These are typically applied on dry hair to absorb properly and are most effective when they don’t mix with the excess water in your hair from wet hair. We also recommend our very own Hairburst Elixar to use in addition to a UV scalp cream as it will provide some extra protection against UV rays.
An unexpected way to help protect your scalp is by tying your hair up. You’ve probably done this already when it’s hot out, as no one likes to be smothered by hair when it’s so hot. But this is actually a great way to protect your scalp, so long as your hair is protected too! By pulling it up into a ponytail or bun you are covering your scalp completely. Typically, your parting will be covered, resulting in just the hairline and nape of your neck visible. Having said that is it always best to be on the safe side, and still protect your scalp in case there are spots that are visible to the UV rays.
In short, yes, your scalp needs protection from the harmful UV rays just as much as your skin does! Your scalp is especially sensitive as it won’t see the sun on a regular basis, so applying scalp UV protection is essential to preventing harmful side effects.
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