Woman with curly hair at the beach
07 January 2020

What To Do if You Have Sun Damaged Hair

Summer is all about sun, sea, surf and … unfortunately bad hair. Yes, we’re sorry to say that none of those fabulous things that summer brings are good for your hair, but the sun is the worst! However, fear no more, in this blog we’ll show you the symptoms of sun damaged hair, teach you how to prevent sun damaged hair, show you how to fix sun damaged hair and ways to fix a sunburned scalp. Read on!


Sun Damaged Hair - the Symptoms!

Image soucre: Unsplash

If your hair has been exposed to the sun for too long, UVA and UVB rays will damage the outside cover of your hair strand, called the cuticle. It is also damages the keratin in your hair which is a much-needed protein. If you have fine and/or fair hair, you’re more at risk for hair damage from the sun so make sure your extra careful.

Signs of sun damage to your hair include:

  1. Discoloration! If you’ve recently coloured your hair you’ll notice that the colour fades quickly after exposure to the sun. This is because the sun acts very much like bleach and bleach reacts with the melanin in your hair and removing the colour. 
  2. Dry and brittle strands that break easily.
  3. Split ends. The worst!
  4. Thinning.
  5. Frizziness. 
  6. Usually, damaged hair dries quickly, another tell-tale sign. 


How Can I prevent Sun Damaged Hair?



A post shared by Elle Macpherson (@ellemacphersonofficial) on

Even the ultimate sun babe Elle Macpherson wears a hat these days.

Image source: @ellemacphersonofficial

This is a question we often hear and the answer is easy - just wear a hat when you go into the sun or some sort of covering over your hair to act as a solid barrier to the sun. You might even multi-task while you’re on the beach by applying argan oil or olive oil through your strands and then wrapping it in a towel or a scarf for a DIY treatment -  yes Nana/Nona’s beauty tips work! If you can’t face a hat, then at least cover yourself under an umbrella or cabana and only go out early in the morning or late in the day just as you would to protect your skin.


How Can I Fix Sun Damaged Hair?

Another question we hear often and a harder one to answer. It really depends what your symptoms are. 

  1. If you have colour fade, get it re-done and then never leave the house without applying a protective colour lock leave-in treatment. There are many good ones out there and they can also help control frizzy hair, which as we know can also be a symptom of sun damage. 
  2. With frizz, you can also use a styling tool to help control it. The VS Sassoon Frizz Defense Straightening Brush with Super Frizz Defense Technology is perfect to help tame your tresses after a day at the beach. Just brush your hair gently and voila – shinier, smoother, silkier hair in seconds. You get to keep the volume too with this tool which is an added bonus. If you’re washing your hair after a day in the sun, try drying it with the VS Sassoon’s Frizz Defense AC Salon Dryer which also comes with Super Frizz Defense Technology. If you want to stay away from heated tools, then try Scunci’s Argan and Keratin Paddle Brush, a treatment and frizz solution in one!
  3. Get into Condition! Using a good conditioner also helps relieve the symptoms of sun-damaged hair and helps to repair split ends at the same time. It also helps guard against further breakage. Just make sure you pick one that’s suitable for your hair type. If your hair is in a really bad place – and damaged hair is let’s face it is a bad place – then get yourself to your hairdressers for a professional restorative treatment.

VS Sassoon's Frizz Defense Range 


How Do You Fix a Sun Burnt Scalp?

A sunburnt scalp goes hand in hand with sun damaged hair. Again the best way to prevent a burnt scalp is to wear a hat, especially if your hair is fine and sparse. If the damage has already been done, try a peppermint scalp treatment. It will work wonders, we promise!


Protect Your Hair This Summer

So there you have it – all the low down on sun damaged hair and how to fix it. Slip, Slop, slap! That’s slip on a hat, slop on the conditioner (or peppermint scalp treatment) and slap on the Argan Oil. And while you’re at it why not sip on something refreshing and cool – it is Summer after all! A girl’s got to have some fun ….

If you would like to stay up to date on all our hair styling tips, hair trends, hair health and tutorials, visit our blog

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Love your style, from the VS Sassoon team x