Long sun-drenched days and balmy evenings are what we dream of when we think about summer. But with long periods of soaring heat and humid weather, our hair can often suffer.
Ever tried straightening your locks for it to turn curly five minutes later? Or has a day spent bathing in the sun and playing in the pool left your tresses dull and dry? We've all been there, but thankfully help is on hand to cure our hair woes.
Andrew Barton - stylist to the stars and creative hair genius behind his award-winning hair care brand Andrew Barton Styling - is here to help and has answered your most problematic summer hair care questions.
Is there anything you can put on your hair before sunbathing and swimming that will protect it?
"The secret to caring for your hair in the sun is to limit the exposure. Use an on trend hat or scarf to cover your hair. Simply tying your hair back into a bun or braid will help to reduce the risk of hair damage at the beach or pool; it’s the tangling and exposure to chlorine, salt water and sun that causes the damage. Seal your hair in with my Andrew Barton SOS Oil or use my SOS conditioner blended with Shea Butter Protein and Moroccan Argan Oil and leave it in the hair to create a protective barrier against the punishing rays. Rinse after swimming and repeat the application to the hair."
what about after a long day in the sun and chlorine?
"Always use a conditioner after lots of sun exposure. Target the tips of the hair and leave the conditioner in for a few extra minutes while you shower, then rinse well. My Andrew Barton conditioners have been designed to be lightweight so you don't have to worry about overloading your hair and weighing it down. The conditioners work by smoothing the cuticle scales leading to less breakage, splits and tears."
how can you revive dry and damaged hair?
"You need a product that is well balanced in protein and moisture. I have crafted my SOS deep conditioning mask to have the benefits of both. Shea butter and 'protect shine complex', which is a derivative of vitamin E, will help to add vitality to even the most tired locks. Apply the rich moisturising mask to the tips and lengths of the hair (the weakest hair) and wrap in a turban and leave for 10 - 20 minutes. For the most damaged hair repeat this hair treatment at least twice a week."
Should you dye your hair before or after you go on holiday?
"Of course you want to look and feel your best on holiday so there's no problem to colour your hair pre-holiday, just follow my top hair care tips above and make sure you keep your hair covered and moisturised during the day. Your colour may have faded a little on your return home and a quick fix up job including a little toning with your hairdresser could be just the trick."
Are there any products you can use to stop hair going crazy in humidity?
"Frizz control is all about adding essential moisture. With my Andrew Barton Smooth That Frizz collection I have blended almond oil into the products to add that essential moisture. Use the trio of products, shampoo, conditioner and serum to control your unruly frizz. The serum mini bottle is perfect to pack in your beach bag and can be re-applied during the day like a lip gloss."
How can you keep your hair volumised all day if you're out at a wedding or party?
"Mousse is my top styling product of all time. Applied before blowdrying it will give hair longer lasting hold and volume. Apply section by section as you blow-dry. It works by swelling the hair shaft with its polymers and will bounce back after a good brush or by turning your head upside down and shaking with your hands to reactivate the volume. Boost the volume by not only spraying hairspray over the hair but in it, right at the roots of each section."
What's your favourite easy up do if you need to look great but it's very hot?
"Many girls feel self-conscious with their hair pulled up away from their face so my favourite is a messy ballerina-esque bun pulled low in the nape of the neck; it's elegant, understated and very on trend this season. Start by applying mousse to either damp or dry hair and blow-dry over the hair to give a foundation. Then gently ruffle the hair and pull back into a ponytail securing the hair with a band. Then backcomb the tail, smooth over with a bristle brush and dress into a bun shape. Spritz with a flexible hold hairspray. "
Are there any easy hair styles you can do without having to use heat?
"Heat styling does transform the hair and up do’s are a good way of styling hair without heat. A little back brushing at the roots will give some root lift and hair swept back or braided can look great.
One of the easiest looks to dress up or dress down is soft, beachy waves. Sleep in plaits to accomplish the look without using heat. Wash your hair as normal, then apply a thin layer of Andrew Barton Texture Spray over a 5cm section of damp hair. Gently plait from root to tip. Don't worry about being too neat - it looks more natural if it's not perfect. Create four to six plaits around the head, secure in a loose bun and let them set as you sleep.
"When you wake up, unravel the plaits to reveal your waves. Apply some OGX Renewing Moroccan Argan Oil from the mid-lengths to the ends for extra shine."