Playing outside in the sunshine is all fun and games until you realize the damage the sun’s done to your mane. We’re talking dried out strands, faded color, and a mane that’s prone to breaking, frizzing, and fraying. Staying inside isn’t a feasible (or fun) option, but there are things you can do to shield your hair from the sun’s damaging UV rays.
For example, you can wear sunscreen for hair, use UV protection hair products, and take measures to minimize exposure such as wearing a hat or using an umbrella. Today we’re talking about all things sun protection for hair and even showcasing some of our best products from the L’Oreal portfolio.
Is there sunscreen for hair?
Yes, sunscreen for hair does exist. Some products are simply formulated with UV protection technology and some contain actual SPF. In addition, you can use sunscreen products for your scalp, which come in both powder and spray form and should be applied directly to your hair part and other exposed areas of your scalp.
Will sunscreen damage your hair?
Sunscreen for hair and scalp are meant to protect your strands and skin—not damage it. While products formulated with SPF can make your hair feel a little oily, they will not affect the health or quality of your hair and can be rinsed out easily at the end of the day. It’s better to be shielded than exposed to the sun.
There are also UV protection hair products which don’t have SPF but do contain technology that can help reduce and prevent damage either before or after you’ve spent time outside. These come in all sorts of formulations, including shampoos, masks, and mists.
Which sunscreen is best for hair?
This ultimately depends on your personal preferences. When in doubt, ask your stylist for their top recommendations. You can also reach for any of the sun protection hair products we’ve rounded up below.
Our Best Sun Protection Hair Products
From shampoos to deep conditioning masks to leave-in sprays, these products help protect your hair from UV damage and can even help visibly repair any damage that’s been done.
Kérastase Soleil Nourishing After-Sun Shampoo
Kerastase's entire Soleil line is formulated specifically to nourish sun-exposed hair. If you've just spent the day beach-lounging or splashing around in a chlorinated pool, we recommend starting with the Soleil Nourishing After-Sun Shampoo. Infused with coconut water, it deeply hydrates the hair fiber, removes chlorine, salt, and sand, and restores smoothness and shine. And of course, it also provides sun protection.
Kérastase Soleil Revitalizing Masque
After cleansing your hair with the Soleil After-Sun Shampoo, follow up with Kérastase’s Soleil Revitalizing Masque. This intensely nourishing mask is a light-textured gel cream that rebalances with vital nutrients, reconstructs and smooths hair fibers, improves shine, and provides sun protection.
Kérastas Soleil Multi-Protection Beautifying Cream
Want a little extra credit? Complete your Kérastase shampoo and mask regimen with the Soleil Multi-Protection Beautifying Cream. In addition to shielding your hair from UV damage, it defends against frizz and humidity by locking in moisture.
Matrix Total Results Keep Me Vivid Color Velvetizer Protectant Balm
Swap out your existing blowout balm for this protectant balm from Matrix. It boasts a non-sticky formula that shields your strands from both UV rays and heat, which in turn helps preserve your hair color and keep your strands feeling healthy.
Shu Uemura Art Of Hair Essence Absolue Nourishing Protective Hair Oil
Made with camellia oil, this best-selling multi-use hair oil from Shu Uemura is absorbed quickly to help rebalance moisture so hair looks and feels soft and shiny. It also provides UV protection to your strands and is lightweight enough for even the finest hair.
Pureology Style + Protect Weightless Volume Mousse
Pureology's exclusive Antifade Complex features a UV filter that protects hair. You'll find the Antifade Complex in all the Pureology formulas in this roundup, including this conditioning mousse. In addition to protecting from UV damage, it provides weightless volume, boosts shine, and protects color vibrancy.
Pureology Style + Protect Texture Finishing Spray
Craving a little beachy texture? Give your hair a few spritzes of Pureology Style + Protect Texture Finishing Spray. While shielding your hair from UV damage it works overtime to deliver perfectly tousled, “just got back from the beach” waves.
Pureology Style + Protect Shine Bright Taming Serum
Use this serum as a last-step defense against UV rays and frizz-inducing humidity. It'll smooth flyaways, boost shine, and protect your hair color.
Pureology Style + Protect Instant Levitation Mist
Forget flat hair. Pureology Instant Levitation Mist delivers weightless volume and heat protection for an impressive 24 hours, all while protecting your strands from UV rays and other environmental aggressors.
Pureology Color Fanatic Multi-Tasking Leave-In Spray
If you prefer leave-in sprays over creams or balms, this is the product for you. Pureology Color Fanatic Multi-Tasking Leave-In Spray for Color-Treated Hair is an easy-to-apply, does-it-all product that serves up 21 essential benefits for color-treated hair. Those benefits include detangling, moisturizing, UV protection, and preserved color vibrancy.
Searching for more hair products? Shop the best salon-quality products at Hair.com.