Scalp Burn Protection and Treatment
Don't let scalp burn ruin your day in the sun and potentially lead to skin cancer. Protect and treat your scalp with these tips.
- Hair Does Not Prevent Scalp Burn
- Use Moisturizing Shampoo And Conditioner
- Hat Protection
- When a Hat Isn't Practical
- The After Burn
Hair Does Not Prevent Scalp Burn
Contrary to popular belief, a full head of hair does not protect the scalp from being sunburned nor will the hair protect the scalp from the harmful, cancer-causing effects of the sun’s UV rays. Scalp burn is a common summertime occurrence after a day of fun in the sun, and not only is scalp burn painful, but it is also a precursor to scalp cancer. Here are some tips for protection against scalp burn, plus soothing treatments if protection is forgotten.
Use Moisturizing Shampoo And Conditioner
Using a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner during the summer months will help to keep the scalp moisturized and less susceptible to drying out under the hot rays of the sun. Hair will be less damaged by the harsh sun when it’s kept moisturized, too.
The best method of protecting against scalp burn is to wear a hat when outdoors in the sun. Hats that have wide brims that will also protect the ears, neck and shoulders from the sun’s rays are the best choice.
Straw hats with wide brims are a fashionable choice, but the loose weave of straw hats allow the sun’s rays to penetrate through, exposing the scalp to UV rays and potential scalp burn. Wearing a head scarf under a straw hat provides full protection.
If a baseball cap is the hat of choice to protect against scalp burn, apply sunscreen to exposed ears and neck to protect these delicate areas from sunburn.
When a Hat Isn't Practical
When it’s time to swim or play in the sun, a hat isn’t a practical choice to protect the scalp. Pricey sunscreen products designed specifically to protect the scalp from being sunburned are an option, but investing in several different types of sunscreen products isn’t necessary.
Combing any sunscreen product (SPF 15 or higher) through wet hair will protect against scalp burn. Mixing sunscreen and moisturizing hair conditioner together, then combing the mixture through wet hair will protect both the hair and scalp from the sun’s rays. Re-apply often throughout the day and after swimming for total scalp protection.
The After Burn
When it’s too late for protection and a scalp burn has occurred, treat the scalp and hair to a gentle cleansing with an after-sun product to remove the chlorine and salt from the hair and sooth the burned scalp.
Wash hair in as cool of water as possible and use double the recommended amount of moisturizing conditioner on the hair after shampooing. Allow the conditioner to set on the scalp for a few minutes before rinsing out.
Use a wide-toothed comb to comb hair, avoid using a hairbrush and avoid styling hair in tight hairstyles (like a ponytail) until the scalp has healed.
Moisturizing shampoo and conditioner, used in conjunction with a wide brimmed hat and sunscreen applied to wet hair will protect against scalp burn and keep hair in tip-top shape this summer. Soothing treatment for the after burn is cool moisture and easy hairstyling.
**Originally written and published by me on Suite101.