First, let's take a look at why sun exposure can cause hair loss. When it comes to hair and scalp health, UV damage from the sun can play a huge role in thinning and hair loss. To start, UVA and UVB rays can not only damage the outer layer of your skin, but also the dermal papillae cells at the base of the hair follicles located beneath the scalp. This can in turn lead to a decrease in hair growth, hair thinning, and even bald spots.
Given this knowledge, it's very important that you take preventive measures to protect your scalp from sun-related thinning. One of the best ways to do this is to apply sunscreen to your scalp and hair every time you go out (it's always best to apply sunscreen even on overcast days). However, it's important to select the right type of sunscreen in order to get optimum protection. Here are a few things to consider when evaluating sunscreens for your scalp:
SPF: First off, you'll want to make sure the sunscreen has at least SPF 30 to ensure maximum protection. However, if you tend to spend a lot of time outdoors or have fair skin, opt for a sunscreen with SPF 40 or higher. Additionally, make sure to look for sodium lauryl sulfate- (SLS) and paraben-free sunscreens, so you won't be putting potentially harmful chemicals on your scalp.
Ingredients: The ingredients used in the sunscreen are also important to consider since many contain naturally derived vitamins, nutrients, and antioxidants that can help nourish your scalp while still protecting it from UV rays. Ingredients to look for include niacinamide, green tea extract, coffee extract, licorice root extract, microalgae extract, safflower seed oil, and green tea oil.
UV Actives: In addition to the above-mentioned ingredients, make sure to check the sunscreen label for active ingredients that provide sun protection. Some of the most common UV actives are homosalate, octocrylene, octisalate, and avobenzone.
It's also important to note that applying any form of sunscreen can cause smudging and dullness in hair colour. Some sunscreens also contain alcohol, which can leave hair feeling dry and brittle. To avoid this, look for alcohol-free sunscreens made specifically for hair and scalp protection.
At the end of the day, the amount of protection you get from sunscreen boils down to how you apply it and how regularly you re-apply it. Make sure to use generous, full amounts of sunscreen every 2 hours and don't forget to work it into the scalp area.
As we've seen, the sun can be dangerous for balding men, and it's always better to be safe than sorry when it comes to protecting your scalp from potentially damaging UV rays. When evaluating sunscreens, make sure to check for high SPF, nourishing ingredients, and effective UV actives. With the right precautions, you can keep your scalp protected and enjoy the summer without worrying about hair loss.