Fremont Area Medical Center

SUM 2013

Spirit of Women magazine is a national publication presented to women by hospitals and their physicians. The magazine provides up-to-date, evidence-based healthcare information and promotes our hospitals as leaders in women's health excellence.

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Fighting summer hair S ummertime means fun in the sun, picnics in the park and—for many of us—a seasonal battle with the frizzy mess that becomes our hair. Read on for a rundown on the most effective hair control tactics. GET BACK TO BASICS Before you spend an hour in the pharmacy aisle searching for a miracle product, take a look at how you're already treating your unruly mane. Shampooing daily, for example, may feel fresh and clean, but it can also strip the hair of sebum, a type of oil that moisturizes the hair shaft and helps control frizziness. rizzle f By Susana Ramos LET YOUR HAIR DRY NATURALLY Have a little extra time? Opt to air dry your hair but try not to manhandle your hair cuticles (the outermost layer that protects the hair) by scrubbing with a regular towel. Instead, squeeze out the excess water by using a softer, more absorbent microfiber towel. THE MAGIC OF CHEMISTRY If your curly Qs are in need of a little smoothing out, keratin treatments are one option. This type of treatment offers a semi-permanent solution to subdue wavy or curly locks, but many include formaldehyde, a chemical often used in hair smoothing products. "Formaldehyde works as a preservative," explains Shari Work, a West Palm Beach, Fla., licensed cosmetologist and certified educator in coloring and straightening. "The chemical works with heat but only penetrates the cuticle of hair and, unlike other options, doesn't actually change the cortex [center of the hair]." Common side effects include irritation of the eyes and nose, as well as skin rashes. Your hair salon can help reduce the risk of side effects by ensuring that the salon is properly ventilated and that your stylist has been fully trained on how to use the product. Select keratin treatments now claim to be free of formaldehyde, but know before you go: Up to 0.2 percent concentration can technically be considered a formaldehyde-free product. SHUTTERSTOCK KNOW YOUR PRODUCTS Keep cuticles in check by applying a serum to your hair before drying, preferably a product that is silicone based. If your hair tends to dry out easily, it may be best to avoid alcohol-based products such as certain mousses and hair sprays, which can cause the cuticle to swell and take away from your hair's natural moisture. When it comes to salon-style treatments, many over-the-counter products promise salon results, but you're likely to get a better outcome at an actual salon, say experts. "Many professional-grade products are now being offered as over-thecounter options, but with shorter longevity because of diluted products," Work explains. "These options also provide a one-size-fits-all approach, which can be aggressive on your hair." • w w w. s p i r i t o f w o m e n . c o m S U M M E R 2 013 SPI RIT O F WOM EN 25

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