Y’all…it’s hot! And I don’t just mean warm for the south. I mean sweltering, make you squint, sweaty, AC on HI, make you cuss, I can’t go to hell kind of hot here in Memphis and the Mighty Mid-South! The only thing I worry about during July, August, and September is how hydrated my body is because I know this will impact the health of my locs.
I’ve found myself hydrating constantly, but if I’m honest (and I always am), I’m probably not consuming the most advantageous liquids. I drink coffee EVERY morning. I mean the richest, darkest, most caffeinated coffee I can stomach, with heavy cream. Although coffee is brewed with fresh water, the drying effects of caffeine can counteract the hydration benefits.
I started drinking Kombucha recently, and while I want to believe it has some benefits for my locs, I’m not quite sure. According to the internet, Kombucha contains high levels of water-soluble vitamins, particularly; niacin, pyridoxine and ascorbic acid that function as antioxidant which reduces the oxidative stress and nourishes the dermal papilla cell thus reveals the ability of kombucha extract to enhance the growth of hair (DiBaise and Tarleton 2019). I’m not as concerned about growth, but the overall strength and vitality of my locs is important to me. I want my locs to stay long, dense, and strong.
Now that the world has reopened, it’s on and popping for social drinking, open air cafes, and patio seating. In general, I drink more alcohol during the warm months. I consume plenty of sweet, bubbly, and sparkling libations during happy hours, dinners, and brunches throughout the summer. According to the internet, there’s no direct link between alcohol use and hair loss. I’m a bonafide social drinker for sure, but heavy drinking may lead to situations, like nutritional deficiencies or hormonal issues, that can thin out your locks. If thinning hair is a result of too much booze and bubbles, I’ll make sure I’m drinking six ounces of water for every one ounce of alcohol I consume during the warm months. Cheers!
The utter enjoyment of an occasional cigar, coupled with live music in my hometown, screams summertime fun in this heat! With me in this brief video clip is my cousin, who has maintained Brotherlocks for four years. He wears his locs in a bun much more than I do, but the after effects of a good cigar, smoky locs…not so much fun. It’s best to indulge closer to shampoo day because the smoke will linger if you are seated in a closed area or within a smoking bar. According to the internet, smoking tobacco can potentially damage your hair follicles and increase your risk of developing hair loss. As with all things, duration and moderation matters. A couple of cigars every month will have minimal impact on hair loss; however, that smoky hair is a game changer. There is additional evidence that grays may flow due to the tobacco exposure. I’d better quit while I’m ahead…literally. Even my eyebrows have gray hairs!
So, I said all of that just to say this – one thing’s for certain, three things are for sure… to maintain healthy locs during summertime heat:
3: Drink alcohol in moderation.
2: Limit the frequency and exposure to tobacco products.
1: Hydrate, hydrate, and HYDRATE, with non-caffeinated, non-alcoholic beverages, at the start of the day, throughout the hottest parts of the day, and at the end of the day to beat the ravages of summertime heat. You can never go wrong with pure drinking water. It’s free or relatively inexpensive AND according to the internet, drinking sufficient water supports hair growth from root to tip. It also helps prevent split ends and brittle hair, as well as makes your scalp healthy. Water is also very important for regulating the circulatory system, which provides important nutrients to your follicles, thereby aiding hair growth. Stay loc’ed and not so loaded! ☺️
Until next time,
Andi D 😘