After a few months in this dry desert climate, my locks went from shiny and healthy to dry and brittle. After some internet research, I found that it was not only the sun, heat and dust that was causing the lack of lustre and breakage in my hair (in some cases, from the root) but also the desalinated water (removal of salt from seawater), the chlorine in it and air conditioning (removes moisture from the hair) was contributing factor as well. In severe cases, it can also cause hair loss. Saudi Arabia, followed by United Arab Emirates and Kuwait uses the largest amounts of desalinated water.
The Gulf climate is harsh so extra measures must be taken to care for the hair. To be proactive and defeat the damages caused by a dry climate it is advisable to avoid over-drying with hot appliances. Let your hair dry naturally and try to wash less often. Use hot oil or moisturizing treatments with a plastic cap. Drink plenty of water and take a good multivitamin (i.e. Vitamin A, B-Complex, Biotin, C,D,and E). Try to avoid the use of chemicals such as haircolor and relaxers. Although expats in most places are not required to cover the hair, it is not a bad idea to do so with a cotton scarf, hat or cap. I protect my hair with Betmar New York hats. They are SPF 50 and they come in several designs. http://www.betmarhats.com/
I am regularly asked through my blog whether I know someone who does braiding in the Kingdom. Braids and corn rolls are a great styling option as long as they are not left in for weeks at a time. I recently received contact information (thanks, Annette) for those of you who reside in Riyadh. Her name is Monica and her mobile is +966560293597. Please give her a call for pricing and availability.
If any of you know any other braiders or Sisterlock technicians in the Riyadh area....please drop me a line so I can pass it on.
All the best.....
Hair and all,