SAUNAS - A dry sauna is like being in a room-sized hair dryer. The dry heat is meant to draw moisture out of the things to which it is exposed, which is why we sweat in the sauna. If your hair is unprotected, you will logically find that
the moisture is being drawn out of it as well.
The best way to combat this is to wrap your head in a towel when you go into the sauna. It would good that the towel is damp so that you can be sure that the hair stays moist.
One thing I would suggest is that you apply your hair conditioner before entering the sauna and THEN wrap the hair in the towel. Doing this would allow you to give your hair a deep conditioning treatment while you soothe your tired muscles. Afterward, simply shampoo and shower as you normally would after a workout.
STEAM ROOMS - As with many environmental conditions, steam can have beneficial effects for certain hair types, but only as long as the level and durations of exposure are controlled and kept to reasonable levels. It also depends on the hair type being exposed. Hair that is porous will absorb moisture more readily, and release it in much the same manner, and could easily swell more rapidly and thus be damaged by prolonged exposure to steamy environs.
Because of this, there are cases where steam can be beneficial, as well as cases where steam could be harmful to the hair. The key is to know your hair and know how much steam to which you should expose the hair. If you have a problem with dry hair, taking a steam can give the hair some much needed moisture. Follow up a 15-20 minute sauna or steam bath with a good acid-balanced conditioner and cool water rinse and you could lock in the extra moisture and leave with better conditioned hair than when you arrived.
If you find that your hair is adversely affected by a sauna or steam bath - for example if your hair becomes puffy and frizzy when steam-exposed - try using a smoothing serum (with a silicone base) or a light oil shine spray to treat the hair before you sauna, or keep your head wrapped in a towel or bathing cap to minimize the amount of moisture your hair is exposed to.. Our Glamour oil coats the hair shaft and prevent moisture from penetrating as rapidly (if at all) This keeps the hair from being over-saturated by the warm moisture of the steam.
Probably the greatest benefit of steam for most people is the tendency of steam baths to open the pores of the skin and allow free flow of sebum and clearing of the ducts and glands in the skin. Since the scalp is made of skin with hair follicles growing from it, a steam can help to alleviate common scalp issues, such as dryness and flaking, and excessive-oil production. The warmth and moisture help stimulate circulation and flush out toxins from the skin.
So, to answer your question: Steam rooms are like every other luxury or pleasure in life. They are best experienced in moderation and with some level of understanding of the intentions behind their use.
AFTER COLOURING HAIR - After a hair colour service – particularly one that applies a dark or bolder colour – your greatest risk of problems comes as a result of the hair cuticle still being raised and allowing the colour to bleed, run or fade. Because of this, it only makes sense to avoid excessive exposure to environments that might penetrate the shaft and interfere with the colour. Steam baths and saunas are a different type of a worry than swimming pools. This is because of the chlorine levels found in most pools. The chlorine can penetrate the hair and interact with the colour on the hair. In the case of some hair colours - especially with ash-toned colours - the interaction of the chlorine results in a green tint to the hair. With other colours the great worry is fading as a result of the bleaching action of chlorine. The steam baths and saunas cause a problem as a result of the heat involved. Colour-treated hair tends to be more porous than virgin hair. As a result, the dry heat of a sauna can leech moisture from the hair and promote damage to the hair shaft. With a steam bath, the moist heat tends to cause the hair shaft to swell further than it already has and further damages the cuticle layer. When the hair dries afterward, the cuticle remains open causing the hair to have a more difficult time retaining moisture. The solution isn’t “staying out of the steam bath, sauna or pool” because until the hair grows out and the colour-treated hair is cut away, your hair is going to be “colour-treated”. The secret is protecting the hair when you plan to enjoy these environs. When you plan to visit the sauna or steam bath, cover your hair with a towel to act as an insulator. If you’re okay with your hair getting or being wet while in the sauna or steam bath, use a damp towel that has been saturated with cool water and wrung out. Afterward, use a good “smoothing” conditioner (one listed as formulated to make hair smooth) to help seal the cuticle layer and keep the colour and moisture locked into the hair. You can also use the conditioner on the hair prior to the visit into the sauna and/or steam bath and simply not rinse it. Just wrap the hair in a towel for insulation. The heat of the environment will help the conditioner penetrate and give you a deep conditioning treatment while you are enjoying the warmth. For the pool, I recommend getting a bathing cap, or if that’s not a viable option, use shampoo and conditioner designed for swimmers. These products help to remove chlorine from the hair and minimize the potential damage from swimming pools.