After months (years) of dealing with the stresses of life in the fab lane, you deserve a break, like yesterday. After all, a little seasonal rest and relaxation is the perfect way to recharge, and spur of the moment vacations are often the most rewarding. I know what you’re thinking (because I read minds when not thinking of ways to be lazy and natural). I have no time to get it braids or twists as a vacation-friendly hairstyle. What am I going to do with it? No worries. You can still wear it well. Here are some easy time-saving tips to protect your hair while you’re away from home.

Minimize sun exposure

Your hair needs protection from the sun, just like your skin. UV rays can damage both the internal structure of your precious curls and the outer cuticle layer. While the melanin in your hair acts as an initial barrier, keep those curls tucked away under a scarf or sun hat for the ultimate preservation. Forgot your fabulous headwraps at home? There are products that can protect your hair against the damaging effects of sun exposure. If you want to let your ‘fro fly free, try using a products with UVA/UVB filters such as Ion Sun Protection Spray to your arsenal of hair staples. Too much sun exposure can cause discoloration and brittle hair.

Prep before a swim

What would a vacation be without a dip in the lake, pool, or ocean? To reduce the likelihood of excessive dryness and damage due to salt and chlorine, prep your hair properly for the water. Before securing your hair under a swim cap and diving into the water, saturate your strands with a good, cheap conditioner such as TRESemme Naturals Nourishing Moisture Conditioner to minimize water absorption. Once you’re done, wash, and detangle your tresses as usual. Another option is to detangle and wear your hair in a bun, you can read more about that process here.

Easy updos

If you’re rocking loose hair on your getaway, a quick and simple updo can mean the difference between working on your tan at the beach or a marathon styling session in the hotel’s bathroom mirror. You can start with freshly washed and detangled tresses or old elongated hair (we prefer old braid outs).  Make sure your hair is knot, mat, and tangle free.  Buns are an easy, breezy option, or try one of these three Tribe Called Curl beach day styles, designed for soaking up the sun and riding the waves in style.

Follow these tips for great hair on vacation and make your curls the least of your worries while you’re away. A relaxing trip doesn’t have to leave your natural hair stressed out. That would defeat the purpose of a vacation!

How do you prepare your hair for travel? What are your styling tips?