Ingredient Profile: How Plumeria Flower Extract Helps With UV Protection for Your Hair

July 20, 2020 | Written by Christine Lee

If you’ve ever experienced a harsh sunburn, you know how much damage the sun can do to your skin—but did you know that it can also wreak havoc on your hair? UV rays can damage the cuticle, the outside of your hair shaft.

The result is fading, discoloration, brittleness, frizziness, and thinning hair. Fine, light-colored, or African-American hair is at an even greater risk for sun damage. However, not all hope is lost. Some ingredients that you find in hair products, such as plumeria flower extract, can help protect your hair from the sun—here’s how:

What is Plumeria Flower Extract?

The plumeria plant was discovered by Charles Plumier. It’s actually the “frangipani” plant, but it was named after the man who discovered it. Some people refer to the frangipani plant as the tree of life. Supposedly, if you cut a branch of the tree, it will still bloom, symbolizing eternity.

The plant grows in tropical and sub-tropical climates, and the flowers are known to be beautiful and fragrant. According to the Environmental Working Group, plumeria flower extract poses no health risks, allergens,  or immunotoxicity. It’s a safe, natural ingredient that is found in a few very specialized beauty products.

How Does Plumeria Flower Extract Protect Your Hair From UV Damage?

Plumeria flower extract offers healing, soothing, and antioxidant properties.

Oxidation happens when oxygen-containing molecules float around in your body as free radicals. Those free radicals are missing an electron. They’ll bond to anything with an extra electron. When they do so, however, they can damage those molecules.

The benefit of powerful antioxidants such as the Plumeria flower is that they can bring an electron to free radicals without becoming unstable themselves. UV exposure is one cause of oxidation, but antioxidant molecules like the ones you’ll find in the Plumeria flower can protect the hair from this kind of damage.

Over time, excessive UV exposure can cause permanent damage to your hair. The sun can lighten your hair as it removes the melanin, the pigment in your strands. This action also has the potential to damage the keratin in your hair.

If you use heat tools to style your hair, you could exacerbate any sun damage you already have. Activities like sitting out in the sun, swimming in chlorinated pools, and tugging on your hair with a brush can all cause significant breakage.

Plumeria contains antioxidants and can stabilize your hair’s pigments and texture. It protects your strands from UV and other environmental damage.

Other Benefits of Plumeria

Besides being a powerful antioxidant, plumeria flower has a couple of other nifty benefits that could contribute to a healthier scalp, such as:

  • Antibacterial properties
  • Anti-inflammatory properties
  • Full of glycosides
  • Relaxing fragrance

Plumeria is also an anti-inflammatory agent, which can be good for the skin on your scalp. If you deal with itchy skin or allergies, plumeria might be able to relieve some of the inflammation.

The botanical contains lignin, which provides structure to cells and binds them together. It stimulates growth and has antibacterial properties.

Plumeria Helps Moisturize Your Hair

The plant also contains glycosides, which bond to water molecules and hydrate the skin and hair. If you have a flaky or itchy scalp, plumeria flower extract can help your hair and skin stay moisturized and flake-free.

Not to mention, if you’ve ever taken a whiff of the extract, you know how relaxing it is. Plumeria flower extract is often used in massage oils to soothe muscles and calm the nerves. With its anti-inflammatory properties, it can even aid in reducing inflammation-related pain, such as some types of headaches. For some people, the relaxing scent might even feel like a sedative.

Plumeria is one of those special ingredients that makes a big impact in our formulas. It’s a natural, plant-based extract with no evidence of toxic effects. It nourishes your hair and scalp while protecting it from the elements, including the sun. Instead of hiding your hair under hats or scarves, a little bit of plumeria flower extract might be all you need to do the trick.

Why Is Plumeria Included in Hair Care Products?

Plumeria is a powerful ingredient for hair care. In addition to protecting your hair from UV damage from the sun, it is rich in antioxidants, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties. The rich antioxidants, lignin, and collagen-boosting glycosides in Plumeria flower extract can help to repair damage, protect from harmful UV rays, and hydrate the hair shaft. The pleasant fragrance also makes it perfect for hair care products.

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