When I woke up on Thursday morning, my apartment was dark and I couldn’t see anything when I pulled aside my blinds. For a split second, my groggy mind thought the apocalypse had happened while l slept. I quickly got on the Gulf News website and discovered it was another sandstorm, the second serious one to hit UAE this year.
It was so bad on Thursday; you couldn’t see more than 10 feet at most in front of you while driving. Maybe some people with supersonic vision could but I definitely couldn’t. This was my first time seeing such a volatile sand storm since I moved to the Middle East. So much dust also has several negative effects on the eyes, hair and skin among which are:
- The dust sweeping over your hair can cause tangling, dry and frizzy hair.
- Irritation of the eyes, nose and throat. Throat irritation especially could also be problematic if you have respiratory issues such as asthma, allergies etc.
- Drying out your skin especially your face.
Unfortunately, you can’t always predict when there will be a sand storm unless you check the weather report consistently. Even then, it’s not always 100% accurate. Next time, a sand storm lands and you have no choice but to go to work or a prior appointment, here are 8 tips to practice to protect your hair, skin and eyes on the way:
- Do not overload your hair with products. It will attract the dust and make things worse. Minimal works best.
- Wear your hair in a bun with the ends tucked in.
- Cover your hair with a scarf or wear a cap if you can.
- Stay hydrated by drinking loads of water and tea if you like. Stay away from frizzy drinks.
- Wear an adequate moisturizer to protect your skin from the elements.
- Wear a mask while walking outside. You can get this in most pharmacies.
- Wear goggles. If you’re concerned about looking a little crazy in goggles, wear sunglasses instead.
- If you have respiratory issues, it helps to have a purifier in your home and the office. Purifiers trap potential contaminants and purify the air up to 90%.
The best solution of course is to stay indoors throughout the storm if you can get away with it.