Who else is guilty of being emotionally attached to their hair straightener? *Shamefully raises hand* Me. I am. That’s me.
My hair naturally is mid-length and has an odd kinky wave. Sometimes it works, but most of the time it just DOESN’T. So, I LOVE having straight, smooth, silky, shiny hair and the easiest way I can achieve that is by using the dreaded hair straightener.
My argument goes like this... “It makes my hair so much more manageable!”, “It saves me so much time!”, “It looks so much better like this!” This is all true but, I admittedly disregard some of the non-negotiables when it comes to using heat tools.
Whether you are busting out the curling wand, hairdryer, straightener or any hot tool on a regular basis, knowing the correct way to use them is paramount to maintaining your hair’s integrity.
I’m sure we all know the basics by now - use heat protectant, style in sections, try not to burn yourself, blah blah blah. But heat on your hair can be much more damaging to what meets the eye, so here are some dealmakers and deal-breakers to add to your routine.
Deal-breaker: Don’t Style on Just Any Random Temperature Setting
Although it is tempting to ramp up the tool to its hottest setting, just do not. Your hair will burn and turn into straw...we’ve all seen it before.
Not to get all sciencey on you but the extreme level of heat breaks down the bonds within each hair strand on a molecular level to the point that the hair becomes weak and brittle, resulting in it quite literally breaking apart.
So, to avoid this, adjust your styling tool to a temperature that suits your unique type of hair. Processed hair and fine hair need to be on a much lower setting when heat styling to protect the overall health of each strand. Whereas thicker, coarse or curlier hair can tolerate a higher setting at the beginning of styling, otherwise essentially, a lower setting won’t allow for the tool to work effectively. Be sure to dial it down a bit once it starts to hold your desired style.
Dealmaker: Make Sure Hair Is Completely Dry Before Styling
Heat styling wet hair is simply criminal. I don’t care if you're in a rush, or you’re too tired to dry your hair properly, excuses excuses. You’re basically boiling your hair in water, and I don't know about you, but I’m pretty sure no head of hair has asked if they could be poached, fried or scrambled. None. Of. The. Above.
It’s not allowed. Dry your hair and then heat style. End of story.
Deal-breaker: Don’t Repeatedly Heat Style the Same Section of Hair
So easy to do but even more so damaging to your hair. Styling a section of hair over and over again, is a reflection of poor technique and lack of patience.
Switch from fast, repetitive motions to a singular swipe, slower technique until the desired result is achieved. This minimises how many times the heat tool is running through the hair.
Dealmaker: Love the Sh*t Out of Your Hair from Beginning to End
Don’t be scared of hair masks. Drown your hair in them. Deep conditioning hair masks will focus on keeping the hair hydrated even throughout the heat styling process.
After shampooing, be sure to press the water out of your hair, then apply your mask and let it sit for the recommended time, rinse and gently towel dry (don’t scrub or rub!), apply leave-in product and/or heat protectant, then use a wide tooth comb to avoid pulling the hair. You are then free to style your hair!
Follow this process as many times as your hair desires!
So don’t be the deal-breaker...be the dealmaker! Your hair will thank you.