Using heat for hair styling is common. Hair dryers are one of the most commonly used accessories, particularly for women and men having long hair. It is a very helpful while it comes to drying your hair quickly and gives you the desired look in minutes. Hair dryers are often used almost every day to dry the hair after a shower. Hair straighteners are also used quite frequently, in particular, by the individuals having curly hair. However, using heat on a regular basis on your hair can damage it considerably, making it lose its natural shine. Although the loss of hair is mostly dependent on hormones and your genetic make-up, lifestyle and environmental factors can speed up the process. While the hair dryers do more damage to your scalp than the hair, the hair straighteners just do the opposite. Both of these instruments do not directly cause hair loss, but they certainly promote hair damage which eventually will result in hair loss. You may not know that the temperature of hair dryers can reach as far as 550-degrees Celsius (1000 degrees Fahrenheit). Frightening, isn’t it!!! Now, how to prevent hair damage by heat while styling your hair? Fortunately, you can reverse most of the hair damage caused by excessive heat by following the tips mentioned below.
Use moderate to low heat settings
Too much heat can quickly make your scalp dry as well as remove your hair’s natural oil making it brittle with split ends. Once the scalp becomes dry the hair cuticles get expand promoting further loss of moisture and natural oil. Moreover, excess heat will weaken the root of your hair that ultimately will cause hair loss. Therefore, using cooler settings of the instruments during styling can effectively minimize the extent of hair damage and subsequent hair loss. It may take some more time, but it is better than hair loss of course.
Avoid direct heat on the hair roots
While using blow dryers never direct the hot air flow on the root of your hair. This is quite a common mistake. Your hair roots are particularly precious. So prefer pointing the dryer towards the tip of your hair. This will help in protecting the moisture of your scalp as well as the natural oils, thus keeping your hair well hydrated all through the day.
Do not heat the same spot for long
Surely you will remove all the moisture and natural oil from your scalp if you heat the same spot continuously. This can even burn your scalp and hair, making it damaged permanently. Instead, change the direction of your hair dryer constantly without concentrating in any specific spot for too long. You can repeat the same spots multiple times, but keep each exposure short.
Use heat protectants on your hair
There are heat protectants available in the market that will protect your hair from heat damage. Apply these products to your hair before hair drying or styling your hair with high-temperature styling instruments. These products are usually creams or sprays that can be applied to the hair. Remember, no heat protectant can protect your hair completely from heat damage. However, it can minimize the damage and additionally moisturize your hair.
Minimize the use of blow dryers and other heat styling tools
This is the best way to protect your hair from heat damage. Use heat as less as possible. Dry your hair naturally and refrain from hairstyles that require heat (or at least opt for it occasionally).
How to determine you have damaged hair
When you feel that your natural hair texture is not returning back after a hair wash, then it is a warning sign. You can also look for curls at the end of your hair, split ends and breakage. These are signs that your hair is damaged. Curlier hairs are more fragile and damage prone compared to the straight ones as the curly hairs get less natural oil flowing from the root to its tip because of its shape. Remember, the older you get, the more damage prone your hair becomes. With age, it also becomes more difficult to get your hair repaired.
Once you feel your hair is damaged from heat, completely stop using heat to your hair. Use enough moisturizing creams, gels, lotions, and sprays to keep your hair hydrated. Using these tips can save your hair from getting damaged from heat styling and also regain the lost natural shine.
About The Author:
Justin Bounds is the main editor at The Barbr – a hair care blog dedicated to providing honest advice and useful tips on the topic. He has been also a professional hairstylist for years. To learn more about his work, please follow him on Twitter and Facebook.