Heat styling can give your hair that dazzling look you may be longing for long, but it can also make the hair frizzled, dried up and broken. Therefore it is wise to use heat styling tools (such as blow dryers, tongs, flat irons and curling irons) with caution and taking proper precautions to minimize such damage.
Your hair is actually made of keratin proteins and contains natural oils both of which gets degraded on overheating (the hydrogen bonds holding the structure are broken). In fact, the breaking of hydrogen bonds actually gives you the all-important sleek and straight or curly look. You will of course heat style your hair every now and then. But do remember to follow the following tips to keep your hair healthy and strong.
Use heat on dry hair only
Never use heat styling tools on your hair when it is wet. Wait till your hair is dry. Minimize the use of blow dryers and never dry your hair with one when you will follow it with other heat styling tools. Your hair is more vulnerable when wet and you may cause irreversible damage to your hair by applying heat.
Adjust the temperature
The temperature of your heat styling tools should be properly adjusted according to your hair texture and thickness. Thinner or fine hairs are more susceptible to heat damage and higher heat setting can completely burn your hair. So start with lower temperature settings and go up only if your hair permits so.
Go for the best quality styling tools
Never compromise on the quality of the heat styling tools. Always use good branded tools. Low-quality tools fail to maintain the temperature and may heat up your hair more than what you were looking for. You will never have control over the cheap products. Moreover, the good heat styling tools use advanced technologies to reduce heat damage. Opt for the best hair dryer with nozzle attachment for better distribution of heat and the best titanium flat iron to straighten your hair. Use heat styling tools with good temperature control.
Protect your hair before styling
Before you start applying heat on your hair it is important to protect it. There are many hair protecting products available on the market. Use the one with the good reputation and that suits your type of hair the best. The ones with silicon are better as silicon gives a perfect protective layer on your hair. However, low quality heat protectants can further affect your hair adversely. So use only the specially formulated ones.
Consider air drying your hair
If possible air-dry your hair and avoid using blow dryers. You can use it occasionally in an emergency but not as a daily routine. In case your hair is very thick or long and it is difficult to go out with wet hair, prefer shower in the night and let your hair dry overnight.
Applying mousse or hair sprays can give your hair that desired volume and shiny look, thus allowing you to avoid heat styling. Remember, prevention is the best way to avoid hair damage through heat styling rather than trying to revive the already damaged hair. So, use heat wisely and sparsely.