How to Protect Your Hair from Heat Damage

Hollie Shirley / Hair & Skincare Editor

Read our 5 handy tips on protecting your hair from heat damage. These tips will help you rock straight hairs and other hairdos you have been craving while protecting your hair from heat damage. 

We know that sometimes you get bored with the routine heat-free hairdos available to your natural hair and that you want to switch things up a little. We wouldn’t pretend that we don’t know your fears about having your hair damaged by heat. Worry no more! 

These tips below will help you rock straight hair and other hairdos you have been craving while protecting your natural hair from heat damage. 

 

1. Always moisturize and deep condition your hair beforehand. 

Before you get those hot tools working their magic on your hair, you must first wash your hair as you would normally do and deep-condition it, letting it sit for the number of minutes prescribed on the bottle. This will help smoothen and strengthen your hair while making it easier to straighten.  Finish up by drying your hair as much as possible with a microfiber towel or a t-shirt before applying a leave-in conditioner.

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2. Allow your hair air-dry for some time. 

Depending on your hair type, allow your hair to get 50 to 70% dry on its own. Damp hair fares very badly with heat. There are some excellent leave-in treatments available which will help your hair to air dry naturally.

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3. Apply heat protectants formulated for natural hair. 

Evenly coat your hair with a heat protectant. This will help to seal in moisture and protect your hair from heat damage.  Heat protectants come in serum, spray or creams. 

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4. Blow dry your hair. 

Blow drying your hair first will straighten your hair. It will also help prevent knotting and tangling of your hair ends, and subsequently, mitigate hair breakage. 

Remember to attach a nozzle to your blow dryer to avoid overheating your hair. Point the nozzle downwards and about 15 to 25cm away from your hair, and work in sections to ensure each part is dried fully.

Medium to high setting at the start while finishing with a cool setting is ideal for protecting your cuticles.

 

 

5. Reapply a heat protectant before heat styling. 

Reapplying a heat protectant after blow drying and before heat styling your hair as you desire is the surest way to ensure that your hair doesn’t get damaged by the heat.

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Other tips to observe for the best hair protection techniques against heat are: 

  • Do not heat-style your hair regularly. A few times a month is fine and very occasional use of heat is ideal. 
  • Ensure the salon and/or stylists know how to handle natural hair especially as it concerns heat-styling. Make sure you also know the right heat setting for your unique hair type. 
  • Use titanium or ceramic flat irons that have an adjustable temperature. Adjustable temperature dials are better for heat control compared to regular on-off and/or high-low switches. 
  • Look out for 1800 watts ionic hair dryers. These dry your hair faster and avert overheating which can cause hair damage. 
  • Move your heat tools through your hair throughout the styling process to avoid overheating portions of your hair. 
  • Keep your heat tools clean and in good working condition, always. 

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Hollie Shirley
Hair & Skincare Editor

Hollie Shirley is SILKUP’s hair and skincare editor. She’s obsessed with all things hair care and results-driven skincare, that is kind to the environment and your wallet. She has a weakness for limited edition eyeshadows and is always testing out the newest and greatest deep conditioners. Hollie has a passion for hair and is studying Trichology, working towards becoming a Member of the Association of Registered Trichologists.