No matter how well you care for your hair, you are bound to notice damage at some point. It may be something as simple as a few split ends, or it could be something as noticeable as extreme frizz.
In today’s culture, heat-damaged hair is particularly widespread because most people regularly use hair dryers, straighteners and curling wands to style their locks. While these items are great for achieving your favorite style, you must know how to use them safely.
Below are some ways to repair heat damaged hair and prevent future damage to your hair from excess heat.
What Does Heat Damaged Hair Look Like?
Heat damage can happen to curly, wavy, straightened or natural locks simply by using a hair dryer or other heating appliance incorrectly or too frequently.
The first sign of heat-damaged hair may simply be a slightly frizzier texture that does not look as smooth and shiny as it once did. Your hair may feel brittle and stiff to the touch, and it may no longer flow around your head as it once did.
In the shower, your hair may become incredibly tangled when you wash it, and your conditioner may not even be able to detangle it effectively.
If you do not stop to repair your hair immediately, the damage will grow. You may notice your hair breaking off and may see split ends even if you recently had a haircut. Eventually, your scalp will start to shed more strands than usual, and your drains may become clogged.
Overall, your hair will be hard to manage, nearly impossible to style and not very eye-catching even after you spend a half hour trying to create the perfect style.
How Can You Repair Your Heat-Damaged Hair?
The good news is that you can repair your hair over time, and you do not have to cut it short. If you do not know how to fix it or are unsure of which step you should take, be sure to speak with your professional hair stylist about the best treatment for you. Follow these steps to see great results.
1. Switch Your Shampoo and Conditioner
Your first step should be to switch to products for heat damaged hair. Immediately turn to a gentle and nourishing shampoo and conditioner combo set that is designed to work together. Your shampoo, conditioner and any hair products you use should be sulfate-free.
You might even want to try a set formulated with nourishing oils, such as argan or olive oil, or a conditioner made with ale vera or shea butter. These ingredients help feed your hair, smoothing it down and decreasing its porousness.
2. Add in a Conditioning Treatment
While you should certainly be using conditioner immediately after shampooing, an additional conditioning treatment, such as a mask, may be helpful at this time. Try an extremely restorative mask. Leave it on for up to an hour while you wear a plastic shower cap to seal in the moisture.
3. Give Your Hair Time
No extremely damaged hair can heal overnight. Be sure to give your hair time to heal, and protect it from the sun, chlorinated water and other damaging chemicals during this time.
4. Avoid Excessive Heat and Chemicals
Try to step back from the hair dryer and hair straightener during this time, and embrace your natural hair instead. If you must style your hair, use a lower heat setting. Also, hold off on dying or highlighting your hair for now.
5. Change Your Hair From the Inside Out
What you eat affects your hair. Eat protein-rich foods or collagen powders to give your hair strength and shine.
How Can You Prevent Heat-Damaged Hair?
Once your hair is healthy again, you will want to avoid damaging it in the future. Learning how to prevent heat damage is as simple as following these tips.
Air Dry Whenever Possible
On days when you do not have to dress up or when you have more time, opt to let your hair dry naturally rather than speeding the process along with a hair dryer.
Turn Down the Heat
When you do use a curling iron or hair straightener, keep the heat below 350 degrees unless you have very coarse hair. In addition, be sure that you only style dry hair.
Use a Thermal Protection Spray
Before blowing your hair dry or styling it, spritz a thermal protection spray all over your strands. This spray not only protects your hair and lets you keep your style longer, it helps keep your hair straight while you sleep.
Keep Your Style for More Than One Day
Use dry shampoo every other day so that you do not have to wash and style your hair daily.
Heat-damaged hair does not have to ruin your life. Instead, learn how to prevent it and how to fix it if it does happen to you. Using these tips, you can achieve gorgeously smooth, frizz-free hair that looks healthy.