Most of us have an ingrained method of drying our hair and don’t even realize the damage we’re doing. Then we search out cures like deep conditioning masks and keratin treatments to repair our strands.
But what if you took the right steps in the first place? When you use heating tools like blow dryers to dry your hair, you have a very powerful tool in your hand that could either do good…or bad.
But before we get to blow-drying, let’s take it a step beforehand.
How to Towel Dry a Wet Head of Hair
Wet hair is fragile. Cuticles swell and hair stretches. Scrubbing your head with a towel can do serious damage, before you’ve even gotten to a blow dryer.
What to do with wet hair instead?
First, gently squeeze out excess water from your hair. Apply a light amount of heat protecting product and distribute it evenly.
Then gently blot (do not rub) your hair with a microfiber towel or even a soft t-shirt. Typical cotton or terrycloth towels can be too abrasive.
Bottom line: the better you dry your hair before blowdrying, the more protected it will be.
Now…on to blow-drying effectively and safely.
It’s all about the brush. If you use a round or paddle brush, pick one made of pliable, soft plastic. The choice of the right brush matters greatly; the wrong one can damage your hair as you’re drying. Hello frizz and dead ends.
Keep your distance. Your dryer should be held approximately 6 inches from your hair. Dry the sides and back of head first, then work towards the front and crown of head.
Start hot, get cool. It’s okay to use high speeds and temperatures at first but as your hair begins to dry, reduce the heat. This is a critical step. Your hair does not need that kind of high heat throughout the process, which only serves to increase damage.
Upside down for volume. If you’re looking for additional volume, flip your head over and blow dry your hair, from the scalp to the floor. Brush in this direction with the blow dryer following close behind. Yes, this gives the hair more lift but also detangles hair more safely.
Lastly, let your hair cool down after the blow-drying process. Don’t apply product or use other hot tools like curling irons or flattening irons directly afterward.
It doesn’t take a lot to keep your hair safe from blow-drying but it often requires establishing new and improved beauty habits.