When you straighten or flat iron your hair you expect to be left with sleek and glossy tresses. If you are seeing dry and brittle strands with split ends then something is not right! So, why does this happen?
If your hair is dry and feels rough after being straightened it is due to heat damage. The heat tool you are using may be too hot and could be frying your hair. Heat damage strips the hair of all moisture so the hair absorbs moisture from the air instead which can cause it to frizz and look drier.
Read this article to find out more about how you can fix your damaged hair after straightening, as well as how you can prevent this from happening in the future!
5 Ways To Fix Heat Damaged Hair
The reason your hair is looking and feeling dry and brittle after you straighten or flat iron it is because it has suffered heat damage. Heat damage can occur over time or after one use of tools that are too hot for the hair to handle.
Heat damage will dry out the hair and make it more prone to breakage and split ends. The good news is that there are ways that you can repair this damage, so read the steps below:
01. Do not over-wash your hair
Your first instinct may be to wash your hair again and try to hydrate it with water, but this is a mistake! Do not over-wash your hair. Your hair is already dry and lacking moisture after being exposed to a lot of heat so you want to avoid washing it so soon, as the products you are using will likely strip the hair of any remaining oils! Instead, give your hair a break and go a few extra days without washing it.
02: Use a hair oil or serum
If you’re in a fix and you need your hair to look healthy and moisturized in a hurry, the quickest way to do that is to use a good quality hair oil or serum on the lengths and ends of your hair.
Try and opt for a product such as an argan oil, avocado oil, or coconut oil as these ingredients are known to have moisturizing properties. Apply a few drops of the oil in the palm of your hands and rubbing it together before running your hands through your hair for even distribution. Moisture-rich products such as oils and serums will smooth out the hair cuticle and nourish the hair strands and make it look less dry.
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03. Use a hair mask
Before your next wash apply a nourishing hair mask to your hair and leave it on for a few hours. Hair masks containing avocado oil or coconut oil is best as they can deep condition the hair. Avocado oil contains vitamin E and fatty acids which is great for smoothing out the hair. It can also help seal the hair cuticle which can minimize breakage. Coconut oil can penetrate deep inside the hair shaft and this will keep your hair looking sleek, and hydrated for longer.
I recommend OGX Damage Remedy Coconut Miracle Oil Hair Mask Extra Strength for the best results!
04. Get a haircut
If you have accidentally fried the ends of your hair with your hair straightener one too many times, you may need to consider getting your hair trimmed. Severely damaged and fried hair can look limp and be difficult to fix as the natural moisture has been lost. A haircut will eliminate the damaged hair and promote healthy hair growth.
05. Get a professional protein treatment
If you have tried the suggestions above and it is still just not cutting it, your next option is to opt for a professional protein treatment at your salon. This treatment will add keratin and lipids back into your hair strands and reduce the dryness.
Have you ever experienced dry hair after doing a color treatment? Don’t worry, you’re not alone! Check out our article here for the solutions you need to save your locks!
How To Protect Your Hair From Heat Damage
As I mentioned earlier, the best thing you can do when it comes to heat damage is to prevent it! Be proactive and you will never have to worry about dealing with the aftermath of heat damage.
The best way to protect your hair from heat damage is to limit your hair’s exposure to heat styling tools. Ideally, your heat styling tools should not exceed 365°F(185°C) to prevent hair damage. That said, always use a heat protector before using hot tools to straighten, curl, and dry your hair. Try the HSI PROFESSIONAL – Argan Oil Heat Protector.
01. Use hydrating products
Firstly, you should be incorporating hydrating products into your hair care routine. Avoid harsh shampoos and conditioners that contain sulfates or high alcohol levels as these properties can dry out your hair over time.
Products that contain glycerin, argan oil, avocado oil, honey, coconut oil, and shea butter are also great and will not dehydrate your hair but instead leave your hair feeling and looking luscious and sleek. By incorporating these nourishing and moisture-rich products into your routine you will be able to prevent dryness in your hair and reduce the risk of dry, frizzy hair!
02. Use a heat protectant spray
Secondly, you should invest in a good quality salon grade heat protectant spray. Spray this on to dry hair before styling to protect your hair from heat damage. These sorts of products will coat the hair strands and reduce damage to the hair cuticle. This step is crucial if you are styling your hair with heat tools such as hairdryers and hair straighteners as the heat is being applied directly to the hair.
03. Air dry your hair before styling it
Thirdly, you should allow your hair to air dry before you style it with a hair straightener or flat iron. This will reduce extra heat damage that could occur when using a hairdryer and perhaps save your hair from any unnecessary heat exposure that could dry it out even more.
04. Get a hair straightener with a temperature control
Lastly, when purchasing a hair straightener or flat iron choose one with a temperature control feature. Many hair tools come with only one heat setting option and this is often too hot for delicate hair.
These sorts of hair straighteners can result in severe heat damage if used too often as you have less control of the amount of heat being applied to the hair. You should try and set the temperature of your flat iron somewhere between 300-350 degrees (F), this is hot enough to style the hair, but should not burn or fry it.
It is very easy to skip steps in your hair care routine when you are in a hurry or feeling lazy (we’ve all been there)! but you should remember that it is a lot more hassle to fix and repair heat damaged hair than it is to prevent it. To avoid having to do damage control and possibly even have your hair cut, make sure you are looking after it correctly when styling with heat tools such as hair straighteners.
My hair starts to sizzle and steam when I straighten it, is that bad?
Yes! That is definitely a sign that your heat tool is too hot and your hair is not completely dry. If your hair is sizzling and steam is coming off when you straighten your hair you should stop immediately and wait until your hair is completely dry before trying it style it.
Your hair is either not dry after being washed or your heat protectant has not been absorbed or dried yet. Never straighten wet hair as this can damage the hair and dry it out further.