Natural Hair: 6 Pointers to Safely Flat Iron
The heat of a blow dryer or the high heat of a flat iron can be very harmful to hair health, especially to those with natural hair. The effects can be even more damaging when hair is exposed to this high heat incorrectly or frequently. There are some tips however, that can help you keep your hair looking fabulous and healthy, should you decide to straighten.
1. Make sure to deep condition before and after
Natural hair losses its strength when heat is used, so to keep your hair at its prime, be sure to use a protein treatment before you straighten your locks. Leave the treatment on for up to an hour. When you are ready to bring back those beautiful curls, use a moisturizing deep conditioner. If while your hair was straight you noticed dandruff, this deep conditioning will restore moisture. Our Vanilla Deep Treatment conditioner would be the perfect fit.
2. Use a good heat protectant
Having the right heat protectant is a very important part of the process and will be a determining factor in your end result. Make sure to choose a heat protectant that works well for your hair, not one that’s too watery or too thick because it can overheat. The last thing you want to do is hear hair sizzling while you are using your flat iron. We recommend our Thermal Styling Protectant Spray. Our spray can be applied section-by-section before using a heat styling tool. This protectant spray is designed to prevent damage, add hold and shine, and leave hair workable and full of life.
3. Lengthen your hair without heat
Blow drying your natural hair, although it might not seem like much, is just more heat and manipulation being added. If time allows, you can skip the blow drying step and stretch your hair before straightening. After washing your hair, apply a small amount of our Leave-In Protein and place your hair in braids, buns, or bands. Let it remain that way until hair is fully dried. Afterwards, apply the Thermal Styling Protectant Spray (heat protector) and begin straightening.
4. Section your hair
Splitting your hair into sections is a big time saver, so it’s important to do before straightening. Make sure your sections are the right size for your particular flat iron. If the sections are too large, you will have to pass the iron multiple times and that extra heat exposure can damage hair. If your sections are too small, you’ll be doubling or tripling the time it takes to flat iron your hair.
5. Use the correct heat setting
Straightening your hair on a very high heat setting can lead to sleeker hair and will reduce the time it takes to straighten; however it can be very damaging to the health of your hair. Using your flat iron consistently on high heat is a sure fire way to damage your delicate locks.
6. Only straighten hair occasionally
Rain, sweat, steam from the shower, and a ton of other factors will make your hair eventually start to revert back to its naturally curly state. Straightening hair too often can result in damaged hair so try to lengthen the amount of time between flat irons. You can try to preserve your sleek look by wrapping it and setting it with bobby pins. Then wrap your head with a silk scarf to keep you hair in place. Also, do not try to sleep with hair down on a cotton pillowcase. Keeping hair tied up will help your look last several days or longer.
Natural hair is very versatile but needs to be taken care of. Some mild heat damage is unavoidable, but the tips we mentioned above are things you can do to keep your hair looking healthy each time you use the flat iron.
Tried any of the tips mentioned above? Head on over to our Facebook page and tell us what you thought!