Using a Curling Iron without Damaging Your Hair
When I was younger I wore my hair short and didn't worry about damaging my ends since they were cut off every six weeks. In my late 30's I decided to grow my hair out and I realized that over time, the heat from a curling iron can cause heat damage. Here are some tricks I learned to keep a healthy head of hair:
- Use a temperature controlled curling iron. This is ideal for fine or thin hair. Higher temperatures can cause heat damage quickly. Adjust the heat to prevent split ends. Use the lowest temperature possible to curl hair.
- Ceramic. Use a ceramic curling iron. They will help hold the moisture in the hair and distribute heat more evenly. Hot spots in a metal curling iron can scorch hair.
- Steam. Steam irons are less harsh on hair and produce a longer lasting curl.
- Condition. Conditioners protect hair by keeping moisture in. Conditioners with jojoba oil, aloe vera and silk protein help restore moisture to dry damaged hair.
- Thermal protectors. Spray on each section of hair before using the curling iron. Not only will these products help protect hair; it will also give a firmer hold and a longer lasting curl.
- Curling wax. Curling wax can minimize the amount of time the curling iron needs to create a curl. The less time the curling iron is exposed to the hair the risk of heat damage decreases.
- Hot wax or cholesterol. Use hot wax or cholesterol weekly to help ends stay healthy. Healthy hair takes less heat to curl.
- Minimize washings. If hair is dry to begin with, washing 2-3 times a week should be sufficient. Washing can strip natural oils and cause more damage.
- Rest. Let hair rest at least one day a week. Allow hair to dry 75% before applying heat to dry or style hair.
- Trim. Trim ends every six weeks. Preventing split ends is healthier than trying to repair them.
Of course, the best way to protect hair from damage is by eating a healthy diet rich in Omgea-3 fatty acids. Vitamin A is essential in developing a healthy hair follicle that will keep the root of the hair well lubricated and prevent breakage. Vitamin E helps support a healthy scalp by increasing oxygen flow supplied by the blood. B vitamins increasing blood flow and reducing hair loss. Taking supplements to augment a diet lacking in any of these essential vitamins will help promote healthy hair. Healthy hair will resist heat damage more effectively.
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