Pictured: @leslielatrice

We all know that heat isn’t the best for your hair, but there are plenty of good reasons to reach for the blow-dryer or flat iron. Sometimes, you just need to try out a new hairstyle — part of the fun of curly hair is how versatile it is! Also, using a blow dryer can help add volume and definition, not to mention majorly speeding up the drying process.

When you do decide to reach for the heat, you should always apply a heat protectant first. These products are specifically formulated to serve as a barrier between your hair and the heat. This layer of protection can make the difference between fried hair and healthy, happy curls.

Here are 10 of the best heat protectant sprays, serums and creams for protecting your hair from heat damage!

1. Mizani Style Shifter Society Heat Screen Heat Protectant Spray 

This lightweight heat protectant spray contains rose water extract to soften hair and give it shine, without leaving behind a sticky residue. It will shield your hair from heat damage up to 450°F whether you're using a curling wand, flat iron, or even just diffusing. 

2. Curl Keeper Thermal Heat Defence 

This new heat protectant from Curly Hair Solutions has a creamy consistency that gets through thick curls and creates a protective barrier for hair and keeps it smooth even in humidity. It also has a water-based formula that won’t dull or build up on hair - ideal for curlies who are sulfate-free. 

3. Cantu Thermal Shield Heat Protectant

This product provides moisture, frizz control and heat protection all in one bottle. It’s formulated with shea butter and silk, and it protects hair from heat up to 425 degrees. Spray it onto your hair while it’s damp and then blow dry or flat iron.


4. Mielle Organics Mongongo Oil Thermal & Heat Protectant Spray

This Mongongo Oil Thermal & Heat Protectant Spray repairs damage and eliminates frizz while also protecting your hair from heat. It’s silky, not drying, and it won’t weigh your curls down. Just apply it to clean, wet hair from roots to tips.

5. Creme of Nature Argan Oil Heat Defense Smooth & Shine Polisher

You can use this spray on either damp or dry hair. Featuring argan oil and honey, it protects your hair from heat styling, but it also does much more — it seals in moisture, promotes shine, and eliminates frizz. You can even re-apply it to your hair to refresh it and add more shine.

6. Design Essentials Agave & Lavender Weightless Thermal Protectant Serum

This serum is designed for “fine to normal” hair. A few drops of this serum will protect each strand from heat damage without weighing down the hair. The serum also seals moisture into the hair cuticle, making your hair look healthy and shiny.

7. Eden BodyWorks Hibiscus Honey Hydration Blow Dry Cream

Looking for a styling cream and a heat protectant in one product? Look no further. This cream is moisturizing, and it helps to define each strand and keep your hair in place. This product is best for those who aren’t heavy-handed with the heat tools, because it’s only designed for blow-drying, and Eden BodyWorks recommends waiting until your hair is 60 percent dry before blow-drying.

8. Mixed Chicks Straightening Serum

Before you reach for the flat iron, reach for this straightening serum. It results in super shiny and smooth hair, and it’s humidity resistant, so your straight hair won’t revert to curls even in the summer heat. No more dry frizzy hair after the flat iron!

9. Sashapure Smoothing & Shine Hair Treatment

Who knew one product could do so much? This multipurpose hair treatment is rich in omegas, vitamins, and amino acids, so it delivers a powerful dose of nutrients to your hair. It protects your hair from heat as well as tangles, humidity and damage; but you can also use it for styling and detangling, as it softens, smoothes and moisturizes the hair.

10.TRESemmé Thermal Creations Heat Tamer

This heat protectant won the Best of the Best 2021 awards for Type 2 Wavy, Type 3 Curly, and Type 4 Coily categories. It swept the category for all curl types, as voted by the NaturallyCurly community. 

Do you use a heat protectant? Tell us in the comments!