Hair drying can be the most damaging part of any hair regimen. Heat wreaks havoc on waves and has both short and long term negative effects and hot air directly causes frizz and dull-looking hair. Here are three ways to gently dry your waves without damaging them.
1. Pat dry
This is obviously the easiest and healthiest way to dry your waves. For the longest time, I dried my hair by rubbing it up and down with a coarse bath towel.
Then I learned about the damaging effects these towels (not to mention my method of rubbing my hair dry) had on my hair shaft. They cause breakage and frizz — both of which I did not want for my hair.
I switched over to a microfiber towel and I will never go back. Microfiber towels are gentle on hair shafts and amazingly absorbent, so it’s easier to pat dry. Patting dry is the preferred method because it doesn’t break the hair.
MORE: How to Dry Curly Hair
2. Blow dry
According to some claims, blow drying can actually be healthier for your hair than air drying. The reasoning behind it is that hair swells whenever it comes in contact with water, thereby putting pressure on our hair’s proteins to stay intact.
The more time you allow your hair to be wet, the more pressure is applied and the more damaging it is on your hair. I’d like to see proof before I completely agree with this theory, but the point is that there is a healthy way to blow dry your hair.
- Let your hair dry naturally till it is about 70-80% dry.
- Use the cool setting on your blow dryer. If you don’t have a cool setting, use the medium setting.
- Blow dry your hair, making sure to keep the dryer a good six inches away. The closer the heat is to your hair, the more likely your hair will be damaged by it.
- Always seal in your hair’s moisture with a nourishing serum or hair oil.
3. Use a diffuser
If your waves are a little too fragile for the straight stream of a blow dryer, try a hair diffuser. It’s a great way to quickly dry your waves while encouraging more curl definition. It is also a better way to blow dry textured hair.
The diffuser slows down the fast stream of hot air by spreading it evenly over a larger surface, reducing the amount of hot air touching your hair and reducing frizz since it disturbs the curl much less.
The fingers on a hair diffuser also help your waves to form gorgeous spirals that can almost pass for curly hair!
At first, using a diffuser can be annoying — it takes a couple of tries to get the hang of it. But if you follow these tips by Curly Suzy, you can become a pro in no time.
- Put your favorite hair styler on before diffusing.
- Use the medium setting on your hair dryer.
- Hang your head upside down for maximum volume.
- Scoop the hair up, scrunching the hair up to your scalp with the diffuser.
- Work in sections until your hair is about 90% dry.