Many of us are hopelessly in love with our styling tools. Our hair dryers, straighteners and curling tongs can work style miracles on our locks, nailing Hollywood star waves, super-sharp looks and sexily tight curls. But with many tools reaching above a scorching 200℃, it’s no surprise that using them can cause severe heat damage to your tresses. If you’re a regular user of these tools, you’re going to zap all that vital moisture out of your strands, making them dry, weak, frizzy and very prone to breakage. If you’ve really overdosed on your styling devices, it might well be that only a haircut can help the situation. But, if the damage is mild to moderate, then there are ways to undo the harm and get your hair back to full health. Here’s how to repair heat-damaged hair.
What Are the Symptoms of Heat-Damaged Hair?
There are tell-tale signs your hair is suffering from heat damage. It becomes rough to the touch and dull looking and gets progressively harder to style. Split ends become common and the strands start to tangle and knot easily, and start to break. It’s quite possible to experience any of these symptoms without thermal damage being the culprit. But if you’ve got two or more of these signs in combination, it’s almost certain that heat’s the prime suspect. If this sounds familiar, then thankfully there are things you can do to help.
If you’re showing symptoms, then don’t hang around. The quicker you start the process of repairing your heat-damaged hair, the easier it will be to achieve. The longer you wait, the worse the damage will become.
Stop Using Heat Tools
If you have heat-damaged hair, this isn’t the time for half measures. So, take your hair dryers, curling irons and straighteners, put them away in a draw and keep them there while you take the necessary steps to help your locks recover.
Limit Hair Washing
If you wash your hair every day, stop. Washing your hair too often can actually dry it out and shampoos can strip natural oils away. This will just impede the healing process, so cut back washing to no more than three times a week. And of course, opt for gentle products with natural ingredients only.
Moisture is your hair’s best friend. If you’ve got heat-damaged hair, then you need to reacquaint it with its old buddy. After washing your locks, rinse them with lukewarm water (or cold if you can bear it!). This will help seal the hair cuticle and lock in that vital moisture. Then introduce a hydrating and nourishing hair mask into your recovery regimen. Hair masks are brilliant at helping your hair hold onto moisture. Our Hair Mask has been formulated to nourish hair from root to tip, helping to protect it against heat damage. Easy to use, and only needs to be left in for 10 minutes. Use twice a week.
As you’re keeping your beloved tools under lock and key, you need to dry your hair by other methods. Firstly, don’t pick up that towel – vigorous towel-drying will just place already damaged strands under more stress. The towel should only be used to pat-dry your hair to remove excess water. Once you’ve done that, use our Hair Gain Comb and gently run through your locks. Any knots and tangles will be easily removed. Then, allow your hair to air-dry naturally. If the idea of not styling your locks fills you with dread, then check out these great air-dried styles.
Hold Off on The Hair Dye
Permanent chemical dyes and bleaches should be avoided while your hair recovers. They are known to alter the protein structure of hair which can weaken it and make it thinner and rougher. If you’re already dealing with heat damage, you’re just going to make your issues worse and make recovery even harder. If you can’t give up colouring your locks, then move to a temporary dye or better still, use natural alternatives. They’re not free of problems but are way kinder to your tresses.
Keep Your Styles Loose
As your hair recovers, be gentle with it. Tight braids or ponytails should be avoided, and don’t use any harsh chemical products to secure your styles. Bobby pins work well, and microfiber materials are excellent. Our Hair Gain Headband will give you a super-chic look and won’t place any strain on your locks.
How Long Does It Take to Repair Heat-Damaged Hair?
Every case of heat-damaged hair is different. Much depends on how strong your hair is and how badly you have been overcooking it! Again, the earlier you identify the symptoms and take the steps needed will make the road to recovery shorter. Be patient and be prepared to wait a few months for your new regimen to bear fruit. If the damage is truly irreversible, having a fairly drastic haircut may be the only solution.
Prevention Is Always Better Than Cure!
When you’ve restored your hair to optimum health, don’t go back to the habits that caused the problem in the first place. Permanently limit how often you use heat styling and when you do, turn down the heat. The lower the temperatures, the less damage. So, only use tools with a variety of heat settings. Don’t wash your hair daily, and always rinse with cool water. Use a hair mask twice a week and if you want a new colour, use natural or temporary dyes. By following these methods, you’ll help prevent heat-damaged hair in the future and truly love the hair you have.