Think you blow dry like a pro? Many common mistakes you don’t even realize you’re making can wreak havoc on your hair health and style. Here, the pro-approved fixes for your most common strand snafus.
Mistake #1: Blow-drying hair when it’s sopping wet
One of the biggest misconceptions is that you should start drying your hair when it’s fresh out of the shower. But in reality, your hair is most prone to damage when wet. And the longer heat is applied, the more damage it causes, so your goal is to minimize the amount of heat exposure. Hair should be 50 to 60 percent dry before you start blow drying. Get as much moisture out as you can with a towel, and let your hair air-dry for a 10 to 15 minutes after you towel-dry.
Mistake #2: Towel-drying incorrectly
A common mistake and a major cause of frizz is wrapping hair up in a turban or rough drying it with a towel. Aggressively rubbing the towel over your hair can also cause damage. The proper method is to gently press the towel onto the hair to soak up excess water.
Mistake #3: Skipping product
Prepping hair is key. Beyond just protecting strands from heat and tension damage, hair products help you achieve the desired look and enhance the performance of your dryer. Before you begin blow-drying, be sure to use a multi benefit primer to help prep and protect your strands against damage caused by heat styling. For fine or thin tresses, look for a lightweight formula that also adds body and bounce, Anti-Frizz Smoothing Serum is excellent for coarse, frizz-prone hair.
Mistake #4: Using too much product
It’s possible to have too much of a good thing. “Using too much product is a big no-no.” Excess product will weigh down the hair and cause it to overproduce oil. Depending on the thickness of your hair, you should use anywhere from a dime to a quarter size amount of product. Fine, thin strands should get a dime size dose, and scale up from there.
Mistake #5: Using the wrong hair dryer
Does it matters what kind of dryer you use. The answer is yes. A good hair dryer makes all the difference when it comes to styling. Depending on the quality of your dryer, you may be causing more damage than you’re aware of. Investing in a good drying tool not only preserves the health of your hair, but also cuts down on drying time and creates a better result and you don’t have to spend a fortune either. Look for a dryer that offers multiple heat settings and ionic technology.
Mistake #6: Not rough drying your hair
Make sure to rough dry your hair before you start round brushing. Rough drying means lightly giving your hair an all over drying with the hair dryer before you get down to heat styling it in sections. Finer strands should be rough-dried at least 80 percent, and coarse hair about 50 percent. This will maximize your time and reduce breakage.
Mistake #7: Not sectioning strands
If you’re drying your hair all at once (after your rough-dry), you’re doing it wrong. “Flipping your head over, or just aiming the blow dryer at the top layer of your hair can lead to over drying and even damage,” Sectioning is so important, though it’s the number one thing people tend to skip over. It seems like it’s an extra step, but in the long run, sectioning makes the whole drying process easier, it helps speed things up and gives you the professional blowout you want. Start sectioning at the nape of your neck and move upward. The front section will be the most visible, so spend time mastering this segment.
Mistake #8: Blow drying hair in the wrong direction
The roots take longer to dry than the ends. Since you don’t want to use any more heat on the hair than is necessary, it’s important to focus on the roots before you move to the ends, so you don’t trigger overworked locks, split ends, and breakage. Maximize volume by over directing in the root area, and blow dry hair against its natural fall. You definitely don’t want pull the hair straight down, as this will result in limp, flat hair. Create tension with the round brush as you travel down the hair, and move to the mid shaft, always passing over the top. As you continue working downward toward the tips, keep the airflow with the direction of the hair and round the ends till you have a smooth, dry section.
Mistake #9: Using the wrong brush
Brushes are an essential styling tool and are key to creating your desired look. Round, ceramic brushes use tension and control for shiny, frizz-free results. Remember, size matters! For bounce and body, use a larger barrel. For a curlier look, a smaller round brush is going to be better. Throw away the metal brushes, which heat up way too much and can burn the hair.
Mistake #10: Not using the nozzle
Blow dryers come with attachments for a reason, though we don’t all take advantage of them. The nozzle is what helps to create that smooth, shiny appearance we all desire in a blowout. Similarly, a diffuser is great for enhancing curls and also protects hair from heat, which is what causes frizz.
Mistake #11: Using the wrong temperature setting
Blow dryers come with multiple settings, who knew, right? And not all work for all hair types. Thicker hair can take a higher temperature, but anyone with fine hair should be using a lower heat setting. And don’t neglect the cool setting. Use the cool setting to finish the blow dry. This closes the cuticle, enhances shine, and helps set the hair for a longer lasting style.