Too much heat to the hair can break the primary structure of a protein and protein cross-links. This will also cause the hair to be brittle and weak. But there are also benefits of blowing out your natural hair without hair damage.
Tips to blowing out your natural hair:
- Use a heat protectant – This is probably the most important, if you can get your hands on one with silicones the better. This will help keep moisture in your hair when it gets in contact with the heat.
- Use the correct blow dryer – Cheap blow dryers usually have very high heat and are not adjustable. Therefore making it easy to damage the hair. Ionic hair dryers are the best, according to experts.
The ionic technology reduces the surface tension on your strands, which results in a sleeker style with less frizz. You’ll find it also encourages retention of your hair’s natural moisture – Barbie Carpenter.
Wattage (How many watts your hairdryer has) is also important, not too low that it takes forever to dry the hair but also not too high that it overheats, 1800watts is safe.
- Plan ahead – Consider what style you are trying to achieve to avoid do-overs which means more heat.
- Take your time – Set sufficient time aside to do your hair. You (should towel dry your hair) need to allow it to drip dry a little before putting it in contact with the heat, it’s not a good idea to blow dry it when it is soaking wet. Putting it in braids or twists helps while it dries.
- Divide your hair up into sections – This ensures you apply everything evenly and that you don’t overheat some parts of your hair.
Natural Hair care Myth Busters:
- Blow-dried hair loses its natural state – This is false. People who wish to keep the coils coiled up all the time should not frown upon those who like to spice it up now and again. The fact that African hair remains straight until the point at which water touches it, is proof enough that it is still very natural.
- There’s some rule book to hair – Not true. Remember that hair is not different from skin type, it is unique. Take some time to get to know your own. Sometimes it’s a matter of trial and error, naturally soft hair, or weak hair is most likely to be affected negatively by heat.
- Heat stifles the growth of natural hair – The growth rate of hair depends largely on one’s genes. The absence or presence of heat has nothing to do with hair growth. However everything in moderation is best, constant heat to the hair is also not good.
The no heat commitment has its benefits but also has limitations.
Benefits of blow drying your hair
- Blowing out your hair can help get rid of tough knots, especially if your hair is thick and long.
- With fewer tangles comes less detangling time, and with less detangling time comes less breakage.
- Blowing out your hair can help you achieve a variety of hairstyles as your hair becomes softer and lighter which makes it easier to manipulate.
- Blowing out your hair can help you minimise shrinkage.
Written by: Kgabo Chuene