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Should You Add a Heat Protectant to Your Routine?

Should You Add a Heat Protectant to Your Routine?

Wondering if you really need to add a heat protectant into your routine?

The truth is, hair is not really meant to be heated. Blow drying is essentially the fastest way to dehydrate your hair. But heating is the best way to style some hair types. If you are blow drying, curling or straightening with heat, a heat protectant is very necessary if you want to avoid the breakage, dryness and brittleness that come from heat styling.

What should a heat protectant do?

In order to protect hair as much as possible, we need to build a barrier between the heat and your hair. When you apply a heat protectant, it immediately forms a layer over the hair shaft, locking in hydration and closing the cuticle.

The conventional way to do this is with silicone. But silicone is an ingredient that we are not too fond of around here. Being petroleum based, it pollutes the environment and it also forms a hard, light layer on your hair shaft that will not easily wash out. It's been known to cause breakage if overused because it smothers the hair and makes it brittle.

Which ingredients should I look for that are actually beneficial?

We’re looking for humectants that will hold the moisture in, amino acids or proteins that will strengthen and support your hair and extracts that will protect and seal the cuticle and also give good slip so that heat tools will not snag and drag in your hair. Anti-oxidants are a bonus since they protect against oxidation in hair. Specifically, in our HoneyBlossom + Marshmallow Root UV + Heat Protectant, we add hydrolyzed honey for it's detangling and moisture holding properties and quinoa protein for protective amino acids and sunflower powder for it's uv shielding.

A closed cuticle lets hair dry faster so you spend less time drying and styling. Notice how the very ends of your hair dry more quickly than the heavier middle of your hair? When you apply a protective layer, all of your hair should dry at a more even pace.

Heat and ultraviolet light also cause oxidation to occur-adding both yellowing and brassiness to blonde and grey hair and orangey tones to darker colors. Protecting your hair from this heat overexposure helps avoid these unwanted color changes.

Is a leave-in conditioner the same as a heat protectant?

A leave-in conditioner can do the same job as a heat protectant, so if you’re using one that has the humectant and protein combination you can definitely use it prior to heat styling. We love multi-taskers! It’s best to choose a product that works best for your hair type. Something too heavy will weigh your hair down. Too light and it won’t give enough protection.

For fine hair, our LavenderMint+ Wild Clover Hydrating Mist will do the trick. For thicker, coarse hair or hair that needs shielding from UV damage go for the HoneyBlossom + Marshmallow Root UV + Heat Protectant. If you prefer a serum or creme to coat your hair even more, these are both great options also. If your hair is damaged already, adding a leave in conditioner to your daily routine will definitely help with repair, but you need to take a look at your routine from start to finish and be sure that each step-starting with shampoo is adding to the health of your hair.

How should I use it?

Use your heat protectant before blow drying to reduce dry time. Prior to heat styling, apply heat protectant and allow to dry completely before using a straightening iron or curling iron. 

Once finished styling, you can apply a finishing oil to reduce frizz and add weight, or a holding spray to keep your style in place.

*Never, ever use heat tools on wet or damp hair. Steam created can burn your scalp and burn, break or coarsen your hair’s texture.

Now that you know how important it is to keep your hair protected during heat styling, you can start incorporating it into your routine.

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