This article comes from Self.com.
It may seem like an easy task: grab a blow-dryer, point, and blast with heat. But there is a mastery behind it. And you may be making simple mistakes that are actually hurting your hair even more than your look. Here, top pros break down the science to getting a gorgeous at-home blowout every single time and point out all the rookie mistakes that keep them in business.
Let’s start at the very beginning: Investing in a high-quality tool is important, especially if you have a lot of hair or you’re blow-drying your hair often.
If you have thick hair, you’re probably damaging your hair more with a cheap blow-dryer as opposed to investing in a great one that will protect your hair and blow-dry it quicker. Expensive dryers tend to come with hair-saving smart features like high power, multiple heat settings, a cool shot, and ionic air technology. The last one helps with frizz, creates shine, and minimizes blow-dry time. The technology in ionic hair dryers helps break down water molecules faster, which makes the hair dry faster. The less time your hair is under heat and the more control you have over the temperature, the healthier it will be.
After getting out of the shower, women tend to leave their hair in the towel for like 30 minutes. A cotton-based towel causes friction on the hair, and it’s more prone to damaging the strands to the point where the hair breaks off.
If you want to get rid of excess water use a microfiber towel or an old t-shirt. And still, only spend about 10 minutes with your head wrapped up post-shampoo.
The best thing for your hair’s health is actually letting it air-dry before blow-drying. Hair is in its most vulnerable state when wet, so allowing it to air-dry is always the healthiest option.
Make sure to dry your hair according to your texture. Fine-to-medium hair can air-dry a bit longer, to about 80 percent dryness, whereas thicker hair should only be about 50 percent dry before blow-drying. That’s because you have a better chance of getting curly or full hair straight while it’s still a little damp.
If you have curly or wavy hair and want to enhance your natural texture, add product when it’s very wet, squeeze out the excess with your hands, and wrap it up gently in a microfiber towel or t-shirt. Once your curls stop dripping, you can start blow-drying.
On the opposite side of the 30-minute towel turban faux paus is taking a round brush to sopping wet hair. It’s bad form to immediately walk out of the shower and pick up your blow-dryer and round brush for a blowout. Use a dryer to rough dry hair first. Set it to medium heat and low speed. If the hair is very wet and put on high speed, then it gets whipped around a lot, this can cause split ends, tangles, and frizz. Once hair is about 80 percent dry from the rough dry, then you can start sectioning it, molding it, and styling it with a round brush.
Using the right product pre-blowout is going to save your ends from breakage and make your blowout last longer. But make sure you’re applying it correctly.
When some people use a serum for frizzy hair or a thickening spray for volume, they just spray the top of their hair, instead of all around.
Part the hair, creating sections, and working the product from mid-shaft to ends. You can also comb it through or use your fingers.
You know that flat, nozzle thing that attaches to the end of your hair dryer? Don’t lose it! That little nozzle helps concentrate the air in a more precise way and protect hair from excess heat, which is better for hair health and styling.
A nozzle is a must for a smooth finish! The nozzle provides distance between the hair and the lip of the dryer, which is the hottest point. Additionally, the nozzle keeps the air flow concentrated, and without it, the hot air disperses, causing undesirable frizz.
Even if you’re not going for a sleek style, it is important to attach the nozzle—no matter how lazy you feel. If you’re just a ‘rough dry and go’ girl, you should still utilize the smoothing capabilities of the concentrator. It helps streamline the airflow leading to less tangles and split ends.
Look for thinner nozzles—that way, it’s more direct. The thinner nozzle will help blast hot air directly to the roots and get more volume in your styles.
When it comes to choosing a brush, the type you use should depend on the results you’re looking for and your hair type. Typically a round brush is the stylist favorite for a voluminous, bouncy look. But you have choices when it comes to the material of the bristles. For women with straight hair who want movement, ceramics are fantastic. For women who want smoothness but have coarse, frizzy hair, boar bristle is key to provide the right amount of tension needed to achieve that smoothness.
Many women make the mistake of starting their blowout from the back of the hair. It’s better to start at the temples, hairline, and crown then move backwards to the nape. That way you tackle the most visible parts first.
Usually you start in the back, and by the time you get to the top and hairline, your hair has dried making it harder to get smooth.
And if you have bangs, we’re definitely talking to you. he front of hair tends to be the most challenging to smooth—think cowlicks and short wisps—and is also the most visible part of your style. By starting from the back, your hairline is bound to get frizzy, so get the tough part done first.
Click here to continue reading this article.