Many of us think we can get blow drying right pretty easily till the time we really do it. It looks like it can’t be rocket science – you’re just repeating the natural process of air-drying but speeding it up and adding a little heat, right? But lets be clear, blow drying is not at all air drying. To blow dry your hair, in the right manner requires a lot more effort and attention to get it right, perhaps even more than 10 times of what is required in air drying.
There can be a bad blow drying job, where you end up with frizzy, dry hair and breakage. There is a right way to do it, the salon way, and it involves using the right products and keeping hair healthy. It minimizes damage to the hair, keeps it fresh all day, and makes you look like you spent a few thousands on yourself even though you never stepped out of the house!
First, Get Yourself a Good Hair-Dryer
A good blowout is founded on a good hair-dryer that will give you better control. Here’s what a useful pro tool should have at the very least – several heat settings and good build quality. Get a model with a higher fan speed. It will dry your hair faster as it styles, and you can get to your daily work routine without hours of fussing. Look for a longer cord, so you don’t get a crick in your neck from bowing to the short cable as you blow-dry. If your dryer has Cool Shot, you can blast your styled hair at the end with a burst of cold air to set it.
There are a few good hairdryers at various price ranges in the Indian market. If you don’t mind spending a lot (around INR 25,000) to save multiple salon trips, the Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer can be a powerful, premium pro tool for you. The Wahl 5439-024 Super Dry pro styling hairdryer is another far less expensive model you can look at, with Anti-Static Blow and three heat settings. Among the sub-INR 2000 models are the Braun HD 180 Satin, the Agaro HD-1150, and the Vega Pro Touch 1800-2000.
Now that you have a good hairdryer, you need to learn how to use it right!
1. Start by getting your hair as dry as possible
It’s common knowledge by now that after a shower, you should avoid a rough towel-down of your hair. If you have the time, squeeze the water from your hair instead of using a towel, then air-dry for around 15 minutes till hair is at least 60 percent dry. The drier your hair is when you pick up the hairdryer, the less heat you’ll need to use. Also, blow-drying wet hair will guarantee frizz.
2. Use the right kind of towel if you must
If you don’t have the time and want to use a towel, pick up a light microfiber towel that won’t strain and stress your hair as a heavy bath towel will. A turban of a heavy bath towel is going to rough up your cuticles and damage your hair. There’s going to be less friction from a microfiber towel and thus less frizz.
3. DON’T brush wet hair
It’s also common knowledge that running a brush through wet hair is death for your strands. If necessary, you can use a wide-toothed comb to detangle gently. If you have long hair, grab the ends in your hands and lightly comb before moving to the roots.
4. Get the right brush
After your hair is nearly dry, you’ll need to have your brush handy. Stylists typically use round brushes for bouncy volume. If you have straight hair and more bounce and volume sounds good to you, get a ceramic brush. These hold heat and add more volume. If your hair is already rough and voluminous or curly, you could try using a boar bristle brush that makes hair easy to manage.
5. Use a heat protectant
Heat protectants are not just marketing gimmicks. They work, and they’re as important as sunscreen. When you buy a heat protectant, make sure you note whether it’s to be used on wet hair or dry hair. Some products are designed for specific uses. You can start your search with the L’Oreal Paris Hairstyle Sleek It Iron Straight Heat Spray, the Arvazilla Pro-Grade Thermal Heat Protectant Plus, and the Tresemme Thermal Creations Heat Tamer Spray. When you spray, don’t forget the back of your head. You can also part your hair in sections and work the product with your fingers or a comb.
6. Use the right attachment & heat settings
Your blow-dryer may have a flat nozzle or diffuser attachment that you shouldn’t ignore. The attachment will make the whole process less traumatic for your strands and focus the heat, so the hot air doesn’t disperse and cause frizz.
Avoid the highest heat setting, or you’ll over-dry. If you’re in a rush and your tool gives you the option, increase the airspeed instead of the heat.
7. Blow dry the right way
Hold the brush in your dominant hand and the dryer in the other. This awkward pose may need some getting used to, but you’ll have more control over the brush you’re wielding. Start on the front of your head, not the back, and work through your hair in sections. You can use butterfly clamps, duckbill clips, or hair section clips to hold your hair up and bring it down section by section to work on. Make sure to continually move the hairdryer so you’re drying every part of each strand evenly. Don’t leave any area cold and damp to avoid frizz. When all your hair is dry, switch to the Cool Shot setting and go over your hair to seal in style and add a little shine.
As you can see, blow-drying your hair, the salon way has a technique. If you follow it to a T, you’ll never have to make weekly visits to the salon again! Some of the heat-protectant products out there can make your style last for as long as three days. So, get yourself a good hairdryer and get styling.