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Friday, October 12, 2012

All About Heat Damage!

There's alot of debate surrounding heat damage. I am here only to offer my own opinion and personal experience.

What is Heat Damage? Heat Damage can be caused by a variety of styling tools including blow-dryers, flat irons, and curling irons. What happens is heat breaks down the hydrogen bonds that are found in the hair shaft. This causes the hair to be able to be "shaped" while hot, and retain that shape when cooled, or until it comes in contact while another hydrogen process (i.e. more heat or water/humidity).

What Causes Heat Damage? A couple of things can cause heat damage. The prolonged or daily use of styling tools or even one instance of extreme heat.

Prevention & Care - Personally, I take both preventative and after-care steps whenever I choose to use heat on my hair, which is not often. I generally do not flat iron more than 2-3 times a year, or I at least wait 2 months between times. I take extreme care with my hair PRIOR to heat styling. I deep condition overnight before hand, and I then use a small amount of Giovanni Direct Leave In, and alot of Grapeseed Oil (I like the NOW brand, so far). Grapeseed Oil, I have found gives me the best straight results and and heat protectant. It helps to smooth my hair cuticle and gives me glossier, sleek straight hair and also offer heat protection well over 400 degrees, though I never use anything over 392 degrees on my hair, and that is one pass only. After I am done with a straight style I then steam my hair with the Huetiful Hair steamer and apply some sort of Intense Moisture AND Protein treatments. This is imperative to re-balance the hair and get your curls back popping! Also, don't be alarmed if your curls are a LITTLE loose after heat styling; after using protein and moisture you could shingle then with a Denman brush or fingercoil them and the curls should re-form. Personally, (especially when using Grapeseed oil & recently trying Aveda's Smooth Infusion products) I have found that after straightening my hair  it has actually added more uniformity to my curls and taken away some of the frizz that resulted from coloring it blonde. 

Finally, heat damage is still very unpredictable and everyone's experience could differ. But taking the extra pre-cautions and caring correctly for your hair after should result well, for most. Please comment below about your own experiences with heat, tips and tricks!

Let me know if you have any questions! I will be straightening my hair again sometime this winter, so stay tuned!

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