Friday, 17 January 2014

Using Protection - Arming Hair for Heat Styling

I've been talking a lot about heat in the last few posts (find them here and here). But no discussion about heat-styling is ever complete without mentioning heat protectants. As with any category of products, there are a mountain of options out there to cater to your whim and fancy. For the sake of brevity, I will speak on my methods in this post and of course you can chime in in the comments section about how you do things in your neck of the woods. Let's go.

L-R: LottaBody setting lotion, Nioxin Thermal Bliss, Aphogee Keratin & Green Tea Reconstructurizer,
Elasta QP Design Silk & ORS Thermal Protect and SHine

The way I use heat protectants depends on whether I'm using direct heat versus indirect heat.

Protecting hair for the use of Direct Heat
For direct heat (blow-drying and flatironing), I use 2 heat protectants. That is, one for each process. Prior to blow-drying, I section my hair into quadrants, detangle and add my heat protectant which is Nioxin Volumizing Reflectives Bliss Thermal Protector or (less often) Elasta QP Design Silk Thermal Styling Spray. These heat protectants prevent heat damage and also give me relatively straight hair. I usually employ the tension method when blow drying. For the next step, flat-ironing, I utilize a different heat protectant - ORS Thermal Protect and Shine. This can weigh the hair down since it's slightly oily, so instead of spraying directly onto the hair, I spray about twice into the palm of my hands, rub together, then apply it to a quadrant. That's it, I am now armed for the flat-ironing process,

Protecting Hair for Indirect heat
For roller-setting I employ a slightly different strategy. I use LottaBody Setting Lotion for hold and Aphogee Keratin & Green Tea Reconstructurizer for strength. I spray thoroughly throughout my entire head and proceed to roller-set. Where's the heat protectant you ask? Well, after I have finished roller-setting, I spray my head (with the rollers in) with a heat protectant of my choice, usually the Nioxin or Elasta QP. I do this because the nature of the roller-set (indirect heat) requires much less protection from heat than a flat-iron job would.

Again I say, a big part of protecting your hair and preparing it for straightening is to cleanse and condition thoroughly. Refrain from using heat tools on unwashed, unconditioned hair.

There you have it, my 3-part heat-styling series. Now straight hair shouldn't seem so enviable yet so damn daunting. Do it right so you don't end up with the damaged hair plight.

What are your favorite heat-protectants, and why are they the bomb?


  1. Chi Silk Infusion! I love the scent, it protects my ends and it gives the most amazing shine!

    KLP | SavingOurStrands

    1. Oh sounds good. Never used it, but I've heard good things about it, it's pretty popular.


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